Spotlighting best practices

Sistema England’s Youth Music Spotlighting aimed to bring together music teachers from Sistema-inspired programmes in England to learn and share effective practices with each other and subsequently with the wider music education workforce.

Social pedagogy

Here you will find video clips of Social Pedagogy taking place on Sistema-inspired programmes in England, as well as a downloadable Tips & Tools for Social Pedagogy resource from teachers for teachers.

‘Social Pedagogy’ – what is it?

As you will see from the ideas and comments contributed by teachers and leaders here, people bring a variety of ideas to the meaning of ‘Social Pedagogy’.  However, a widely recognised short-hand in education is, ‘whole child development’.  The Children’s Workforce Development Council describes Social Pedagogy in this way:

‘The pedagogical approach rests on an image of a child as a complex social being with rich and extraordinary potential, rather than as an adult-in-waiting who needs to be given the right ingredients for optimal development… There is no universal solution – each situation requires a response based on a combination of information, emotions, self-knowledge and theory.’

See here for a useful introduction to Social Pedagogy.

More work needs to be done to identify the most effective interventions for achieving measurable ‘Social Outcomes’.  These practical tools are a starting point from which we hope opportunities for rigorous research will emerge.

‘Building self-esteem, self-confidence, character and resilience, together with a general concern for the young musician’s well-being are equally important as the musical outcomes in a Sistema-inspired programme. For example, a child can be praised for effort or for making progress where there is still a way to go to achieve a desired musical outcome. Engaging with parents and the wider community are also part of a Sistema-inspired programme’s objectives rather than being an added bonus.’
Richard Hallam MBE, Chair, Music Education Council, Trustee, Sistema England

Download Tips & Tools for Social Pedagogy.  These are not exhaustive, and if you would like more, download the full Sharing Tips & Tools document, which includes teaching ideas for Differentiation and Repertoire.  In whatever context you work with young people, we hope some of the resources here are useful for your practice, and that you can contribute your own ideas below.