It’s half term; it’s a time to reflect on what has happened last term and to get excited about what is coming next half term – and boy, am I excited?! #NTLTiPadBand is about to become real!

Last January, I went to BETT for the first time and was in awe of everything around me. But one thing stuck and that was the performance of the iPadBand. I remember walking down one of the many aisles and hearing Guns ‘n’ Roses ‘Sweet Child of Mine’ blaring from the Main Arena. I desperately tried to make my way over to see what was going on but the crowds were so big, I could only grab a glimpse of what was happening but I was blown away. They were absolutely brilliant! If only I could do that in our schools…

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Then my role as eLearning Lead Teacher took over. The idea of an #iPadBand became a distant memory and I began working with our schools delivering all things eLearning.

It was only in June, the time of the Apple Regional Training Centre Summer Conference, when I received an email from Chris McFall to ask for ‘volunteers’ to take part in a project on the 2nd day of the conference. Well, you know what I am like! So I signed up, thinking nothing of it. I arrived at the Belfry for 2 inspiring days working with some amazing educators from around the UK. At the end of Day 1, at dinner, it was announced that we had a special performance… #iPadBand!!! I LOVED it! They, again, were amazing!

People were on their feet, encores were played, the whole thing was just fabulous!

Then the announcement came… “For those of you who have signed up for the mystery 2nd day event – you are going to be working with #iPadBand tomorrow to get ready for your own iPadBand Performance!” WOO HOO!!!

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The second day of the RTC Summer Conference was amazing! Working with David Kirtlan and the iPad Band from Bohunt School, a group of us (including Lisa, Louise and Martin) spent the day learning ‘Wake Me Up’. The students became the teachers, and what great teachers they were.
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Our performance at the end of the day was certainly not of ‘#iPadBand’ standard but we gave it our best shot!

On the train journey home at the end of the conference, I was buzzing. I wanted to give the experience of being in an iPadBand to the children I work with. So that’s when the idea of #NTLTiPadBand was born.

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Fast forward to this half term. All of the background work has been done and the funding has been secured for #NTLTiPadBand from North Tyneside Learning Trust. The dates have been booked and, working in collaboration with the North Tyneside Music Education Hub, we are all set and ready to go with 15 schools taking part. Each school will have training from David and the project will culminate in a #NTLTiPadBand ‘Battle of the iPadBands’ competition in July!

I can’t put into words how excited I am! From seeing a glimpse of #iPadBand at #BETT15 to now, starting on a journey with 15 of our schools to create their own #iPadBand, it’s the start of something extremely special!

I can’t wait!

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