HOW WE DO IT
We use an approach based on social pedagogy (often called ‘musically inclusive practice’ which has its grounding in informal music education and community music).
This has six key aspects to it:
person-centred – responding to and driven by each individual – built around the music they want to make
holistic – focusing equally on musical, social and personal outcomes
creative – aiming to identify and bring out each person’s unique musicality
emotionally engaged – enabling trust, effective feedback and positive modelling of behaviours
inclusive – focused on ways to break down barriers to achieving potential in music, learning and life
outcomes driven – focused on what participants, funders and commissioners of services want to achieve
We’re not alone. This type of practice has been developing for more than a decade and there is a nationwide network of practitioners using this approach, supported by a wealth of research evidence to show its impact.
The charity Youth Music is at the centre of this work – you can find out more about the impact of the projects it supports on the Youth Music website.
Video: This song was created and performed by two young women, who took part in our Music Minds programme in 2016. Jenny, aged 13, was in the ‘top five’ of students with challenging behaviour in her school. She would regularly argue with staff, and...
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
See what people have to say about their experience of working with us.
SUSIE SAYS …
“Sam and Jake absolutely love the workshops. They come away buzzing every Saturday, always having learned something new and feeling inspired. We’re seeing both boys growing in confidence and ambition, and they’ve made new like-minded friends too. The workshops have ‘perked up’ the weekends no end and it’s not quite such a battle to encourage them to get homework done, once they’ve released some of their creative energy!”
Susie Newman-Turner, mum to Sam and Jake who attend Audio-Base in Tetbury.
ALESHA SAYS …
“The tutor has shown us how we can make our own music, and we can record it. You can jam with people. You can’t do this anywhere else.”
Alesha Maguire-Toombs, aged 12.
SAFFIRA SAYS …
“You can just jam with each other, it’s fun, you get to learn a lot off the tutors, you get inspiration.They know everything, and can give us tips.”
Saffira Maguire-Toombs, aged 12.
DEIRDRE SAYS …
“I am so elated, because finally there is something for young people playing in this genre. You have orchestras and brass bands, but there’s been nowhere for kids playing popular music to get together. They don’t really get opportunities to experiment with different instruments and ways of making music, and having the technology side is great. And the music leaders are lovely, they’re very open and very generous in how they deal with students.”
Deirdre Maguire-Toombs, mum to Saffira and Alesha, aged 12, who attend Audio-Base in Forest of Dean.
NICOLA SAYS …
“The Music Works enabled our most vulnerable students to express themselves freely and confidently. All 28 students absolutely loved blending rap and poetry together, and it was great to see our students enjoy writing and creating poetry. This session was truly inspiring and our students took so much away from it: confidence, engagement with writing and self-worth.”
Nicola Toohig, English Teacher, Archway School.
SUE SAYS …
“The year 6 children from Chesterton Primary School, Cirencester, had a wonderful time combining music and technology. Even our most reluctant musicians are finding out about time signatures, chords and composition as they enjoyed exploring GarageBand on the iPad.”
Sue Dearsley, class 6 teacher, Chesterton Primary School.
DIANE SAYS …
“It achieved all we wanted it to: understanding of musical concepts as well as composition – often the hardest thing to deliver. It was successful too in engaging ALL pupils through music. We have a few in year 5 that have behavioural issues, ADHD, family members with mental health problems- so they find concentration and engagement really hard, but they were completely. I think it has changed their perception of themselves, how they feel about music and what they can achieve.”
Diane Bainbridge, Headteacher, Whiteshill Primary (nr Stroud).
HOWARD SAYS …
“Our students literally jumped to join the sessions when it was their turn. It seemed to really boost their self-esteem and sense of achievement, they worked really well together and supported each other throughout, they had lots of ideas and rose to the challenges presented. Your music leader was always well prepared, on time and enthusiastic, he seemed able to deal with whatever we threw at him – he was always prepared to go the extra mile.”
Howard Eason, Heart of the Forest Special School.
GARETH SAYS …
“During my time at the school I have been delighted with the progress made and subsequently the opportunities provided by The Music Works. I am keen to continue to build on this relationship to provide a legacy for a high quality music curriculum and extra-curricular opportunities. Their work is providing a tangible music presence in the school. The value and positive impact this has made and will continue to make to the school and community is really exciting.”
Gareth Reynolds, Associate Head,The Forest High School.
ANNALISE SAYS …
“Music technology is particularly good for engaging young people who are switched off to learning. The staff have a way of working with even the most anxious pupils that brings out the best in them – they’re highly skilled in music themselves and inspire young people to aim higher. They’re very professional – collaborative, thoughtful and reliable. They really care about the outcomes for each pupil and this belief and care in each pupil helps to produce great results.”
Annalise Price-Thomas, Head of Service, Gloucestershire Hospital Education Service