The Whakaaro Tahi Community Trust is making 20201 a year to remember at Far North schools, nowhere more so than at Peria, where it has been funding tutors (Eli Moore and Jane Hillier), a music programme and instruments for several years.
And last month the pupils were delighted to present the best of their first term's learning at a celebration with whānau.
"Every student in the school has the opportunity to play an instrument, and there are allocated times for practice and instruments provided in each classroom," Hillier said.
"The juniors (Te Puna) are beginning to play ukuleles as well as some percussion, and as usual they delighted us all with their fledgling moves and voices. They certainly enjoyed their brief time on stage.
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"The older students (Te Awa) made great progress in one term on guitar, keyboards, violin and ukulele. Whaea Jo has brilliantly created a window for daily music practice beside math lessons. The results are very promising. They had fun performing two waiata, 'Te Aroha' and George Ezra's 'Shotgun.'
"The seniors (Te Rangi) explored some creative ways of presenting 'Hareruia' and 'Wagon Wheel.' Some students had worked hard on cello, violin and keyboards, and they led these versions of the pieces, while others made brave headway, keeping time and managing chords.
"We encourage 'having a go.' We understand we can't all get it easily; we each have strengths, and we value students' efforts to give it their best in their music lessons."
The music performances were followed by presentations to students who had worked hard, excelled in written work, leadership, conservation, caring etc, the celebration ending with a shared lunch and an opportunity for parents, caregivers and the wider whānau to catch up with new staff members and students.