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“Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. As pupils progress, they should develop a critical engagement with music, allowing them to compose, and to listen with discrimination to the best in the musical canon.” (The National Curriculum)

Music teaching at St Mary’s Primary School aims to follow the specifications of the National Curriculum; providing a broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum and ensuring the progressive development of musical concepts, knowledge and skills.

At St Mary’s we believe that music plays an integral role in helping children to feel part of a community, therefore we provide opportunities for all children to create, play, perform and enjoy music both in class and to an audience.

Through assemblies and key stage performances, children showcase their talent and their understanding of performing with awareness of others. Lessons enable children to develop their skills, appreciate a wide variety of music and begin to appraise a range of musical genres.

The aims of our Music curriculum are to develop pupils who:

· Enjoy and have an appreciation for music.

· Listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, cultures, styles and traditions.

· Can sing and use their voices to create different effects.

· Create and compose music, both on their own and with others.

· Use a range of musical language.

· Make judgements and express personal preferences about the quality and style of music.

· Take part in performances with an awareness of audience.


Music teaching at St Mary’s delivers the requirements of the National Curriculum through use of the Charanga scheme of work. Teachers follow the suggested scheme of work, although adaptations can be made using the ‘freestyle’ element of the package to substitute units deemed to be more appropriate for thematic learning in other curriculum areas. Music lessons are broken down into half-termly units and an emphasis is placed on musical vocabulary, allowing children to talk about pieces of music using the correct terminology.

Each unit of work has an on-going musical learning focus and lessons usually follow a specific learning sequence:

  • Listen and Appraise
  • Musical Activities (including pulse and rhythm)
  • Singing and Voice
  • Playing instruments
  • Improvisation / Composition
  • Perform and Share

Our progression model also follows the same learning sequence to ensure all interrelated elements of music are covered and implemented.

Within the EYFS setting, music is an integral part of children’s learning journey. Rhyme and rhythm are utilised throughout the learning of phonics, handwriting and mathematics. Children learn a wide range of songs and rhymes and develop skills for performing together. Singing and music making opportunities are used frequently to embed learning, develop musical awareness and to demonstrate how music can be used to express feelings.

Children in Year 3 benefit from whole class specialist teaching, delivered by a member of Thurrock Music Services. These lessons allow children the opportunity to learn to play an instrument as part of an ensemble and to engender a love of music learning. Throughout the sessions the interrelated elements of music are developed. The Music Service also use elements of Charanga in their sessions.

Performance is at the heart of musical teaching and learning at St Mary’s and pupils participate in a range of performances during their school ‘career’. These include nativities (EYFS + KS1) and a Carol Concert (Y5), Easter performances (Years 3 – 4) and a Leavers performance (Year 6). Pupils also take part in Harvest assemblies and singing assemblies. Pupils who are confident are encouraged to perform in solo performances. Parents are invited and welcomed to watch all of these performances whether at school or outside of school.

At St Mary’s we also recognise that staff have musical abilities that can be utilised to supplement our musical curriculum. Pupils have the opportunity to join the school choir as well as participating in the annual Young Voices concert.

The school choir is open to KS2 children who focus on singing in unison, developing harmony, solo performances and having fun! The school choir have the opportunity to perform in school performances, carol concerts and have sung at a range of events both in school and at other venues such as Thameside Theatre in Grays.

Respect ourselves, Respect others, Respect our school, Love God.