A collaborative approach to planning, teaching and learning
Collaboration is at the heart of successful whole class instrumental and vocal teaching. The professionals who work together might be instrumental teachers, classroom teachers or visiting community musicians – they will all bring their own skills and approaches, but when they work together in a co-ordinated way the effect can be dramatic. A central recommendation in Music Manifesto Report No. 2: Making Every Child’s Music Matter (DfES 2006) is that ‘everyone involved in music education should work together to provide a framework and focus needed to deliver a universal music education’ (ibid.: 7). Initiatives such as Musical Futures,1 whole class instrumental and vocal programmes (WCIVT) or Wider Opportunities and many educational outreach projects involving teachers, musicians and orchestras have placed increasing emphasis on class teachers, music teachers, performers and community musicians working together. Working with partners with different musical backgrounds and from a wide range of teaching experiences and contexts can be enriching and rewarding for practitioners and children alike. The success and impact of working in this way depends to a large extent on how well collaborating partners work together. Collaborative planning and teaching is all about working together. This can take different forms but, whatever the model, its effectiveness will be dependent upon all those involved developing an agreed and shared approach to teaching and learning. Establishing effective working relationships and developing collaborative models which make the best of your collective skills and experiences is central to successful collaborative practice. Such relationships support the cross-fertilisation of teaching and musical skills and experiences which is invaluable to both practitioners and children. Musical horizons are broadened and pedagogy strengthened whilst children benefit from the breadth, diversity and exposure to a range of role models and different approaches. By the end of this chapter we will have considered the following questions:
● What are the characteristics and benefits of different models of collaborative planning and teaching?