“Our curriculum promotes social mobility;
we give our children the roots to grow and the wings to fly.”
Music at St George’s
At St. George’s CE Primary and Nursery School, music is considered an essential part of a broad and balanced curriculum. Music is a foundation subject of the National Curriculum and an art form that all children can participate in with enjoyment. We recognise that it can play an important role in children’s development and promote the art as a form of expression and celebration of differences. It can be integrated across the whole curriculum to add value to topics and themes. Musical experiences of various kinds will support and develop self-confidence and bring a sense of achievement. We know that music is a fantastic way to unite the school as well as to celebrate; it can also have positive health benefits by triggering the release of feel good chemicals into our bodies, which links particularly to our Healthy body, Healthy Mind school driver. Music is important to our school community and we believe it is essential to the growth, development and well-being of our children. We also engage in a number of events within the community, which are always well received by the public.
At St. George’s, we use the Charanga online teaching programme, enhanced with teachers’ own expertise and using instruments available in school. The musical elements are progressively introduced, discussed and understood. Our children are given opportunities to sing, use instruments and to listen and appraise music, including their own music, that of peers, popular music from a range of different genres, cultures and ethnicities and that of recognised composers. All children are encouraged to respond to music in a variety of ways, including written work, dance and art. Where possible, music is used in a cross-curricular way to promote our creative curriculum. Each term Music plays an important role in our curriculum cultural days where children are given the opportunity to learn songs in other languages, listen to music from other cultures and create their own music using traditional instruments from other countries.
Music and singing is also an important part of our Daily Dashboard sessions where we have found that learning a song or rap really helps the children to remember and recall facts and retain information more easily.
Through our music curriculum, we hope to enrich the children’s learning and provide opportunities for participation in musical activities through the development of:
• Self-esteem, self-confidence and self-discipline
• Social skills, co-operation and sharing
• Performance skills
• Concentration, memory and listening skills
• Musical vocabulary, appropriate to age
• Composition skills
• Physical co-ordination through breathing and posture
• An understanding of musical traditions and appreciation of own and other’s cultures
• The use of IT to capture and enhance creativity in composing and performing
• The enjoyment of taking part in a shared experience
In addition to our core musical learning, all children are given opportunities to enhance their musical experience through performance. Assemblies, plays and concerts provide an important opportunity to share and enjoy music as a school; we also use music to enhance our worship both in school and in church. Once a week, the school joins together to enjoy a Praise Worship, where we focus on singing praise songs together.
In Foundation Stage, children will sing and perform to their peers during cultural celebration assemblies, class assemblies during and FS and KS1 perform to parents through their Christmas Nativity concerts. In KS2, each class is responsible for performing a special collective worship assembly such as Remembrance, Christingle, Easter and Harvest. The children have the opportunity to perform plays and learn songs to perform to their peers and parents. Each year, the UKS2 children are given the opportunity to perform an ‘end of year’ production which involves lots of singing which the children (and parents) enjoy.
We have an after school singing club which is extremely popular with the KS2 children and these children are given opportunities to perform in assemblies and take part trips such as ‘Young Voices’ annually. Our school choir perform to the whole school in assemblies, parents in concerts and the community during school church services and on special occasions such as singing at Morrisons during Christmas time, which both the children and members of the public enjoy.
In KS2, children also have the opportunity to learn to play a tuned instrument using peripatetic teachers (including violins and currently ukuleles).
Whilst in school, children have access to a varied programme, which allows students to discover areas of strength, as well as areas they might like to improve upon. The integral nature of music and the learner creates an enormously rich palette from which a student may access fundamental abilities such as: achievement, self-confidence, interaction with and awareness of others, and self-reflection. Music will also develop an understanding of culture and history, both in relation to students individually, as well as ethnicities from across the world. Children are able to enjoy music, in as many ways as they choose- either as listener, creator or performer. They can dissect music and comprehend its parts. They can sing and feel a pulse. They have an understanding of how to further develop skills less known to them, should they ever develop an interest in their lives.
All children at St. George’s receive a broad and balanced curriculum regardless of year group or ability. Every child accesses all subjects on offer at our school. There is a clear progression of musical skills and knowledge, to ensure that all children access at an age-appropriate level. Children learn to work both independently and as part of a group, ensuring skills of resilience and teamwork are promoted in this subject. Our children are enthused and engaged by the wide variety of musical activities. Opportunities to perform outside of school, within our local community and further afield ensure our children understand the significance and place of music within the wider world and that these excite and inspire children’s thirst for knowledge and participation in this subject.