Can­ning teacher nom­i­nated for ARIA

Canning Times - - FRONT PAGE -

STU­DENTS of a Can­ning Vale pri­mary school can now sing in dif­fer­ent lan­guages, thanks to their mu­sic teacher.

Calade­nia Pri­mary School mu­sic teacher Deb Skelton is a con­tender for the 2018 ARIA Mu­sic Teacher of the Year award.

She be­gan teach­ing songs in Noon­gar this year and has taught melodies in Aus­tralian Sign Lan­guage for a cou­ple of years.

Mrs Skelton said 650 chil­dren from Year 1 to 6 sang I am Aus­tralian in three lan­guages for Naidoc week in July.

“We sang the cho­rus of I Am Aus­tralian, trans­lated into Noon­gar, and signed that in Aus­lan as well,” she said.

“Sign­ing acts as a bridge be­tween the Noon­gar lan­guage and the English lan­guage.”

Mrs Skelton said she worked with stu­dents to in­ter­pret songs and started with trans­lat­ing key words.

“This year, in the Har­mony Day assem­bly, a par­tic­u­lar song had greet­ings in 10 dif­fer­ent lan­guages,” she said.

“We’ve added each of the stu­dents’ greet­ings and ended up with over 20 lan­guages.”

Mrs Skelton is one of four teach­ers in the run­ning for the na­tional mu­sic teacher of the year award.

She said she was sur­rounded by mu­sic all her life and had been teach­ing mu­sic in the class­room for 18 years.

“Mu­sic was my favourite sub­ject in school and I too was in­spired by my mu­sic teach­ers,” Mrs Skelton said.

“It never oc­curred to me that mu­sic wouldn’t be in my path.”

Pub­lic vot­ing is open un­til this Wed­nes­day at www.ari­a­mu­sicteacher­

The award will be pre­sented at the ARIA award cer­e­mony in Syd­ney on Novem­ber 28.

Pic­ture: Matt Jelonek d488415

Mu­sic teacher Deb Skelton with pri­mary school stu­dents.

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