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Song unites pupils over 6,000 miles
Buy this photo » Anna Phillips at the piano leading Wood Farm students in the song We Stand Tall. Picture: OX62613 Jon Lewis
WOOD Farm youngsters are bridging a 6,000-mile gap by recording a song with pupils at a South African school.
Fifteen Year Five and Six children at Wood Farm Primary School are going to a Blackbird Leys studio today to record their teacher’s song, We Stand Tall.
Pupils from Adelaide Primary, in the Eastern Cape, South Africa, will later record the song in English and Afrikaans before the tracks are blended.
The schools, which formed a partnership in 2011, are also planning a music video.
Year Five teacher Hannah Barton and the song’s writer and Year Six teacher Anna Phillips travelled to the African country last year to teach pupils at the school.
Miss Barton said during the visit last October they realised both schools enjoyed music. She said: “It was something we could do together. Even though the children live miles away from each other and may never meet in person they still have this relationship and can sing together.”
Since linking up the primaries have swapped letters and emails, and also made videos for each other about what life is like where they live.
Adelaide Primary headteacher Theuns Human said: “We want our children to open their eyes to all the opportunities of the multicultural world they’ll join as adults.
“Our vital link with Wood Farm helps them, in the words of the new song, to stand tall and reach higher and discover first-hand from people of their own age what it’s like to grow up and learn in another part of the earth.”
Wood Farm headteacher David Lewin said his pupils were excited about the new song.
He said: “It’s partly the idea of a school song shared across two continents, and sung in Afrikaans as well as English.
“It’s about seeing further than the estate they live in. And about the values we share – the huge privilege our children have of growing up together in schools where so many cultures and languages meet.”
The track will be recorded at the Soundworks studio, at Blackbird Leys Community Centre.
WE STAND TALL
So many different faces,
So many different smiles.
We all come from different places
But join as one across the miles.
We will sing, drum a beat,
We stand tall and sing together.
Although we may not ever meet,
We just want the best for one another.
We all speak in our own way,
We may use different words,
But while we learn, listen and play
Our hopes and dreams can be heard.
No matter what clothes we wear,
Or who’s in our family.
We’re shining brighter – that’s what we share
And reaching higher, can’t you see?
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