Singing in a group is a fantastic confidence builder. A shared social interest gives a sense of belonging and the child learns to sing and perform while having fun, relaxing, mixing with a different group of children and learning about the importance of team work.
If a child is used to performing in front of an audience, and has learnt the skills to do this in a calm way, they can transfer these skills to the classroom. Presenting work to the class, taking part in school productions or even just talking to a teacher for some children requires the self confidence that can be gained during singing.
What should you be thinking about to help you choose the right singing coach or choir for your child?
Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) - An internationally recognised education body based in London that provides examinations in music.
Trinity Guildhall -Trinity College London
LCM Examinations - A department of the London College of Music within the University of West London.
The National College of Music - specialises in external examinations in music and speech subjects in centres throughout the UK and in some countries overseas.
ICMA (Independent Contemporary Music Awards) hold examinations in Music Performance, Music Theory and Speech. Flexible exam dates are held throughout the year at times agreed with the applicant, so that candidates may perform at their peak, and without disruption to children's education. Applicants may use their own studio, home, school, church, or local hall for examinations, enabling candidates to perform in familiar surroundings and on familiar instruments.
Singing - grade 1-8.
Ensembles (from duos and trios to jazz ensemble) – Exams at Primary, Intermediate and Advanced Levels.
The Choral Singing syllabus is designed for a wide range of choirs. Exams are available at three levels – Initial, Intermediate and Advanced.
Singing grade 1-8 in Classical & Jazz, Rock & Pop. Exams are available at three levels – Initial, Intermediate and Advanced for solo and group certificates.
Classical Singing, Popular Music vocals, grades 1-8.
The National College of Music
Exams in Singing, Gospel Singing and Chorister Singing in two Preparatory grades for the under 12s and Grade 1–8.
Exams in Singing, Contemporary Vocals, Pop Vocals, Musical Theatre, Chorister and Ensembles. Grade 1-8.
During singing lessons children are taught the importance of good posture to enhance the quality of their voice. Listening skills, memory and concentration are required to learn new lyrics and techniques. Children learn that patience and practice are needed to become successful in singing whichever type or style they are choosing to learn.
In the Eighties Carol Vorderman (born December 24, 1960) was in a Leeds-based pop trio called Dawn Chorus and the Blue Tits. The band signed a deal with Stiff Records – the label behind Madness, Elvis Costello and Ian Dury, released three singles and even recorded a session for the late John Peel’s legendary Radio One show. Carol was already on Countdown but the show hadn’t really taken off by that stage. Sadly, the band didn’t last. After a couple of years, Carol got impatient when they didn’t have instant success and left. And, as we all know, Carol and Countdown became a national phenomenon. But if they had stuck it out, who knows?
Actress Gwyneth Paltrow (born September 27, 2002) sang in the Hollywood film Country Strong and the popular television series Glee. “If she decided she wanted to dedicate herself to singing, she would be a huge star.” said David Grant, Vocal Coach and TV presenter.
Lesley Garret CBE (born April 10, 1955) is Britain’s most popular soprano. She appears regularly in opera, in concert and on TV. She has 14 solo CDs to her credit.
Gareth Gates (born July 12, 1984) was head chorister for Bradford Cathedral Choir and even sang for the Queen when she visited in 1997. He also plays the piano and guitar. He shot to fame in 2002 when he came 2nd in the TV talent show Pop Idol. He has sold more than 3.5 million records in the UK and is well known for pop music although more recently he has made a move into Musical Theatre in ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat’ and ‘Les Miserables’.
Chinese: Choral Tribute to Lily Allen by Capital Children's Choir - A really lovely clip of The Capital Children’s Choir singing a song that Lily Allen wrote for her mum. These children have great voices and it is very obvious they love singing together.
Shake It Out: Choral Tribute to Florence and The Machine - If you enjoyed that – have a look at the Capital Children's Choir tribute to Florence And The Machine: Shake it Out.
Best Ten Year Old Singer Ever - And to prove children can sing brilliantly just sitting in their bedroom at home…here’s a 10 year old girl singing a lovely cover of The Climb by Miley Cyrus… and she didn’t even make her bed first!
I have just moved up into Year 3 at school which means I’m allowed to join the choir. I am very excited about it because I really love singing. If you’re in the school choir you have to go to practice every Thursday afternoon and during the year there are lots of different performances. I am really looking forward to singing in the Carol Concert in our village church.
I started singing in the choir at school as I thought it would be fun and found out that it is quite easy and I am getting quite good at singing. I really love learning new songs to sing and mummy says it has helped me with my confidence. I think it is a good idea to join a choir but only if you do not mind people watching you – I get a bit embarrassed!