What can I offer?

Dave Clinch, Bideford Folk FestivalI am available to work with students of all abilities across the learning phases through The Piper Calls Project. I have a current Enhanced CRB Disclosure Certificate and also a Public Liability Certificate.

The Piper Calls Project draws on my considerable teaching experience in diverse, multicultural environments across the Key Stages.

I can adapt performances and workshops to meet the needs of infant/primary/secondary students and those in the tertiary sector. This would be discussed with the teacher-in-charge beforehand.

I am able to work with large groups, such as school assemblies and also with smaller groups.

I play the uilleann pipes, also known as the union or Irish pipes, the bodhrán, the bones and whistles.

I sing songs through which students can explore a variety of topics and themes, for example Steve Knightley’s ‘Widdecombe Fair’ and ‘Kilkelly’ by Peter Jones. I have worked in North Devon with students at Ilfracombe College, Marwood Primary School, Orchard Vale Primary School, West Down Primary School and Petroc College in the tertiary sector over the last three years. I now wish to develop this work further having retired from teaching in the summer of 2009.

I perform PB Shelley’s 91-verse masterpiece The Mask of Anarchy from memory, with guitar accompaniment and also a slideshow. This is most appropriate at A-level and Degree level. I have performed the poem and led discussion on its content and Shelley’s reasons for writing it with Petroc College English 1st Year Degree course students.

I have worked with students on the theme of songs of struggle and resistance.

I was invited by teacher Paulette North to the City Academy, Bristol to work on a science-based theme through music and performance for national Engineering and Science week in March 2010. We explored the song The King of Rome by Dave Sudbury. Paulette works with, and campaigns for, asylum seekers and refugees and their families. We arranged a successful cultural exchange between our schools some years ago.

Juggling is another area I will be exploring across the learning phases. One example is working with students on basic juggling techniques using safe, small beanbags. There are many links with music here. It is also another way of showing that success is accessible and good fun too. It also helps to raise confidence and self-esteem. This has been borne out through the juggling lessons/clubs I have organised for several years in the schools where I have taught. Furthermore, it is a skill that staff can also learn and enjoy.


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