‘Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. A high-quality music education should engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians, and so increase their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement.’
- Department of Education National Curriculum for Music (Key Stage 1&2)
Music plays an important role in our curriculum. From a very early age, children have an awareness of rhythm, pitch and the everyday sounds which surround them. Our intent is to build on this by enhancing knowledge through delivery of the national curriculum, to meet and exceed curriculum guidelines and to plan activities and events which will help support and enrich every child’s musical learning journey whilst engendering a love of the subject. From Reception onwards, each class receives structured music lessons where the content prepares them for the next stage of learning.
Children experience a range of different and contrasting musical genres, periods and cultures and develop an understanding of music history and timelines.
Music plays an important part in helping children to think creatively both individually and collectively; building confidence, interpersonal skills, developing cognitive and motor skills and nurturing a team ethic.
Through planned progression, children will develop an understanding of music vocabulary, play a range of pitched and non-pitched musical instruments, be able to listen and appraise a range of music genres, will have knowledge of musical notation, compose their own music using music technology both individually and collaboratively and be given the opportunity to perform in class, assemblies and musical events throughout the year.
We are fortunate to have a range of resources including:
- Acoustic guitars and ukuleles
- Electronic and acoustic drum kits
- Djembe drums and Congas
- Piano and Keyboards
- A range of world music pitched and non-pitched instruments
- Theremin (with cross curricular links to Science)
- PA and microphones
- GarageBand Music technology
Performing to others can be a massive boost to self-confidence as well as being hugely enjoyable. Children wishing to showcase their talents to a wider audience are actively encouraged to do so. Opportunities to perform include:
- Performance in class to peers
- Weekly assemblies
- Key Stage 1 Christmas Production
- Year 6 end of year production
- Spring Concert
- The Downderry Xmas Factor
- School Choir
- External Music & Dance events
- After School Clubs
Our intent and aim is to inspire and motivate the next generation of performers and to give them the platform to express themselves. We are very fortunate to have links to musicians and musical directors who perform in London’s West End, as well as those who have worked with high-profile artists within the entertainment industry!
For the Year 6, 2023 production of ‘The Lion King’ we received a personal video message from Fraser Skeoch, Musical Director of ‘The Lion King’ in the West End. He gave great words of encouragement to our young performers.
We also have an annual visit from musician Peter Long, who has played in countless West End shows, regularly performs with Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra and has arranged for many artists including Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Tom Jones and Lionel Richie to name a few. Following his last visit, one child was motivated to start learning the clarinet with others saying they really wanted to play an instrument and perform!
This academic year we have a visit planned from a musician who has worked with recording artists Taylor Swift and Mariah Carey – Hopefully, we can inspire even more children to find the performer within them!