The Music Workshop Company Coronavirus Home Learning resources
During this challenging time, the Music Workshop Company will be sharing activities and resources to keep music alive in your homes.
Feel free to explore the wide range of articles, top tips and other resources, or click on the links to find activities for specific age groups.
If you would like resources on a specific topic please email Maria AT music-workshop.co.uk
Early Years & Key Stage 1
Key Stage 2
Key Stage 3
Key Stage 4 & opinion pieces
Is there an instrument you can play at home, without buying special equipment? Can you make music from items already in your house? The answers are yes, and yes. You can make sounds and rhythms with a percussion instrument that you'll find in your kitchen. Spoons have been used to make rhythmic percussion music since ancient times. The Romans, Greeks and ancient Egyptians all played spoons. Read more.
This year, organisations from around the world have been sharing music and arts education resources online. This connects them with people who would normally be able to attend performances and workshops, and it creates a whole new way to learn. The upside of this is that a whole range of creative activities from top arts bodies is now readily available, wherever you are in the world. Read more.
Famous for the Saxophone, Sax conceived and patented quite a number of new instruments. His life was difficult and unusual, but his influence, and the thick, singing tones of his instruments or those they inspired, are still heard daily across music genres from pop to jazz and orchestras to regimental brass bands. Read more.
Explore how you can make music through clapping, stamping and clicking your fingers with our introduction to body percussion. Body percussion is a brilliant way to warm up for a music workshop, and a useful tool for creating music in a group. It is incredibly accessible; the human body is an instrument every participant possesses. It is also valuable for internalising fundamental musical concepts including rhythm, beat and tempo. Read more
Did you know you can play the spoons? There are spoon playing traditions in many different countries around the world, including Ireland, America, Turkey and Russia. Spoon playing is fun. There’s no need to go out and buy expensive, large instruments, just head to the cutlery drawer. Spoon playing is brilliant for co-ordination, particularly fine motor skills. Read about this easily accessible instrument on our blog. Read more.
For those continuing with home learning - here are our favourite home learning resources.
MyMusicPB.com is an interactive resource for music teachers, music services and music students that offers a way for teachers to stay organised, up to date and compliant with European data laws while motivating pupils of all ages. Read more.
Why not explore some new music or the history of music you enjoy listening to?
20th February 2021 marks the centenary of the birth of composer, conductor, teacher, oboist and pianist, Dr. Ruth Gipps MBE.
Sadly, Gipps’ music is not very well known today, and this may be due to the challenges she faced as a female musician. It seems fitting that, on her centenary, we should take the opportunity to explore her music, and to celebrate her work.. Read more
In this opinion piece we explore how to introduce young people to music, inspired by an article by Nicola Benedetti. Benedetti argued that since, if children were given the option either to play a video game or study mathematics, the majority would choose the video game, deciding against teaching them to listen to classical symphonies because they don’t seem interested or it is considered difficult is a nonsense Read more
There is a huge variety of dance associated with English folk music, some of it quite alien to modern culture. Folk music was either written as song or for dancing, and the dances have deep roots in the social history of England, as well as offering an insight into agriculture, industry and cultural diversity.. Learn about English folk dance on our blog. Read more
Cecil Sharp was born on November 22nd, 1859. Curiously, November 22nd is also Saint Cecilia’s Day the feast day of St. Cecilia who is known as the patron saint of music and musicians. Sharp is known for his extensive collecting and archiving of English folk music and his collection is still kept at Cecil Sharp House in North London. Read more.
Junk percussion isn’t a new idea. Centuries ago, people made drums and other instruments from objects they found, including bones, wood and hard-shelled fruit called gourds. African slaves who weren’t allowed to play their own drums would make instruments in secret from shipping boxes and dresser drawers. Explore how to make instruments out of junk on our blog.. Read more
North Africa has always been a region of diverse cultures, ethnicities and religions. Its recorded history stretches back to the Phoenician sea traders, Carthaginians and Greeks, and the area was under Roman control from around 200 BC to 300 AD.Read about the music of North African on our blog . Read more.
Need to build your confidence to sing outside the shower? Singing releases feel-good chemicals such as endorphins into the brain, lifting the January blues and relieving stress. It’s great physical exercise, raising oxygen levels in the blood, encouraging deep breathing and giving your lungs and facial muscles a workout. Singing is good for you mentally, giving an increased feeling of self-esteem and wellbeing: It’s very hard not to feel happy when you sing. Check out our blog. Read more.
Samba is the most typical, important and recognisable music of Brazil. It is common throughout Brazil, but is most frequently associated with urban Rio de Janeiro, where it developed during the 19th and 20th centuries. It is celebratory music, frequently identified with Carnival and the exotic, feathered dance outfits. Explore the music of Brazil in our article on Samba. Read more
There are many kinds of drum in Africa, made from wood, metal, earthenware or large gourds, which are hard-rinded fruit. Drums fashioned from gourds, or calabash, are most often seen in the Savannah Belt of West Africa. The djembe originates in West Africa. Its early history is associated with the Mandinka caste of blacksmiths, known as Numu. Explore the drums of Africa. Read more