Embracing Music at Cubbington C of E School
At Cubbington C. of E Primary School we aim to develop children’s interest, understanding and love of music that will last throughout their lives.
We provide an environment where lessons foster and develop the creative process, while also ensuring that children have at least a basic grounding in the way that music has been written for hundreds of years.
We want children to know that the language of music has no geographical barriers, and playing and singing music can bring together people of all races in a common activity.
Through skilled specialist teaching, and links to other subjects, children will learn that composing, performing or listening to music can be an exciting, moving and spiritual experience. We encourage them to reflect on how music can have an effect on people’s moods, senses and quality of life.
We aim to give all children in the school opportunities to sing, compose and record their own music and to perform to audiences of fellow pupils, parents, friends and the wider community, as appropriate.
We value music of all cultures, and will expose the children to a wide range of recorded music and provide opportunities to experience the excitement of live performances.
Elements of the music curriculum – Principles and Practice
We see singing as central to the music curriculum throughout the year.
As a church school we celebrate the major Christian festivals of Christmas and Easter in song and also see these as community events where we are integral to the celebrations of the churches and local community, such as the Senior Citizens group.
We aim to sing songs appropriate to the age of the children for a number of reasons:
to develop their vocal range in terms of pitch of notes; to improve their technique in terms of musical complexity-such as songs with wider or more difficult intervals, singing rounds, 2 part songs or different rhythm patterns such as syncopation.
We aim to constantly widen their repertoire by singing in different languages and introducing the songs of different cultures and traditions.
Most importantly, we aim to see singing as an enjoyable pastime that children may take through their lives both in formal settings such as joining a choir, but mostly in the family to pass on songs through the generations. This type of singing involves all abilities.
At Cubbington we have a bank of songs taught throughout the school which enables families to sing together in the car, at dinner or bath time or on a walk.
Composition is also integral to the curriculum and is usually linked to the class theme or an event such as the Vikings, Rainforests or Chinese New Year.
While the theme is a starting point, musical learning points are stressed such as, the pentatonic scale in Chinese music or pulse in Viking raid chants.
While we aim for an end product of a piece of music that can be performed, we value the process of composition. We help children to accept that sometimes the end product does not turn out to the satisfaction of the composer(s) or to a point where a performance can be made. The ‘why’ of this scenario is a valuable learning and discussion point.
We aim to give children the time and space to explore sound and structure, to develop as composers and also to explore relationships and group dynamics. Many of these skills are relevant not only to music and transferable to other areas of life and learning.
We aim to encourage listening to the composition work of other children within the class or school and to encourage positive criticism.
In listening to a wide range of recorded and live music wherever possible, we aim to widen children’s awareness of different instruments, styles and cultures. By enabling children to listen with informed interest, if not always with enjoyment, we aim to prevent the “it’s not my type of music” stance before preferences become entrenched.