Waltham Forest Music Service (WFMS) provides music tuition in many of the borough’s schools. We provide tuition in singing and a wide variety of instruments which are available to hire at an affordable price. The service also runs a thriving Music School after the school day and on Saturday mornings.
Instrumental and vocal tuition
There are many benefits to learning a musical instrument, and at Waltham Forest Music Service we provide a number of opportunities for children to do this.
There are many reasons why children should be encouraged to learn a musical instrument. Learning helps pupils develop the following qualities: self-confidence, self-reliance, self-discipline, imagination and creativity, commitment, communication skills, team and social skills, co-ordination skills and concentration skills.
Many reports have been conducted both in this country and abroad and it has been proved that playing a musical instrument benefits other areas of the curriculum. The benefits go way beyond musical skills and pupils can engage in a lifelong learning activity.
The Whole Class Instrumental and Vocal Tuition programme (previously known as Wider Opportunities) is introducing hundreds of children to the rewards of learning an instrument in a class setting alongside their teacher. This experience gives them a solid musical foundation on which they can then build with smaller group lessons on an instrument of their choosing.
To begin lessons, discuss with your child’s school the arrangements they have in place regarding costs. The Music Service can provide instruments for you to hire for a small fee of £15 per term or £7 for those in receipt of free school meals. We can also advise on purchasing your own instrument if appropriate. To support learning we would expect students to practise their instrument regularly at home.
Music tuition is available on the following instruments -
- Strings: cello, double bass, violin, viola, acoustic guitar, bass guitar, electric guitar.
- Woodwind: bassoon, clarinet, flute, oboe, recorders, saxophone
- Keyboard and piano
- Brass: euphonium, French horn, tenor horn, trombone, trumpet, tuba
- Percussion: African drumming, drum kit, steel pans.
We also arrange for instrumental and vocal exams to be taken locally each term with a special visit from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, and we have links with other examining bodies. Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you wish to find out more.
Our Music School groups cater for a wide range of musical abilities and styles. These run on Monday to Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings during term time. Joining an ensemble enables your child to make music with others of a similar standard from different schools across the borough. It is essential to develop self-confidence, team and social skills and concentration skills. Not only does joining an ensemble help build upon work your child is learning during his/her instrumental lesson, they are also developing their performance skills by working together with other young musicians. These communication, co-operation and self-discipline skills are invaluable to the development of a young person and are transferable skills for life.
Each group is led by a member of the Waltham Forest Music Service teaching team and pupils are encouraged to strive for, and to achieve the highest standards. The groups are structured so pupils can join and progress as they advance on their instrument. Each group has an opportunity to perform publicly at least once a term. We have developed a number of partnerships with external organisations, and our link with the London Symphony Orchestra has involved members of the Music School in workshops and other performance opportunities.
We also provide individual instrumental tuition at the Music Service where it is not possible to receive instrumental tuition at school. Please contact us to find out more about what we can offer. We run theory classes throughout the week and on Saturdays which support the work covered in instrumental lessons and also develop your child’s understanding of music.
Music School groups and times
|Woodland Strings||Open strings & 1st position||Thu||16:15||17:15|
|Saturday Strings||Grade 1+||Sat||09:15||10:15|
|Forest Strings||Grade 3+||Thu||17:30||18:30|
|Guitar Group||Grade 1+ (& TAB or stave)||Tue||17:00||18:00|
|Beginner Wind||Able to play at least 5 notes||Mon||16:30||17:30|
|Woodwind Group||Grade 1-2||Wed||16:30||17:20|
|Saxophone Group||Grade 1-4||Mon||17:30||18:30|
|Brass Group||Grade 1-2||Wed||16:30||17:20|
|Festival Choir||Year 4+||Mon||17:00||18:00|
|Drumming Group||Year 5 or older||Tue||18:00||19:00|
|Wind Band||Grade 2-5||Wed||17:30||18:30|
|Training Orchestra||Grade 2-4+||Sat||10:30||12:00|
|Youth Orchestra||Grade 5+||Wed||19:30||21:00|
|Dance Band||Grade 5+||Wed||18:30||19:30|
|Theory and aural|
Paying fees online
To pay for instrument hire, Music School tuition or Music School ensembles, please read these instructions (PDF) and then use the 'Pay online' link at the top of this page. Please contact us for more information.