The Protege Effect
by Rachel [aka Bradders] - Youth Support Worker at Cre8 Music
I have no musical ability, so was especially excited to get involved with the music project! I’m a youth support worker at the Cre8 Music project on the Moss (I have many roles at Cre8 – this is just one of them!). I look after the tea & toast, sit and chat while young people wait for lessons, and more recently I’ve become a ‘project’ for the young people to teach music to!
My lack of musical ability became apparent to the young people quite quickly and so they took it upon themselves to sort me out with some music lessons – taught by them! It began with singing and we are currently practising Jessie J's ‘Flashlight’ and Leonard Cohen's ‘Hallelujah’; a fine combination! This is accompanied by piano and most recently, ukulele... Simon Cowell eat your hat! As well as fuelling my one man band daydreams, I find it a cool way of building the young people’s confidence in their own ability and focus' them to practice (albeit while laughing at my raw talent). Plus, there’s plenty of evidence to show it helps them learn – have a look at the article here >>. It's also really encouraging to see young people teaching each other young people, as everyone seems to join in with ‘teaching Rachel’ time.
I see that music has this quality to calm an anxious young person. I hear it in the lyrics they choose to sing, the story they wish to tell. In the tea & toast moments (always a popular time at the music project) the young people describe their creative aspirations for the future while chatting over a brew. I love to hear this.
The music project provides such a positive learning environment. I listen in awe while the highly talented music tutors and young people jam together; spontaneous creativity spills out of the group. I can't help but feel energised, feel included and want to have a go. I’m sure this energy is why the kids stick around too. I've seen these young people grow from no musical background to being musically (and socially) confident and competent. The Youth Music Concert’s that Cre8 holds during the year are evidence of this - blows me away every time!
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