In Early years, we aim to provide an 'enabling environment' where children can explore, be curious and create their own music using sound-makers, made and brought. The children regularly sing songs throughout the day; during 'tidy up time', when washing hands, as welcome songs and for celebrations. The children learn how to use their voice to speak, sing and chant, and are given opportunities to do this as a whole group. The children are given the opportunity to perform in our Christmas Nativity, as well as rehearsing and performing nursery rhymes and jingles as a whole group.
Singing nursery rhymes in Polish and English during snacktime
In year 1, the children move onto using tuned and un-tuned instruments to perform their own simple rhythms. They begin to respond musically with increasing accuracy to a call (high/low/loud/soft/fast/slow) and keep a steady pulse. The children begin to sing with control and pitch as they find their personal voice and sing with some confidence. As the children perform more regularly, their awareness of others will grow and their ability to perform with others will increase.
In year 2, the children will learn how to follow a melody using their voice and instruments. They will begin to focus on singing in tune as an ensemble, and perform in whilst following a leader (e.g. hand signals that indicate pitch and duration of notes). The children will perform simple rhythmic patterns using an instrument, and their control when playing will begin to increase.
In year 3, the children will be singing songs from memory with increasing expression, accuracy and fluency. Their singing skills will develop as they modulate and control their voice whilst pronouncing words clearly. Notes will be played on tuned and un-tuned instruments with increasing clarity and accuracy, and the children will be given more opportunity to improvise within a group using both voice and instrument. More opportunity will be given for the children to collaborate to create a piece of music which they can perform to an audience.
In year 4, the children will aim to sing songs from memory with increasing fluency, accuracy and expression. They will learn and understand more about preparing to sing, and explore a range of vocal activity e.g. rapping, beatboxing. They may sing as a soloist or as part of an ensemble. The children will progress from experimenting to following different notation, this will include playing pieces in unison and in two parts. At Westwood, we provide the children with ukulele lessons weekly where they learn how to follow music using a tuned instrument.
In years 5/6, the children sing and use their understanding of meaning to add expression. This is especially evident when performing in their Upper Key Stage 2 musical when the children apply their skills. When improvising, the children use melodic and rhythmic phrases, as well as using basic structural forms e.g. rounds, variations, rondo form etc. When performing, the children are expected to maintain their part whilst others perform; this may be when performing using voice or instrument. The children will understand the importance of practise and rehearsal on the lead up to performing, as well as the importance of watching and reflecting on their performance after. The children use their instrument lessons to rehearse a piece for our school performances.