Here is a list of the kind of skills an experience music leader working with children has:



Confidence – to sing out in front of children and adults

Songwriting – making up words and tunes and remembering them, writing them down

Improvising – making up little songs and tunes in the moment, repeating them, validating them

Melodic and harmonic skills – feeling where a tune is going as I sing, finding notes to fit with chords, and chords to fit with notes, and chord sequences to express the mood

Instrumental skills:

  • able to play my instrument while singing and paying attention to what’s happening around me – only 20% attention needed on my playing
  • knowledge of chords
  • ability to find a melody on the instrument
  • repertoire of melodies and chords

Aural skills to hear tunes and repeat them

Repertoire to draw on:

  • of songs
  • of activities and games
  • of puppets and props

Producing printed sheets of song words with clipart

Documenting with photos and video

Writing up what I see as significant

Empathy and intuition to tune in to children’s moods, feelings and experiences

Trust of my instincts and intuition to voice things that don’t seem to make sense


  • to go with children’s ideas
  • to stop doing something if it isn’t working
  • to abandon any pre-conceived plan
  • to go into new territory

Willingness to have times when nothing seems to be happening, out of which can come something new

Sense of humour

Kindness and understanding