Good News Stories - Learning in lockdown and not missing a beat!18-May-2020
Our tutors have been facing-up to the challenges of Covid-19, and our tutor Bob Young relates his recent experiences where email and YouTube has meant the music has played on for his learners.
‘Tutoring three classes a week in Music Appreciation has been a regular part of my routine. . . and then Coronavirus Covid 19 suddenly interrupts: classes are disbanded abruptly without any forward planning and without the opportunity to bid each other farewell.
‘Happily, this term we are up and running again – not as classes meeting in a physical sense, but as the Tutti Music Club on email (Tutti is the Italian word used on music scores to indicate that everyone plays together – a title suggested by one of the learners).
‘Each Monday I send out notes to give background and analysis on the piece of music designated for that week. Each recipient then finds the music on YouTube and plays it at a convenient time. ‘Club members’ are invited to send in their comments on the music by the next Sunday evening, and these are then circulated to the group with the next week’s briefing.
‘We are now four weeks into our email venture, and the feedback has been heartening. The initial response was a flood of thanks for having a way to continue; that was followed by some emailed observations on the music, more thoughtful and careful than the immediate reactions of the learners when the music would be played in class. It also means that there is time for everyone to have their say, which is difficult in the normal group of 15 or more. And although not everyone sends in comments, I’m fairly confident almost everyone will be reading those written by the others.’
Bob feels that the sessions have progressed really well and his learner comments would suggest that they agree with one (Meg) noting that ‘Music Club is a treat – even by email. I need treats. Why else would I wrestle with the technology?’ Learner Glynis also commented, “I am pleased we have this group. It offers a small escape from the monotony of the current situation, an opportunity to focus on a particular piece of music rather than randomly listening to Classic FM.”
Learners Ian and Jane also speak warmly of the sessions: “The two of us listen to the music each week. We set aside a time and a day to do this. Then I send an email replying to the questions and noting our opinions. This is a good part of our new routine.”
And Jane observes, “I am missing the interaction of the weekly sessions but I am continuing to enjoy and learn about the world of music.”
Membership of Bob’s Tutti Music Club currently stands at 47. However, there are some who would normally be in classes but who are not on email and therefore cannot participate. Conversely, others not normally involved in the classes have joined in.
If you would like to join the Tutti Music Club, a warm virtual welcome would be assured. The Club is free to join, and will run until the lockdown period ends, and until normal class activities are re-established. Contact Robert.Young@adultlearning.wales for more information.
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