Oakwood Primary School, Easterhouse, Glasgow
Reel Kids Music is currently implementing a three-year programme at Oakwood Primary School in order to develop musicianship skills among students in Primary 5, 6, and 7. Every week, the children have a 30 or 45 minute class, based on the Kodály concept, which teaches fundamental music skills through songs, games, and rhymes. The children are learning to read and notate music and also to sing using “ solfa” handsigns.
Oakwood Primary is situated in Easterhouse, a disadvantaged area of Glasgow, where the population/community is deeply affected by high unemployment and poverty rates. The school has a highly motivated community with a deep sense of pride and a desire to achieve well for all its families. To this end, the Headteacher has identified increasing the students’ opportunities for creativity as a key way to enhance achievement and attainment. The Reel Kids Music programme is part of a series of culture-changing initiatives designed to support that aim.
The music programme helps children develop musicianship and musical knowledge. These are not only beneficial in and of themselves but foster other core skills — which are particularly important in schools in areas of deprivation — such as active listening, collaboration, and purposeful focus. In addition, the programme brings to its students the sheer enjoyment of participation and appreciation of the power of music.
Research consistently shows that quality music teaching has enormous benefits for children. Taking part in singing and music-making activities helps their young brains develop not only cognitively but socially and emotionally as well.
“When children are out on trips they randomly burst into songs they have learned.”Ms Kelly, P6 teacher
“P7 have loved the music lessons. It has been wonderful watching them improve week by week. I feel my confidence in music has increased. I have learned a lot and will definitely use the strategies and technique in the future.”Mrs Bestow, P7 teacher