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After leaving teaching to register as a free-lance historian, musician and writer in November 2003, I was involved in many different activities working in schools, museums and libraries up to my 70th birthday in 2018. Here are just a few examples;
- Taking a large number of school sessions in musical support of a National Portrait Gallery Exhibition in Sunderland Art Gallery.
- Taking a large number of school sessions on life in the coal mines (19th and 20th century) in Washington F Pit museum – usually a week or more – thirteen consecutive years (2004-16).
- Working with a Sunderland School and a Jarrow school on writing songs for a Bede and Biscop project – performed at churches in Jarrow and Monkwearmouth
- Interactive whiteboard literacy support in primary schools using Shoofly’s material – (see www.shooflypublishing.co.uk )
- Producing a CD of songs/worksheets for schools using songs of coal mining and working with individual primary schools on mining history through song.
- Working with Sunderland museum to produce a CD of songs for schools using songs of fishing
- Working with Newcastle’s Discovery museum to produce a CD of songs and work for schools based on sea shanties and traditional music, producing worksheets for special needs pupils’ visits and participating in a successful ‘Pirate Day’ (2006), River Day (2007) and Mining Day (2009)
- Working with Washington Old Hall ( National Trust) to create a three session scheme based on Tudor music, song, dance and a Tudor murder mystery
- Working with Northumberland schools on researching, writing and performing mumming plays.
- Working at Arbeia Roman fort on Roman life with special needs pupils -see account of this in ‘Working Together -Innovative work from the N E Regional Museums Hub’ booklet
- Taking an interactive musical Book Bag round branch libraries to encourage youngsters to read and join libraries (numerous!).
- Working with Sunderland Museum to provide back-up musical material for their Boomtown Exhibition in 2008.
- Working on an extended Creative Partnership on local heritage with Prior Park School, Berwick Summer 2009
- School Assemblies for Tyne and Wear Museum Service – including Tudors and Working on the Railway (nine years continuous).
- Creating a musical project relating to the art of L S Lowry in Sunderland.
- Producing CD of own songs written over 35 years (sold out).
- Working with new pupils at Monkwearmouth School on song writing and performance (Summer School 2011) and following this and other projects at the school into 2012.
- Creation of complete historical package for ‘Singing the City Sunderland’.
And now semi-retired on this front although some of the work related to the above is available (free) via my YouTube Site