Sheffield pupils raise their voices as singing takes centre stage

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Sheffield is widely known as a musical city – and this week it became even more so, as Sheffield Music Hub launched a new initiative aimed at encouraging every primary school in the city to take up singing.

The Primary Singing Support Pack, revealed to teachers at a reception at the Crucible Theatre on Monday evening, gives a set of simple, singable songs to all primaries in the city, completely free of charge. Singing coordinator Peter Taylor explains that this maximises access. “Our vision is that in the coming months, every child will know these songs. Through creative work, they will develop their musical skills and learning, and it will be a springboard

to learning in other school subjects.”

Projects are planned too with the Hallé Orchestra, Sheffield City Hall, Music in the Round, and other major venues to celebrate these new shared songs and give the children exciting opportunities to join in on the big stage.

Yvette Cooper, who teaches at several schools in the region, enthused: “it is very good to have new repertoire and the choice of songs is great. I can see all the kids really enjoying it.”

Enjoyment of course is key to the children taking the songs to heart, and the range and variety of songs proved popular with teachers at the launch event.

Becky Stroud, music teacher at Beck Primary School, explains that the songs will inspire both teachers and pupils. “All my staff can use it easily, and the kids can even take over control of the whiteboard! My students like being Singing Leaders. It’s a great addition to our school’s singing resources.”

Music and singing, explains Fraser Wilson, learning and participation manager at promoter Music in the Round, can benefit every area of children’s lives. He says: “It certainly enhances education and attainment, but also confidence, health, communication, social and emotional development, resilience, and so many other things. Music can be a vital and irreplaceable part of a child’s upbringing.”

And as Fraser said to the assembled teachers on Monday, the last word goes to Irish singer Bono. “Music can change the world because it can change people.”

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