Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity and enables a person to express themselves in a variety of different ways. Our high-quality music education and provision at St Alban & St Stephen Catholic Primary School, engages and inspires pupils to develop both a love of music and their talent as musicians, and so increases their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement.
Music is a unique way of communicating: a universal language of which we can all speak, regardless of circumstance. Through Music at St Alban & St Stephen, our pupils listen, learn and perform the universal language of music, removing the barriers of diversity and exploring songs, sounds and instruments from not only Great Britain, but also different cultures and nations. Through the exploration and participation of this curriculum, our pupils become knowledge-rich, understanding and appreciating the significance music has on the lives of people within our wider community and all around the world.
We value the development of the whole child. Our children are not just learners – they are creators, performers, listeners, composers, collaborators and ultimately the future of our community and the world beyond it. Through our high-quality Music lessons, we relish building both the musicians of the future and those who appreciate the arts!
We ignite pupils’ curiosity and fascination about the musical world around them, encouraging them to think, act, perform, collaborate and grow in confidence like those in the creative field. Furthermore, music also plays an important part in helping children to feel part of a community and so we provide opportunities for all children to create, play, perform and enjoy music, to develop their skills, to appreciate a wide variety of musical forms, and to begin to make judgements about the quality of music.
Through our Music curriculum, the children will experience :
- A rapidly widening repertoire which they use to create original, imaginative, fluent and distinctive composing and performance work.
- A musical understanding underpinned by high levels of aural perception, internalisation and knowledge of music, including high or rapidly developing levels of technical expertise.
- Very good awareness and appreciation of different musical traditions and genres.
- An excellent understanding of how musical provenance – the historical, social and cultural origins of music – contributes to the diversity of musical styles.
- The ability to give precise written and verbal explanations, using musical terminology effectively, accurately and appropriately.
- A passion for and commitment to a diverse range of musical activities.
Through our in-depth and carefully sequenced lessons, pupils’ musical knowledge, skills, concepts and are transferable to all areas of our school curriculum.
These key Music skills and concepts are:
- Describe music
Our Music curriculum has been designed to cover the objectives in the National Curriculum Framework and is linked to the cross-curricular themes covered in year groups. Music is taught by our Music specialist who teaches the children to play instruments, developing the skills of performing, listening, reviewing and evaluating music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions. Children are taught to understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, with lessons focusing on pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations. At St Alban & St Stephen, pupils are also offered the exciting opportunity to study a musical instrument in a small group with a peripatetic teacher. Children can choose to learn one of a variety of instruments, such as the violin, flute, clarinet, brass instrument or even be part of a rock band and this is in addition to the timetabled music teaching of the school.
Once the child is able to play their instrument with increasing confidence they will enjoy playing as part of a group in our newly formed school orchestra. In addition to these opportunities, the music curriculum is further promoted and enhanced through the annual Christmas and summer term productions. These productions consist of a play led by a specific year group and all children in this year group are given the opportunity to participate in the accompanying choir for this event. The whole-school choir and orchestra accompany this event, showcasing their skills to the friends and family of St Alban & St Stephen.
In addition, the school choir engage with the wider community, performing carol concerts within the local area to delighted audiences. Children in KEY Stage 2 also have the opportunity to perform at The Young Voices in the O2 and also take part in the schools performances in The Alban Arena and also St Albans Cathedral.
Implementation of our Music curriculum
All learning will start with revisiting prior knowledge and making meaningful connections. Staff will model explicitly the subject-specific vocabulary, knowledge and skills relevant to the learning to allow them to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts. Music assessment is ongoing throughout the curriculum themes. Summative assessment is completed at the end of each theme to inform leaders of the improvements or skills that need to be developed further.
Impact of our Music curriculum
Pupil voice is used to enable leaders to assess the impact of the Music curriculum and whether children know and remember more. Pupil performances in class and throughout the school show the high standards expected and are celebrated via Twitter, the school website and weekly newsletter.
Our pupils leave St Alban & Stephen Catholic Primary School with the knowledge to be a musician: to act like a musician and perform like a musician, and they value the transference of these skills into their every day life, in education and beyond.