Not only are we back into the routine of school and great learning, but this week sees the return of our fabulous radio station, Westwood Radio.
With two new broadcasting teams, including some familiar faces and lots of experienced professionals, we are straight back into our live broadcasting THIS WEEK with a show on Friday 8th September at 2.30pm.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with our station, the shows are planned, scripted and presented entirely by our children, ranging in age from Year 3 to Year 6. They work together seamlessly to produce high quality education radio that has seen a growing number of listeners over the past year, now topping nearly 1000 listeners a month to our online station and an average of 30-50 listeners to our live shows each week.
We also record all of our shows and upload them to our website, radio.westwoodwithiford.org where you can also listen to our station 24 hours a day!
With high quality content, local, community and world news as well as top features and regular interviews, our children are leading the way in their broadcasting reaching audiences from around the globe.
For now, let me introduce our broadcasting team for 2017-18 and I hope you will be able to join us for a show soon:
Having enjoyed working with some amazing children (and adults!) this year on our radio station, it was a real joy to listen to some of them talking about how it has been a highlight of their year to sit behind the microphone and to learn new skills.
As a community project this has been an enormous success so far, with a diverse range of people joining us in the studio to share their experiences and backgrounds. For the children this has been a wonderful chance to connect with their community, developing excellent questioning and interviewing skills, whilst at the same time spreading the message of what the local community can offer in a weekly live broadcast that now reaches 800 listeners a month through our online station.
In the 9 months that our station has been live it has also been incredible to see the impact that using radio in education has had on our children’s literacy, oracy, confidence and resilience. With our Hub Plus Station from Anderton Tiger, built and installed by Russell Prue, we have been able to utilise this incredibly easy to use, child friendly equipment to support so many areas of the curriculum throughout the year. It is the children who have run each show, working the microphones, choosing the jingles, timing them to perfection and planning and scripting every show. The ownership they have of their radio station is unparalleled and we are working with children from Year 1 to Year 6, all of who have the skills and expertise to step behind a microphone and to give a professional delivery every time.
From radio plays to poetry, creative writing and even through topic work, our school has benefitted so positively from having our radio station and our community involvement has been far richer as a result. But don’t take my word for it, here are William and Oscar to tell you what they have enjoyed this year and what the impact of working with radio has done for them:
After the success of our collaboration with the fantastic Russell Prue of Anderton Tiger Radio at the West of England ICT Conference, I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to write an article about our day for Hey magazine!
Radio has played such a big part in developing the confidence and literacy of so many of our children this year, do please visit https://soundcloud.com/westwoodradio to listen to our children’s live broadcast recordings and see how they have progressed in under a year!
This week, as always, I was in the very privileged position of being able to stand quietly in the corner of our radio studio with just a pair of headphones on and listen as our talented broadcasters presented a full 40 minute show completely on their own. What has really struck me recently has been the level of confidence, professionalism and ability that all of our broadcasters are showing, particularly when the microphone opens and they are live to the world.
This has been echoed by a professional in his field this week, as Ben Prater from BBC Wiltshire, who you will know joined us last week, was interviewed about his visit to us and features in a wonderful Wiltshire Times article about our radio station, stating “To be honest, they seemed less nervous than I am when I open the microphone every morning on BBC Wiltshire”
Praise indeed from a fantastic broadcaster and testament to the children’s hard work that they put in each and every week to making each show unique and entertaining.
You can read the full article online here: http://www.wiltshiretimes.co.uk/news/inyourtown/bradfordnews/15294935.Going_live__Westwood_primary_rules_the_airwaves/
Here also is our very latest broadcast from yesterday, which is just brilliant.
Today’s show was incredibly exciting for us all as we were very lucky to be joined in the studio by Ben Prater, BBC Wiltshire’s Breakfast Show presenter.
Ben took time out of his very busy schedule to visit our school and take part in the entire live show, giving us all a masterclass in microphone technique and joining in the fun and excitement of being on air to the community and the world. Ben also kindly agreed to be interviewed by Josh and Dan live on air and even presented the weekend weather for us, which the children loved watching and listening to and learnt a lot from.
Our huge thanks to Ben for making our afternoon so special – it was a wonderful experience for us all and so good to see how it’s done by the professionals. I know that some of our amazing children will be aspiring to presenting and broadcasting as they get older. Well done everyone, you were a credit to our school and so professional. Another superb show.
Here are some photos of our afternoon with Ben
Here is the show in full for you to listen again, plus Ben’s interview and his weather report live on Westwood Radio.
As you know I am always trying to promote our children’s amazing work by drawing as wide an audience as possible to our blogs and websites. Tonight I was particularly thrilled:
Have you got a question for our radio team that you would like answered live on air with a shout out too? Leave us a comment here and when we plan our next show we will include a Q&A as an extra feature!
This morning we broadcast our last breakfast show with the members of the current radio club as this week the group will be changing. Once again, the children chose their own features and wrote superb scripts which they delivered with professionalism and clarity – it was a pleasure to stand back and watch them work. Even with our chosen song – Rag and Bone Man’s ‘Human’ -edited out for copyright reasons, the children still put together a fabulous show of almost 20 minutes. If you missed it, you can listen again here or on radio.westwoodwithiford.org/latest-show and there are some photos of the show too.
Well done everyone and thank you for being so enthusiastic and committed. Top broadcasting and such a fun way to start a week. I hope you enjoyed it.