In 2023, Cambridge 2030 worked with The King’s Men, the choir of King’s College, Cambridge, in a pilot project designed to inspire a love of singing in children and help ease the stress of transitioning to secondary school. The project involved students from four primary schools – Shirley Community Primary School, Kings Hedges School, The Grove Primary School, and Chesterton Primary School, as well as students from North Cambridge Academy, in a series of interactive musical workshops.

Acknowledging the emotional and academic challenges of transition from primary to secondary school for many young people, the pilot sought to bridge the gap between Years 6 and 7, using acapella and choral singing to help students combat anxiety, break down barriers, and build confidence and resilience, all while having fun.

During the workshops, students of all abilities were introduced to and used good singing techniques including posture, breathing and head vs chest voice; developed a sense of pitch and rhythm; performed music individually and as a group from memory; learned about choirs, musical terms and the role of the conductor.

Through solos and leaderships roles students also had the opportunity to grow in confidence as well as working as a team with classmates, instilling healthy competition and camaraderie in working towards an end goal of a performance. Importantly, the pilot project established music as a cross-curricular activity in the primary schools and gave teachers the opportunity to discuss the subject matter of songs within the context of learning.