An exploration of the UK unpaid carer's world

Shades of age-appropriateness                                      


Is appropriateness in the eye of the caree?  The performer?  The organiser?  The helpers?  The managing agent?

  1. Preamble (with Annex -  Beating and tapping - foot of page)
  2. The M O
  3. Shades of appropriateness
  4. Rounding up
  5. Relevant pages

1  Preamble


The context is a group, ideally participating, of mainly-senior adults with congenital ailments.


"Leading" song/music sessions is rather too heavy.   Mostly strong-beat songs (some music - no vocal) are played, generally with very brief individual intro  The group members, on average, have virtually zero ability to sing or tap out a rhythm. See  Annex.   However, there have been surprises. 

2  The M O

  1. The group is assembled in a circle with one entry/exit point for organisers  
  2. The members are seated
  3. Each week, a playlist is used and it includes exercise tunes 
  4. I have supplied a stock of tambourines, jingles and drums - more than one item for each member for variety
  5. Liaison is carried out with one organiser with whom I discuss the forthcoming sessions and after
  6. There is usually a helper, often from an agency and with little continuity
  7. Until the end of June, on even weeks, I played general songs and include some of the more significant songs from the odd weeks themes to maintain continuity
  8. On odd weeks, I played songs within a theme, wore appropriate costume and made a "Grand Entrance" (GE).

3  Shades of appropriateness  

3.1 A piper

  1. A piper performs at a normal  party or at an event
  2. The piper performs for our group and leads WW1 & WW2 songs and tunes
  3. He plays in WW1 Regimental Highland piper uniform and leads WW1 & WW2 songs and tunes
  4. He makes a GE in a DIY Army tank and leads the songs/music

3.2  A cowboy

  1. Someone attends a party in fancy dress
  2. Sings or plays to the party-goers, perhaps leads a few songs 
  3. For our group, he GEs in cowboy outfit, plays and leads cowboy songs and tunes
  4. The GE is on a DIY horse to the tune  "Champion the wonder horse"
  5. During the session, a large (2ft high) toy animal was caught by lassoo

3.3  Elvis

  1. Someone attends a party in fancy dress
  2. Sings or plays to the party-goers, perhaps leads a few songs 
  3. For our group, he GEs, plays and leads Elvis songs and tunes
  4. The GE is in Elvis costume
  5. That includes a plastic "wig" with golden shades attached
  6. It was passed to one of the group (capable of independent travel to the day centre

3.4  The formula and other themes briefly described

  1. Numbers 1, 2, 3 set out the procedure - here are some other sessions:
  2. Noah and his ark - toy animals seen entering the ark - GE tune - "Animals went in two by two"
  3. It later became a Red Indian canoe.  May be used later for songs such as "Messing about on the river".
  4. A separate Destroyer - for the Navy songs.  It or No.3 might become a pirate galleon. 
  5. Engine-driver in his engine

4  Rounding up
  1. By the time 3.4.1 was due, BT stated that there should be less emphasis on costume.  I have the Sitting Bull outfit but went in mufti plus simple feather head-dress.
  2. To be continued

5  Relevant pages:
  1. An example of an A4 sheet used in the development of song/tune lists here  left column
  2. Play-list General 3 here      
  3. Age-appropriate support here    
  4. Tanks for the memory  here     

Annex - Beating and tapping

We use the average of eight regular participants

None within this group would be able to sing or clap in time here.  Perhaps six could handle a tambourine or similar such as jingles.  

Perhaps six could beat a drum.  Perhaps one would be in time with the music.   Perhaps beat is the wrong word for many. It implies regularity even if  different from the beat/rhythm of the song or music.   Hitting the drum (also tambourine) could vary.  Some might hit it more or less normally while others might demolish it if  not well constructed. 

Then there is tapping.   Some might tap it more or less normally while others might scarcely touch whatever is in their hand. 

It's difficult to run the songs and observe  at the same time.  Mainly, I assess reaction to specific songs and music and stay or move on.  Any repeats from week to week can vary so much.  

However, every sessions ends with a well-enjoyed rendering of Who let the dogs out.  The managing agent doesn't permit use of video in the sessions.  Youtube for more than one or two songs would be impracticable anyway.

pagetop here  for pasting   Shades of age-appropriateness here