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St Mary's Catholic Primary School

St Mary's Catholic
Primary School


Music Curriculum

‘Without music, life would be a mistake’ Nietzsche

Music is an essential part of life; integral in the development of the whole person. We believe that the opportunity to engage in musical experiences is crucial for the development of the whole child. Learning music develops all aspects of a child’s learning. These abilities are directly transferable to other areas of the curriculum, allowing children to flourish, and will be invaluable in their future life. At our school, children have access to music through regular class lessons, worship, workshops as well as extra opportunities such as peripatetic music lessons, orchestra, choir and wider performance opportunities with other schools and in the local community. At St Mary’s, music demonstrates the school drivers of Community, Whole Child and Communication.

Through playing, singing, creating and performing, children will develop confidence, communication, thinking and creative skills and improve their emotional well-being. In addition, as these activities utilise both sides of the brain, it will foster connections which will improve memory and coordination. Children will find that music is enjoyable and relaxing and can help reduce stress. All children will be able to experience a sense of achievement and pride. It is our vision that every child adopts an understanding and love of music which they can carry with them for the rest of their lives. An appreciation of music enables children to be happy, well-adjusted and cooperative adult.

Music feeds the soul.


The principal categories of the National Curriculum are taught to each Year Group. A specialist Music teacher provides 45-minute lessons to Key Stage 2 classes and 30 minutes to Key Stage 1. Reception children are taught by the class teacher. Music is a foundation subject within in the National Curriculum. In Key Stage 2 children have the opportunity to learn an instrument through peripatetic music lessons with an experienced music tutor. They have the chance to learn the piano, violin, cornet, clarinet and flute.

Year group lessons are based around Music Express, Cool4school and Imoves schemes and the threshold concepts.

Pupils perform, listen to, review and appraise music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions which reflects the diverse community in which we live.

  • 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 through O Gen and Music lab
  • Understand and explore how music is created through the building blocks of music: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations.
  • Develop their performance expertise through musical opportunities such as: end of year concerts, assembly performances, music share, mass, local community ensembles, Snape, collaboration with local schools, Nativity performances and KS2 summer performance.


The impact reflects what we have achieved from our intent and we can see it by the vast array of activities and opportunities below which sees the three drivers of ‘Community, Whole Child and Communication’ in full use:

  • Christmas performances and ensembles to peers and local community.
  • Key Stage 2 perform a musical in the Summer Term.
  • Pupils regularly perform at Prayer and Praise, concerts, assemblies, fares and in church.
  • Key Stage 2 visits to concert halls, ballet, musicals both regionally and in London.
  • KS2 choir and orchestra
  • Visiting peripatetic staff provide woodwind, brass and string lessons.
  • Visiting musicians present workshops and the opportunity to hear live music


Threshold Concepts for Music:

  • Perform

This concept involves understanding that music is created to be performed.

  • Compose

This concept involves appreciating that music is created through a process which has a number of techniques.

  • Transcribe

This concept involves understanding that compositions need to be understood by others and that there are techniques and a language for communicating them.

  • Describe music

This concept involves appreciating the features and effectiveness of musical elements.