Primary Robins in lockdown

Primary Robins Summer Term 2020

During these extraordinary times we wanted to do all we could to keep the Primary Robins singing. Every week since the start of lockdown our teachers have made a video that has been uploaded to the Home Learning page of each school’s website and has been used in school for the children of key workers.

There have been warm-ups with witches casting spells, bumble-bees buzzing, snakes hissing and Tarzan swinging through the jungle and each week a new song has been taught. For some schools, it was a traditional song like Molly Malone or Scarborough Fair and the children really enjoy learning the history and getting absorbed in the stories of these old songs.

One week the Robins in Durham sang The Bare Necessities from The Jungle Book and they were asked to find something percussive to play whilst they sang. It turns out that a packet of crisps makes an excellent shaker, a cheese grater a brilliant guiro and saucepans, of course, can be great drums.

A few weeks ago the Surrey schools learnt Food Glorious Food from Oliver! and this brought back memories of the Robins that sang in our production of Oliver! in 2016. Waiting in the wings with Sophie, Millie, Rebekah and Rhianna on opening night was unforgettable. From the first rehearsal to this first performance, it was a truly incredible journey for them. They loved the costumes, singing their hearts out with an orchestra and the backstage camaraderie and it was wonderful to watch their confidence grow.

This summer, four children from Bisley Primary School were going to be in our production of La Bohéme but, due to coronavirus, sadly this was not possible. Hopefully we will be able to have Robins in a production in 2021.

Next term, Primary Robins will have to continue to be flexible. Some schools will be able to have classes spaced out in their hall, but for those that do not have the space singing will have to continue online.

I feel that singing is needed now more than ever and, as the lyrics of another song they learnt in these challenging times, remind us; “Even when the darkest clouds are in the sky. You mustn’t sigh and you mustn’t cry. Spread a little happiness as you go by”. We very much hope that this is exactly what Primary Robins has been able to do over the last term.

Annabel Larard, Project Leader 

My child engaged and enjoyed joining in a singing lesson a lovely alternative to structured learning. They have kept the children connected to the school community.

Pycroft Grange Primary School

After the first lesson, several parents told us that they had enjoyed the lessons with their children and we were so pleased to see a ‘virtual David’!

Redbridge Primary School

Rosie’s videos have really brought singing to life for the children, they are so pleased to see her and they are really engaging with the videos. As a teacher it has been great to see the thought which has gone into the song choices and also that the children are being exposed to the correct technical musical vocabulary and terms.

Sythwood Primary School