Pupils at a Perthshire school are able to continue making music thanks to their inventive teachers who crafted hundreds of personalised drumsticks.
Teachers at Strathallan School, near Forgandenny, developed the unique way around coronavirus restrictions in an effort to tailor lessons around learning to read, write and compose rhythms.
Under current guidelines from the Scottish Government, schoolchildren are unable to share equipment which means practical subjects such as music and technology have been hindered.
Strathallan pupils have been unable to play many instruments as a result, however they will now march to the beat of their own drumsticks after their quick-thinking teachers adapted to their limitations.
Every pupil studying music at the fee-paying school will receive their own hand-made drumsticks.
Director of music Matt Gooch, who came up with the idea, said making music had been challenging since the school went back.
He said: “At the moment making music has been rather tricky due to regulations put in place by the Scottish Government, so rather than thinking what we can’t do, we have been prioritising what we are able to do.
“Whilst we cannot share instruments and even play some, we’ve focused this term on skills around rhythm which every pupil can take part in.
“This has involved us making a pair of drumsticks for every single pupil from year four in prep school up to third form in our senior school, so that they can continue to learn to read, compose and perform music individually and in small safe groups.”
The drumsticks have been made from dowelling and are crafted under Covid-safe regulations in the school’s design technology department.
Whilst we cannot share instruments and even play some, we’ve focused this term on skills around rhythm which every pupil can take part in.”
Almost all of Strathallan’s music lessons are taught face-to-face, however brass, woodwind and singing are delivered online following Strathallan’s blended approach to learning.
More than 7,000 live lessons were taught through the school’s online platforms during lockdown.
It’s also not the first time Strathallan’s teachers have used their initiative to support music tuition.
The distribution of drumsticks follows the acquisition of Deger electric chanters in the school’s drumming department which allowed more than 70 pipers to continue practising.