In August 2015, songwriter Keith Ayling was invited by BBC Education to write for the new phase of the BBC Ten Pieces initiative.
Ten Pieces Primary started in the autumn term of 2014 with a week of free screenings of a cinematic film featuring ten pieces of music introduced by celebrities and performed by the National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales. The finale of the first year of the project was a Ten Pieces Prom at the Royal Albert Hall on 18th July which was repeated on 19th July 2015.
The project helped schools to deliver key aspects of the educational curriculum, including learning about the works of great composers, composing and performing. It is endorsed by a number of ‘champions’ across the music education world including Sing Up! and the NCO as well as musicians such as Nicola Benedetti.
In September 2015 the BBC launches Ten Pieces II for secondary schools. In August 2015 Keith was asked to write a lesson plan to connect songwriting with one of the ‘Ten Pieces’ in the programme. The lesson plan will be a downloadable resource for all schools nationwide from September 2015.
Focusing specifically on Vaughan Williams’ Lark Ascending, Keith used the romantic poetry on which this piece of music is based to connect forms of lyric writing to modern songwriting – all within a lesson format.
Using songwriting to connect students to different parts of their set works, and to other parts of the curriculum is an excellent and effective method educationally giving a focus to develop the skills needed to complete expressive songs.
Invite Keith to your school for a lesson, a day or a series of workshops.