The aim of music at The Brent is to develop children’s creativity and self-expression, fostering a sense of belonging and an ability to collaborate and build connections with others.
“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.” Plato
We engage the children’s interest by listening to and performing a wide range of music from around the world, using ukuleles, recorders, voice, percussion and electronic devices. We promote growth mindset, encourage participation and teamwork and teach children to respect the cultures, values and opinions of others. Learning a range of instruments will develop the children’s co-ordination, concentration skills and confidence. It will also help them express their thoughts and emotions in a creative way which supports their emotional wellbeing.
We will teach the children about rhythm, notation and dynamics, whilst giving them the opportunity to explore different instruments and engage in composing, and performing individually and as part of a group. We aim for children at The Brent to have a broad understanding of key composers and works, including Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Blues, Jazz and world music. At The Brent, we inspire learners to engage in music performance outside of school in a variety of different ways and settings.
Our Music Journey Through The Brent
In EYFS, music is available in the environment daily, and there are regular opportunities to play and sing. In Years 1 to 6 we teach music in each class every week. This means that knowledge and skills are regularly practised and fluency and confidence are built.
Music is separated into different areas, which are all covered each year. These areas are Listening and Responding, Performance (singing, playing and improvising), Composition and, in KS2, History of Music.
Our Listening & Responding Journey Through The Brent
EYFS – Responding to music through movement, using different movements to match the tempo, dynamics or pitch of the music.
Year 1 – Recognising and understanding the difference between pulse and rhythm. Recognising basic tempo, dynamic and pitch changes (faster/slower, louder/quieter and higher/lower). Describing the character, mood, or ‘story’ of music they listen to, both verbally and through movement, as well as expressing a basic opinion about music (like/dislike).
Year 2 – Beginning to use musical vocabulary to describe music. Listening to and repeating a short, simple melody by ear. Recognising timbre (sound) changes in music they listen to.
Year 3 – Understanding that music from different parts of the world has different features. Recognising and explaining the changes within a piece of music using musical vocabulary. Discussing the features of different genres, styles and traditions of music using musical vocabulary. Beginning to use musical vocabulary when discussing improvements to their own and others’ work.
Year 4 – Building on recognising and discussing the features of different genres, styles and traditions of music using musical vocabulary. Identifying common features between different genres, styles and traditions of music. Using musical vocabulary to discuss the purpose of a piece of music. Identifying scaled dynamics (crescendo/diminuendo) within a piece of music. Continuing to use musical vocabulary when discussing improvements to their own and others’ work.
Year 5 – Recognising and confidently discussing the stylistic features of different genres, styles and traditions of music using musical vocabulary. Representing the features of a piece of music using graphic notation, justifying their choices with reference to musical vocabulary. Comparing, discussing and evaluating music using detailed musical vocabulary. Developing confidence in using detailed musical vocabulary to discuss and evaluate their own and others’ work.
Year 6 – Discussing musical eras in context, identifying how they have influenced each other, and discussing the impact of different composers on the development of musical styles. Recognising and confidently discussing the stylistic features of music and relating it to other aspects of the Arts (Pop art, Film music). Representing changes in pitch, dynamics and texture using graphic notation, justifying their choices with reference to musical vocabulary. Use musical vocabulary correctly when describing and evaluating the features of a piece of music. Evaluating how the venue, occasion and purpose affects the way a piece of music sounds. Confidently using detailed musical vocabulary to discuss and evaluate their own and others work.
Our Performing Journey Through The Brent
EYFS – Using their voices to join in with well-known songs and nursery rhymes from memory. Moving to music following instructions to perform actions. Participating in performances to a small audience. Stopping and starting singing/playing at the right time.
Year 1 – Singing short songs from memory, maintaining the overall shape of the melody and keeping in time. Maintaining the pulse (play on the beat) using hands, as well as tuned and untuned instruments. Responding to simple musical instructions such as tempo and dynamic changes as part of a class performance. Beginning to perform from graphic notation.
Year 2 – Using their voices expressively when singing, including the use of basic dynamics (loud and quiet). Singing short songs from memory, with melodic and rhythmic accuracy. Copying longer rhythmic patterns on untuned percussion instruments, keeping a steady pulse, using dynamics and beginning to alter the sounds used. Singing back short melodic patterns by ear and playing short melodic patterns from letter notation.
Year 3 – Singing songs in a variety of musical styles with accuracy and control, demonstrating. Singing and playing in time with others. Performing from basic staff notation, using both rhythm and pitch and being able to identify these symbols using musical terminology.
Year 4 – Singing longer songs in a variety of musical styles from memory, with accuracy, control, fluency and a developing sense of expression including control of subtle dynamic changes. Singing and playing in time with peers with increasing accuracy and awareness of their part in the group performance. Playing melody parts on tuned instruments with accuracy and control and developing instrumental technique. Playing syncopated rhythms with accuracy, control and fluency.
Year 5 – Singing songs in two or more parts, in a variety of musical styles from memory, with growing accuracy, fluency, control and expression. Working as a group to perform a piece of music, adjusting dynamics and pitch according to a graphic score and simple staff notation, keeping in time with others and communicating with the group. Playing a simple chord progression with accuracy and fluency.
Year 6 - Performing a solo or taking a leadership role within a performance. Performing with accuracy and fluency from graphic and staff notation as well as from their own notation. Performing by following a conductor’s cues and directions.
Our Composing Journey Through The Brent
EYFS – Playing untuned percussion ‘in time’ with a piece of music. Selecting classroom objects to use as instruments. Experimenting with body percussion and vocal sounds to respond to music. Selecting appropriate instruments to represent mood. Experimenting with playing instruments in different ways.
Year 1 – Creating simple melodies using a few notes. Choosing dynamics, tempo and timbre for a piece of music. Creating a simple graphic score to represent a composition. Beginning to make improvements to their work as suggested by a teacher.
Year 2 – Creating simple melodies from five or more notes. Building on choosing appropriate dynamics, tempo and timbre for a piece of music. Using letter names and graphic notation to represent the details of their composition. Beginning to suggest improvements to their own work.
Year 3 – Composing a piece of music in a given style with voices and instruments. Using letter name and rhythmic notation (graphic or staff), and key musical vocabulary to label and record their compositions. Suggesting and implementing improvements to their own work, using musical vocabulary.
Year 4 – Beginning to improvise musically within a given style, creating a piece of music with at least four different layers and a clear structure. Using letter name, graphic and rhythmic notation and key musical vocabulary to label and record their compositions. Suggesting improvements to others’ work, using musical vocabulary.
Year 5 – Improvising coherently within a given style. Combining rhythmic patterns (ostinato) into a multi-layered composition. Using staff notation to record rhythms and melodies. Selecting, discussing and refining musical choices both alone and with others, using musical vocabulary with confidence. Suggesting and demonstrating improvements to own and others’ work.
Year 6 - Composing an original song, incorporating lyric writing, melody writing and the composition of accompanying features, within a given structure. Developing melodies using rhythmic variation and changes in dynamics, pitch and texture. Recording own composition using appropriate forms of notation. Constructively critique their own and others’ work, using musical vocabulary.
Our History of Music Journey Through The Brent (KS2 only)
Year 3 – Understanding that music from different times has different features.
Year 4 – Recognising and discussing the stylistic features of different genres, styles and traditions of music using musical vocabulary.
Year 5 – Confidently discussing the stylistic features of different genres, styles and traditions of music and explaining how these have developed over time.
Year 6 - Discussing musical eras in context, identifying how they have influenced each other, and discussing the impact of different composers on the development of musical styles.