Music and Performing Arts
Participation in music develops well-being, promotes listening and develops concentration. Music should be an enjoyable experience for pupils and teachers and something they can learn together. At Ashcott School we want children to engage with a range of musical experiences ranging from singing and exploring basic percussion instruments to playing more advanced instruments as they progress through the school, building up their confidence at the same time. They will develop their understanding of rhythm and pitch and learn how music is structured, as well as learning some technical vocabulary for these elements. As children’s confidence builds, we want them to enjoy the performance aspect of music and showcase this to an audience. Children will experience listening to music from different genres, cultures and eras (related to our whole school focus areas from around the world) as well as to their peers in class, assemblies and productions, including the work of great composers and musicians.
Music is taught as a discrete subject in each class but also across the curriculum when appropriate. Our curriculum planning starts from the learning objectives set out in the latest National Curriculum document. The use of ‘Charanga’ helps to support teachers in their subject knowledge and planning. Areas of learning, such as times tables in maths, vocabulary in French, movement in dance and funky fingers, composition in computing all incorporate different elements of our music teaching. Our school choir, as well as a weekly singing assembly allows children opportunities to develop their singing skills and gain an understanding of how ensembles work.
Performances such as Nativity Productions, Summer Plays, end of year assemblies, Highbridge Festival and Strode Lions Concert demonstrate that music is highly important to the life of our school.
Children in Years 3 & 4 (Woodpeckers) and Years 5 & 6 (Owls) and Year 2 (Starlings) receive free whole class tuition in a specific instrument each year, from our visiting music specialist teacher. Woodpeckers learn either ukulele or clarinet, Owls learn keyboard and Starlings percussion. Activities such as choir and peripatetic music lessons also provide children with experience of playing and performing music. Pupil Premium funding is used to support children who wish to continue learning a musical instrument via private tuition.
The impact of teaching music will be seen across the school with an increase in the profile of music and the uptake of peripatetic music lessons. Currently we have children participating in music lessons in: ukulele, piano, guitar, violin, clarinet, flute, brass and drums. Whole-school and parental engagement will be improved through performances, extracurricular activities and opportunities suggested in class planning overviews for wider learning.
We want to ensure that music is loved by teachers and pupils across the school, encouraging them to want to continue building on this wealth of musical ability, now and in the future.