At Birchwood we believe in giving children many forms of expression through their musical experiences, through carefully planned lessons and forming links to the other curriculum subjects. Our curriculum map covers the full requirements of the national curriculum. It is organised into substantive knowledge, disciplinary knowledge and vocabulary.
The curriculum is full of singing from EYFS all the way through to year 6, listening and responding to a wide range of music and genres, performance opportunities; solo and ensemble and evaluating their own performances and composing and recording compositions in a variety of forms. There is a structured progression building on the children’s prior learning and developing knowledge and skills in various forms in music.
Each unit of music develops knowledge and skills in singing, listening and responding, performing and evaluating and composing and improvising. These elements are woven into the curriculum and key knowledge and skills are revisited year on year to build upon prior learning. Children learn basic notation in different forms and they learn a variety of ways to record their compositions. Composing, improvising and learning to perform on a variety of instruments are embedded within learning. Exploring vocal sounds and performing using body percussion are also part of the curriculum.
KS1 children and year 3 have opportunities to learn to play tuned and untuned percussion instruments and enjoy learning to play simple melodies during whole class glockenspiel lessons. Year 4 children have the opportunity to join keyboard club as an extra-curricular activity, year 5 enjoy learning the cello as a whole class experience and year 6 learn to play the keyboard and ukulele as a whole class experience.
The opportunity for children to be creative and express themselves are embedded in their weekly singing assemblies, where children are taught a fact each week about the benefits of singing.
Sing up and Music Express are used to support the delivery of the music curriculum across school which links to and reinforces learning in other subjects where possible. Our music curriculum allows children to reach their full potential in their music lessons and in our extra-curricular activities, which include keyboard club, KS2 choir, year 6 ukulele club and a musical theatre club.
A Birchwood our children have access to clearly sequenced music curriculum which allows them to be creative and express themselves. Music also develops the children’s understanding of culture, history and mutual respect.
We measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods: pupil discussions and interviews about their learning, lesson visits, teacher assessments and videos.
By the time children leave Birchwood they will perform in solo and ensemble contexts, using their voices and play musical instruments with increasing accuracy, fluency, control and expression. Children will improvise and compose music for a range of purposes and listen with attention to detail. They will appreciate and understand a range of high-quality music drawn from different traditions and composers. Our aim is to equip children with the necessary knowledge and skills in music to be able to continue their musical journey in secondary school.