Music forms a critical part of our curriculum. Pupils have the opportunity to learn an instrument, compose, sing and develop notational knowledge.
In Early Years, music is embedded throughout the Early Years curriculum, usually in the form of singing. For example, phonics and maths songs are an effective, age-appropriate way of building fluency in these subject areas. Tuned/non-tuned percussive instruments are also periodically explored within planned music lessons.
From Year 1 onwards, every child has a weekly music lesson that enables them to practice and develop their instrumental skills. The key curriculum skills are carefully crafted into well-structured lessons that provide a balance between learning and developing new skills with the application of these skills through rehearsal and performance. These lessons are delivered by specialist music teachers and every child has an instrument to play. In addition to class music lessons there are many musical enrichment opportunities for everyone.
Specialist Music Lesson Structure
Whilst the content of each lesson builds and develops upon prior learning, the music lessons have a structure that ensures key skills are practised during every lesson.
- Set up – ensure children are sitting correctly and handling the instruments appropriately, this may also include tuning.
- Games – developed over time, but including rhythm and call &response exercises.
- Extended learning content - Singing and clapping exercises to deliver understanding of pitch, rhythm, dynamics, posture, breathing etc
- Instrumental content – Learning musical pieces and rehearsing. Applying extended learning content to performance and rehearsal.
- Summary of learning and safely packing away the instruments
Our instrumental offer has been planned to ensure children develop key skills and learn these by playing a variety of instruments.
Key Stage 1 – Djembe drums
Year 3 – Violin & 'cello in addition to djembe drums
Year 4 – Ukulele
Year 5 - Ukulele
Year 6 - Ukulele
- Assemblies – Song is a key part of every whole school assembly, the song choices cover a wide range of musical styles from around the world. A weekly singing assembly ensures that singing skills are developed, with an emphasis on performance.
- School productions – During the school year every child takes part in a production. For Early Years and Key Stage One this is in the form of Christmas productions. In Key Stage Two there is a summer production.
- Clubs and music lessons – We have a very active school choir which rehearses weekly and has been involved in concerts both in and out of school. Every year the choir sing at the local Town Carol Concert and perform alongside 8000 children at the O2 London in a Young Voices concert. In addition to this choir sing during school concerts at Christmas and in the summer. Recently choir also took part in a music festival for school choirs within the Didcot Partnership of Schools.
- iRock opportunities are available from Reception upwards, children work with specialist teachers to form small bands, these bands perform to the school on a regular basis (these sessions are funded by parents/carers).
- Piano lessons are available for pupils who are Year 3 and above (these lessons are funded by parent/carers)
- School concerts – Twice a year there is a school concert, this is a showcase for many aspects of the musical life of the school. Concerts include aspects of whole school singing, choir performances and class instrumental performance.
updated January 2021
For information about piano lessons, please contact the school office.