Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. It is an immersive sonic and social phenomenon that is at once both physical and emotional. Communication takes place through the processes of musical creation, performance and response (processes which are by no means discrete from each other), and music carries multiple meanings, communal and individual, intentional and unpredictable. People turn to music every day throughout their lives to create a sense of identity, to connect with others and to express, reflect and change their emotions. Music is a pervasive feature of life. Music engagement both underpins and accompanies many of our day-to-day activities from our earliest years as well as marking the significant moments of individual and collective life.
Using the National Curriculum documents for Music as well as those regarding the EYFS and Development Matters levels, Drumbeat School has found common and universal aims, which have been incorporated to suit the needs, abilities and attainments of our pupils in a developmentally appropriate as well as progressive curriculum, which builds upon prior skills and knowledge as well as additions to their creative expressions.
A high-quality music education should engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians, and so increase their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement.
As pupils progress, they should develop a critical engagement with music, allowing them to compose and to listen with discrimination to a variety of musical genres.
From the very start of school-life at Drumbeat, pupils are engaged in songs, which support their transitions around the school. By linking the songs with certain areas of the school or transitions to specific lessons, the pupils become familiar with their routines. This assists the students with regulating their emotions during transition periods. Songs and music are further used to develop pupil understanding of educational concepts, such as numbers and letters.
Music is developed within an exploratory platform, to include discrete lessons, where specific skills are taught and where expression of emotions and feelings can be explored through the use of both tuned and untuned instruments as well as everyday sounds pupils would be familiar with.
As pupils develop these skills throughout their Drumbeat life, their involvement in more specific areas of music can be seen; a choir at Downham and a rock band at Brockley, the use of music as a therapy and intervention as well as part of a pupil’s own developmental engagement.
School performances, such as weekly assemblies as well as specific shows at specific times of the year, support the use of music and the involvement of as many pupils as possible, in whatever capacity they are able to attend. Individual as well as small group lessons in specific instruments are also offered, specifically the recorder, drums and the ukulele. These skills are developed through the key stages.
Therefore, the Drumbeat curriculum for music aims to ensure that all pupils have the opportunity to:
- Perform, listen to and respond to a wide variety of music (including sounds)
- Sing and create music with others
- To learn to play on a musical instrument
- Use technology to create music
- Understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated; through the inter-related dimensions of pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations.
Within these areas, pupils at Drumbeat will have the opportunity to progress in terms of four learning areas:
Music is a very creative and responsive area of the curriculum and we encourage each pupil to engage and develop from their own viewpoint and level of understanding, where skills and further concepts can be further built upon and expanded.