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Move Groove Improve: A research project to determine whether additional music input can help to  “close the attainment gap” for children identified at two years old of being at risk of being left behind their more affluent or mainstream peers

Duration/Location: Two years, delivered by Ali Harmer through The Music Works. Based in two Children's Centres in the South West of England.

Number of children: About thirty six children from age two when they start attending fifteen hours a week, to shortly before they start school aged four.

Evaluation: Notebook recording all observable musical behaviours, The Sounds of Intent scale, EYFS data

This Post: Remarkable co-operation amongst three-year olds after a shared song with claves (clicksticks)

'Beyond Words'  international conference launching the final report of the research project between Plymouth Music Zone and Plymouth University Institute of Education is scheduled to take place on 14th and 15th March 2017. Academics from across all disciplines, arts practitioners/organisations, community organisations and representatives from Education, Health and Social Work are all encouraged to take part.  The deadline for submission is 1 December 2016 and decisions will be made by 20 December 2016.

I am a new trainee music practitioner working for BPM (Bristol Plays Music). I have been assigned to a project called ‘The Hope Creative’. The Hope Creative is a project for Children in Care in Bristol. Using a creative approach, the children can develop their sense of musical-self and explore ways to help reinforce positive identity and self-worth.  Alongside the project I am also taking part in an inclusive practitioner training course based at Colston Hall which I hope will equip me with the skills and knowledge I need for the monthly workshops.

I am extremely excited to start my new career in community music and I am going to share my experiences with you over the coming months. 

We asked Advanced Music Leader Simon Williams to reflect on his experience and practice of working with children and young people with special needs, using the 'Do, Review, Improve' framework. All Cymaz Music provision is based on a young person centred approach and uses structure and flexible creativity in equal balance to offer high quality experiences.  

Watch this 10 minute film to find out about our work with young people excluded from mainstream schools. Cymaz Music has been working in AP Academies for a few years and this film shows some of the impact and also the essential ingrediants for successful partnerships with AP Academies. This work has been primarily funded by Cornwall Music Education Hub as part of its ongoing commitment to inclusion and ensuring all children and young people can access music education. 

Bristol Plays Music (BPM), the Music Education Hub for Bristol, and Urban Development, a London based talent development organisation, worked in partnership over August 2016 to deliver a week-long residential, called the ‘Urban Artist School - Summer Academy’. The project was designed for talented young people who are drawn to less formal musical genres and activities such as Pop, Hip-Hop, R’n’B (as opposed to Jazz and Classical) and was facilitated by a team of experienced Music Leaders and industry professionals, all of whom are active in the local music scene. The aim was to inspire, provide career insights and support the young people to realise their musical potential through simulating real world experiences relating to the ‘journey of a track’ process; from conception through to creation, recording and on to release.

Our Trainee Practitioner, Naomi Jeremy, has written this reflective diary as a day-to-day account of her first hand experience being part of a delivery team in this environment.

At 3rd Space Music we believe in providing communities with local access to safe spaces, quality equipment and inspirational guidance

  • by LMW72

    Wed 28 Sep 2016

Dean Skinner is an Assistant Music Leader with B Sharp as part of our regular grassroots programme and emerging music leader training scheme. Dean has progressed through our open access Youth Music funded programme from a young person finding his way to becoming a confident and aspiring music leader. A part of this work included facilitating targeted sessions in a youth centre at a critical time just before it closed due to local authority cuts and before our community music festival, the Big Mix. 

Dean's approach to music leading was so inspiring and focussed on young people that he was immediately welcomed and great things began to happen, as you can see from the pictures! This was brilliant for Dean as a young leader,  for the young participants, partners, and for our community. Through this work Dean and many of these young have gone on to feel able to fully participate and contribute to other areas of our work and beyond. 

Thanks again to Youth Music for making this possible.

Hi I'm Louise, I am a producer at Hat Trick Productions, a TV production company based in North London. We make such shows as Have I Got News for You, Dinner Date and Outnumbered and we are currently making a brand new documentary series exploring family life in the UK. In each episode, two families will swap homes, lifestyles and budgets for one week and we are looking for families in Bristol to take part! 

We would like to speak to families from Bristol and the surrounding areas who have one or more children still living at home who either play musical instruments already or are very keen to learn, but havent had the opportyunity to do so, perhaps for financial reasons. This could be an opportunity for a musical child (or parent) to spend seven days surrounded by amazing instruments whilst taking part in a fun, heart-warming new documentary series.

Families will receive £500 for taking part and filming will take place across seven days outside of work/school hours. 

If anyone would like to find out more about taking part or would like to apply, please email us at or call 0207 184 5775.




Jam Buddies create their first full music video!

We have been reflecting on two of areas of our CPD programme we are delivering through New Ambition – The Inclusive Practitioner foundation course run over four days and delivered by Phil Mullen and Ways into Workshops a weekend residential course for music leaders delivered by Hugh Nankivell, Steve Lewis, Sandra Barefoot and Alex Lupo. We have met with trainers and participants to get feedback

With funding for youth services having been either cut completely, or shifted from open access to targeted provision, working with ‘at risk’ young people is fast becoming an essential skill for socially engaged and community musicians. It’s certainly a growing area of need, and therefore a market for practitioners. But are musicians and the sector really equipped to do this work? What skills are required of musicians working with young people in the 21st century, and what support do they need? Anita Holford looks at one programme in Wiltshire, and talks to those working in the field.