The Future of Singing in Transition and Secondary Richard Jones National Specialism Coordinator for Performing Arts and Music SSAT Steve Cook Director of Performing Arts/AST Personalised Learning Co-ordinator SSAT Lead Practitioner Formby High School
An EISTEDDFOD! The word eisteddfod is derived from the Welsh word eistedd, meaning "to sit", and bod meaning "to be" and therefore means "to be sitting" or "to be sitting together" ("bod" is softly mutated into "fod").
“ SINGING? In SCHOOLS? Someone should have thought of that before.... Oh! They did! “
What History Tells Us.. With thanks to Prof. John Paynter Around 1025 Guido D’Arezzo created a system of musical notation using a 4-line staff which has evolved into the system we use today. The importance of this work is enormous. Before Guido's invention of musical notation, every singer had to memorize the entire chant repertoire.
The Tonic Sol-fa method of teaching vocal music was codified by an English Congregational minister, the Reverend John Curwen (1816-1880) who drew upon a number of earlier European and English music teaching systems including an indigenous English music teaching method known as Norwich Sol-fa . The Norwich method had been devised by Sarah Glover (1785-1867 )
<ul><li>The 1931 Hadow Report on Primary Schools stated, </li></ul><ul><li>“ The educative value of music has often been overlooked in the past. It has sometimes been mistakenly regarded as a soft relaxation…. </li></ul>
<ul><li>If taught on sound lines it should react on the whole work of a school. In no subject is concentration more necessary; in no subject is there so much scope for the disciplined and corporate expression of the emotions….” </li></ul>
1932 The first Scheme of Work – written by Margaret Donington Mary Datchelor School, Camberwell
<ul><li>The aim of the whole scheme is to treat Music as an ordinary class subject. Every girl takes it as a matter of course whether she is gifted or not. The classes are not graded.” </li></ul>
<ul><li>“ There is no attempt at specialising in any direction whatsoever- the aim is rather to place within the reach of each child the opportunity of understanding and appreciating every side of the Art of Music.” </li></ul>
<ul><li>The scheme was published by OUP in </li></ul><ul><li>“ Music throughout the Secondary School: A Practical Scheme”. </li></ul><ul><li>In her Foreword the Headmistress wrote…. </li></ul>
<ul><li>From being an accomplishment for a young lady, a soft option for the dull girl, or an expensive extra for the technically gifted, it is slowly but surely winning recognition as part of the education of a normal girl……” </li></ul>
<ul><li>… . And in some quarters also of a normal boy! </li></ul>
<ul><li>The Headmistress went on to write… </li></ul><ul><li>“… nothing here described needs for its accomplishment a lavish expenditure of money, or impossibly ideal conditions, or extravagant time table allowance… “ </li></ul><ul><li>Heard that before..? </li></ul>
Spens: Grammar Schools 1938 <ul><li>Except with the previous permission of the Board, adequate provision must be made for instruction in the English Language and Literature, at least one language other than English, Geography, History, Mathematics, Science, Drawing, Singing , Manual Instruction in the case of boys, domestic subjects in the case of girls, Physical Exercises, and for Organised Games.' </li></ul>
1959 Primary Education: suggestions for the consideration of teachers This Ministry of Education publication provides a snapshot of primary education in the 1950s, eight years before the publication of Plowden .
Singing comes foremost among the resources available at any time of day; it calls for no apparatus apart from the teacher's voice, and experience shows that there are few teachers of young children who cannot learn to sing simply, naturally and rhythmically the traditional songs that are the children's heritage and that should form the basis of all their musical training of the primary stage.
<ul><li>“ A powerful factor in musical education is the teacher's own enjoyment of music, and his power to communicate that enjoyment through confident but sensitive presentation. The most useful musical asset the primary school teacher can possess is a pleasant, unforced singing voice. </li></ul>
The treatment of 'growlers' has already been discussed. These children should never be excluded from the singing class, nor silenced altogether when the others are singing. A little individual attention usually produces rapid improvement in sense of pitch and control of voice, and the provision of simple instruments as an alternative means of musical expression is particularly helpful in such cases.
Read the full chapter on music with much more on singing at http://www.dg.dial.pipex.com/documents/docs4/primary15.shtml
The Plowden Report (1967) Children and their Primary Schools The rot sets in?
If the upper age limit of the primary school is extended to 12 some fresh problems will result but there will also be new opportunities. As far as boys are concerned, many of their voices will be at their best, and singing of high quality, which should include singing in parts, will be possible at the primary stage. With earlier maturing, however, some boys and not a few girls of this age will be passing through a phase of uncertainty, and it may be advisable to reduce the amount of singing expected from some children, to limit the register range of what they sing and to provide other means of practical music making.
Influence of Vaughan Williams, Orff and Kodaly.... Vocal and / or instrumental?
The 70’s - Schools Council Music Project lays the foundation for composing an an integral part of the music curriculum. The 80’s - The National Curriculum The 90’s – Influence of Local Financial Management of Schools The 00’s - Commitment for all primary school children to learn an instrument Music Manifesto