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Westwood Primary School

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Curriculum Intent and Implementation

At Westwood we offer a high quality, engaging Music curriculum which is taught through the scheme ‘Charanga’. The curriculum offer has been well mapped out in order to ensure progression of the 4 key Musical Aims across year groups and key stages. We work closely with Artforms to provide the children with instrument lessons and external performance opportunities.

The teaching of Music remains high profile across school with Music being a prominent feature both in adventures and extra-curricular activities as well as part of the school celebrations. While at Westwood children learn to become confident singers and musicians learning and celebrating different musical cultures and backgrounds. Our Music curriculum will enthuse pupils to celebrate and play music throughout life equipping them with the skills to pursue a rich and diverse path in this subject should they choose to.

The children also have the opportunity to see a range of Musical Theatre performances throughout their time at Westwood and we are particularly proud of our annual Yr6 end of term performance which involves pupils learning Music and Drama.

Music Implementation

Below outlines the progression through the 4 key Musical Aims at Westwood which we have derived from the 3 Aims in the National Curriculum.

  • perform, listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions, including the works of the great composers and musicians

  • learn to sing and to use their voices, to create and compose music on their own and with others, have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument, use technology appropriately and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of musical excellence

  • understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including through the interrelated dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations


To confidently perform either singing or skilfully playing an instrument, either solo or as part of a group.

From the moment children at Westwood enter Nursery they receive half an hour with a dedicated music specialist a week. This time is used to develop the childrens’ knowledge of key repertoire for the EYFS including Nursery rhymes, chants and specialist EYFS songs. Children have access to a range of different untuned and tuned percussion both in the EYFS and during music lessons and are taught to use instruments appropriately and with skill. Children in the EYFS take part in the Christmas nativity for which there are rehearsals and children are taught to use their voices with expression and sit and stand to perform to an audience. We aim to develop awareness of the key elements of Music within the EYFS Music lessons using both Charanga and our own Music Specialists throughout school. Children are taught to develop a sense of rhythm and pulse and begin to understand dynamics and tempo. In Yr 1 and 2 children are taught to sing confidently as part of their singing assembly where they explore a variety of music accompanied and unaccompanied. The use of ‘Sing Up’ is encouraged throughout school and every half term each class performs a song with dance moves in the Music Celebration Assembly so that children can learn to perform as part of a group to a familiar audience. At present Charanga is taught alongside specialist singing assemblies to enhance the Music Curriculum. Through our adventure approach to learning, the children also take part in workshops available from the local authority and Musical Visitors are frequently invited into school from different Arts organisations to inspire the children. We encourage the children in KS2 to become confident singers through offering the opportunity to take part in the Leeds Lieder event and Opera North celebrations of classical Opera Music as well as the Artforms Big Sing and Big Play. Children are taught glockenspiel from years 1 to 6 through Charanga music lessons. Children in KS2 receive specialist Music Tuition from Artforms learning a variety of instruments including guitar, ukulele and recorders and are taught how to use their voice expressively and using the inter-related dimensions.

To compose and create songs / music using typical structures and create rhythmic patterns. Show an awareness of timbre and duration, digital technology may be used to edit and refine pieces of music.

At Westwood children are taught about musical structure though listening and appraising in the first instance. We celebrate a ‘Composer of the Week’ every week and this is part of our drive to celebrate musical culture throughout school and expose the children to a diverse range of music. In the EYFS and Nursery children are taught to understand the structure of songs and exposed to vocabulary relating to structure i.e. verse and chorus. They are taught to repeat rhythmic patterns and understand the difference between rhythm and pulse. Children in Yr 1 are taught using the Charanga schemes of work which give a variety of opportunities to compose. Children are also engaged in literacy activities relating to poetry which in turn offer opportunities for song-writing. In every year group the children have access to the Ipads and garage band which is used in Yrs 5 and 6 to compose and create songs and pieces of music related to adventures. Children are encouraged to compose in partners in the first instance and then move on to composing as part of a larger group requiring team work and leadership skills. Children in KS2 will be encouraged to experiment with different patterns of sound and timbres, ordering and re-ordering sounds and using digital technology to record and evaluate their ideas.


To become confident readers of music, transcribing and using notation to compose and perform

In the EYFS children are exposed to Musical notation in the form of ‘Sing Up’ following lyrics as they are highlighted in the board. Pictures of animals are used to represent the different note values and therefore get the children used to recognising some form of notation. In KS1 the teaching of the glockenspiel begins to expose the children to the musical stave and notes that sit on the stave and this is integrated with the pictures approach taken in the EYFS. The children are taught about pitch as part of their learning and the rhymes that accompany notes on the musical staff. In KS2 children are encouraged to become more familiar with the musical stave so that they can read more complex pieces of music once they begin to master the instruments being taught.

Through the use of Charanga, teachers are encouraged to test children’s knowledge of the musical stave and encourage children to write short pieces of music using both instruments and digital apps. Children should be able to transcribe notes by the end of KS2 if given a reasonable starting point and be confident to perform some music using notation. They are also encouraged to recognise the difference between different chords. Children in KS2 are also exposed to different methods of notation including graphic scores.


To listen and review music becoming confident to form an appraisal of pieces of music. To have key knowledge of both composers and performers from all musical genres throughout history.

Throughout the EYFS children at Westwood are taught to recognise and respond to music. They are given the opportunity to use and identify the sounds of different instruments and experiment with making sounds with their own voice. They are asked to listen to and respond to a variety of music expressing and interpreting their feelings. Children in Yr 1 are encouraged to differentiate between high and low sounds, identify instruments and use movement to express and interpret music. In the EYFS we use some Dalcroze method within the provision. ‘Composer Of the Week’ provides a foundation for learning about music from different genres and different methods of composition.

Teachers are encouraged to pick pieces of music appropriate to the adventures the children are learning about throughout KS1 and KS2 and children are encouraged to write their thoughts on pieces of music down using the inter-related dimensions of music. Children are encouraged to evaluate the structure of Music in KS2 and to help with this they are exposed to a variety of workshops on different types of music as well as having weekly whole class instrumental lessons with Artforms. They are taught to express their feelings about different pieces of music, likes and dislikes.

Wherever possible, our music curriculum is enhanced by trips and visitors as this provides the real life experiences needed for our children and helps bring the curriculum to life. As music is a key driver for a number of adventures children have the opportunity to consolidate their learning within music through a number of subjects. Music and dance has been combined as part of the P.E. curriculum at Westwood giving the children more opportunity for expression within both subjects and this is celebrated in the end of term assemblies.