Meridian Primary School Music Overview
At Meridian School, we strive to provide all pupils with opportunities to appreciate, make and discuss music in different forms. We believe inspiring children to make and develop a love of music gives them a lifelong gift of creativity, as well as a wealth of practical skills, such as concentration, dexterity, co-ordination and memory.
Playing an instrument extends these skills and develops co-ordination and control. It also imbues a sense of discipline and growth mindset, as talented musicians must practise regularly. Being part of a musical performance also boosts confidence and self-esteem and allows all children to achieve as part of something bigger than just themselves.
Singing is a high-profile foundation of Meridian School. We come together each week to share new songs, old favourites and improve our breathing, posture, fluency and vocal tone and range. As a collective, we know we can achieve even greater things than we can as individuals, and we delight in the quality sound we make and great fun we have when we all sing together. The school’s recent purchase of the Sing Up music scheme, has helped us to ensure a new rigour and confidence in our coverage of the music curriculum.
In the EYFS, children build a repertoire of songs, singing on a daily basis. They explore the different sounds of instruments and make music with them. Through instrumental and vocal music making and movement the children experiment with ways of changing pitch, duration, dynamic, and tempo. Music making opportunities regularly exist in our continuous provision and the children also participate in a dedicated Sing Up session every week.
Key Stage One
At Key Stage One, children have opportunities to use their voices expressively and creatively by singing and chanting songs and rhymes, both in the classroom and as part of weekly KS1 school singing assemblies. We are proud of our wide selection of untuned percussion, which children learn to experiment with, using the inter-related dimensions of music. Through our “Composer of the Week” initiative, our learners are also exposed on a daily basis to a range of high-quality live and recorded music, covering a diverse range of cultures, eras and musical genres. Key Stage One also put on a Christmas performance together, which is attended by the school, parents, local preschools and wider community.
Key Stage Two
At Key Stage Two, children have quality opportunities to sing, play instruments, compose, appraise and listen to music with a greater level of confidence and control. They will also develop their aural memory by recognising rhythm patterns, riffs and motifs in music drawn from a range of historical eras and traditions.
As children begin to familiarise themselves with musical notation, they have opportunities to compose by writing out their works and taking greater ownership of pieces of music. We encourage children to enjoy composing and playing music as part of small groups, which promotes teamwork and the development of leadership skills.
Through our “Composer of the Week” initiative during daily assemblies, children experience high-quality recorded music in order to develop an understanding of the history of music.
Key Stage Two enjoy a number of musical performances. Our Year Five production in November gives them the opportunity to develop characters through costuming and props, as well as strengthen their singing voices as a class. Year Three and Four take to the stage in March to wow audiences with their musical energy, expression and teamwork, and Year 6 come together in July to round off the year in style.
We offer children at Meridian multiple opportunities to perform in a number of different settings, which gives them greater confidence to express themselves. Each year group is involved in at least one performance each year, as well as a number of concerts for parents and the wider community. Our Key Stage 2 Choir is ever-growing and thriving. We perform informally at school and have performed more formally in venues such as Burwash Manor, St Mary’s Church, Comberton Baptist Church and West Road Concert Hall.
We are committed to having fun, to expanding our musical repertoire and working hard to achieve ever-higher musical standards. We have dedicated peripatetic teachers, who work alongside staff and pupils to provide children with opportunities to perform. Our Key Stage Two Musical Ensemble recently accompanied us during a whole school carol concert and busked festively outside our school entrance to raise Christmas spirits and funds for musical equipment. We are also developing music making opportunities for Key Stage One children.
We assess and monitor children’s progress termly in this subject.