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West Sussex Music Education Conference

Tuesday 11 July 2023


We are delighted to be inviting all those working with children and young people to our Music Education Conference, #EveryChildAMusician, at Chichester College.

Keynote speaker Jimmy Rotheram

What happens when you put music at the heart of school life? Come and find out with internationally recognised music lead and teacher Jimmy Rotheram. In his key note he will be sharing how his work at Feversham Primary Academy in Bradford transformed the school from failing to being in the top 1% nationally for pupil progress. This has attracted media attention from across the globe and, unsurprisingly, this has also led to very musical children. Jimmy will be sharing his inspiring story and suggesting some ways beyond pedagogy and curriculum that we can all work to make this happen for all children and young people.

Workshop leaders

We’re delighted to welcome four further experts in music education to lead some inspiring workshops throughout the day:

Whatever context you teach in, each workshop will increase your own confidence and support you to build confidence in others. This fun-packed and informative day closes with an inspirational song from Emily Barden, adaptable for any context and ready to take away for use with your young musicians.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Find out more & book tickets

This conference is FREE to West Sussex Music Education Hub schools, partners and associates 
And just £30 for non-West Sussex schools and educators

✅  Please tick the gift aid box if purchasing a ticket, it makes a huge difference and allows us to provide more opportunities for pupils.


Session One Workshops

Stomp Style Body Percussion - Ollie Tunmer

Build your confidence and inspire your pupils by getting them stomping, clapping, slapping and everything in between from an instrumental tuition setting to the classroom, rehearsal room and beyond – this dynamic, high-energy workshop will explore the use of the body as a percussive instrument.  The session will feature a range of rhythmic warm – ups, Afro-Brazilian grooves, and percussive routines. This will be an invigorating workshop suitable for all, regardless of prior musical experience.

Songs, Sounds, Stories - Emily Barden

Singer, and songwriter, Emily Barden will explore how to teach vocal play and songs inspired by stories. In this practical song-filled session, you will not only develop your own confidence to be creative but also deepen your understanding of how to inspire creativity in others. If you are working with children at the start of their musical journey this workshop will give you the tools you need to ignite your imagination and those who you teach.

Rappin’ in Your Instrumental/ Vocal Lessons - Francis Winston

This workshop will educate and empower those teaching instruments or the voice in 1:1 and small group settings. From sight-reading skills to improvisation, rap’s innate aural musical tradition is something we will use to explore how to bridge the gap between sheet music and ‘live’ music-making. Rap is music and music teachers are the authority on music, therefore whether the teacher is new to or well-versed in rap music, they will find this workshop an invaluable resource.

Session Two Workshops

Putting Music at the Heart of your Curriculum in EYFS and KS1 - Jimmy Rotheram

How do you have every child singing in tune and beginning to read music by the end of Y1? Who would have thought that a holistic music programme, putting the child and their development first, building social skills, confidence in expression, literacy, numeracy and storytelling could:
a) be so much fun
b) develop physical coordination including handwriting and core strength
c) lay the strongest of musical foundations.
In this fun-filled session, Jimmy will explore how to achieve all of the above through an inclusive music curriculum delivered by empowered teachers. This workshop will give you confidence you never thought you had, and the stepping stones needed to build that same confidence in your colleagues and pupils alike.

Neurodiversity: Instrumental Lessons for All - Ruth Spencer

 Every child and young person has the right to explore the life-changing benefits of music: on their education, their well-being and their future. In this session, Ruth will be equipping us with the skills to see the world from others’ perspectives – giving practical tips and teaching strategies for working with neurodiverse music students. With Ruth’s guidance, we will be encouraged to explore innovative ways of facilitating learning for all.

Rappin in the Classroom - Francis Winston

This workshop features a complete breakdown of the art of rap with easy-to-implement classroom techniques and schemes of work for KS2-3. It includes vital resources, suggested discography, and a clear assessment criterion that will assist and empower music teachers. It will encourage them to come out of their comfort zone and instil them with confidence. The workshop also discusses the more controversial elements of the genre and provides some clear links to the wider curriculum.

Session Three Workshops

Putting Music at The Heart of the Curriculum KS2 - Jimmy Rotheram

In this workshop, Jimmy will share ways of supporting beginners in Key Stage 2 – both the beginner child and the beginner teacher, making this a useful workshop for music coordinators and teachers of all levels of experience. He will look at ways of bringing beginner musicians out of their shells and on a path towards musical literacy and confident self-expression, exploring learning through play, singing and movement. Whether you are new to teaching music or a confident music lead supporting colleagues this workshop will give you the tools you need.

Neurodiversity: Music in the Classroom - Ruth Spencer

In this session Ruth will guide us through inclusive, interactive music ideas for class settings.

It will be full of practical strategies and tips for those leading class-based music activities which will be accessible to all and will support you to put inclusion at the heart of your music teaching.

Afro-Brazilian Percussion - Ollie Tunmer

Roll back the carpets, put aside the tables get the instruments out as you enter the uplifting and inspiring world of Afro- Brazilian Percussion. This session focusses on building confidence in improving for all music educators whether in a classroom or small group and individual lessons. There will also be a focus on composition and performance skills using literacy as a tool for learning rhythms based on Ollie’s collaborations with Pie Corbett of Talk4Writing.

Workshop Leaders


Thank you for everything you made possible at the conference- I’ve enjoyed it so much, and I always leave inspired and more equipped!

It was a fantastic day! Really good vibe, really good energy! Really good information, really good speakers, Really good participation I got so much to take away from here and I can’t wait to get started

WSM Conference participant, 2023

The day was very empowering and inspiring and has helped me to support future teaching in my school, great ideas to use moving forward (particularly for EYFS & KS1) 

Primary teacher
Vale school

I am new to being a music subject lead and I’ve learnt loads! I’ve made so many notes! I will definitely be using the resources for teaching pulse and rhythm. 

Ashington CE Primary school

Highlights for me were the key note speaker and meeting fellow music leads and other colleagues. There was such a wide offer of workshops, something for everyone. Continue doing everything you’re doing!  

Music lead
Yapton C of E primary school

Very inspiring and thought-provoking! It’s re-energised me again and reminded me of the fundamentals of why we teach music.  

Music co-ordinator
St. Lawrence CEP school

A highlight of the day was making music together. There were lots of good ideas shared which I can go back to school with and share with my colleagues. The songwriting was brilliant! 

Music lead
White Meadows Primary Academy

I’ll take back a lot of ideas on how to make music more inclusive and accessible. There were lots of creative ideas for inspiring composition 

Music coordinator
Seaside primary school
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