Monthly Archives: December 2016

Life is a song – sing it!

bryn-coch-choir-bryn-yr-haul-care-home-christmas-2016

The spirit of Christmas arrived for me a couple of Mondays ago at 2.30pm, give or take five minutes! Yes, we had some great concert performances by Foundation Phase and Key Stage 2 but the real magic of Christmas descended when I took a group of 16 Year 6 and Year 4 choir children to perform a selection of Christmas songs for a group of elderly residents at a local care home.
Sadly, the success of primary schools (and, of course, secondary) is constantly judged by the data requested, but in this instance, no amount of data could reflect the warmth and sheer joy created in that twenty minute performance. The look on the faces of the children showed their genuine delight as they sang their hearts out with ‘Let it Snow!’, ‘Little Donkey’ and ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’. The audience, some of whom were initially quiet and sedentary, suddenly came alive; tapping their feet, clapping along and grinning from ear to ear. It was as if time had been suspended and nothing existed outside of this magical bubble of humanity! At the end of our performance, the children were encouraged to mingle with the residents and wish them a ‘Happy Christmas’. Some, it has to be said were quite reluctant at first, but after a few minutes they were moving around from one resident to another like a game of musical chairs that they would inevitably play later in the week.
And so in that one afternoon an opportunity was presented to contribute to the true meaning of Christmas by joining hands across the generations. ‘Music speaks when words fail’ is a saying that sums up the occasion and I urge all schools with a choir to get in touch with local care homes, day centres and community organisations. As well as providing opportunities to perform and develop their vocal skills, your children can give so much to the wider community in ways that, sadly, cannot currently be measured by Ofsted/Estyn, but nevertheless enriches the lives of all in so many ways.

Have a great Christmas!

‘Twas The Week Before Concerts!

nativity-play

‘Twas the week before concerts and all through the school
The teachers were frantic, preparing for ‘Yule’,
The state they were in had caused so much disquiet,
They longed for success and not simply a riot!

The constant repeat of ‘Away in a Manger’
Reminded the staff they were heading for danger!
And strained singing tones from the weary school choir
Only raised blood pressure higher and higher!

Rehearsals were fraught and then out of the blue,
Mary and Joseph went down with the flu!
And all of a sudden poor Rudolph did vomit
Just at the entrance of Dasher and Comet!

Mothers complained and some staged a walkout,
“My sweet little Johnny’s not being a sprout!”
“And my gorgeous Eliza’s no round Christmas pud.
It’s tea towels that make a Nativity good!”

Now the stage was all set and the scenery grand,
And everything seemed to be going as planned,
But Herod, while standing to wave to his mum,
Slipped on his cloak and then fell on his bum!

Innkeeper one said (he tried to be cool),
“Why, come in we’ve a great room with views of the pool!”
And the doll used for Jesus caused such an uproar
When its head came unstuck and rolled onto the floor!

But this time is so special and though teachers despair,
And go home humming carols with glitter in their hair,
As even more marking gets added to the pile,
The singing and laughter just makes it worthwhile.

So teachers remember that through all your fears
The smiles and excitement make memories for years,
Trust in the children and it’ll all turn out right,
So Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!