school workshops

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Teachers interested in educational school presentations may choose from the list of Dawud Wharnsby’s workshops listed below:

Hi Neighbour! Salam Neighbour! (Ages 7 – 11)

Bonjour! Shalom! Hola! Konnichiwa! Salam! Calling all kids to look inside themselves for the hidden treasures and talents they can share with the world! Regardless of our languages and cultures, the rhythm of creation surrounds us and binds us. Through interactive dialogue, drumming and Dawud Wharnsby’s engaging songs, students explore the world’s natural rhythms (from the rotation of the Earth to the beating of our hearts), while also being encouraged to reflect upon their own individuality and role as a “neighbour” in the global village. Major themes include: celebration of uniqueness, tolerance & acceptance of differences, assessing inner strengths and weaknesses, social awareness, promotion of community activism and preservation of ecology.  (50 minutes + Resource Package)

The Rhythm Of Surrender (Ages 7 – 11)

Aimed specifically at faith-based audiences in private school settings, The Rhythm Of Surrender is a non-political, non-dogmatic, “God centered” approach to helping children understand faith, scripture and their world in a whole new way. Building upon the concepts of Dawud’s “Hi Neighbour! Salam Neighbour!” presentation, students are encouraged to celebrate and openly discuss not only the humanitarian aspects of tolerance and social concern, but also how their awareness of God relates to their daily lives. The Rhythm of Surrender program is non-denominational, however, portions of the program do reference the Torah, Bible, Qur’an and other scriptures. Some songs and terminology within the program can be altered to suit specific needs and beliefs of schools, with the program easily adaptable not only to audiences with an Abrahamic foundation, but also those aligned with Hindu, Buddhist and Sikh traditions. Major themes include: celebration of uniqueness, tolerance & acceptance of differences, importance of trying our best, assessing inner strengths and weaknesses, importance of charity, social awareness, promotion of community activism, preservation of ecology. (50 minutes + Resource Package)

Songwriting 101 (Ages 9 – 12)

A wonderful supplementary workshop to Dawud’s more “musical” programs, Songwriting 101 walks middle school students through unique writing experiments*, helping them build their own poems, songs, raps and stories – but more importantly: helping them build their confidence and self-esteem.  A course with no “right” or “wrong” answers, Wharnsby helps even the most tentative students dig deep into their imagination to unleash feelings, emotions and creativity in ways they might have never attempted to try before.  Grammar and spelling teachers can enjoy a cup of coffee in the staff room during this session, as Dawud challenges young writers to look at “writing” in a whole new way. Songwriting 101 is more about self discovery, self esteem and understanding our responsibilities to our world, than it is about “rhyming”, “meter” and “metaphor” – but don’t be surprised if, at the session’s end, you find your students eager to record their own album of original songs – using music as a tool for social change. Major themes include: overcoming learning disabilities, acceptance of differences, celebration of uniqueness, historic look at music as a tool for social change, assessing inner strengths and weaknesses. (50 minutes) *(This hands-on workshop requires the accessibility of chart paper, markers, loose-leaf paper & pencils for students. Workshop size is limited to 30 students in a classroom, library or out-door setting.)

Songwriting 101 (Ages 12 – Adult)

Dawud’s Songwriting 101 workshop (listed above) adapted for high school age students. (This hands-on workshop requires the accessibility of chart paper, markers, loose-leaf paper & pencils for students. Workshop size is limited to 30 students in a classroom, library or out-door setting.) (50 minutes)

Muslims and Music: Over 1400 years of Sacred Song (Ages 12 – Adult)
“But Dawud, isn’t music haram (unlawful) in Muslim tradition?” ~ A question Dawud hears much too often.   While the delights and dangers of listening to too much “music” have been up for discussion and debate theologically by people of many religious backgrounds for thousands of years, Muslims have spent the past 1400 centuries trying to strike a balance between categorically discouraging musical expression completely, and falling into social decadence under music’s alluring power.   Somewhere, on a middle path between those two extremes, Muslims throughout the ages have helped define how sacred song may be used to enliven culture.  They have refined the tools of musical expression and their advancements have inspired some of the world’s greatest artists ~ from Mozart to Mos Def. Walk with Dawud through history, scripture, SeerahHadith literature and songs of the past ~ to discover a vibrant tradition of sacred community music, with the potential to lead listeners and practitioners toward positive social and spiritual change.

Comments from Teachers about Dawud Wharnsby’s Educational Workshops

“Valuable, essential message which needs to be reinforced all the time.”
“Lovely to include children with instruments.”
“Very nice ~ positive message.”
“It would be good to have info about where he gets his resources from, as he is very inspirational.”
“It was great to see many children who normally don’t participate joining in and enjoying themselves.”
“Very positive, well organized and clear.”
“Good use of humour and encouraged children to join in.”
“A really enjoyable presentation!”
“A great message through song, thank you!”
“Lovely delivery and lots of things to lead into a discussion in class…thank you!”
“Perfect mix of lively fun and contemplation of deep issues of self.”
“…I loved it.”
“The children loved the songs.”
“Excellent lyrics and lovely, catchy melodies”.
“Great assembly.”
“The children loved it…so did the teachers!”
“Engaging and fantastic.”
“Lovely ,well done!”

School Tour Evaluations

Dawud Wharnsby visits hundreds of schools each year with his inspirational workshops encouraging use of  the arts as a means of achieving positive social change.

On recent school tour of the United Kingdom, evaluation forms were handed out to teachers, seeking feedback on his work through 5 basic questions.  Here are what the teachers at 19 Primary Schools and 2 Secondary Schools had to say:

Q1. Did the presentation meet your expectations?

Out of 90 forms:
56 people said it was excellent
33 people said it was very good
1 person said it was good
0 people said it was satisfactory
0 people said it was poor

Q2. How well do you feel Dawud engaged the students during the presentation?
Out of 90 forms:
65 people said it was excellent
25 people said it was very good
0 people said it was good
0 people said it was satisfactory
0 people said it was poor

Q3. How effective was the presentation in conveying the message of unity and valuing diversity?
Out of 90 forms:
52 people said it was excellent
31 people said it was very good
7 people said it was good
0 people said it was satisfactory
0 people said it was poor

Q4. Did you feel that the presentation was suitable for the age range?
Out of 90 forms:
59 people said it was excellent
25 people said it was very good
6 people said it was good
0 people said it was satisfactory
0 people said it was poor

Q5. Would you like Dawud return to your school?
Out of 90 forms:
90 people said yes
0 people said no

 

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