Music is all around us - you cannot escape it. It enables creativity, teamwork, reflection and enjoyment.
"Music has the power of producing a certain effect on the moral character of the soul, and if it has the power to do this,
it is clear that the young must be directed to music and must be educated in it" - Aristotle
At Prince Albert School, we want our pupils to be able to listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions, including works of the great composers and musicians. Our aim is that our pupils will learn to sing and play musical instruments and they will develop the skills to use their creativity to compose their own pieces of music. Through our curriculum, pupil’s confidence to perform in front of an audience will build. In essence, we want our pupils to have the skills, knowledge and inspiration, from the range of diverse musicians they learn about, to be able to pursue a lifelong love for music, either in their personal or professional lives. Enrichment and curriculum opportunities will develop an enduring passion for music in our pupils that could turn them into great musicians and composers of the future.
IMPLEMENTATION LONG TERM OVERVIEW
Our music curriculum is based on the National Curriculum and includes a wide range of skills which are covered cyclically each academic year. We have developed our music curriculum around the Charanga music scheme. We have carefully ensured that these plans are progressive and develop music skills sequentially which allow pupils to build on their previous knowledge and apply it in a different way. We work closely with our secondary school (Prince Albert High) to ensure that our curriculum is designed to ensure that pupils leave us at year 6 with the skills and knowledge they will need to successfully continue their musical journey in secondary school.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is where we start our integrated approach to musical learning, laying down the foundations for KS1 and KS2 where we learn more about the interrelated dimensions of music (pulse, rhythm, pitch and tempo, dynamics, timbre, structure, texture) Our youngest children listen to and sing along with different pieces of music, nursery rhymes and action songs. They begin to improvise and play classroom instruments. They share and perform the learning that has taken place.
Throughout school, pupils learn about a different genre of music ranging from Jazz to Pop. Pupil are given ample opportunities to analyze and critque songs in order to be able to form their own opinions about music. They listen with attention to detail and recall sounds with increasing aural memory. They learn to understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including through the inter-related dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture and structure.
Pupils learn to develop their vocal skills. The KS1 curriculum focusses on the love of singing and singing songs with different rhythms and in KS2 children cover further singing skills such as singing in rounds, singing well in a group in unison and with harmonies. During their time in school, children are given ample opportunities to perform their singing in front of their peers and parents.
Pupil learn to play tuned and un-tuned instruments. In years 2 and 3, pupils are taught to play recorders. Pupils in years 1 to 3 also use percussion instruments and glockenspiels regularly. In year 4, pupils are taught to play the keyboards. In years 5 and 6, pupils apply the knowledge of different instruments they have learnt, to the skills of their units. Through these lessons, pupils are also taught to use and understand staff and other musical notations. Pupils are given opportunities within each unit of work to create new melodies and musical patterns and are given guidance to assess and improve their compositions.
Through working alongside an external agency, Rocksteady Music School, pupils have the opportunity to be taught to play a wider range of instruments as well as perform at concerts. Building on from learning to sing any given song each term, the pupils are taught to play glockenspiels and a wider range of instruments in time with the song. Pupils in years 4 and 5 are also able to access keyboard club.
Leaders regularly monitor the quality of music teaching and learning. Staff receive training in order to support with their delivery of the music curriculum. Teachers have worked with our secondary music specialist within their class to develop their teaching. All staff have received training on composition and using Charanga. Finally, teachers have been able to access specialist training on aspects such as playing recorders.
Pupils’ progress in music is assessed regularly against 6 core strands: keeping time, performing vocally, performing instrumentally, composing, improving and listening and improvising. Their progress is recorded and monitored closely. The impact of our curriculum is that pupils know, apply and understand how the elements of music are combined to create pieces of music. They become increasingly musically confident with an ability to perform their own and others’ music. They can recognise music from different parts of the world and different genres and are able to critically appraise music and discuss preferences. Our pupils can read basic formal notation and describe main note names and values. Finally, our pupils transfer to secondary school with skills they can develop in/out of school. Due to the opportunities given to the children to perform to varied audiences, children have developed self-belief and the confidence to perform.