At Boonderu we firmly believe in the power of music and its place at the heart of any education environment.  

Music is a primal form of teaching and communication. It activates areas of the brain that pertain to emotion, motivation, learning and reward. With various instruments, you can weave a story and produce a calm reserve.

Although a high percentage of our students are Aboriginal, Boonderu is a place for all children of any race, gender or background. Our program started in Roebourne in January 2015 and has now expanded to five other schools throughout the Pilbara and into Perth. We work closely with each school and their teaching staff at Roebourne DHS, Mosman Park Primary School, South Fremantle High School, Dampier Primary School, Seaforth Primary School and Southern River High School.

Aboriginal culture is a 75,000 year old culture based on song and story telling. The elders of Roebourne say,

"A good education is like a song. You sing the song over and over until the song is part of you. Sharing your song keeps your mind and body strong". 

This was such a wonderful and succinct statement that gave birth to Boonderu, strength in our own ideas, and is at the very core of Boonderu's ethos.

The principal aim of Boonderu is to create a safe sanctuary for all of our students to feel comfortable and confident, and to ensure that children are educated, healthy and positively contributing to the school, their community and society. We create a calm, nurturing space for children to learn and express themselves through music. We want to ensure that they have the tools to empower themselves and that they make positive life choices. By working together with the staff of all of the Schools we run our program in, we strive to improve the educational and social outcomes for children. We build meaningful relationships with each student and reinforce self worth and positive behaviours by using the incredibly powerful tool of music.

Our teachers and mentors encourage school attendance and positively enforce the importance of education. We respectfully acknowledge that any education system can not cater to all students. We use music as the vehicle, however our focus is not on producing world class musicians. We aim to ensure that children are feeling happy, consistently attending school but most importantly are engaged in all areas of their learning. We guide and teach children to focus their energy and attention. We give them practical tools to assist them in their classroom learning. We achieve this with instrumental lessons in guitar, keyboard, bass guitar, drums, singing, song writing and the study of music theory. Through this, Boonderu students feel a heightened sense of joy, confidence and achievement.  We aim to contribute to each child's education journey to ensure it is a successful and enjoyable one.  

Our study and discussion of music theory reinforces basic literacy and numeracy and many of our students have chosen to study AMEB Music theory. All of these positive outcomes have translated to an overall improvement in student attendance and classroom behaviour.  

Scientific research has found that music can have a profound influence, potentially elevating the positive aspects of mood, such as "vigor, excitement and happiness, and reducing depression, tension, fatigue, anger and confusion". 

Boonderu caters for students of all academic abilities and many of our students are at opposite ends of the academic spectrum. The students must adhere to our strict behavioural code of conduct, however our classrooms are free from judgement and the students are neither graded nor streamed.                                                               

We have found that the discussion and study of music and live performance encourages self esteem and gives any education campus a heart and soul.