Musical Futures is a movement to reshape music education driven by teachers for teachers. At its heart is a set of pedagogies that bring non-formal teaching and informal learning approaches into
more formal contexts, in an attempt to provide engaging, sustainable and relevant music making
activities for all young people.
Our core aim is to promote, support and develop innovative and high quality teaching and learning
of music through MF approaches in schools across the UK
What defines Musical Futures in practice?
- A variety of non-formal and informal teaching and learning approaches grounded in secure
- Practical work on instruments/voice, creating authentic musical experiences
- Aural learning, that fully integrates listening with practical music making, improvising and
- Students are motivated and engaged by music they value and that is relevant to them,
before moving onto other musical and learning styles
- Technique, notation and other forms of written instruction are part of the process but are
developed through practical playing
- Teachers and practitioners act as facilitators, through showing rather than telling, and
through guiding and modelling rather than instructing
- Develops skills and confidence in teachers enabling them to deliver high quality MF
What we do
Musical Futures is a Paul Hamlyn Foundation special initiative. It began in 2003
when the Paul Hamlyn Foundation instigated an initiative to find new and imaginative ways of
engaging all young people in meaningful music activities.
As a ‘movement’ Musical Futures has always operated from the ground-up. The people who do the
bulk of the Musical Futures work are teachers and practitioners in classrooms, who take the Musical
Futures approaches and implement them, often with little or no additional funding.
Centrally we aim to respond to the needs of teachers, practitioners and others who are using the
Musical Futures approaches.
The work of Musical Futures falls into four main areas:
Musical Futures delivers more than 60 training and CPD courses per year. All courses are run
by Musical Futures ‘champion teachers’ – i.e. those who have been
delivering Musical Futures themselves and have experience and practical guidance to share with
others. Training is free of charge, and open to anybody to attend.
Musical Futures commissions and collects resources showing how teachers can deliver high quality,
relevant music making projects and approaches in their classroom. Musical Futures has also
produced a selection of research and reports about how to engage learners in the music classroom.
Musical Futures runs an online network for music teachers, as well as running
local networking events, and national conferences and Teach Meets.
Musical Futures regularly works in partnership with other organisations to deliver new and exciting
projects, usually culminating in has always worked in partnership with other organisations to deliver
exciting projects. These have involved the Royal Opera House,