Kate has been working in the early years as a music practitioner since 2002. A big part of her ethos is to upskill and empower early years practitioners to become more confident in their own music-making, singing and movement. All of the songs and ideas she brings to projects can be followed up on and repeated by early years practitioners. This is to ensure that all of her project work has a long term legacy and brings about sustainable change and improvement in the early years sector.
What's it all about anyway?
Once upon a time, Kate used to make tapes (yes, really, it was a long time ago!) of her songs and leave them in nurseries all over the north east, to help practitioners to remember tunes and words. Then, to show she was moving with the times, Kate started to make CDs.
As you can’t ever really know what will happen with children under the age of three, it was impossible to plan exactly which songs she would do each week, so pretty tricky to know which songs to put onto the CD each week for the practitioners to follow up on. Practitioners ended up with countless CDs and bits of paper, and it was very time consuming for everyone.
A genius idea was born in 2011, when Kate started working on the Tuneful Tots & Bouncin’ Bairns project in Howdon and Wallsend. Why not make a website which houses all current project resources? Then, she could add songs as regularly as needed, and it was simple-pimple for practitioners to go and listen to and download songs and copy the words. Eureka! This website was born.
This resource website has become Kate’s main tool to share her projects with family members and the wider community. This website has been used to support all of Kate’s project work since 2011. It has grown and evolved as Kate’s project work has.
A big part of Kate’s projects now is working with video observations of the children engaged in their own musical play, and responding to the musical stimulus she provides.
These video observations are an excellent way for Kate to reflect on her work and how the children respond to it. Video really captures how amazing younger children are. They move so quick with so much bustle, that sometimes we miss their brilliance because we are so busy clearing their path or worrying about them falling over!
Videos of children’s responses to project work are posted to this website regularly. This has proven to be an excellent way to share the projects with parents/carers at home, who often miss out on these first-hand experiences because they are working while their children are at nursery.