Music Intent Statement:
Our vision for Music at Birches First School is to inspire all children to develop a life-long love of music and provide opportunities for self-expression, where they can learn to respect and appreciate music of all traditions and communities. Through an engaging and stimulating music curriculum, children will develop confidence, creative thinking skills and improve their emotional well-being.
Our intention is that children gain a firm understanding of what music is. Through listening, singing, playing, evaluating, analysing, and composing across a variety of historical periods, styles, traditions, and genres we will look to broaden children’s musical enjoyment and appreciation.
Our objective is to develop a curiosity and understanding of the subject, it’s value and the importance and impact music can have on people’s lives and their emotional well-being.
We are committed to ensuring children understand the value and importance of music in the wider community, and are able to use their musical skills, knowledge, and experiences to involve themselves in music, thereby developing a life-long love of the subject.
We aim to motivate and capture each child’s individual interest and encourage them to develop their own sense of musical style, so that they not only learn; but also become musicians who are confident sharing and performing themselves.
Birches First School assists every student regardless of ability, gender or social and economic circumstances, to reach their individual potential as learners. This underpins our school ethos ‘Believe, Grow, Succeed to be the best ‘me’ I can be’.
Music is at the heart of everything we do at Birches. Songs can often be heard throughout the school in all subjects; not just during Music lessons.
We find that music helps the children to memorise and solidify key concepts, in a positive, fun and engaging way. At Birches First School, we consistently go the extra mile to ensure children have access to a rich set of musical experiences; in the curriculum and through extra-curricular activities.
As a school, we use Kapow’s Primary Music scheme to support our teaching and learning of music. Units of lessons develop pupils’ knowledge and skills across the areas of listening, composing, performing and the interrelated dimensions of music (pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, textures and structure).
The scheme uses a spiral curriculum, where previously taught skills and knowledge are built upon as the child progresses through the school.
The music curriculum ensures students sing, listen, play, perform and evaluate. This is embedded in the classroom teaching as well as the weekly singing assemblies, various concerts and performances, the learning of instruments, musician visitors and the option to join our extra-curricular musical activities.
Children learn to understand the different principles of creating notes, as well as how to read basic music notation. They also learn how to compose, focussing on different dimensions of music, which in turn feeds their understanding when listening, playing, or analysing music.
Children have singing assembly, once a week. Singing is a great starting point for musical learning and the development of musicianship skills, while being a hugely enjoyable activity for pupils and teachers. At the same time, it creates a strong and positive sense of community within our school and binds our Birches community together. The school sings collectively during assembly and we mark significant moments by singing together – like celebrating the school’s 60th Anniversary, the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, Singing around the Tree at Christmas in the village and religious celebrations.
Parents are regularly invited into school to watch their children perform and pupils work hard to develop their performance skills. At Birches we are passionate about music as we know that singing forms a large part of what pupils will remember about their time at school, long after they have left.
Other extra-curricular activities on offer for the children include specialist keyboard tuition which is highly popular. Through exposing the children to a wide selection of musical genres from across the globe, children are able to expand their taste in music and are strongly encouraged to have discussions and share their opinions with their peers.
Through a child’s journey at Birches First School, their musical skills and understanding are built year on year. From singing simple songs in Foundation Stage, to performing basic rhythm patterns in KS1, to more advanced techniques in lower KS2.
Throughout their time at Birches First School, a child’s enjoyment of music is a key element of their development. Children develop a rich musical palette, as well as self-confidence; interaction and the awareness of others. This helps children’s ability to share their own thoughts, opinions and ideas. Through music they develop an understanding of culture and history, both in relation to students individually, as well as ethnicities from across the world.