At Dunton Green we inspire our children through a meaningful music curriculum that develops an appreciation of musical genres, an understanding of composition and creativity; which increases their self- confidence through performance.
At our school we view music as a chance for children to express their creativity. It is a great way for children to gain an understanding of different cultures from around the world through listening and appreciating a wide variety of music. There are many benefits of music education and through our teaching we aim to: improve children’s wellbeing, both emotional and physical; reduce stress; improve concentration, and promote our schools core values. It encourages children to think creatively, work both independently and with a team and gives multiple opportunities for exploration, reapplication and performing.
Music is a subject that can appeal to everyone in different ways. Some will enjoy listening to music, learning about music – past and present, singing and performing, learning to play an instrument, learning how rhythms fit together logically or having the freedom to create something new. A lot of the time, there is no right or wrong answer in music. It gives our children freedom to discover ideas without the fear of failing, therefore promoting a positive mindset.
Children are taught music once weekly by either their class teacher or Mrs Boyden (our music lead). The majority of our curriculum lessons are planned using the Music Express scheme which covers all of the music curriculum objectives from Reception to Year 6. We link our work closely to our existing cross-curricular planning, which engages the children and helps to support children making broader connections in their learning.
In KS1, children are taught to: use their voice expressively whilst learning songs and chants, learn to play a variety of percussion instruments, listen to and discuss music, and create their own music.
In KS2, children are taught to: improvise, compose, listen and appraise, write music and perform. In addition to this, they learn about the history of different musical styles.
Key Stage 2 pupils are given opportunities to learn a new instrument: In Year 3 the children learn to play the ocarina and in Year 5 they have recorder lessons. As well as this, we have strong links with Kent Music, who provide clarinet lessons for our year 4 class. These lessons are taught by an external teacher every week.
Every week the children take part in singing assembly. Different genres of music are played as the children come into the hall, this is to expose them to the wide variety of music out there and find appreciation for music they may not otherwise hear. Most of the songs we learn are from ‘Out of the Ark’ songbooks, they have strong cross-curricular links and teach children a range of different singing techniques such as: breath control, singing in harmony, part singing and rhythm.
We use our music curriculum as a way to improve children’s self-confidence. Many performance opportunities are organized throughout the academic year. Each class performs in their own class assembly at different points in the year. At Christmas our KS1 pupils put together a Nativity performance for parents and our KS2 pupils perform in a Carol Service at Riverhead Church. We previously held a Spring Showcase which consisted of pupils across the school showcasing their musical talents. Then at the end of the year, our Year 6 pupils put together a musical performance as well as preparing for their Leavers Service.
Children who have a keen interest in singing also have the chance to join the choir when they are in KS2. This is led by Mrs Boyden on Monday’s after school and is another chance for the children to improve their singing ability. The choir have lots of opportunities to perform, they sing for: charity events, Young Voices at the O2, PTA events, coffee mornings and they’ve previously sung for the residents at a local care home.
We believe that music should be enjoyable for all. We are determined for all children to grow in self-confidence through their appreciation, understanding and performance of music.