All pupils at The Downley School are immersed in a carefully crafted music curriculum that intends to develop a life-long love of music.
Our music curriculum enables pupils to learn, grow and succeed together and is underpinned by our six values:
- Children will show an appreciation and respect for a wide range of musical styles from around the world and will understand how music is influenced by the wider cultural, social, and historical contexts in which it is developed.
- Children will learn to respect and appreciate the music of all traditions and communities.
- Children are resilient learners and learn from their mistakes; they approach music with a growth mindset.
- Children have the opportunity to learn how to play a variety of musical instruments. Approaching this learning with an open mind and determination.
- Children have the opportunity to work in pairs, small groups and as part of a class team to learn, create and perform music.
- Children develop transferable skills such as teamwork and leadership.
- Children will have the opportunity to work as part of a wider team to develop performances. Nativity, Year6 production, end of year assemblies.
- Children will have the opportunity to do extracurricular activities such as the choir, guitar lessons and RockSteady lessons.
- All children have the opportunity to participate in music lessons.
- Adaptations/support is provided to enable all to achieve.
- Children will learn how to correctly use and look after the musical instruments. This is modelled by all staff.
- Children will learn to demonstrate and articulate an enthusiasm for music and will be able to identify their own personal musical preferences.
- Children will have the opportunity to explore a range of different musical styles from around the world.
- Children will learn how music is influenced by the wider cultural, social and historical contexts in which it is developed.
Our high quality music curriculum has clear progression and learning is carefully sequenced, built on and revisited. Lessons are planned to deepen pupils’ knowledge and skills, for future learning and employment as a musician.
Kapow’s music scheme takes a holistic approach in which the following strands are woven together;
- The history of music
- The inter-related dimensions of music.
Each five-lesson unit combines these strands within a cross-curricular topic designed to capture pupils’ imagination and encourage them to explore music enthusiastically. Over the course of the scheme, children will be taught how to sing fluently and expressively, and play tuned and untuned instruments accurately and with control. They will learn to recognise and name the interrelated dimensions of music - pitch, duration, tempo, timbre, structure, texture and dynamics - and use these expressively in their own improvisations and compositions.
The instrumental scheme lessons complement the Kapow Primary scheme of work and allow lower key stage pupils to develop their expertise in using a tuned instrument for a minimum of one term as recommended in the Model music curriculum.
The Kapow Primary scheme follows the spiral curriculum model where previous skills and knowledge are returned to and built upon. Children progress in terms of tackling more complex tasks and doing more simple tasks better, as well as developing an understanding and knowledge of the history of music, staff, and other musical notations, as well as the interrelated dimensions of music and more.
In each lesson, pupils will actively participate in musical activities drawn from a range of styles and traditions, developing their musical skills and their understanding of how music works. Lessons incorporate a range of teaching strategies from independent tasks, paired and group work, as well as improvisation and teacher-led performances. Lessons are ‘hands-on’ and incorporate movement and dance elements, as well as making cross-curricular links with other areas of learning.
Differentiated guidance is available for every lesson to ensure that lessons can be accessed by all pupils and opportunities to stretch pupils’ learning are available when required. Knowledge organisers for each unit support pupils in building a foundation of factual knowledge by encouraging recall of key facts and vocabulary.
Strong subject knowledge is vital for staff to be able to deliver a highly effective and robust music curriculum. Each unit of lessons includes multiple teacher videos to develop subject knowledge and support ongoing CPD, aiding teachers in their own acquisition of musical skills and knowledge. Further CPD opportunities can also be found via webinars with our music subject specialists. Kapow has been created with the understanding that many teachers do not feel confident delivering the music curriculum and every effort has been made to ensure that they feel supported to deliver lessons of a high standard that ensures pupil progression.
Teachers use assessment to help learners embed and use knowledge fluently, to check understanding, address misconceptions, and inform teaching.
The impact of Kapow Primary’s scheme can be constantly monitored through both formative and summative assessment opportunities. Each lesson includes guidance to support teachers in assessing pupils against the learning objectives and at the end of each unit there is often a performance element where teachers can make a summative assessment of pupils’ learning. Knowledge organisers for each unit support pupils by providing a highly visual record of the key learning from the unit, encouraging recall of practical skills, key knowledge and vocabulary.
We offer a number of extracurricular opportunities, including choir, guitar lessons and RockSteady lessons. The choir have opportunities to perform externally at community events and organised performances. These give the children opportunities to develop the values listed above and experience a wide variety of music and cultures. This supports their SMSC development.
Pupils leave The Downley School with a deep understanding of the academic content of the Music curriculum. They know more, remember more and can do more; they are prepared for their future aspirations as a musician.
The expected impact of following the Kapow Primary Music scheme of work is that children will:
- Be confident performers, composers and listeners and will be able to express themselves musically at and beyond school.
- Show an appreciation and respect for a wide range of musical styles from around the world and will understand how music is influenced by the wider cultural, social, and historical contexts in which it is developed.
- Understand the ways in which music can be written down to support performing and composing activities.
- Demonstrate and articulate an enthusiasm for music and be able to identify their own personal musical preferences.
- Meet the end of key stage expectations outlined in the national curriculum for Music.
They understand that when we learn together, we grow together and succeed together.