Why is The Family Music Hub needed?

When families with young children congregate, music and singing tends to happen! Whether that's a 5 minute sing-song at the end of a toddler group in the local church hall, a 'rhyme time' session at the local library, or the franchise that's running groups in your local town. Those delivering music include children's centre practitioners, volunteers, parents, library staff, as well as music specialists. However, we have discovered that the ‘non musician’ workforce is doing the lion’s share of music delivery on the ground – and often these practitioners are undervalued, paid poorly, given little support and receive minimal training. We believe that this must change. 

Our vision

Together with practitioners working on the ground, we seek to discover a new approach to family music making sessions that centres parents and carers, and which harnesses the unique skills and instincts that they have to engage musically with their children.  Parents and carers are with their children all week – by supporting and working with them, practitioners will be able to impact babies and young children’s everyday musical experiences in a powerful and enduring way.

Our Story

Nicola, Katie and Rosie came together in 2020, having recognised their overlapping research interests as well as their mutual passion for family music-making to be valued and supported in this country. Over regular Zoom meetings, they developed their ideas and thinking, and together founded The Family Music Hub (FMH). The FMH has now teamed up with Early Education to deliver the first phase of their work which, thanks to a grant from Youth Music, will see them working on an action research project with librarians, family workers and volunteers in the West Midlands. They’re working towards launching The Family Music Hub platform in 2023.

Our team

Rosie Adediran is an early years and family music practitioner, singer and songwriter. She loves to create new music with family groups, with a special interest in perinatal mental health. She founded award-winning ‘London Rhymes’ in 2015, an initiative that involves collaborating with families to create new songs and rhymes. She was a Paul Hamlyn Foundation’s Ideas and Pioneers grantee in 2019, conducting research into the state of music provision across the UK for families, and is passionate about the role that music can play in the lives of families with young children.

Katie Neilson is a music teacher working with children from birth to age 11. She has a special interest in Early Childhood Music Education and research. In 2020, she completed her MA with CREC in which she explored musical parenting and new models of practice for family music classes. Katie has subsequently presented research at RiME 2021 and EUNet MERYC 2022.  Katie runs her own independent Early Childhood Music practice, Little Bees, but also works nationally as a freelance practitioner training and mentoring EY and Primary school teachers. Katie has worked with Voices Foundation since 2008 and, in 2016, Katie wrote their award winning book Inside Music: Early Years which is used extensively across the country.

Nicola Burke is an author, strategic leader, researcher and consultant. She is currently the strategic leader of large workforce development initiatives taking place across Leicestershire and Birmingham, involving a range of arts and music organisations and Early Childhood services. She created the award-winning Tune into Listening free online resource and in 2018 wrote Musical Development Matters in the Early Years, a free downloadable resource to complement the EYFS guidance material, Development Matters in the EYFS. Nicola works nationally and internationally to strategically support organisations to develop their Early Childhood music programmes and initiatives.

Keep in

Whether you're a parent, practitioner, musician or something else entirely, we’d love to hear from you! Keep up to date with our latest news by signing up to our newsletter here, or get in touch with us at hello@thefamilymusichub.org