At the Convent of Jesus and Mary Catholic Infant School & Nursery we consider music to be ‘a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity’ (NC 2014). Our music curriculum engages and inspires our pupils to develop a love of music and explore their talent as musicians. This improves their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement. Music should be an enjoyable experience for pupils and teachers. Pupils participate in a range of musical experiences, they develop their understanding of rhythm and pitch and learn how music is structured, as well as learning technical vocabulary for these elements. These skills support primarily the development of pupil’s voice as an instrument and help them to retain core knowledge of traditional songs and hymns from various cultures. This helps to develop their understanding of the musical world they live in.
As children’s confidence builds, they enjoy the performance aspect of music. Children experience listening to music from different cultures and eras. We are committed to ensuring children understand the value and importance of music in the wider community and British culture and are able to use their musical skills, knowledge, and experiences to involve themselves in music in a variety of different contexts such as performing in assemblies, mass, and in other schools.
At the Convent of Jesus and Mary Catholic Infant School & Nursery Music is taught as a discrete subject but also across the curriculum. All pupils complete a weekly music lesson in addition to singing at weekly assembly. To ensure that teachers develop good subject knowledge, the school uses the Music Express programme of study. This enables planned lesson based on pitch, beat, exploring sound and performance. Pupils are expected to learn key pieces of music and songs which spread throughout the teaching week in preparation for celebrations such as Harvest, All Saints Mass, Carol Service and St Claudine’s Mass. Other areas of learning, such as times tables in maths, vocabulary in languages and movement in dance can all incorporate different elements of music. The weekly assembly allows all pupils the opportunity to develop their singing skills and gain an understanding of how ensembles work. Performances, such as Christmas plays and nativities and end of year shows, demonstrate that music is important to the life of the school. We endeavour to introduce extracurricular activities, such as choir and peripatetic music lessons in the academic year 2020/21, which would also provide pupils with experience of making music.
The impact of teaching music will be seen across the school with a raised profile for music. Parental engagement will be improved through whole school performances, extracurricular activities and opportunities suggested in lessons/overviews for wider learning. Pupils have access to a varied program through Music Express which allows them to discover areas of strength, as well as areas they might like to improve upon. Participation in music develops wellbeing, promotes listening and develops concentration. Pupils are assessed by a specialised music teacher; these assessment points will be reviewed throughout the academic year as the music curriculum evolves. We aim to ensure that music is loved by teachers and pupils across the school, encouraging them to want to continue building on this wealth of musical ability, now and in the future.