We've provided African Drumming workshops at Aston on Trent Primary on several occasions. One summer we visited them during their parent's open evening. That time the drums joined in with the thunder of a huge electrical storm outside! Another year we delivered our Boomwhacker Workshop and the whole school was filled with the beautiful sound of harmonious 'Pentatonic' music. This year we were back again with the African Drums and worked with their Key Stage 1 classes. We never have any problem with motivating infants - they love drumming and their energy and spirit is wonderful. Normally, the main challenge is giving them the opportunity to appreciate the difference in quality between a complete 'free for all' rumble and the sound of a steady 'in time' beat. However this was less of a challenge for the Aston on Trent children. They were brilliant at listening and they really understood that they were all working together in the music and not just in isolation.
The final performance by the classes to their parents was wonderful and the afternoon finished with a really nice unexpected twist. We finished a little earlier than expected and there was still a few minutes before home time. We asked the parents if they wanted to have a go and (refreshingly) they said 'yes please'. So the final ten minutes of the day we ran a mini drumming workshop just for the parents - I'm sure that the drumming gave them some therapeutic sense of release and as they left the hall, there were big smiles on their faces!
Is your school planning a topic on Africa? If so, an African drumming workshop can provide your pupils with an amazing educational experience they will never forget!