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Music at Menheniot Primary School

Each year a variety of musical experiences are provided across a range of styles and genre and from different cultures. We aim that the children become confident and reflective musicians who are happy to share their compositions with others either in the classroom or as part of performances. We hope that they will find music enjoyable and inspiring, sometimes uplifting and sometimes calming and appreciate the contribution that listening to and playing music can make to mental health. Alongside developing an appreciation and love of music, we are also keen that they acquire musical knowledge and the skills to compose effectively. Whenever possible, we arrange for live music performances to take place, usually of a cultural nature and offer opportunities for children to learn an instrument.

   We are aware that both young and older children can feel anxious at the idea of performing. We provide musical experiences and activities carefully matched to the children’s ability and interests. There are opportunities for children to perform informally during end of term musical assemblies in which they may either perform individually or with others. Those who show a special aptitude for music will be encouraged and supported in further developing their skills. 

We follow the 2014 National Curriculum which specifies the content and skills to be taught within each key stage. We teach this using the award-winning program, Charanga, through which individual teachers deliver exciting and inclusive lessons which are fun and enable all children to achieve. Although many of our staff are very knowledgeable about music, this ensures that high quality lessons are a feature in all classes and our music provision is consistent throughout the school and taught in progressive steps which are accessible to all. The children study three musical topics a year which is taught weekly in Key Stage 1 and weekly in the first half of each term in Key Stage 2 .

Through the music curriculum the children have opportunities to listen, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions. They also learn about the work of composers and musicians and develop an appreciation of the talents of others. There is an emphasis on singing throughout the school and this occurs on a daily basis in many classes, for example, the Key Stage 2 children often sing in French and the younger children sing when learning their phonics. Cross-curricular links occur in most subjects of the curriculum, particularly in technology and dance. Children are taught a knowledge of musical components such as pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo and notation and become increasingly knowledgeable about these and able to apply their learning as they move up the school. The children really enjoy creating music and composing so we have placed this at the heart of our music curriculum and opportunities to celebrate their success are often incorporated into our Christmas performances.  We also participate in the Cornwall Music Education Hub whereby a whole class receive tuition in learning an instrument, enabling all to benefit from specialist music tuition.

Content of Curriculum 2014

Key Stage 1      

Pupils will 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 inter-related dimensions of music.


Key Stage 2

Pupils will 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 will 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 inter-related 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.