Music at Ark Blacklands aims to give every child access to high quality music making opportunities, in the hope that this will instil in them a lifelong passion for music and lead them to reap the many associated benefits. Our curriculum will encourage children to enjoy singing, composing and performing and provide children with the opportunity to perform in front of an audience both within and outside of school. We also aim to provide children with an understanding of the history of music and the creation of songs.
Children’s love of music begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage, where children are provided with opportunities to sing songs and make music and be imaginative by representing their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through music.
Our KS1 and KS2 music curriculum is centered around ‘Charanga’, a music-based programme, in which the children learn to sing and play instruments. They also have an opportunity to develop an understanding of pulse, rhythm and notation. Children learn to work both independently and as part of a group, ensuring skills of resilience and teamwork are promoted in this subject. Children are enthused and engaged in the wide variety of music activities.
Music lessons focus on playing, listening, performing and creating. Singing is at the heart of music making in the school and is an integral part of the music curriculum in every year group. Every pupil performs to the rest of the school at least once a yea rand every pupil gets an opportunity to perform to parents at least twice a year, at Christmas and in the summer term.
In year three, all pupils learn the recorder, learning musical notation and playing in solo and ensemble contexts. From year three to year six, the students develop their musical knowledge further by learning the ukulele. During this time, they learn to read and play chords, play and sing simultaneously, compose music in a group and improvise.
Children attend weekly singing assemblies where they can learn songs from a wide range of genres. This time is crucial to their musical education at school and is used to teach singing technique, expression of voice and key musical vocabulary such as rhythm, tempo, dynamics and pitch. The pupils are taught to listen to and sing back phrases of increasing complexity while KS2 singing assembly develops the texture of songs by introducing multiple parts and melodies.
The school choir is open to all pupils from year 4 to year 6 and rehearses weekly and performs regularly. In the past, the school choir has performed at the local theatre (The White Rock Theatre), local care homes and The Barbican Centre in London. Children can also participate in instrumental lessons at school which currently include recorder, violin, clarinet, guitar and keyboard.
Opportunities to perform outside of school, within our local environment, ensure our children understand its significance and place within the wider world and that these excite and inspire children’s thirst for knowledge and participation in this subject.