At the Glebe Primary School, we believe that singing is a powerful vehicle for teaching listening, performing and appraising skills; it is an important activity in its own right for developing confidence and self-esteem.
Our children receive a dedicated weekly singing session from nursery age, delivered by a specialist singing teacher and accomplished pianist. As a result they are exposed to high quality live music and a wide range of genres of songs on a regular basis.
Through performing in groups and on the microphone in front of each other, our children’s levels of oracy and presentational skills are improved and they become sensitive, mature listeners who appreciate what they hear.
Gifted and talented singers are selected to join a school choir who regularly perform in assemblies, for parents and the wider community.
Through singing with real passion and engagement in communal sessions our children gain enjoyment and a sense of belonging – the “feel good” endorphins are tangible.
Alongside our singing lessons, The Charanga Music School Scheme provides teachers with week-by-week lesson support. This Scheme moves away from the previous levels and learning objective/outcome concepts to an integrated, practical, exploratory and child-led approach to musical learning. Teaching focuses on developing the children’s ability to understand rhythm and follow a beat. We teach them to listen and to appreciate different forms of music. Children develop descriptive language skills in music lessons when learning about how music can represent different feelings, emotions and narratives. We also teach technical vocabulary such as volume, pitch, beat and rhythm and encourage children to discuss music using these terms.
The music curriculum ensures children sing, listen, play, perform and evaluate. This is embedded in the classroom activities as well as the weekly singing assemblies, various concerts and performances and the learning of instruments.
Through the musical program Charanga, teachers are able to produce inclusive lessons for all children to access the musical curriculum in a fun and engaging way, further promoting a love of learning.
Teachers deliver music following the Charanga programme, designed specifically for the teaching of music in primary schools. Charanga lessons are planned in 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 the classroom, children learn how to play the recorder and a variety of percussion instruments including glockenspiels. Playing various instruments enables children to use 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 the curriculum, which develops the understanding of musical elements without the added complexity of an instrument.
Alongside Charanga and weekly singing lessons, Tees Valley Music Service (TVMS) provide biyearly workshops from Reception to Year 6. TVMS also provide opportunities to perform alongside other schools. For example, Snappy Christmas, Snappy Spring, Trumpet ensembles and so on.
Assessment in music is carried out termly by the class teacher. This is measured against the Charanga objectives for each unit as per Year group.
Termly reflective evaluations provide feedback from staff for the subject leader.
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 the Glebe 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 understand how to further develop skills less known to them, should they ever develop an interest in their lives.