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Trench Brothers Exhibition

Today sees the launch of our long awaited Trench Brothers exhibition! 

Touring three locations around Lancashire, the interactive exhibition is a creative response to the untold stories of ethnic minorities in the First World War.

For further details, check out the dedicated exhibition page on this website and feel free to explore and discover more about the project.

Impact tested, effect measured – TIME comes to an end.

The end of time is usually a cause for concern, but with the conclusion of our TIME project, the end of TIME (testing impact, measuring effect), is a chance to celebrate and reflect upon more than a year of hard work. The project saw as its conclusion the launch of a DVD and book, which detail the responses of the children of Queen Eleanor Primary Academy to their school’s vision and values.

Daniel Smith

Headteacher / Queen Eleanor Primary Academy

This project has been all about what it adds to our school and there is no doubt that the additions have been significant – both in terms of professional capital and collective achievement.

We worked with teachers throughout the year to deliver a way for them to enrich their own teaching by sharing our tried and tested methodology of embedding the arts within all aspects of the curriculum.

Daniel Smith

Headteacher / Queen Eleanor Primary Academy

The initial workshops helped to focus the teachers on the importance of skill development within the more creative subjects as well as to get to know their classes better as budding artists, musicians and actors.

Working together, the school decided that the end product would take the form of each class responding to a specific vision or value, through the arts. At the very start of the project, it would not have been possible to predict the enthusiasm and creativity that the children would display as the weeks and months passed. Each class worked with a composer to write and record a song that exemplified their value or vision, utilising a wide range of genres and influences including jazz, rap, gospel and soft rock.

Daniel Smith

Headteacher / Queen Eleanor Primary Academy

At the outset, it was really important to ensure that the work that we undertook complemented and indeed enhanced the school’s journey towards excellence whilst also providing something substantial and lasting. I am pleased that this has been the case. The use of our school vision and values as the subject matter certainly helped with this endeavour.

Alongside the song, each class worked on more varied projects that allowed them to explore their theme in greater detail with the help of a specialist in different artistic fields. This ranged from building a rhino sculpture to demonstrate Resilience…

 

The mighty rhino of Resilience!

The mighty rhino of Resilience!

 

to collaborative collages to celebrate Collaboration…

 

All hands on deck!

All hands on deck!

 

as well as photography, puppetry and animation.

 

The songs, recorded in a professional studio, are celebrated on a DVD to keep a lasting record of the pupils’ works. This, along with QEPA’s Fantastic Book of Values, will allow the school to look back at what they have achieved and serve as a positive reinforcement of their values and visions.

Daniel Smith

Headteacher / Queen Eleanor Primary Academy

I’m absolutely delighted with the quality of the finished articles.

For us, it has also been a valuable opportunity to evaluate our methodology in detail and assess its impact, as well as to develop it through CPD training to enhance teachers’ skills, an experience we are looking to expand and replicate.

We would like to extend our thanks to the staff and students of QEPA for their commitment to the project. The TIME project was funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, whose generosity made all of this possible, for which we are very grateful.

Trench Brothers – Lancashire Tour

Trench Brothers is our First World War project that brings to life the lives of Black and Indian soldiers and commemorates their contributions. After running the project in schools around London, this summer saw the project taken on a tour around Lancashire in partnership with the Heritage Team at Lancashire County Council. The tour covered the length and breadth of the county, visiting primary schools from Blackpool to Burnley and was well extremely well received wherever it went, but don’t just take our word for it:

 

Justine North

/ Worsthorne

As a school located in a traditionally ‘White English’ village, we often find our children and families have little knowledge or empathy with other cultures. It has been valuable for our school to embrace the contributions made to the war effort by black soldiers.

 

We have been thrilled by the warm reception that the project received in every school that it visited. The pupils, teachers and parents showed our team nothing but a tremendous amount of appreciation and enthusiasm.

 

Students receive four workshops along with over 90 commissioned lesson plans, which inform their understanding of the topic by integrating learning about the First World War across the curriculum. You can learn more about this by clicking here.

 

For the tour, we partnered with several local organisations and performers to deliver the workshops.

 

The artefact handling workshop was provided by Lancashire County Council Heritage team:

 

Ruby Patel

/ St. Augustine’s

When the children wrote their diary extract, they wrote descriptively and passionately about their experience of being a soldier in the British army.

Justine North

/ Worsthorne

The children appreciate that there was a lot more to life in the war than fighting. It made them think more about life in the trenches.

 

Ranj Nagra played the role of an Indian Havildar to give students a first-hand experience of what life would have been like for young recruits.

image1

Claire Clarke

/ Willow Lane

[One child] adored the Havildar session and stayed in role as a soldier throughout. She wrote an excellent piece in role as a Havildar talking about him and how he treated the other soldiers.

 

Led by puppeteers from the Horse and Bamboo Theatre, students crafted their own puppet in the likeness of an Indian or BWIR soldier.

 

puppetpilling

A student from Piling St. John proudly shows off his BWIR puppet.

 

Colette Hardman

/ Reedley

Most of our children find art and craft skill difficult, however, Horse and Bamboo engaged the children with their step by step instructions. This allowed the children to keep focus, follow the instructions and complete the task that they are proud of.

 

Once all the workshops are complete, the students prepared for their final performance of our Trench Brothers music theatre piece by composers Julian Joseph, Richard Taylor and libretto by our own Creative Director Tertia Sefton-Green. They learnt the songs for the show, including their Letter Song about a given soldier they have written the lyrics for and set to music with a composer.

 

Justine North

/ Worsthorne

They learned that they can be song writers and composers. They gained confidence to sing in front of their peers and were proud to have their ideas included in the song.

 

On the day itself, our team of 8 turned up in each school with all the necessary equipment and, in the space of a few hours, got the children ready for their performance! We are delighted to say that each school put on a fantastic performance, one that will be recorded on our Legacy Site shortly.

 

Chris Allton

/ Cliviger

I could not believe the amount of time and resources provided to the school and the final product at the end.

 

Claire Clarke

/ Willow Lane

What an opportunity for our children! We have never done anything like this before at our school and I was astonished with the results. We loved learning our songs and taking part in a show with another year group. All the children were so proud of the part they’ve played and the feedback from parents has been amazing. One parent said ‘Best thing I’ve ever seen.,

 

francisveterans

The students of St. Francis of Assisi invited local veterans to watch the performance.

 

The schools involved in the project will also be contributing some of their work to the Trench Brothers exhibition, which will shortly begin its own tour of Lancashire starting on 10 August at Lancashire Maritime Museum. There, the children’s work will be found alongside fascinating memorabilia and displays that will bring the Trench Brothers experience to life.

 

Colette Hardman

/ Reedley

I have learnt from the staff provided new ways to engage children’s learning. I have developed as a teacher to engage students in new ways.

 

We would like to extend our thanks to all of our partners on this project, as well as the Heritage Lottery Fund, whose generous support made the project possible.

Future Doves – Update!

HMDT Music created Future Doves, a new project that took place during the Spring 2017 term of the Saturday Programme, with support from Snape Maltings through their Friday Afternoons Project Fund. The project involved over 300 students from all across our Saturday programme; Fledglings, CYMH and I Can Sing! (ICS!), and tasked them with responding to the song cycle Seasons and Charms,the Friday Afternoons project commissioned from composer Jonathan Dove and writer Alasdair Middleton.

Working with choreographer Mia Okorafor and videographer Stacey Williams, the ICS! Juniors and Seniors spent a dance workshop creating a physical interpretation of two of the songs that CYMH sung. The resulting films were projected as a backdrop to the choral performances; a new opportunity for us to integrate ICS! and CYMH through digital media!

You can watch the resulting piece below!

About Friday Afternoons

The Friday Afternoons initiative began in 2013 with the aim of encouraging young people across Suffolk to sing Benjamin Britten’s collection of Friday Afternoons songs on what would have been the composer’s 100th Birthday. The project quickly grew, and it was immediately clear that groups from around the world were keen to explore this genre of music, so every year since then Snape Maltings (previously Aldeburgh Music) and Friday Afternoons have commissioned a new set of songs inspired by the original collection. What now exists is an ever growing collection of over 40 songs written specifically for young people’s voices, and a varied selection of repertoire available completely free to anyone who wishes to use it. To date, close to 80,000 young people have taken part in the project. To find out more and get involved, visit www.fridayafternoonsmusic.co.uk

Congratulations to our ABRSM Students!

We are delighted to announce that our latest batch of students to take their ABRSM exams have done exceedingly well. The rate of Distinctions was an incredible 33%, with a further 35% achieving a Merit grade. All of our Saturday Programme students passed their exam – a testament to our methodology and the hard work of our pupils and tutors.

Our “wholistic” approach to music education on our Saturday Programme centres around equipping young people with a knowledge of music that extends beyond their chosen instrument(s), through choir practice, theory lessons and classes in general musicianship. These results help to confirm that our proven methods work, as shown by the fact that all the Distinctions came from students who do a full day at the Saturday Programme, beyond one-to-one lessons.

We know that pupils whose parents felt able to help them were more likely to achieve a distinction or a merit over a pass grade. To this end, we will be looking to improve the resources we can offer to parents to help them feel confident enough to provide assistance in the run up to exams.

Finally, we would also like to extend our congratulations to the external students who came and took their exams at our centre.