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Teamwork: Teaching Individual Children How to Contribute to the Whole; Hard Work, Achievement, Reward


Ann is a retired teacher of literacy and EFL (English as a Foreign Language) to multi-national and dyslexic students, having a DipSpLD

Putting it All Together

All the Players on the Stage

All the Players on the Stage


Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.

— Henry Ford

Every successful individual knows that his or her achievement depends on a community of persons working together.

— Paul Ryan

A Choir, A Concert and How it All Comes Together

I attended my granddaughter’s school choir event, held in one of the big entertainment venues in Bristol and featuring at least 10 school choirs, along with instrumental pieces and dance routines. The children filed in, apprehensive but eager, took their places in the rows of banked seats on stage, the selected repertoire for the approaching performance beating through their brains, over and over!

We (the proudest family members in the whole building of course) enjoyed an exciting evening listening to their well-rehearsed, polished versions of popular songs from the last few decades. A few brave individuals sang solos with confidence and pride. I too was proud as I watched my granddaughter; she was coming to the end of her last year at primary school, getting ready for the great step to secondary education.

Preparation and Work, Time and Effort

It occurred to me as I watched and listened that being able to sing together, hundreds of voices in tune, in time, each word clearly reaching across to us, accompanying movements all in sync, took a tremendous amount of work and time; the children’s time and effort, the teachers’ time and effort, the organisers’ time and effort. Not only were they able to deliver all this, but they did it with enthusiasm, joy and energy. They all stood up on cue, they sat down on cue, they followed the conductor’s directions with ease and confidence and they smiled, oh how they smiled and so did we!

Smile for the Music

Smile for the Music

The Effect

How easy it looked! How well it all came across to us, the audience. How they made our hearts soar and our pride swell! How happy and pleased they looked that they were all taking part, giving pleasure and entertainment to so many people.

Hundreds of children, about twenty songs, three orchestral pieces, two dances, all in two hours; all those words and movements, all the timing, lots of information committed to memory, hours of rehearsing over many weeks, for just two hours of performance. Many hours of work for just two hours of production.


How It's Done

It’s called working together. It’s putting all the individual necessary pieces of a machine in the right place at the right time to produce the best effect, to create the desired results and consequent emotions. It’s making sure that each piece offers its best with as much energy and enthusiasm as possible, to ensure the finest outcome.

Each Individual Makes a Difference

Without just one of those pieces,

the sound would ring more quietly,

the mass would have less swing,

the quality would suffer,

the effect would slightly dim,

the joy would be less obvious,

the hearts beat smaller drums,

the smiles not quite so wide,

the shouts much more like hums;

The whole effect would not have such impact nor last so long.

Making the Effort

Choir of 30,000+!

Choir of 30,000+!

Life is like a Choir

I sat there listening and thinking that life is like a choir; we have to work together for many reasons, to help each other, to improve our lot, to be heard, to show effort and enthusiasm, to give joy, to make us proud and to make a difference to the lives around us. It often takes a lot of time to produce a little effect but that effect can be worth so much to so many.

Praise is The Icing on the Cake

The Icing on the Cake is a bonus!

The Icing on the Cake is a bonus!

An Important Experience for Children; Being Part of the Whole

Those children in that choir of choirs experienced the hard work, the nerves, the apprehension of carrying out a task they had taken a long time to learn. They also experienced the joy of performing that task, the satisfaction of being able to succeed in it, the pride in themselves and those around them and, on top of that, the amazing feeling of giving pleasure to all those people in the audience, many of whom they didn’t even know, of seeing the smiles, hearing the cheers and the applause, receiving the congratulations for a job well done.

They were children experiencing being part of an important group, for a purpose, and realising that each one of them was needed for the whole thing to happen, let alone to succeed. The pleasure and relief on their faces was palpable. They were pleased with themselves; they had done it and done it well. They were even more pleased, even amazed, at the reaction of their audience.

The feeling of pride in oneself and knowing that you’ve achieved something is reward in itself. The effort and the doing well are important. The accolade, more so when it is not expected, is the icing on the cake.

© 2012 Ann Carr


Ann Carr (author) from SW England on August 24, 2018:

Indeed, Anusha. Thank you for your valuable comments; I appreciate your visit.


Anusha Jain from Delhi, India on August 23, 2018:

So true! In India, we have fewer team projects, and I and a friend were talking about the same, that we lack the required cultivation of habit and attitude of working and performing in a group. Not just with family, but with friends/classmates/companions. This cultivation might help them easily work with colleagues in later life -- to be able to rely on others, and be reliable themselves.

Ann Carr (author) from SW England on October 25, 2013:

CraftytotheCore: They certainly do need music and art. Our primary schools here still do lots of it, thank goodness. Thank you for the compliment and for your comments. Have seen you lots today and it's much appreciated! Ann

CraftytotheCore on October 25, 2013:

Wonderfully written. I remember being in school and participating in the choir, even in Kindergarten. One of the first things I had to do was teach all of the other children this cat dance. I learned it at the former school I went to. Now, children aren't invited to participate in any choir or musical program at school until older grades. They have cut way back on funding. I think it's a terrible. They need music and art.

Ann Carr (author) from SW England on August 23, 2013:

Thank you, thumbi7, for dropping in and commenting. You're so right! It's the long-term effect that helps them become better citizens, better cooperators, better thinkers too I believe.

JR Krishna from India on August 23, 2013:

Teaching children team work is extremely important. We can see many adults "falling off" from family and institutions just because they can't work together.

Interesting article

Ann Carr (author) from SW England on July 22, 2013:

pstraubie48 , thank you for your lovely comment. Don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions regarding dyslexia or need any suggestions for help. Ann

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on July 21, 2013:

"The feeling of pride in oneself and knowing that you’ve achieved something is reward in itself. The effort and the doing well are important. The accolade, more so when it is not expected, is the icing on the cake."

Those lines are so true. Well done.I will be back/my daughter who is now an adult is dyslexic so I would like to read those articles for sure.

Angels are on the way to you ps

Ann Carr (author) from SW England on July 28, 2012:

Thank you katyzzz. I never used to be good at it either. It can be difficult but I guess it's just trying to find the part that you're comfortable with and giving your all, usually when you have some knowledge about it. I think confidence has a lot to do with it. Good luck!

katyzzz from Sydney, Australia on July 27, 2012:

Teamwork is for me a great weakness so I have bookmarked this hub so I may give it the attention it deserves. You've struck a chord with this one

Ann Carr (author) from SW England on July 23, 2012:

Thanks billy. Good to see you again! Yes, sadly it's an ideal but if we don't have ideals and dreams then where would we be? Greatly appreciate your comments.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on July 22, 2012:

Wouldn't it be wonderful, Ann, if everyone believed this and worked toward a common goal? Imagine what could be accomplished in this world.

Well done; a very important message my friend.

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