Friday, 25 August 2017

'We Make Use of...' Charanga

For over a year now, we have used the Charanga website to aid our delivery of the music curriculum across the school. The scheme is used by adults who are 'not musical', those who have a decent subject knowledge and those who play instruments and are very knowledgable and confident in this subject area. All find it a useful resource (in different ways).

First of all, it's more than just a scheme. There's loads more too!

The scheme is useful and split into six units of work per year group (one per half term). Of course, in school you could juggle some of these around, but there is progression built in. The units come with lessons planned and resourced, but the teacher still needs to teach with them and possibly even adapt the lesson and resources for their class. Each unit is based upon a song or composition and builds up an understanding of it and the way it has been produced. The image above shows units for the autumn term for Year Four and Five. There's sheet music, backing tracks, interactive videos...

In addition, there is:

Music World is a Charanga programme especially for children to use themselves. It’s a safe online space where children can learn more about music and practise their instrument if they are learning to pla.

Song Centre is 100s of songs to enjoy with your pupils + singing courses for younger children.


Freestyle Resource Centre is a bank of songs to be used as you wish. 

There's planning to support SEND pupils too and an assessment tool.If you're interested in it, sign up for a free trial and give it a go...

Charanga is provided to our school through our LA. We have not been asked to write this post or received anything for it. This is, as always, the view and opinion of two full-time class teachers about something we use in the classroom. We hope it is useful for others to read. 

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Gifts / Cards - Word Clouds

Bit late for this year UK teachers - sorry. But, you can start planning for next year...

For two and a half terms this year just gone we actually taught the same class. Mates, assistant heads, bloggers and job share teachers. Think we drove each other a little crazy at times. Anyway, come the end of the year we were thinking of a gift for the pupils in our class and this is what we came up with: 

Again this year, we undertook the summing up of each day in three words. At the end of the year we therefore had 190 X 3 words. We stuck these words into a word cloud generator, purchased some picture frames and hey presto, they look rather good. They certainly look like they cost more than 80p each to make! And, they're full of the children's thoughts, word choices and experience whilst in our class.

I hope that most of them will keep it and look back upon it fondly. And, as for 'english', we decided it looked good as a design choice - but it bugs me the more I look at it! There's the off typo/spelling error too... However, look which word came out top!

We'll three word blog again next year and may even use word clouds on Christmas, Mother's/Father's Day (and so on) cards too.

Word clouds from some previous years too.