World Voice brings the joy of singing to classrooms across the world. It started life as a British Council project created by Artistic Director Richard Frostick and ran from 2013 to 2020, initially in Senegal and India, and expanding over the years to include Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ethiopia, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Nepal, Palestine, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Zimbabwe and the UK. In that time, World Voice reached over 8,000 teachers and 500,000 children worldwide.
World Voice has now been taken on by the Sing Up Foundation, and anyone in the world can access the growing bank of online resources, including a World Songbook with songs from all the countries that have taken part.
If you’d like to read more, the World Voice Evaluation conducted by Sound Connections is a comprehensive review of the first seven years of the programme.
About World Voice
World Voice is a global programme that adapts to the cultural and educational needs in the countries where it operates and can be used to help children learn a foreign language, learn about different cultures, improve their musicality and improve their understanding of other subjects. World Voice is designed to support teachers to deliver the curriculum they are already teaching and introduces new skills to enable them to improve children's attendance, behaviour, wellbeing and achievement in school through the joy of singing. It has also been used effectively to ensure the inclusion of pupils with Special Educational Needs in school life.
‘When you take songs into classrooms ... you find every child, especially those that are bored or not interested in education ... they do not miss that [singing] class. Everybody is in the classroom, active and attentive’ – Zeny Zerfu, World Voice Master Trainer in Ethiopia
The World Voice programme enhances children's learning across the curriculum, in countries around the world, through singing. It also empowers and trains teachers to integrate songs into the classroom, resulting in a wide range of benefits – a child’s musicality is improved but also their awareness of other cultures by learning songs from other countries. Multi-Grammy Award-winning singer Joyce DiDonato, a former World Voice Global Ambassador, said ‘if I were to have designed my dream project, it would have been this.’
An increasing body of evidence supports the idea that music, and singing in particular, is hugely effective at helping children learn and improve their health and wellbeing. A school in Bradford, in the north of England, revealed that the secret of their dramatic rise in attainment was down to extra music classes for all pupils and incorporating songs and singing into maths, history and other lessons beyond music.