At Bellingham Primary School, we are musicians! We want our children to love music. We want them to have no limits to what their ambitions are and grow up wanting to be music producers, songwriters, composers or rock stars! Our vision, at Bellingham, is to give children access to an engaging and fun music curriculum reflecting the world they live in now, but at the same time giving them access to musical styles throughout history. Children are able to listen and appraise a variety of musical styles alongside performing pieces and creating their own compositions through the use of instruments and technology. To achieve this, all children access a variety of musical games, songs, instruments, music workshops, and extra - curricular activities giving them practical hands on experience. We hope children continue to grow in confidence as they progress through the musical curriculum and become passionate in their responses to music.
Our music curriculum ensures children sing, listen, play, perform and evaluate. This is embedded in to classroom activities as well as our weekly songs.In addition, we showcase these skills through various concerts and performances and the learning of instruments. Harvest, Christmas and Easter celebrations always include singing and is celebrated with parents, carers and the local community. We follow the Charanga musical program from EYFS to Y6 and teachers are able to deliver inclusive lessons for all children which promote a love of learning. We implement progressive units that are designed specifically for the teaching of music in primary schools. Long and medium term planning is based on Charanga Musical School Online Resource. Short term planning will allow for continuity and progression through specific activities and will show appropriate differentiation. Each class will have approximately 30 minute music lesson each week, additional singing sessions take place each week in assemblies and are followed up in class. Our music curriculum is planned into sequences to provide children with the opportunities to review, remember, deepen and apply their understanding. The elements of music are taught in classroom lessons so that children are able to use some of the language of music to dissect it, and understand how it is made, played, appreciated and analysed. In Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 children have the opportunity to learn to play the piano and guitar. As well as learning to play an instrument children are taught a range of methods to create notes, as well as how to read basic music notation. They also learn how to compose, focusing on different dimensions of music, which in turn feeds their understanding when listening, playing, or analysing music. Composing or performing using body percussion and vocal sounds is also part of our curriculum, which develops the understanding of musical elements without the added complexity of an instrument. Musical opportunities are encouraged from an early age and talents are nurtured through the extra-curricular activities run by the school staff.
Through Expressive Arts, children are taught to sing songs, make music and dance. Children are given opportunities to experiment with ways of changing sound and develop an understanding of pulse rhythm and pitch. Children follow a scheme of work from Charanga Music School and enjoy listening and responding to different styles of music, learning to sing, joining in with nursery rhymes and action songs which leads to playing classroom instruments and performing for others. Children are also encouraged to use everyday objects to make music and create sound.
At Bellingham, children have the opportunity to discover areas of musical strength, as well as areas they might like to explore and grow in confidence. Music enables children to develop an understanding of culture and history, both in relation to children individually, as well as ethnicities from across the world. Children are able to enjoy music in as many ways as they choose – either as listener, creator or performer. Children have the opportunity to discuss and share their own thoughts, opinions and ideas, acknowledging and respecting that these may vary and that this is positive. They can dissect music and comprehend its parts. They can sing and feel a pulse. At Bellingham Primary School children are provided with opportunities beyond the National Curriculum to further and support their understanding. These include having visitors with a musical talent, visiting concerts and school productions. External interests and talents are also encouraged and showcased in class and assembly, ensuring that everyone is challenged regardless of previous musical experience. Children have an understanding of how to further develop skills less known to them, should they ever develop an interest in their lives.