Hartington youngsters see in summer holidays with an African song and dance


Students at Hartington C of E Primary School bid farewell to their year of studies with an African themed presentation event for parents and carers to enjoy.

Youngsters presented all they had learnt about Africa and its culture at the afternoon showcase on Wednesday 22 July.

They recited words and poems, played traditional African drums and displayed a map of the continent to show visitors where certain countries were including Ghana, Zambia, South Africa and Kenya.

The pupils also performed songs and dance routines that originated from each area alongside Rachel Wilkes from the Derby and Derbyshire Music Partnership and Bemma Akyeampon, of African Ark, based in Nottingham.

Rachel said: “I have been working with pupils in Hartington for the last ten weeks and at first, I was quite concerned that I wouldn’t have enough material to stimulate the children for so long! However, once I started looking at the different countries in Africa, I realised that there is a fabulous wealth of different styles of songs.”

“We performed a range of tunes for the audience to enjoy, including welcome songs – some about the countryside, working life, saying hello and celebratory songs. Every week I have brought something new in for the children to have a go at and they have always embraced it and always had a great go.”

Local parents, carers and residents who attended the presentation described it as “moving,” “special” and “inspiring.”

Head Teacher, Tracy Blackwell said: “I am so proud of the children. The performance was absolutely fantastic and it gave me goose bumps as I saw how much hard work went into it. They did a terrific job of remembering the words to all of the songs with Rachel and the movements and rhythm of the drum playing and dancing they did with Bemma.”

“The event has rounded off a great year here at Hartington. We have achieved so much and have lots of happy memories to look back on. We have also waved goodbye to two pupils who are now off to secondary school in Ashbourne and Bakewell and I wish them all the very best of luck for their future. We’re now looking forward to the brand new year and more exciting activities like this one!”


African round up 1

African round up 2

African round up 3

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