The first guest post of the year has been written by Sum Yee Chan who is a specialist in Genitourinary medicine in London. She has recently completed a course entitled Sounds of Intent at Roehampton University. Sounds of Intent is a framework of musical development for children with learning difficulties. According to the university; ‘The Sounds of Intent programme is designed to enable practitioners to gain the skills and understanding necessary to use the Sounds of Intent framework to assess children and young people’s levels of musical development and devise music policies and curricula.’ Here, Sum Yee outlines her experiences.
I have recently completed a course run by Roehampton University in the Department of Education on special educational needs and music (Post Graduate Certificate in Sounds of Intent).I have an amateur music background and do not work in this field, none the less I found the course to be very valuable and have gone back into a school to lead a weekly music session there.
The course is led by Prof Adam Ockelford who is Professor of Music. The Sounds of Intent project was set up in 2002 in conjunction with the RNIB. Prior to that there was little or no research into musical development in children with special educational needs. The PROMISE report in 2001 (Welch, Ockelford and Zimmerman) was a survey of 52 special schools providing education for 2758 pupils, this highlighted a large variation in music provision for children with special needs. It also recognised that music provision is important for the general social and educational development of children away from the musical setting. The Sounds of Intent project is an evidence-based web site which enables practitioners to map the musical development of children in three domains: reactive, proactive and interactive over time. There are example videos on the website to show each level. Anyone reading this blog post can use it, as it is completely free.
Music has been and continues to be very important in my life and I hope that it can be an important part of people’s lives irrespective of disability or special educational needs.
For much more information about how to practice piano repertoire, take a look at my piano course, Play it again: PIANO (published by Schott Music). Covering a huge array of styles and genres, the course features a large collection of progressive, graded piano repertoire from approximately Grade 1 to advanced diploma level, with copious practice tips for every piece. A convenient and beneficial course for students of any age, with or without a teacher, and it can also be used alongside piano examination syllabuses too.
You can find out more about my other piano publications and compositions here.