Fylde coast children get lessons on the rhythm of life

Drumming fun with Whambajam
Drumming fun with Whambajam

Fylde coast toddlers are to get a taste of the rhythms of Africa with a new music and movement class.

Tanya Southern from Johannesburg has launched Whambajam to get preschoolers playing instruments and developing their minds through music.

Tanya Southern with some of the children at a Whambajam session

Tanya Southern with some of the children at a Whambajam session

Tanya, who moved to Kirkham after her husband took a job in the North West, said she had been running classes in South Africa for more than five years and has amassed scores of drums and percussion instruments which she has shipped over.

She said apart from being fun, music can up the tempo of children’s mental performance.She sa

id: “Apart from playing chess, listening to and playing music is the only activity that ‘switches on’ both sides of the brain.

“You have left and right brain co-ordination, one is responsible for logical thinking, mathematics and literacy. The other side of the brain is the creative force, art, expression, language, communication.

“By activating both sides of the brain at the same time, you are priming and exercising those neurons used latter on in life.

“I have spent a small fortune bringing the instruments over. I have 35 djembe drums which are some of the traditional ones used in West Africa, rhythm sticks, maracas castanets.

“The children love it and it helps develop their motor skills and social skills and we tell stories, sing songs and dance.

"I taught on another music programme but wanted to incorporate more instruments and movement and once we did, you could see the children’s attention span growing.”