How important is singing and music in your school?
Absolutely vital! I believe in singing together for a long and healthy life – so it’s something that I hope to instil in the students. Singing improves your intelligence, increases your friendships, make you more confident and gives you a sense of humour. Singing is probably the only time during the day that students will use their lungs in this way – breathing deeply and openly to give a sense of satisfaction as well as a group consciousness.
What does singing bring to school life and community?
A wonderful feeling of togetherness and confidence. It builds character within the individual and encourages a taste for co-operation with others. It allows us to share gifts and applaud one another.
Any advice for teachers starting to integrate more singing into their school?
Keep being enthusiastic and find a quiet regular time to rehearse that students can rely on, as part of their routine – we find early morning the best time!
How do you engage the less confident singers?
Repetition breaks down the barriers and makes young students comfortable with song material. Resist the temptation to sing with them all the time. This gives them more of their own “voice”.
What aspirations do you have next for music at St Michael’s Catholic College?
- To give students the experience of performing in an ensemble. This requires discipline, which is beneficial in academic life and in the work force.
- To improve the study of vocal and choral techniques and to begin building sight singing skills and a basic understanding of music theory through this.
- To develop an appreciation of many styles of music.
- To develop an understanding of the important role of music in the enrichment of the human spirit.