Drumming Is Fun – enjoyment deepens learning
Kids love drumming, e.g.:
“Drumming is AWESOME! It’s my favourite subject!”
“I’ve been looking forward to this class all week.”
“It was one of the best music lessons ever!”
“I liked playing the dun duns in the performance because it made me feel really confident and proud.”
As well as being a dynamic screen-free way to learn about other
cultures, African drumming is a great all-inclusive activity to build
self-esteem and well-being while developing character and musical
Since 1992 I’ve been studying djembe with master drummers from Nigeria,
Ghana, Guinea, and Ivory Coast. In 2005 I extended my learning to
embrace the dun duns, the bass drum heartbeat of African rhythms. I’ve
since embarked on field trips to Senegal to study with master musicians
in their native villages, to experience directly the vibrant culture of
West Africa, which I’m committed to bringing to a wider audience,
sharing the joy and unity it creates.
In leading thousands of workshops and performances, I’ve refined my
techniques and know what works well with groups of all ages. I have
considerable experience working with special needs projects.
“I could not be more pleased with our sessions. Not only did the children finish the workshops able to play a range of pieces on different types of drum, but also they gained a lot in terms of self-esteem and sense of achievement. Malcolm Smith is a talented
musician but also a good – and very patient – teacher who was able to adapt his own teaching style and the content of the lessons to suit a diverse group of children.”
– Chris Loft, Assistant Head Teacher, Goldington Green School, Bedford
African Drumming Workshops for groups of up to 30 children aged Year 2
I'm based near Leighton Buzzard and offer:
- Half day projects west of the M1
= £250+travel for 9am-12pm (3 sessions)
or £200+travel for 1pm-3:15pm (2 sessions)
- Full day projects east+west of the M1
= £360+travel for 9am-3:15pm (4/5 sessions)
All projects begin with an initial Wow Assembly demo for all
participants, to explain the basic techniques (to save time later in
each class) and then teach everyone a traditional African song.
Whole days can be split between 2/3 classes, where each group has a
morning class then an afternoon rehearsal for a final performance. Or
instead of the performance, have 4/5 classes throughout the whole day
with one go each.
Weekly lessons can also be arranged (near me, or further afield if a few
neighbouring schools team up to make travel viable) building up to an
Staff Team-Building for groups of up to 30 people
African Drumming sessions will quickly break down any barriers between
management and different departments. Playing exciting African music
together as a unified force energises people and provides new insights
into group dynamics which carry through into daily working practices.
I'm an experienced workshop leader for staff training events, inset days
and social functions, and can motivate conference delegates with
newfound enthusiasm, creating positive experiences to cherish.
"One of the best workshops we have ever had. The children were all
enthused and invigorated by the experience, as were the staff. Can't
wait for the next visit, especially the staff workshop after school."
- Sheena Tower (Year 4 Teacher, Arnett Hills School, Rickmansworth)
Referee 1: Wendy Turner, Christ The Sower Ecumenical Primary School, Milton Keynes, firstname.lastname@example.org
Referee 2: Paul Wildman, Lincroft Academy, Oakley, PWildman@lincroft.beds.sch.uk
Safeguarding: DBS checked, PLI held.
01525 240 937