Our aims in teaching music at Lady Margaret Primary School

Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. 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 the best in the musical canon. 

 The national curriculum for music aims to ensure that all pupils:  

  • perform, 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 
  •  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 appropriately and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of musical excellence 
  • understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including through the inter-related dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations. 


How music is taught at Lady Margaret Primary School

Music at Lady Margaret Primary School is an inclusive activity for all pupils from Nursery to Year 6. Pupils receive specialist tuition in the subject from Year 1 onwards. The scheme of work provides children with the opportunity to compose, perform, appraise and develop their appreciation of this subject and learn about the key elements of music. 

Singing lies at the heart of music tuition at Lady Margaret and all children regularly sing together, be it in class music lessons, weekly singing assemblies or class assemblies/ productions. 

Facilities are of a very high standard with a well-resourced dedicated teaching room. Standard notation is taught as part of the curriculum from the outset and all children are given the opportunity to regularly play musical instruments.  Children are also given the opportunity to listen and appraise a wide range of music from many different genres.  

All pupils learn to play the djembe in Year 3, recorder in Year 4 and ukelele in Year 5 during their music lessons whole school ensemble tuition.  Children in KS2 can join the choir which runs weekly and children in Year 5 and 6 can attend Ukelele club.  

Termly showcases for parents take place for Djembe, choir and ukelele.  

The school endeavours to provide regular additional musical experiences both in and out of school as availability and suitability permits.  These have included steel drum workshops, Japanese drumming workshops, Gamelan workshops and performances at the Royal Albert Hall.  

The external provider ‘Irock’ runs weekly lessons for pupils who wish to learn an instrument as an additional activity and can choose to hone their skills on the guitar, keyboard, bass guitar, or vocals. Children in years 2, 4 and 6 who attend Irock lessons are able to achieve RSL music qualification with iRock. iRock have developed this qualification in partnership with RSL, global provider of qualifications in the creative and performing arts. For further information, parents can visit: 

By the end of year 6, we want pupils to:

By the end of year 6, we want pupils to: 

Reading Notation: Pulse & Rhythm 

  • Confidently read and perform rhythms with a wide range of note values, including semibreves, minims, crotchets, quavers, semiquavers and their equivalent rests, fluently interpreting rhythm patterns and note durations. 
  • Sight-read and perform intricate rhythmic phrases and rhythms from prepared notation, confidently maintaining accurate timing and rhythm throughout, in an ensemble of up to 4 parts.

Reading Notation: Pitch 

  • Fluently read and perform pitch notation within an octave range (e.g. C–C). 
  • Interpret and perform music with dynamics and articulation.

Singing and Performing  

Sing a broad range of songs, including those with complex rhythms and harmonies, with a strong sense of ensemble and performance.  

  • Perform three- and four-part rounds, partner songs, and songs with intricate structures.

Instrumental Performance 

  • Play complex melodies and accompaniments following staff notation, utilising a wide range of notes within an octave (do–do), whilst contributing to the interpretation and expression of the music. 
  • Accompany melodies using block chords or a bass line using keyboards, tuned percussion or melodic instruments. 
  • Demonstrate proficiency in playing by ear, copying longer phrases and complex melodies on tuned instruments

Composition and Improvisation 

  • Extend improvisation skills through working in small groups to create music with multiple sections, repetition, and contrast. 
  • Compose melodies made from pairs of phrases, in a major or minor key suitable for the instrument chosen, enhanced with rhythmic or chordal accompaniment. 
  • Plan and compose an 8- or 16-beat melodic phrase using the pentatonic scale and incorporate rhythmic variety.


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