It is our intention that our Music curriculum ensures that the National Curriculum requirements are not only met, but children receive a broad and rich learning experience. Music is a universal language and one of the highest forms of creativity. It is our vision to equip our pupils with key skills, knowledge and vocabulary and enable them in their own creativity. Our curriculum drivers are possibilities, diversity and community. These are woven into our Music curriculum and are planned for through enrichment, P4C and child led learning opportunities, providing our pupils with a rich and broad cultural capital.
It is our aim for children to build upon skills and knowledge gained from foundation stage through to year 6 and to incorporate musicality through our curriculum as a part of our ‘Create’ projects and throughout the year.
Equip – Plan the contents of the music curriculum and resource accordingly to meet the needs of all children providing pupils with the skills and knowledge to fulfil their potential. Equip children with the necessary skills to sing, play instruments, listen and appreciate music and create their own music. They perform, compose and learn about the history of music.
Embed – Through high quality teaching supported by the Nottinghamshire Music Hub and as a part of our ‘Create’ projects, children will gain confidence embedding key basic skills and broadening their knowledge. Teachers know what has come before and what will come next and use this to recap and revisit key knowledge, vocabulary and skills to embed these in the children’s long-term memory.
Enrich – We are proud of our music enrichment program at Abbey Gates. Children have a wealth of opportunities to showcase talents through concerts and performances both within school and around the community (see below).
At Abbey Gates we believe that nothing has been learnt until it is in your long-term memory and that memory is the residue of thought. All teaching staff have access to high quality resources needed and are able to provide children with music lessons that enables pupils to revisit previous skills and build upon their knowledge and understanding. Sequences of lessons are planned using progression mapping within and across year groups from EYFS through to year 6 ensuring progression for all. In years 1 – 6 pupils have a strong focus on the learning and application of Music during one term in which their project falls under the term: ‘Create’. During their ‘Create’ project pupils are asked a ‘Big Question’ which will support them to broaden their thinking through questioning about The Arts including music.
Sequences of lessons are planned for using progression mapping within and across year groups. Teachers plan for equipping children with sticky knowledge and key skills. Key questions are planned for in order to encourage active learning and challenge for all. Opportunities for cross curricular music are also embedded – for example in PE, music is used in dance. Opportunities are provided to explore diversity through learning focusing on different cultures. Some of our music learning is not taught in specific lessons but rather it is repeatedly revisited across year groups. Examples of this type of longitudinal learning are: Listening & appraising and using voices expressively. Teachers have access to the Charanga subscription to expose children to a variety of genres and music through history and then explore their opinions about the music. Sequencing documents with specified vocabulary are produced for each year group to help our children to broaden their subject specific terminology giving them the confidence to articulate their opinions and explain their thinking about music.
Children at Abbey Gates have access to a wide range of enrichment opportunities. Every year, all children have the opportunity to perform in their phase when we present school performances to an audience. KS1 and Foundation perform in the autumn term and LKS2 in the spring term and UKS2 in the summer term. Children in KS2 have the opportunity to join the school choir and to peripatetic instrumental teaching provided by NMT. We hold regular ‘musical soirees’ where individuals, groups and ensembles can perform to an audience. The school hosts a community orchestra where current pupils, past pupils and adults play together. There are many opportunities to perform in the community, for example, singing the Summer/Christmas Fayres, at the annual Remembrance Event and at the St Peter’s Nativity (along with many more).
Children also have opportunities to watch others perform and to perform with pupils from other schools, for example as part of the Joseph Whitaker family of schools Sing Up event and at by competing at the Mansfield Music Festival.
The impact of our Music offer is measured through our monitoring cycle. This includes learning walks, pupil voice, planning scrutiny and curriculum intent reviews. Once reviewed the subject team feeds their findings into our action plan for improvement which teachers from each phase then take back to their teams for action. We assess and track Music against Benchmark Standards in each phase, ensuring children maintain a good knowledge, skills and understanding. In assessing we are looking for sustained mastery, inspired learners and children who are fulfilling their potential whilst having a good sense of enjoyment and achievement.
Below is an outline of the intended impact we are looking for in our pupils in the curriculum area of music:
- Opportunity to have been exposed to a wide range of genres
- Opportunity for all children to play an instrument (e.g. ukulele, glockenspiel)
- Knowledge of the history of music and how it is developed
- Opportunities to listen to live music
- Wide range of vocabulary to appraise music and express opinion
- Cultural origins of music around the world
- Confidence to ‘perform’
- Reading musical notation – universal language
- Knowledge of musical skills – e.g. pitch, volume, etc. (interrelated dimensions of music)
- Compose music individually and in groups – see progression in composition skills
- Opportunities to showcase work
- Ability to self-assess and ‘critique’ own and others’ performances