From our very first cries as a baby to the singing of an aria, the voice is our most powerful form of expression. I believe that everyone should have the opportunity to sing from an early age and am a strong advocate of developing a singing culture in every context. As Senior Leader of Singing & Vocal Development, I love having the opportunity to meet other practitioners, share experiences and offer ideas to enable them to use their voice with confidence.
Last week, Sutton Music Hub welcomed over 20 teachers from local nurseries and pre-schools to join us for a morning of singing. Despite the nervous faces when they entered the room, we were soon up on our feet and singing a welcome song, led by vocal specialist Lynda Benn. The session focussed on how to use your voice with confidence in an early years setting, vocal technique and teaching songs using the Kodály method.
Not worrying about singing perfectly – be natural with it. Create singing opportunities throughout the day not just at singing time. Staff should enjoy it and instill an early love of singing, making children more aware of their voices.
One of the main hurdles in teaching singing is often confidence and feeling that you need a ‘special talent’ in order to teach singing to young children. However, this is simply not the case. Children love to sing and will be encouraged by your energy and enthusiasm! They won’t notice if you sing slightly out of tune and they don’t think you are silly when you use a different voice – they just want to have fun and sing with you. By normalising singing in the classroom from a young age, we can inspire children to continue on their musical journey from nursery to primary to secondary school. Throughout the morning, it was amazing to see our teachers grow in confidence and we hope that by providing opportunities like this, we will be able to create a strong singing legacy for Sutton.
“Good course, the two ladies putting on the course were very engaging, and would recommend the course to others”
As a music hub, we are committed to making a difference and strongly believe that by instilling singing from a young age, we can help to create a borough full of keen and talented musicians. This first Early Years CPD session was such a great success that we hope to repeat it in the future to reach other nurseries and pre-schools who missed out this time around. I am also looking forward to working with practitioners to develop a follow up session so that we can continue to support the fantastic work that is happening in our nurseries and pre-schools in Sutton.
“New ideas to use in our setting – can’t wait to try!”
Singing & Vocal Development