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This Session

During our final music session, we were able to become aware of different apps to support children’s learning surrounding music. We were also made aware of curriculum links which were indicated on the last music blog post. We worked together in groups to think about how we can use I-pad apps to support children’s learning in the early years, using a range of apps. This was a really interesting session and opened up our eyes to a range of I-pad apps available to us as teachers. We also did an introductory song to the session called ‘hello’. We explored this as group and were able to pass this around the circle which is quite a nice idea to support children to engage in different ways of thinking about music. I like this idea and would use it having a class for the first time, as a nice introduction to getting to know each other. This also supports inclusive practice. We explored a range of ways of music and games such as ‘Follow the Leader’ and ‘Simon says’.

Train song

We also worked as a group to think about a train song. This used a range of different instruments and also we were able to think about different lengths of the pitch (building on last session) of the music needed to recreate a train atmosphere. We listened to of the little train of Caipira by Villa-Lobos. We then were asked to think about our voices and how we could adapt this into a performance thinking about a journey of a train from start, middle and also end. This was something which I definitely would like to try out with children as it proved to be interesting and inclusive. This is something which I have found out from these sessions, music can be adapted for different abilities of children and also gives them the chance to explore learning regardless of their abilities. Music seems to be as a universal subject, obviously children will be of different levels, but it is something which can be applied across a range of abilities without children realising too much. Again, it was nice to compare and contrast ideas with my peers. This made me realise we all had different values about how to use music in different ways, combined this created a very interesting piece.

Please check out our train video piece here – train video


As teachers we were made aware of a range of apps that can be used on a I-pad to engage children on learning about music. Some of my favourites were…

  • Garageband – Really great app to create a song – please click here to listen to a piece which I created myself:
  • Magic piano – another engaging app children would love to explore
  • Drum kit – exploring levels of sounds
  • Music sparkles – exciting!
  • Simon says – recalling colours and sounds – building on children’s mathematical knowledge of patterns as well.
  • SoundOscope – extremely interesting when changing the pitch of sounds and composition

There are many more apps which can support teachers to plan and engage children in music sessions, however, these I found were the most engaging to get started with.






What music is all about…








































How can this support young children’s learning development?  

To further my own professional teaching development when exploring music I have chosen to evaluate how I would use these ideas within the classroom, combining last sessions ideas as well as this one, especially learning about improvisation and innovation. Due to the developments highlighted in the ICT creative computing session, as teachers it is important that we keep up to date with technology and how we can support children to engage in this within their own learning too. Children are surrounded by new updates of technology, highlighting the value of this being combined into their learning at school too.

This website has been really helpful to me as a developing teacher as I have been able to gain some useful information from this site : It provides some really great links and ideas to engage and integrate into music lessons.

Here is another useful website if you would like to view some more Early Years useful I-pad apps:

The photos below show some apps which are useful to combine children’s languages into music. Children can not only hear songs in different languages but value their peers’ backgrounds too. This is really useful as a teacher as if we are teaching children about the world around them (UTW) surely it is valuable to combine this into their music learning as well. I really like this idea and in the classroom you could have a language of the week and use different songs in that language. This also allows children recognise that meaning can be displayed in many different ways, videos can be shown from the internet too to support children’s understanding of what they are listening too. What great apps!

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Further Reading

Humpal and Kern (2012) explain the benefit of using I-pad apps for music to combine SEN learners into lessons. This links into my previous thoughts about inclusive practice and how learners can feel valued of this through the use of I-pads. This reading indicates to me I-pads are a ‘client preferred’ age for learners. Suggesting that this is appropriate to this day in age and engaging children into this topic too.

Mayesky (2014) also suggests that I-pad apps can support children in different ways of creative thinking opportunities, which widen their thinking just by having something visual to look at and see. I-pad apps can show children when music is developing in higher pitch or sound, showing them what this actually means. This is really useful to think about as it relates back to different learning styles of children, as well as supporting inclusive practice too. Mayesky (2014) also talks about what Montesorri (a early years pedagogical theorist) would say about using I-pads, she values that talk, user and connection with apps would be in favour of a Montesorri style method of learning. Talk and communication are highly valuable experiences at any level in the early years, as teachers it is important that we do recognise this as well. Again, this reading is something else which suggests multi-cultural, SEN, EAL and bilingual learners can access as well as other children too.


Humpal, M. and Kern, P. (2012) Early Childhood Music Therapy and Autism Spectrum Disorders: Developing Potential in Young Children and their Families. London: Kingsley.

Mayesky, M. (2014) Creative Activities and Curriculum for Young Children. Stamford: Cengage.

During this session we were able to explore how digital literacy can be used to support children’s development through the arts. We were also able to think about a range of resources of how to achieve this, as well as understanding what type of learning opportunities can take place during these tasks. As well as learning about these elements we thought about how we could also support children of different abilities to also promote inclusive practice in the Early Years classroom.

Group Work and The Session

We undertook a group based project which related to being able to work together to engage with prints and also digital literacy media. The pictures below show how our digital media Christmas Winter Wonderland scene progressed. First me and another peer used clay materials to set the characters for our scene. We were able to use different types of techniques and became aware of how to achieve effective results from using clay with the different tools given to us. This also indicated to us that young children could explore these techniques if they are given appropriate modelling, as well as opportunities for talk to extend their thinking skills when mixing and combing materials. Our other peers in our group were able to create the background scene also shown below. This required skills such as using different types of prints as well as colour to achieve combined effects. It was interesting to see how well the glitter made the background stand out, as well as creating a ‘Winter Wonderland’ theme which worked exceptionally well with our clay characters. Combing all of our ideas together was useful to be able to support each other and value each others ideas. I think as well this is something which is incredibly important as teachers to achieve inclusive practice, allowing all children to be able to have the chance to participate. We agreed as a group that if this was carried out in our classes we would also like to give children the opportunity to which part they might like to design too. For example; some children might prefer painting over clay based activities. I think that also combining both types of art can allow children to have a sense of independence as well as confidence over their work. The role of our characters was based around Christmas. We had a Santa and Snowmen working in the North Pole. This would be great to use with children as they could think of their own character plots as well as stories. I was able to make the character show emotion by allowing different shapes to show a happy face which can also engage the children in thinking about how they might think characters could be feeling or what emotions they would like to express, as well as how they are going to achieve this too.

How can this support young children’s learning?

I think that as a teacher I could also engage children especially in the EAD area of the EYFS curriculum but also through Communication and Language as well as developing essential skills needed for art. These include fine motor skills such as co-ordination with tools and paintbrushes as well as moulding and joining the clay together. This also gives the children confidence to carry on with these skills throughout their education as they will have developed knowledge of early learning aspects around these concepts. It is also very enjoyable learning experiences!

From working with my peers and becoming aware of key aspects of printmaking in this session, I have also been able to reflect on this. Firsly, I have done printmaking with children before using vegetables and sponge stampers. However, this session was interesting to see how we as teachers could support children to combine colour, texture and pattern together. I would really love to give my children the opportunity to think of their own types of prints, as well as share ideas with each other. I am aware that this also builds up children’s EAD developmental skills towards the Early Learning Goals. One which my peers and myself enjoyed exploring today was Mono-Printing. This is shown below in the background of our scene. I think this was excellent to use ink and combine images together. Also through using the technique of rolling we were able to explore how the texture as well as appearance could be changed to be more appealing or look completely different by just using a different tool. In this session, the demonstration from Rebecca our tutor was really useful to see how we can actually explore this concept further with young children. One way in which I would like to do this myself as a teacher would be to think about the ways in which the quality of print can be explored. This could be giving children a certain area they have to complete the print within or also allowing them to explore different breadths and type of print with their own choice of colours. I think it would be valuable to also allow children therefore to explore their own colour mixing to choose the colours to achieve this type of learning. Next time I do this I would definitely enjoy exploring a range of techniques from today’s session.

Please have a look at our Winter Wonderland photos below!

E-book – directed task

I became aware of what it could feel like to be a children’s illustrator and how to engage children in thinking through the use of story based multi-media learning experiences. I think it is also important to allow children to combine media to realise that technology in this day in age can support children to engage in different ways of viewing stories or images with each other. I was able to work with my peers to put together a video which shows our creation of our WinterWonderland scene with music included too.

Further Reading

Machado (2012) argues that children need to be given these type of opportunities to enhance their visual literacy skills in being able to understand meaning through text, as well as engage in expressive arts and design. Not only is this important for children to be able to meet the ELG of the EYFS (2012), yet this gives them great opportunities to reflect on their own learning and extend their learning through giving children these new and exciting ways of thinking. I also feel strongly about this and aim to put this into practice myself as a teacher.

Callaway and Kear (1999) also argue that using printmaking in education can open children’s ideas to different ways of being creative as well as using a variety of resources to achieve this. From the lesson today, I can understand how this can be applied to children as this definitely influenced my individual learners. It would be interesting to perhaps read a story with children and then allow them to explore the different techniques of the printmaking themselves where possible relating to different characters or settings. This would therefore give children the chance to explore different ways of viewing imagery. Some challenges towards this could be having the correct resources or materials within a setting, and also supporting those children who aren’t too confident within the arts or using different types of tools.

Another interesting reading by Eglinton (2003) explores the use that technology can have by giving children the chance to view illustrations on screen. Since this literature there has been a lot of developments which can extend young children’s learning further such as the use of I-pads and technology. However, it is apparent that this has been an on going development over the past 10 years+. Eglinton (2003) indicates that this type of learning can also support children to read, interpretate as well as analyse visual imagery. I think that print is also an excellent enjoyable way to introduce children to artists as well as different ways of perceiving imagery/visual literacy.

When considering the effects that this type of learning can have on EAL or SEN children within a class who I would teach, Price (2009) outlines that using art and ICT combined together can also have a positive effect on children’s learning who are EAL or SEN. This visual type of learning can support children with their understanding of learning, contributing to exposing them to different types of language or learning beyond what they are used to. This is something from this session and my wider reading which I will value as importance in the early years as it has made me aware of how valuable inclusion practice can be supported through printing or visual literacy art based lessons.


Callaway, G. and Kear, M. (1999) Teaching Art and Design in Primary School. London: David Fulton Publishing.

DfE. (Department for Education). (2012) Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage: Setting the standards for learning, development for children birth to five. Runcorn: Department for Education.

Eglinton, K. (2003) Art in the Early Years. London: Routledge.

Machado, J. (2013) Early Childhood Experiences in Language Arts: Early Literacy. USA: Wadsworth.

Price, H. (2009) The Really Useful Book of ICT in the Early Years. Oxon: Routledge.

WinterWonderland Scene photos:


My clay based characters


Combining group work to create a scene


My peers clay work/background plus my characters


How do my characters look against the scene?


My peers clay work characters


Our lovely background using print work and tools


Using different effects to give different meanings from a photo




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