Music-making is an integral part of the teaching and learning at Meldreth Primary School.
Every class studies music as part of their regular curriculum, and we are currently trialling plans in order to teach the new curriculum. In adapting to the new curriculum, musical skills or genres which would make good matches for the new topics have been noted or assigned (for example, Year 2 study superheroes as a literacy topic, so it has been suggested that they invent a fanfare for their superhero as a composition task).
All children have the opportunity to play tuned and untuned percussion. Music from all around the world is shared and the emphasis is on making music wherever possible. In the past year, Woodpecker Class performed ‘Wimoweh’ on a range of instruments and Swallow Class turned in to a samba band to support the learning of their topic on Brazil.
Singing around school
Singing is at the heart of the music curriculum. The school has purchased a new resource ‘Our Singing School’ which has broadened their singing repertoire with modern classics and popular film tunes such as ‘Here Comes the Sun’ and ‘I Just Can’t Wait to be King’. All children have opportunities to perform. Foundation Stage/ Key Stage 1 a Nativity, sometimes traditional, and sometimes less so – in 2013 the production was ‘Christmas with the Aliens’! Key Stage 2 perform a summer production. Recent examples have included ‘Alice in Wonderland’, ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat’ and ‘The Pirates of the Curried Bean’. Swallow Class have an annual singing event when they join up with Meldreth Manor to help with their summer concert.
Music beyond the classroom
Children are able to study piano, drumming or guitar with outside teachers currently offering lessons to Meldreth pupils. Within school recorder groups and choir are offered. The school holds an annual Summer Concert to celebrate music making with a wide range of solo and group performances. The choir has also visited a local residential home to entertain members of the wider community.
The National curriculum states that primary music teaching for Key Stage 1 and 2 should include the following:
Key stage 1
Pupils should be 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 interrelated dimensions of music
Key stage 2
Pupils should be taught to sing and play musically with increasing confidence and control. They should develop an understanding of musical composition, organising and manipulating ideas within musical structures and reproducing sounds from aural memory.
Pupils should be taught to:
- play and perform in solo and ensemble contexts, using their voices and playing musical instruments with increasing accuracy, fluency, control and expression
- improvise and compose music for a range of purposes using the interrelated dimensions of music
- listen with attention to detail and recall sounds with increasing aural memory
- use and understand staff and other musical notations
- appreciate and understand a wide range of high-quality live and recorded music drawn from different traditions and from great composers and musicians
- develop an understanding of the history of music