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Becket Primary School



At Becket Primary School, we aim to provide an enjoyable, multi-sensory, practical and participatory Music curriculum that inspires, engages and challenges all pupils.

We intend to provide a curriculum that promotes the mental and emotional benefits of music-making. Making and experiencing music will nurture our children’s personal development, boost their confidence and recognise the intrinsic role of ‘every child a performer.’ Creating and participating in music will enable our children to make positive contributions as performers and as an audience through which they will develop skills of self-reliance, cooperation and collaboration.

We will provide our children with the time and opportunity to:

  • Learn to play a range of musical instruments
  • Develop their singing voice
  • Create and compose their own music
  • Perform
  • Understand and explore the inter-related dimensions of music
  • Work and perform with a range of music specialist teachers and professional musicians both in lesson time, after school clubs and special projects
  • Listen to, review and evaluate their own music-making and that of other composers and musicians

By the time our children leave Becket Primary School, a strong foundation will have been developed which enables them to progress to higher levels of musical excellence and have the confidence to take full advantage of the wide opportunities KS3 music offers. A range of important transferable skills will have been developed – communication, cooperation, collaboration, creative thinking and meta-cognition. They will have an appreciation of music as a universal language, the role music plays within the wider world both historically and culturally and its role in promoting mental and emotional well-being.


Music is a Foundation subject and falls within the ‘Understanding the Arts’ area of learning.  Music is taught primarily as a discrete subject, although links may be made within topic planning where appropriate.

There is a progressive skills framework for each year group which outlines the minimum expected standards across 3 strands:

  • Perform (singing/playing)
  • Explore and compose
  • Listen, reflect and appraise

The skills framework also specifies key musical words/terms and inter-related dimensions (musical elements) to be introduced in each year group. These are constantly revisited, recycled, added to and developed as our children progress through the school.

In order to meet the minimum expected standards outlined within the progressive skills framework and to provide opportunities for more challenging and greater depth learning, the following whole class ensemble teaching projects and/or approaches are in place:

  • Foundation Stage: discrete musical activities are planned together with child-led learning through continuous provision which also meet the objectives outlined within the Early Years curriculum
  • Year 1: Singing Stars (10 week singing based teaching project)
  • Year 2: Singing Stars and KS1 Handbells (10 week teaching project planned by Derby and Derbyshire Music Partnership)
  • Year 3: KS2 Handbells (10 week teaching project planned by Derby and Derbyshire Music Partnership) and Wak-a-tubes
  • Year 4: String (violin and cello) Wider Opportunities Programme (Derby and Derbyshire Music Partnership) – year long
  • Year 5: Pentaglocks (10 week teaching project planned by Derby and Derbyshire Music Partnership) followed by 2 term Wind Band (clarinet, trumpet, trombone, euphonium) teaching project based on the Sure Start Programme
  • Year 6: 1 term continuation of the Wind Band Sure Start Programme. This is followed by a 2-term After School Clarinet and Brass Club provision for those children interested in continuing to learn their instrument and developing a much greater depth of learning. In addition, the whole class work for 1 term with Sinfonia Viva in a series of musical workshops based on a specific topic.

In reality, the 10 week teaching projects very often require longer to deliver to provide opportunities for consolidation of skill, greater depth learning and learning to play to performance standard. Teaching project lessons in Years 1, 2 and 3 are planned for 30-40 minutes per week as appropriate. Lessons in Years 4 – 6 are weekly and 1 hour in length (pentaglocks 45 minutes).

The teaching projects in Years 1, 2, 3 and 5 (Pentaglocks) are delivered by the class teacher. Training for these projects has been provided by the Music Curriculum Lead through a process of team-teaching. The team teaching is not time-limited and the Curriculum Lead builds in a planned withdrawal only when the class teacher states and demonstrates increased levels of confidence in leading the class and delivering the project.

The teaching project in Year 4 is delivered by visiting string specialist music teachers from the Derby and Derbyshire Musical Partnership.

In Years 5 and 6 the teaching project is delivered by a visiting brass specialist music teacher together with the Music Curriculum Lead, a clarinet specialist.

The Sinfonia Viva project is delivered by musicians from Sinfonia Viva.

The outcome of each teaching project is then showcased by a whole class performance either as a special assembly or concert.

All children sing weekly either in class and/or in a designated Key Stage singing assembly creating a continuous provision of the progressive skills framework. Opportunities for singing to a performance standard are provided through a range of special, celebratory and Festival assemblies. In the KS2 singing assembly, points are awarded for individual and class demonstration of musical skills and effort. These points are then collated at the end of each assembly and a weekly musicianship award presented. The weekly points combine and the class with the highest total wins the half-termly musicianship award. At the end of the year, the class which has the highest number of points combined from the 6 half terms, is awarded the KS2 Class Musicianship Trophy.

Ongoing formative assessment within a lesson informs next steps. Performances provide opportunities for assessment of the development of musical skills and an assessment comment is made on the end of year report.

Children with additional needs are fully included in all lessons and performances. The class teacher assesses what additional support or accommodation is required by children with SEND and/or GT. If appropriate, children with GT may have the opportunity to take music exams with the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music.

Extra-curricular activities are provided by the After School Clarinet and Brass Clubs and some year groups may perform in Derby Cathedral, Derby Arena, Derby Theatre dependent on opportunities provided by other organisations e.g. Derby and Derbyshire Music Partnership that become available during the year.   


Through the Music curriculum at Becket Primary School, pupils have had the opportunity to learn a range of skills within two complementary strands:

Strand 1 - Specific Music Skills:

  • Learn to play a range of musical instruments - tuned and un-tuned percussion instruments, Handbells, Violin or Cello, Pentaglocks and the Clarinet, Trumpet, Trombone or Euphonium
  • Understand, use, develop and apply their knowledge of the inter-related dimensions of music (pulse, rhythm, pitch, dynamics, timbre, structure, silence)
  • Understand, use, develop and apply their knowledge of a range of musical terms and vocabulary
  • Participate in several performances – celebratory/Festival assemblies, special class assemblies showcasing instrumental skills learned, Y6 perform with Sinfonia Viva and some year groups will have performed in the Cathedral, Derby Arena and/or Derby Theatre (dependent on the opportunities that become available during the year)
  • Learn the discipline involved in participating in ensemble music
  • Work with several visiting music specialist teachers and professional musicians in lesson time, after school clubs and special projects
  • Sing weekly through which they have developed the quality of their singing voice and learned to sing a wide number of songs that reflect a wide range of styles, culture and moods and incorporates call and response, unison singing, part-singing and canons, understanding how these parts fit together
  • Become familiar with and begin to read standard musical rhythm and pitch notation (music’s universal language)
  • Create and compose their own music
  • Listen to, review, and evaluate their own music-making and that of other composers and musicians both recorded and live

Strand 2 – Generic transferable social, emotional, and learning skills:

  • Communication
  • Co-operation
  • Collaboration
  • Creative thinking
  • Meta-cognition
  • Resilience
  • Self-reliance.


 Underpinning Principles to the Music Curriculum

Making every child’s music matter is a core principle of music education at Becket. Through music, children learn to:

  •  Be Healthy: making music can actively promote a healthy outlook physically, mentally and emotionally


  •  Be Safe: children learn to observe safety procedures when moving large instruments and setting up seating for the whole class and be responsible for ensuring that electrical items are positioned safely 


  • Enjoy and Achieve: enjoying musical activities represents the heart of the National Curriculum. Making and experiencing music nurtures personal development, boosts confidence and recognises the intrinsic role of ‘every child as a performer’


  • Make a positive contribution: creating music allows children to make positive contributions both as performers and audience; participation develops self-reliance, cooperation and collaboration


  • Achieve economic well-being: participation in music-making gives children transferable skills (communication, working with others, discipline, improving their own learning, performance and creative thinking skills)