Music Services

Music Conference 2023/4

Together we make a Difference

Thursday 1 February 2024

Low Wood Bay Hotel, Windermere, LA23 1LP

in partnership with Lancashire Music Hub

Registration from 8.45 - ends 16.30

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An inspirational day of workshops and networking to help you get more out of music for the children and young people you work with. The day is designed to support you with the new National Plan for Music, your SMDP and delivery of the Model Music Curriculum - while keeping creativity and joy at the heart of music.

Speakers and Sessions:

Paul Whittaker, inspirational speaker, musician, performer and workshop leader who is profoundly deaf. Paul will also share his passion for Signed Song.

Rebecca Berkley, Professor of Music at Reading University and Director of Sing for Pleasure, will help you assess practical musicianship skills and the Model Curriculum

David Horne from RNCM demystifies the composing process

Snappy Opera and Sandgate School explore new ways of co-creating with children with additional needs, and integrating music into the school day. 

Lucinda Geoghegan from NYCOS / British Kodaly explores musicianship

Charanga Yumu

Write your School Music Development Plan with the help of the Cumbria Music Hub team

Download Timetable
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Who's it for?

Everyone who works with children and young people!

All Key Stages
Specialists and non-specialists
Schools and Out of School settings
Any school writing their Music Development Plan

Ticket Price: £120

Including a delicious lunch and refreshments

Book now online

Workshop Leaders:

Snappy Opera: Bridget Rennie with Annie Rucsillo: Sandgate School

Lucinda Geoghegan: NYCOS / British Kodaly

Writing your School Music Development Plan: Practical support sessions

Introduction to Live Music Now and Musical Mondays

Sharon Durant: Sing Up


9-9.30 Registration and Coffee

9.30–10.45 Welcome and Keynote

11.15-12.15 Session 1

12.15-1 Lunch (included in ticket price)

1.00-1.55 Session 2

2.05-3.00 Session 3

3.15-4.00 Session 4

4.00-4.15 Show and Tell

4.15-5.15 RNCM Engage Launch

Key Note Speaker: Paul Whittaker

Paul will talk about accessibility, singing and signing, and the impact of his work with NYCOS and Deaf Children.

Workshop (all KS): Feeling Music - Encouraging Deaf children to sing

Paul was born in Huddersfield in 1964 and has been deaf all his life. After getting a music degree from Wadham College, Oxford and a post-graduate diplomas from the RNCM he founded “Music and the Deaf”, a charity he ran for 27 before leaving to pursue a freelance career.

Paul has signed many shows and concerts across the UK and performed with The King’s Singers, Voces 8, CBSO, RPO, and at many festivals including the Cumnock Tryst and the BBC Proms. He continues to promote music and deafness and currently runs 8 signing choirs. He was awarded an OBE in 2007 and holds 2 Honorary Degrees.

Since 2020 Paul has been working closely with the National Youth Choir of Scotland Creative Learning team devising BSL resources based on Kodaly methods and he continues to be an advocate for music and deafness.  

Photo credit to Michaela Walsh

Paul Whittaker

David Horne: Composing

Workshop: Composing with Secondary Pupils 

Where do we begin / How to Extend? 

David aims to demystify the process of composing. The workshop will will explore the notion of ‘developing an idea’ in a variety of contexts to demonstrate how ideas can be usefully generic and apply across genres.

Workshop: Composing with KS1&2

Where do we begin / How to Extend? 

Practical and hands on tips and reassurance on how to get started creating the kind of music your students are listening to today…

David Horne has been commissioned and performed worldwide by groups as diverse as Scottish Opera, BBC Orchestras, the Nash Ensemble, Remix Ensemble (Portugal) and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Centre. International soloists such as Evelyn Glennie, Boris Berezovsky, Nobuko Imai and Fred Sherry have also commissioned works from him, and he has appeared in the proms as both a pianist and composer. He has been Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra's composer in association. 

Winner of the piano section of the BBC Young Musician of the Year in 1988, he performs regularly. He is in high demand in education delivering workshops and lectures for organisations including Sound and Music, Wigmore Hall, the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group.

He mentored emerging professional composers on Making Music’s Adopt a Composer and Sound and Music’s Next Wave schemes and is now Professor in Composition and Head of the Graduate School at the Royal Northern College of Music teaching composition at all levels. He also teaches across a range of disciplines with a particular interest in performance studies, supervising the work of PhD performers and composers.


Dr Rebecca Berkley: Assessment and the Model Music Curriculum

Workshop: Show me what you know (Primary focus)

Assessing practical musicianship skills in primary children.

Musical learning is non-verbal and is heard and seen in the way children sing, move, play instruments and explore musical sound. It can be difficult as a teacher to deliver practical music lessons and assess what the children are doing at the same time.

This is a practical session exploring ways of assessing children’s musical learning in the four key activities of the Model Music Curriculum: Singing, Listening, Composing and Performing, including performing on instruments, through incremental development of the skills relating to each area. We will explore ways to integrate assessment into your music teaching, investigating some practical examples from KS1 and KS2. If you can, please bring along a pitched instrument to this session.

Workshop: Modelling the Music Curriculum (Primary)

A practical discussion session investigating ways to implement the Model Music Curriculum in schools. Hear the latest Ofsted advice about ways to ways to support children in becoming better at music by teaching them technical, expressive and constructive skills through planned knowledge and skills development. We will consider planning for music teaching across the key stages, encourage you to share good practice, and explore ideas for tackling challenges in curriculum design. We will discuss how to embed practical musicianship into the school curriculum. If you can, please bring along some examples from your own schools of how you are implementing the Model Music Curriculum in your schemes of work and lesson planning.

RB casual

Rick Kershaw: Developing Rock and Pop Ensembles with children in School 

Workshop: Developing Rock and Pop Ensembles with children in School (KS3 focus)

Rick will give you some practical ideas to get your KS3 rock band off the ground. He'll present some basic instrumental techniques for you to try on the day that non rock-band musicians and complete beginners can get going with quickly. He'll also talk about approaches to getting pupils through the door and an instrument into their hands, and some repertoire and resources that can be used straight away.

RK headshot

Max Wheeler: First Steps in Music Technology 

Workshop: First Steps in Music Technology with Charanga Yu Studio (KS2 focus)

Bridget Rennie and Annie Ruscillo  : Inclusive music at Sandgate School 

Workshop: Snappy Operas

Learn from Snappy Opera's year long music residency at Sandgate school - a partnership with Mahogany Opera. Explore new ways of co-creating with children with additional needs, and integrating music into the school day.

Bridget Rennie is Executive Director of Mahogany Opera, a leading commissioner and producer of new opera and music theatre working with a diverse range of artists and audiences. She was previously Co-Executive Director of Streetwise Opera, and is passionate about artistic and social inclusion and enabling people to make music. Bridget is part of the Clore Leader network and is a Trustee for Hear Me Out, a music charity which works with people affected by immigration detention.

Bridget Rennie

Lucinda Geoghegan

Workshop: Developing Musicianship in the Secondary Curriculum

Workshop with Paul Whittaker: Feeling Music - Encouraging Deaf children to sing


Conference Feedback Form

1 February 2024

How did you hear about the conference?

Select a number for your experience with 5 being high and 1 low.

Please complete for the sessions you attended, and add any comments in the box below.
Composing with Secondary Pupils (David Horne)
Snappy Operas
Signed Singing for All (Paul Whittaker)
Writing your School Music Development Plan
Show me what you know (Rebecca Berkley)
Developing Musicianship in the Secondary Music Curriculum (Lucinda Geoghegan)
Developing Rock & Pop Ensembles with children in school (Rick Kershaw)
Composing with KS1&2: Where do we begin / How to Extend (David Horne)
Introduction to Live Music Now Musical Mondays (Karen Irwin)
Singing for Secondary: with Sharon Durrant
Modelling the Model Music Curriculum (Dr Rebecca Berkely)
Feeling Music: Encouraging Deaf children to sing (Paul Whittaker and Lucinda Geoghegan)
First Steps in Music Technology (Max Wheeler)
Value for money

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