The Music provision at Central Park:
At Central Park all children are given the opportunity to explore and develop music in a variety of ways from EYFS to year 6. We aim to foster a lifelong love and appreciation for the subject through providing fun engaging activities.
The school teaches the National curriculum requirements through the use of the Music Express scheme and the ‘Every Child a Musician’ (ECAM) project. Each week children have a taught session (in class with their teacher or with a tutor) and a communal session (singing assembly).
Teachers also incorporate music cross-curriculurly in the teaching of subjects like English, Maths, Topic, science etc. Further development in music is offered through after school club activities. The children at Central Park get lots of opportunities to develop their performance skills throughout the year and parents are regularly invited to observe assemblies, concerts and recitals.
As part of the whole school music curriculum, singing is an integral part to children’s school life. Children have a weekly ‘Singing assembly’ where they explore music and performance as a collective. Each term the children sing song’s connected to the school’s ‘character strength of the term’ e.g. The theme for the second term of Autumn is ‘Friendship’. This is a fun way of incorporating the teaching of SMSC (Social Moral Spiritual community) whilst also learning singing skills.
In Nursery and Reception, children have access to musical instruments every day and are encouraged to experiment with making sounds during ‘Free-flow’ time. Children also complete focussed teacher led music activities that may involve exploring untuned instruments as a group, learning a chant, song, nursery rhyme - helping children to develop their voices and communication techniques. Musical activities make learning communication fun and enjoyable. There is growing evidence that singing can assist children with early language development and emotional wellbeing (Blythe 2011). Regularly singing nursery rhymes with your child at home can reinforce learning and support communication development
Key Stage 1:
In Year 1 and Year 2, children continue to use their voices expressively and creatively by singing songs and dictating chants and rhymes. Music is incorporated cross curricularly when teaching other subjects e.g. number bond songs in maths, songs about the weather for their Topic.
They are exposed through ‘Music of the term’ to lots of high quality pieces of music and are taught to listen and appraise music. In lessons and assemblies they are encouraged to begin to talk about musical elements like beat/pitch/tempo/musical arrangement.
KS1 after school club
KS1 after school club 2
KS1 choir singing fireworks
Key Stage 2:
In Key stage 2 children continue to explore music cross-curricularly in their everyday subjects but also have their first exposure to learning an instrument – In year 3 children have Ukele lessons with a visiting tutor from the Newham Academy of Music. In year 4 Violin lessons are also on offer to small groups of year 4 children from a Newham Academy visiting tutor.
In year 5 and 6 children are given the opportunity to learn an instrument through the Mayor of Newham’s ‘Every Child a Musician’ (ECAM) scheme. Children are given their very own instrument, free of charge, to progress with from year 5 to year 6. The instruments are theirs to keep for life.
Aside from instrument lessons, children continue to explore high quality pieces of music through the ‘Music of the term’ in assembly listening and appraising music. Children are expected in KS2 to talk confidently about musical elements like beat/pitch/tempo/structure/dynamics/musical arrangement etc. At this stage children should also be able to identify the work and music of ‘Great composers’ e.g. Beethoven, Haydn, Brahms, Debussy etc.
Currently we have a Music Technology Club that takes place on Mondays.
Key stage 1 choir takes place after school on Thursdays.
Key stage 2 choir takes place during Tuesday play times.
Violin lessons with Newham Academy take place on Thursdays 1.30 – 2.30 pm
How to support your child with music at home:
Anticipation songs – these are songs that cause the children to pause or pre-empt that something is going to happen next e.g.
‘round and round the garden’ (Children know that there is a silly part in the song i.e. being tickled)
‘ring-a-roses’ (Children know when to fall down)
Songs with actions – these are songs that help children to visualise and role-play concepts (fantastic for story- telling) and develop their coordination e.g.
‘Incy wincey spider’ (using their fingers to make a spider and imagining it crawling up their arm)
‘The wheels on the bus’ ‘Miss Polly had a dolly’ (various actions performed with their hands that involve role play)
Counting songs that reinforce maths skills like addition and subtraction:
‘Ten green bottles’
‘Five green and speckled frogs’
‘Ten in the bed’
‘This old man’
Lyrics available at: http://www.bigeyedowl.co.uk/show_songs.php?t=7
Teachers at Central Park often use music when teaching new concepts to children e.g. science, Topic and Re lessons there are lots of great videos on Youtube.
Every Child A Musician (ECAM)
Practise, practise, practise!
We expect all children who are learning an instrument to practise regularly – we recommend practising for 15 minutes every day or at least four times a week.
Practising a little bit everyday will produce better results than practising for an hour the night before a lesson.
This will ensure progression and success! Children who are showing steady progress will be encouraged to take a grade exam in year 6; you can find out more about grade exams on the ABRSM or Trinity College London websites. Children will receive a worldwide recognised qualification.
*The Genius of Natural Childhood (2011) Hawthorn Press
Free Interactive music games to play at home: