‘Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity’ -
National Curriculum, 2021
It is our intent at William Cobbett to provide children with an exciting and engaging music curriculum that allows them to explore a wide variety of musical genres whilst developing their individual music skills. By following a curriculum designed to continuously introduce new styles, genres and music theory we aspire to develop a real love of music within our pupils and foster a desire to express themselves musically as they grow older. We intend to give pupils many opportunities to participate in all aspects of musical development, including singing, use of musical instruments, music theory and performance.
The National Curriculum for Music aims to ensure that all pupils are taught to:
- Use their voices expressively and creatively by singing songs and speaking chants and rhymes
- Play tuned and untuned instruments musically
- Listen with concentration and understanding to a range of high-quality live and recorded music
- Experiment with, create, select and combine sounds using the inter-related dimensions of music
Music throughout the school is taught with an integrated approach. All pupils take part in a weekly singing assembly which gives the opportunity to sing together as part of a large group. Throughout the year children may also learn various songs with cross curricular links to topics. At EYFS, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2, the Charanga online music scheme is used as the basis for planning and children have one distinct 45 minute music lesson per week. There are many fun games to learn about pulse, rhythm, pitch, tempo, dynamics, timbre, texture, structure and notation. All activities are based around a song with singing being at the heart of all the musical learning. The children have opportunities to play tuned instruments (glockenspiels, recorders and chime bars) and untuned percussion. Some opportunities are given for improvising and composing. It is a positive experience to share musical learning and work towards performances with an audience.
Each Unit of Work comprises the of strands of musical learning which correspond with the national curriculum for music:
- Listening and Appraising
- Musical Activities
- Warm-up Games
- Optional Flexible Games
- Playing instruments
At William Cobbett we understand that music plays a significant role in the teaching of all subjects across early years, with songs, rhythms and rhymes integral to the early acquisition and retention of skills and information for our young children. Our curriculum ensures that children have regular access to a wide variety of musical instruments to explore and develop their early understanding of sound, volume and pitch through continuous provision in addition to regular musical input from classroom adults.
Key Stages 1 and 2
Our KS1 and KS2 Music curriculum ensures that our children:
- are familiar with a wide variety of different musical styles and histories.
- are comfortable with a range of rhythms and melodies.
- can recognise and read simple musical notation.
- are familiar with key musical language.
- have the opportunity to develop performance skills.
Children also have the opportunity to extend their musical development outside of the classroom through a number of extra-curricular activities including singing assembly, iRock, peripatetic music lessons, infant choir and junior choir. We organise regular musical performances from members of our community and beyond so as to further encourage an interest in music and knowledge of what 'music' is. This year our visits have included a local choir and one of our pupil's grandfather with his huge collection of different guitars.
The impact of our Music curriculum can be measured and evaluated in a number of ways. We hope to see children’s increased acquisition of musical skills and progress, laid out in the Music National Curriculum and progression of skills document. We aspire to see progress and confidence in singing enhanced through collective worships and performances. We know that the efforts we have put in to celebrating and promoting music are paying dividend. Following on from a successful visit from the Farnham Youth choir, both the Junior and Infant choirs have seen an increased uptake in members this year. Both choirs took part in performances over the festive period, including the Farnham lights switch on, Christmas Fair, Church carol service and carols at a local nursing home. A woodwind assembly has also seen an increase in numbers of pupils singing up for woodwind instrument lessons from Surrey Arts.
Music is assessed at the end of each academic year in each year group. This is done through teacher judgment using the assessment laid out in the Music progression of knowledge and skills document. Teachers record children’s progress from Reception through to Key Stage 2 in Music. Teachers will need to judge if a child is developing, secure or greater depth at the end of each year group and this is communicated to parents through children’s annual reports.
Music is monitored by the subject leader and senior leadership team through book looks, learning walks and pupil and teacher surveys. Monitoring observations are communicated to staff and support and training are put in place where a need has been identified.
‘I love doing the choir and learning songs that we hear on the radio’
‘lessons are the best when we get the instruments out’
‘I can’t wait for my mum to watch my in the iRock show’
Peripatetic instrumental lessons are available at school through Surrey Arts. At present there are pupils learning to play violin, guitar, flute, saxophone, clarinet and piano.