ABRSM Music Theory Success

A huge congratulations to our students who sat their ABRSM Music Theory exams recently! All students passed with a number receiving Merit and Distinction Grades.

From weekly music lessons, to our Music Keys programme, to ABRSM examinations, to BTEC Music, students at BISA benefit hugely from their music education.

A recent report by Dr Amy Fancourt, Head of Psychology at Queen Anne’s School, Caversham stated:

Music in schools is critical to a well-rounded education. In addition to the enjoyment that music brings in and of itself, musical training also confers a number of advantages to other areas of life.

Musical training has been linked to improved emotional processing and to the ability to read the emotional tone in another's voice. If we want to raise young people who are sensitive and socially intelligent then keeping music within the curriculum is a good start.

Children who learn to play a musical instrument show more perseverance and resilience when faced with challenges. If we want our young people to leave school with the 'soft skills' that will help them succeed in life then begin this preparation through musical instruction.

Participating in a school choir can help to bring a feeling of connection and improved self-efficacy and self-esteem in young people. Singing with others leads children to develop a more positive view of themselves and fosters a stronger sense of social inclusion.

Group musical participation can break down racial and social barriers. If we want to foster tolerance, understanding and respect of those with differing social and cultural backgrounds, music is one effective way to do this.

Group singing and musical participation have been linked to improvements in mood, happiness and wellbeing alongside reductions in stress. Encouraging musical participation in schools affords an opportunity to equip our young people with the tools needed to combat stress and to enable them to flourish in a pressured world

Learning to play a musical instrument sharpens the brain's ability to track very small changes in sound. The ability to break down a stream of sound that constitutes words or syllables is an important skill for language learning. Children with musical training show a more robust capacity for tracking very fine-grained changes in sound and learning an instrument strengthens the auditory processing networks in the brain. If we want to improve language and literacy then musical training is one route to doing this

Musical training leads to improvements in rhythm perception and production, which can be important for speech comprehension and production. For children with developmental language difficulties (e.g. dyslexia) learning to play an instrument can help to train the rhythmic processing that is important for comprehension of rapid changes in sound inherent within speech

These are just a few reasons why we must protect music provision within schools. Music is so much more than an additional enjoyable activity to accompany a child's academic subjects. Music is a key to unlock a child's potential in so many different areas that are vital to a successful and happy life. We have a responsibility to ensure that music remains very much at the heart of our curriculum, integral to our education system and widely accessible to all.

Seka Theatre Visit Secondary

Recently the Seka Theatre Company (http://www.seka-educational-theatre.com/) came to perform their new Forum Theatre play for the Year 8s and the BTEC Performing Arts Students.

Forum Theatre is a type of interactive theatre often used in Theatre for Development circles where the audience get try try out different solutions to their problems.

This particular play was looking at women's rights and the Year 8s did a fantastic job joining in the performance and experimenting with different solutions to the problems brought up in the play.

FS1 Give A Wonderful Performance

Building confidence in performing in front of an audience starts young at BISA. Our FS1 class in our Early Years Town Campus were a perfect example of that recently when they performed an assembly for their parents and the other classes.

They spoke about our new school in Njiro, which they recently went to visit as part of their construction topic.

"We saw our new classrooms."

"It's really big and has lots of space for us!"

"We saw the kitchen and where we will eat."

The children then acted out the story of the Three Little Pigs to the delight of their families and friends. They spoke with so much confidence that it was hard to believe that the children were only three and four years old.

Well done to our confident young learners!

Enjoy the Flickr album here: https://flic.kr/s/aHskWS5Lhs

Building self-esteem and self-confidence from a young age is an important part of EYFS. Watch this video for more information...

Panto Pandemonium - What a show!

"Fun and laughter now you're at the Panto!"

It was a spectacular evening of fun, laughter, goodies, baddies, fairytale characters and, thankfully, a happily ever after. Continuing the BISA tradition of excellent performances, Lower Primary's Production of Panto Pandemonium was a triumph.

From the beautiful set to the fantastic costumes, it was clear that a huge amount of effort had gone into the performance. Our young performers from Years 1,2 and 3 all acted, sang and danced with confidence. It was hard to believe that all the children performing were under the age of 8.

Congratulations to you all on a fantastic show!

Please enjoy our video slideshow of the event...

Why choose BTEC?

Chosen by over 1 million learners every year, BTEC offers a range of professional qualifications for anyone taking their first steps into the world of work, progressing through their careers, or planning to enter university. BTEC qualifications are run by Edexcel . Only approved centres can offer these continually assessed courses with no examinations and a practical approach to study. In addition to knowledge, they focus on developing the skills of research, communication, collaboration, public speaking, organisation and presentation valued by universities.
BISA currently offer vocational BTEC qualifications which enable students to gain entry into university in Performing Arts, Music, PE, Media and Business. We spoke with some of our current BTEC students to find out why they chose their courses and the benefits they are gaining.

Kisha Ndyetabula - BTEC Creative Media: The course gives a close feel to real life and work experience. It has given me a glimpse of the key requirements in the media industry. BTEC Media pairs my interests. It allows me to balance my intellectual and creative abilities. The vocational context of the course tests my hands on skills in a way that an exam paper wouldn't be able to do efficiently. It's been a very great course so far because at Braeburn, BTEC is building young talents with not only knowledge but equally life skills and experiences.


Mariam Hassan - BTEC Creative Media: I chose creative media because it provides me a professional insight on the skills required in the industry. The assignments are designed to allow production of work that responds to real life scenarios. You get to prepare and make your own media products which means, you have the opportunity to creatively give solutions through varied media platforms. The media saturates everything we do in the world in the 21st Century. I am an artistically talented individual and what better way to explore this than through creative media? I plan on taking Advertising, Media and public relations in the future.


Andrew OgonjiBTEC Performing Arts: I chose BTEC performing arts simply as a matter of loving the craft. Acting has been who I am for as long as I can remember. I want to acquire a highest possible level of the craft. Performing arts doesn’t just make your virtuosity turn from straw to gold but, it makes you as a person understand human beings on a deeper level. We learn to accept our insecurities, go on stage and flash our inner deepest, most concealed emotions. In some ways you can almost say that Performing arts allows you to be your true self emotionally but put on a mask and lie externally like everyone does in real life. As an actor people appreciate you showing the truth rather than telling it.
Kunashe Mbaya - BTEC Business: BTEC requires students to be effective every day at school and at home as assignments can pile up if you allow them and if this happens you will not enjoy it. BTEC has improved my skills as a student for example l have become more organised with my planning and work. My teachers are very helpful for example if l do not understand how to do an assignment they either give you reliable references or go through lengths of sitting down with you to explain what to do and what not to do. The school in general is very friendly and welcoming.
Lucy G. Meena - BTEC Business: From the day I joined Braeburn I found the people here are very welcoming especially the staff making the environment feel like home. The teachers are very supportive and always acknowledge  every step a student takes. One of the things I love about Braeburn is that they don’t only believe in what the students can do in class, but also encourage them to grow in their talents and also making  them to be more creative and practical.  I didn’t take Business in O-level I thought things would be very different and tough but I was totally wrong. It wasn’t that hard for me to understand in class because my teachers are very  supportive. BTEC business is actually very simple for a student who always pays attention in class and meets their deadlines of submitting assignments. Thanks to the help of my teachers and my determination, I am able to achieve good grades in my subjects.
Sam Mbuna - BTEC Business:  I have been in Braeburn for about four years now. I completed my IGCSE’S in this school and decided to stay and do the Extended Diploma BTEC Business course which is equivalent to doing three A levels. This course changed my perspective on the business world and how things work differently from what most of us see or think. I am taking Management, Marketing and Business which is known as compulsory. These three subjects opened up my mind a lot since it requires a lot of thinking and creativity. BTEC offers a fascinating insight into how the commercial world works. We learnt about the structure of business organizations and the processes involved in planning, setting up and running a business venture such  as management and human resources, marketing, and ethics, and the importance of innovation and creativity in business. Learning those elements led unit 36 to be one of my favorite units and piece of  work in this course. We got a chance to start up our own small business in groups or individually if  you wished. One thing I like about this course is that we are assessed continuously through assignments. Many people say that it allows you to become lazy and laid back but the truth is its not easy but it’s worth it. The fact that you get assignments every week from three different subjects motivates you to keep working continuously since you’ll always have work coming in. This course helped me develop my employability through the day-to- day course activities such as team working, group and individual activities. I think working on computers dealing with calculations; accounts etc also helped a lot in improving my English Math and ICT skills. During these two years I learnt how to become a more independent learner as the course develops my analytical and critical thinking skills as well as team working and leadership skills. For anyone who’s thinking of doing this course, I would advise them to do it. BTEC will actually give you some very useful study skills. You will be better prepared for degrees that assess through practical work, research and independent study, rather than exams. You will probably be better able to work in teams/groups than most A level students. You are likely to be more used to independent study and making your own choices about what to focus on.