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At Highwood we aim to provide every pupil with a musical experience which offers a foundation on which to build a lifelong appreciation for a wide variety of genres. By exploring music through performance, composition and listening, pupils begin to recognise, not only the key elements of music such as pulse, rhythm, pitch, and basic notation.

Pupils are encouraged to listen to music, appreciating it as a language and understanding its context, either geographically or historically. As part of the life of the school we encourage pupils to perform and showcase the skills they have acquired through the curriculum.


At Highwood Primary School, we ensure that our Music planning follows a clear progression of skills and ensures that there is full coverage of, the National Music programmes of study. Where possible, we aim to make links to other subjects to help children make further connections and developing their learning. We use a combination of music schemes, such as Charanga , Sing up and BBC Ten pieces to teach Music to our pupils. Every year group focuses on six different units throughout the year, pupils will 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. Every unit will be adapted to ensure every child can access and benefit from the learning.

Before teaching each unit teachers will:

  • Plan a ‘ Big Piece’, for the pupils to perform at the end of the unit.
  • Assess pupil’s prior learning and skills to ensure they are building on previous skills.
  • Use the progression of key skills to build on learning.

During each unit teachers will:

  • Listen and appraise a piece of music or song.
  • Give pupils an opportunity to learn about the composer or singer and contextualise, enabling pupils to make connections.
  • Develop the pupil’s use of musical language highlighting new vocabulary to pupils and displaying it in lessons.
  • Allow pupils to play a variety of musical instruments and develop their understanding of formal written notation.
  • Encourage all pupils to sing and perform with confidence.
  • Provide pupils with opportunities to make links and use knowledge from other subjects.

At the end of each unit pupils will:

  • Perform their ‘Big Piece’ and appraise, discussing what they like and what they can improve.
  • Pupils will also listen to and appraise their peer’s performances.
  • Reflect on the skills they have learnt.

After each unit teachers will:

  • Assess pupil’s ability and skills.
  • Evaluate pupil’s performances, have they used the necessary skills to complete them.


What will this look like?

Through pupil voice we will see:

  • Pupils express their passion for Music by talking enthusiastically about their learning and sharing their knowledge and understanding.
  • Pupils discussing broad range of musical genres and their impact on culture using appropriate musical vocabulary.
  • Pupils are able to reflect and evaluate their performances in detail.

Through learning walks we will see:

  • Pupils demonstrating their love of Music through their high levels of engagement.
  • Sing and/or play a range of instruments with expression, accuracy and control.
  • Pupils appraise different genres of music using key musical vocabulary.
  • Use their creativity to compose original pieces of music, producing a collection of BIG musical pieces.
  • A clear sequence of lessons that allow pupils to acquire skills to create their ‘big piece’

In the pupil’s learning we will see:

  • A clear sequence of lessons that are linked to the big piece.
  • A secure understanding of the interrelated elements of music.
  • Scaffolded activities that allow all pupils to make progress.
  • Pupils review, evaluate and suggest improvements to their BIG piece as well as their peers.