TP-Issue14.5 | 79 PARTNER CONTENT Can every child play a musical instrument? Yes, with the right instruments. My classes played tin whistle, guitar, keyboard, ukulele and brass – each instrument created its own problems. Then, I discovered four-hole ocarinas. Everyone loved them and played instinctively – all problems solved! Instead of struggling to play just a few notes, children can play full-octave tunes straight away, and harmonies soon follow. With ocarinas, any class can make music; and any teacher can lead whole- class music-making. Can every primary teacher teach music? As with swimming, you may either be confident, or likely to drown! Your heart may sink at the thought of pupils ‘armed’ with musical instruments and the sight of music notation. However, just as every teacher teaches numeracy and literacy, every teacher can teach music. Ocarina charts show which finger holes to cover – even a four-year-old can read these. And, using bespoke Ocarina teaching materials, you and your classes can make tuneful music that everyone will enjoy. How can musical success be guaranteed? These teacher-friendly, child-friendly musical instruments and resources together create the right environment for success. Rapid progress is down to a simple ‘what you see is what you play’ approach. Playing tunes is easy, with no mystique and no complexity. Your general teaching skills and teacher- pupil relationship will be more effective than the specialisms of any visiting ‘music expert’, so even if you don’t think you’re very ‘musical’, try playing an ocarina yourself and your class will soon follow. “Everyone can be a musician” ASK THE EXPERT Teacher and songwriter David Liggins explains how you and your pupils can play tuned musical instruments Why is the ocarina a unique solution? Most wind instruments, even recorders, need carefully controlled breath, ‘intelligent’ third fingers, and an embouchure: special manipulation of lips and facial muscles. Playing the Oc® is so natural that no specialist skills are needed: children play all 11 notes and lots of high-quality music, easily. The four-hole ocarina fingering system is the simplest, and the Oc® sound has been acoustically tested and verified to be purer than that of any other instrument. Why should we ‘do music’ every day? Research shows that listening, playing and singing all accelerate learning. Physically engaging with music activates the brain. So, singing and playing number patterns, rhyming words, facts about Ancient Egyptians or rainforest tunes, all reinforce learning and embed information, making lessons memorable and enjoyable. This is why dementia sufferers still remember songs from their youth, when other faculties are lost. Active music-making is vital for children’s learning and brain development. To improve every day, sing and play! BEGINNING – How to involve the whole staff; which classmusic packs to choose; how to get off to a flying start withwhole-classmusic-making COMPOSING – The national curriculumdemands it and fewdo it.You don’t have to be Beethoven to get creativemusically! EXPLORING – The world is full ofmusic. Discover different eras, cultures and peoples by playing and singing theirmusic, today T: 01536 485963 E: ASK ME ABOUT EXPERT PROFILE NAME: David Liggins JOB TITLE: Teacher, songwriter, publisher AREAOF EXPERTISE: Whole-class music teaching BEST PART OFMYJOB: Enabling everyone to make music