This term, secondary school students across United Learning are enjoying a range of new and exciting projects as part of our most recent music initiative, #UnitedinMusic.
Across the Group, students and staff have been immersing themselves in a range of musical projects. At Walthamstow Academy and The Hurlingham Academy, students enjoyed a special Samba Drumming Day where they worked together to create exciting samba music and rhythms on authentic Brazilian drums and learnt about the culture of Carnival.
Elsewhere, at Midhurst Rother College, students have been immersing themselves in music from Indonesia, with the school borrowing a set of traditional Gamelan instruments for the term. As well as students at the academy learning how to play these unique instruments, staff have been trained to deliver workshops for pupils at nearby primary schools, enabling young people across the local community to experience this musical culture for the first time.
Catherine Barker, Head of Music and Performing Arts at United Learning said:
"It is fantastic to see secondary academies across the Group inspiring students to get involved in music-making through the #UnitedInMusic project. From DJ sessions in Sheffield, to Indian dhol drumming in Banbury and London Symphony Orchestra composing workshops in London, across the country we are helping the students who need it most to take up and keep up music.
“All of this is part of United Learning's commitment to deliver an Education with Character which means broadening our students’ horizons and providing them memorable experiences beyond the day-to-day curriculum. Given the disruption that young people have faced over the past two years, it is incredibly important that we are re-engaging them in music and bringing the subject to life.”
Commenting on their ‘BigVoices Sing’ project, a Year 7 student at Paddington Academy said:
“I like that we all get to do something together and that we will be able perform at the end of the project. It's been fun to see professional singers and our teachers joining in to help us feel less nervous and be more excited.”
Speaking about the school’s taiko drumming workshops, Lucy Baish, music teacher at The Cornerstone Academy said:
“Our students in Years 7-9 had an absolute ball with Taiko South West – the day is still much talked about and we've already established our own extra-curricular club to keep the momentum going. Thanks to the funding we received from United Learning, our set of taiko drums will hopefully now become a staple of extra-curricular music-making at the academy.”