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Westcliffe Primary School

'Our school is committed to inspirational teaching that develops aspirational young people.'



By studying music at Westcliffe Primary School, pupils will have the opportunity to sing and play a range of instruments, as well as learn how to create ensembles that are performed to others. They will be taught musical vocabulary and when listening to pieces will then apply this knowledge to critique and evaluate music from a range of genres and artists. Some children in our school’s community may not have had the opportunity to handle and play different instruments, nor see live performances and show an appreciation for the arts. In order to increase these opportunities, we have invested in class sets of glockenspiels, children are able to develop and transfer their skills throughout a school year using an instrument. In Upper Key Stage 2, all children are given the opportunity to attend and perform at Young Voices - this is part of our curriculum which is fully subsidised by school.  (Utilita Arena, Sheffield. Y5/6. Biannually) 


To inspire our children and to encourage an enquiring mind and a curiosity to want to discover more about their local area and the world around them, each year opportunities are built into the curriculum to explore the arts - such as cinema and theatre trips as well as inviting visitors (from the arts) into school. 


Our curriculum promotes tolerance and understanding of other cultures by incorporating music from many parts of the world (North America, South America, Africa and India as well as from other cultures closer to home in Europe and the United Kingdom). The discussions surrounding music from different cultures allow teachers to challenge the use of stereotypical cultural references and discuss how it can lead to discriminatory and prejudicial behaviour with the pupils.



The national curriculum for music aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • perform, listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods,
  • genres, styles and traditions, including the works of the great composers and
  • musicians
  • learn to sing and to use their voices, to create and compose music on their own and
  • with others, have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument, use technology
  • appropriately and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of musical
  • excellence
  • understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including
  • through the inter-related dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture,
  • structure and appropriate musical notations.


How the subject is taught:

We teach music through the scheme Charanga to support and improve the quality of music teaching that children receive at our school. Charanga works seamlessly with the national curriculum ensuring that learners revisit the interrelated dimensions of music: pulse, voice, pitch and rhythm- building upon previous learning and skills.


The learning within this Scheme is based on: listening and appraising, musical activities, creating and exploring and singing and performing.  Music is taught as a separate subject, but links are made to other learning such as timelines in history and the origins of music in geography. All learners from Early Years to Y6 receive a weekly music lesson supported by Charanga. The Charanga music scheme allows children to experience a new topic and style of music every half term. We have created a 2 year rolling plan for the Charanga scheme so that children still receive the same level of music teaching and experience all the units of learning.


Lessons provide children with the opportunity to listen and respond to different styles of music, use their voices and instruments to listen and sing back and have a go at composing their own piece of music. The lessons are planned so that, each year, children follow on from the learning they completed the previous year and clear progression is evident across the school. In addition to the taught music curriculum, learners listen to a range of music styles and genres in assembly, as well as having the opportunity to sing in assembly every week.  We also use outside music services to further support and foster children’s love of music.  Jane Green and Maurice Davies are peripatetic teachers who deliver guitar and piano lessons respectively, a number of children in school access these one-one lessons.


At the end of the year we hold our 'Musical Extravaganza' to showcase our learning and talents. 


If you walk into a music lesson, you will see:

  • Children listening to, performing and composing real music from a range of genres, cultures and styles
  • Music is the dominant language of the lesson. Verbal instruction is concise, and pupils spend the majority of the session making music.
  • Pupils singing, moving, playing and creating to internalise musical concepts, which are then made conscious by the teacher to ensure both practical and theoretical understanding. Theory and practice go hand in hand so that music is both felt and understood.
  • Pupils being supported and challenged as listeners, composers and performers, and demonstrate high levels of enjoyment and engagement.


If you have any questions about music, please contact our subject leader – Miss Nicole Richardson.


Music Progression Document

Music Vocabulary List