Alongside the general music curriculum, we offer pupils the opportunity to receive professional tuition to learn a specific instrument during school hours.
Not only does this provide them with a skill for life, it also teaches them to persevere offers opportunities to perform in front of an audience and to attend events such as William Howard’s annual ‘Music Week’ in upper Key Stage 2 … and there is even some research evidence that suggests it can help with general brain development and improve mathematics as the same areas of the brain that deal with pattern recognition and counting are utilised when reading and performing music.
Lessons are typically offered to pupils in years 3 and up, but our tutors can also advise if Year 2 pupils might be ready to start learning on request.
We have two music tutors who visit school each week:
Woodwind and Brass – Mr Hemingway – Thursday afternoons
Mr Hemingway was previously Director of Music at William Howard, and has many years’ experience teaching woodwind and brass; he even taught many of our pupils' parents to play! Pupils typically start with clarinet, trumpet, flute or trombone but can potentially move onto the oboe, bassoon, saxophone and more.
Weekly lessons with Mr Hemingway cost £6.50* from September 2019 and are billed retrospectively** by the school via ParentPay. An instrument can be purchased outright or hired from the Cumbria Music Service.
Keyboard and Guitar – Mr Draper – Friday afternoons (TBC)
Mr Ben Draper works with a number of schools and individuals in the local area and has his own website: . Recently he has taught a number of very talented pianists at Fir Ends, many of whom have successfully gone on to graded exams.
Weekly sessions with Mr Draper cost £7* (for 2019-20) and this is paid direct to him, in advance. We have a number of keyboards in school, although one at home is useful for practice! Reasonably cheap guitars can be recommended for purchase, or hired through the Cumbria Music Service.
Instrument purchase or hire
The school can purchase an instrument VAT free on your behalf for lessons or you can hire one from the Cumbria Music Service. The initial rental is £30* for a 3-month trial. Full information on their hire rates can be found at: http://www.cumbriamusicservice.co.uk/instrument-hire/
Forms to advise us that you would like your child to receive music tuition can be downloaded below. Alternatively, if your printer is on the fritz, give the office a call and we can send a pre-printed form home for you to return.
*Prices correct at date of last page update. Please contact the office/music service to check if these have changed
** Lessons missed due to absence will be provided as a double lesson at a later date. If your child misses a lesson because they forget to bring their instrument on the day you will still be charged.