The National Curriculum for music aims to ensure that all pupils:
At St Mary’s the intention is that children gain a firm understanding of what music is through listening, singing, playing, evaluating, analysing and composing across a wide variety of historical periods, styles, traditions, and musical genres. Our objective at St Mary’s is to develop a curiosity for the subject, as well as an understanding and acceptance of the validity and importance of all types of music, and an unbiased respect for the role that music may wish to be expressed in any person’s life. We are committed to ensuring children understand the value and importance of music in the wider community, and can use their musical skills, knowledge, and experiences to involve themselves in music, in a variety of different contexts.
The music curriculum ensures students listen, perform, compose and evaluate. This is embedded in the classroom activities as well as the weekly hymn practise, various concerts and performances; and the learning of instruments. The elements of music are taught in the 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 the classroom students learn how to play an instrument through the Upbeat programme (whole class instrumental tuition) taught by a Music specialist teacher. Through learning an instrument, pupils understand the method of creating notes, as well as how to read basic music notation. They also learn how to compose focussing on different elements 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 the curriculum, which also develops the understanding of musical elements.
Whilst in school, children have access to a varied programme, which allows students to discover areas of strength, as well as areas they might like to improve upon. The integral nature of music and the learner creates an enormously rich palette from which a student may access fundamental abilities such as: achievement, self-confidence, interaction with and awareness of others, and self-reflection. Music will also develop an understanding of culture and history, both in relation to students 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, composer or performer. They can dissect music and comprehend its parts. They can sing and feel a pulse. They have an understanding of how to further develop skills less known to them, should they ever develop an interest in their lives.
Small group and individual instrumental tuition is provided by specialist teachers on a range of musical instruments including Keyboard, Guitar, Violin and Woodwind.