African Drumming for Colleges and Secondary Schools

Our secondary school drumming can be used to reward a group of students with a fun packed day. We provide a djembe or kpanlogo drum for every participant in a lively and engaging session.

Equally we can work with music students who wish to engage with the art form at a high level.  GCSE and A level drumming workshops are also available from our professional African musicians.

In all our sessions we work hard to avoid the stereotypes and bring a richer deeper understanding. Practitioners can, if you wish, discuss their culture and society as the sessions develop.

Our secondary and college drumming workshops are fully participatory for all students, including Pathways and Gifted and Talented sessions. You can run them for a specific group or for an entire year - assemblies and other touch points can enable the whole school to become involved. Drumming sessions are particularity popular on Citizenship days and for Black History Month. Please remember they can easily be combined with our other activities at no extra cost.


All of our African drummers for schools are professional African musicians - enabling richer, deeper, and authentic educational experiences teaching percussion within its cultural context. Rhythms and songs taught are from Sene-Gambia, Guinea or Ghana - depending on where your practitioner is from.


Classes can work towards a performance and drumming activities can be mixed with other artforms.


The workshop will be authentic, dynamic and energetic.  Hire of 30 djembé comes as standard with each booking, up to 1000 are available on request -  allowing classes to be collapsed so we can teach more students, where space is available.


This dynamic workshop is an introduction to the energetic style of West African drumming; it's one of our most popular workshops with 100% participation!


College and secondary school Djembé workshops are fantastic for getting fast results! Originating from West Africa, these drums are familiar to all our practitioners. They have sonorous tonal qualities and are relatively simple to play, meaning your class can quickly work on a hypnotising beat! Every participant will have a djembé for the entire session. They will learn a piece aurally (as your practitioner learnt it). Children will respond to aural and visual queues and will have the opportunity to perform a solo.


College and secondary school Kpanlogo workshops are taught on Kpanlogo; Ghanaian drums, originally played by the Ga and now played all across Ghana. They are highly versatile and can be played both with sticks and hands. Traditionally they are played in groups of six drums, with great tonal and pitch variety between the drum sizes. Complex polyrhythms make up the beat. This workshop is more suited to music students.


Drumming workshops can be taught with the song that accompanies that rhythm, commonly in a call and response format. Your college or secondary school drumming workshop can be supplemented with a number of other instruments to make up the rhythm. In addition to the 30 djembe, each practitioner has with them as standard, the cow bell which forms the frame for the tune, shakers, xylophone (balafon) and the Dun Dun base drum.

Drumming workshops for secondary schools and colleges

Sample Timetable with one class



Learning outcomes


The majority of our secondary school drumming workshops are held for Black History Month and off timetable days such as Citizenship days and arts weeks. Here we are happy to work to your learning objectives. However, where necessary we can work towards the Key Stage 3 music curriculum particularly elements 1b & 1c, 2a, 4d, 5e.


Workshops of course also cover and enhance elements of the Key Stage 4 and 5 music curriculum. If this is of interest you may wish to explore our GSCE African drumming workshops and A Level African drumming workshops.


All students will...

Experience playing base, tone and slap on a djembé/kpanlogo drum

Play a djembé/kpanlogo rhythm

Sing a call and response song

Enhance rhythmic skills

Develop listening skills


Most students will...

Learn a djembé/kpanlogo rhythm

Learn a call and response song

Learn to work in an ensemble and respond to changes in the music

Develop confidence through performing to the school and/or parents

Enhance improvisation skills

Create a basic composition


Some students will....

Use the rhythms they have been taught as the basis for further complex solo improvisation

Hold a rhythm and sing a melody in synchronisation

Create a composition with polyrhythms

How can we combine workshops?


Drumming workshops combine very well with dance workshops, with two practitioners you can easily run drum and dance workshops in the same space.


Our practitioners are happy to work towards a particular learning objective and they would be delighted to offer their world view in a question and answer session.


An assembly is often a great starting point for everyone to explore stereotypes and dominant paradigms. Assemblies giving a quick introduction to the instruments (or with a performance where more than one practitioner is booked) can be a great way to reach even more students.


In all the standard drumming workshops song, movement and storytelling may be used depending on the needs of your class.


If you would like to explore offering your students a multidisciplinary day, please do take a look at our off timetable options, allowing a class, school or year group to work off timetable with a number of activities and practitioners working on a carousel basis. This has worked well for arts week events and for Citizenship days in the past, read about Perins school's cultural arts day with African Activities.

Timetabling a workshop


Every practitioner can offer six sessions with at least 30 students in each session throughout the day.

We work with 14 practitioners across the UK and are happy to work with you to develop a timetable to suit your needs.


What can we expect?


  • A truly authentic, uplifting, cultural drumming experience - not just drum beats
  • A CRB/DBS checked, insured and talented cultural ambassador from one of the most experienced teams in the UK
  • African drummers for schools who offer a responsive and tailored experience that can be adapted to meet your needs
  • An instrument for each participant
  • A brief history and cultural context for drumming workshop; the instruments and the rhythms
  • Call and response song and some dance may be used alongside storytelling, depending on the needs of your students
  • A fun and engaging drumming workshop for your school


School drumming workshop prices


£385 Full Day (Max 6 hours) with 1 practitioner

£320 Half Day (Max 3 hours) with 1 practitioner

Each additional practitioner is £320 per session

This is teaching time. Please note set up and break down is not charged but practitioners would be very grateful for help from the school!

Plus travel expenses and VAT

Price Match Guarantee


Booking with African Activities guarantees an authentic and quality experience.  If you are quoted for an equivalent workshop at a cheaper price, we will match it.

Drumming workshops for secondary schools and colleges

African Drumming for secondary schools


Drumming workshops for secondary schools and colleges
Drumming workshops for secondary schools and colleges