The first full day is always filled with 'light bulb' moments and plenty of scrambled brains as we begin our programme in earnest. The day always starts with a warm-up, led by Allan Hubert-Wright, and followed by choir. Esther Hargittai led the main choir as they tackled Kodály's Horati Carmen and Purcell's Come, Ye Sons Of Art.


After choir it was Musicianship, where everyone is taught the the level they need. Sarah Batten was in level 7/8 with James Cuskelly:

Having assessed our existing skills and knowledge yesterday, today James set about challenging us. We worked on several classical rounds, first in unison, then in parts as a group, then a lucky few sang them one to a part. This was a great challenge of our solfa skills in major and in minor, as well as keeping together as an ensemble and, most importantly, staying in tune! We also did several exercises for singing major and minor thirds and using them to build triads. Every time something starts to feel straight forward, there is another layer of complexity to add, just to keep us on our toes.



After Musicianship, Delegates have the choice of Methodology lessons for Early Years, Primary, Secondary, or completing our Foundations of Methodology certificate course. There were sessions in Conducting, Diverse Repertoire and Integrating the Kodály Approach in primary Methodology. There were lots of practical activities, laughter and more as everyone explored ways to teach using the foundations of the Kodály approach.


Sarah Batten was in Primary Methodology with Chris Andrews: 

To start our whistle-stop tour of primary methodology, we went through the process of prepare, present, and practise using tika-tika. We learned four songs and their accompanying games - with cups, beanbags, and balls galore - and then looked at how we would lead our students to discover the new element within them. Chris has a seemingly endless collection of games, and we discussed how important it is to break up periods of heavy concentration and new learning with games, for children and teachers alike!


For those who weren't interested in how to teach others using the approach, there were sessions on English Folk Music and Song by Lynne Clark, including an evening lecture from Angela Fogg on Female Folk Song Collectors.


Tomorrow brings another day of learning, and the return of the ceilidh- the 'scratch band' were sounding wonderful in rehearsal!