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Secondary Music Conference

Thursday 29 June – University of Sussex
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Powering Up an Inclusive Music Curriculum

A FREE one-day music education event for University of Sussex partnership schools, and secondary music teachers at all stages of their careers working in all secondary schools across West Sussex, East Sussex and Brighton & Hove. 

Keynotes and workshops have been co-developed with colleagues in secondary schools and will focus on curriculum, inclusion, the DfE’s new National Plan for Music Education, and achieving greater collective impact through partnership working, along with opportunities for collaborative working. 


Morning sessions

The Beatbox Approach: Engaging Reluctant Singers through Beatbox and Movement - Randolph Matthews

Randolph Matthews – Vocalist
The session is designed for teachers looking for innovative ways to engage and inspire their students.

Through a combination of beatboxing, voice, and movement, Randolph will guide participants through practical techniques for encouraging reluctant singers to find their voice. Participants will learn how to incorporate beatboxing and movement into their teaching to help students build confidence, improve vocal technique, and express themselves through music.

In this workshop, teachers will have the opportunity to learn from one of the world’s leading experts in using beatboxing and movement to enhance vocal performance and unlock musical expression.

Singing in the Black Oral Tradition - Cecelia Wickham-Anderson

Uplifting, harmonious, soul-stirring, challenging  – the workshop will cover a range of black music traditions that have influenced and shaped many genres including black Gospel.

Composing in the Classroom: First Steps to Embedding Music Technologies - Max Wheeler

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.

Inclusion, Collaboration and Co-creation: Taking an SEND Model Mainstream - James Redwood & Emma Collins

James Redwood – Freelance Composer and Music Leader 
Emma Collins – Create Music / Future Creators, Deputy Director and Strategic Lead: Quality and Inclusion 

o360 is Create Music’s flagship Inclusive Ensemble.  Since 2016, the group has provided a space for disabled and non-disabled musicians to work together to create new music which celebrates the skills of everyone involved.   

Over this time, we have built up a bank of activities and approaches which form a key part of the identity of the project.  And what’s more, we’ve found that these same tools are equally effective when taken into mainstream settings. 

 During this workshop, we will share games and exercises, tools and resources we use at o360.  We will also zoom out to reflect on some of the areas of overlap that exist between inclusive work in a SEND setting and the mainstream classroom and music group.  

Afternoon sessions

Tools for Developing Authentic and Purposeful Curriculum Schemes and Projects - Emily Crowhurst

Emily Crowhurst –  School21

Meaningful Feedback – Using a Curriculum Tuning Protocol:
In this session we invite teachers to share a curriculum scheme or project they are currently planning or would like to redraft. Come prepared to speak for a few minutes about the project, giving key information and sharing a specific dilemma around an aspect of the scheme (the planning, the pedagogy, the outcome, etc.)

Emily will then work through a set of protocols to discuss and give feedback on the dilemma to help move the planning process forward. This method of ‘tuning’ ideas is beneficial for both the presenter and participants and is something teachers can take back to their own settings to use on a regular basis.

Increasing Instrumental Teaching and Setting up Ensembles - Adrian Reeve

Adrian Reeve – Head of Music, Patcham High School

Intended to support teachers with limited experience of setting-up and working with ensembles, and increasing the numbers of students taking up instrumental lessons at school.

As well as providing some practical steps to leading ensembles, it will highlight how the department has increased uptake in students taking music lessons and what have been the key decisions and actions to facilitate to encourage a thriving department. This will be particularly suitable for Early Career Teachers but is open to all.

Drop in sessions

School Music Development Plan with Ally Daubney and Duncan Mackrill

Following on from Ally Daubney and Duncan Mackrill’s work with teachers across Sussex on writing Music Development Plans for NPME 2, they will be offering an opportunity for teachers to talk one to one.


Digital Badges with Rachel Carter – Future Creators

Digital Badges are a smart, simple and visual way of recognising non-accredited learning. They recognise and acknowledge the development of transferable skills and aptitudes and help earners better tell the story of their participation.

Find out how Digital Badges can be used in your school to support music engagement and showcase students’ skills and achievements.

Hosted by the University of Sussex, in partnership with West Sussex Music and Create Music

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