Why do we learn music?
At Ark Little Ridge we aim to foster an interest and enthusiasm for music in all our pupils. We intend for all children to leave primary education having had the opportunity to play a musical instrument as well as listen, compose, improvise and perform to an audience. We expose our pupils to a broad repertoire of different musical genres from a range of different eras to ensure our pupils have a rich and extensive knowledge of the subject. In addition, through learning music, children develop habits of practice, resilience and teamwork.
Our KS1 and KS2 music curriculum is centred around ‘Charanga’, a vocal based scheme, in which the children learn to listen, sing, play, improvise and compose. Through weekly (bi-termly in KS2) Charanga sessions, children learn to work both independently and as part of a group, ensuring skills of resilience and teamwork are promoted. In addition to regular music lessons, children are exposed to a Charanga based ‘Listening Calendar’ which widens their musical knowledge and is specifically designed to relate to important yearly events.
Our Charanga based scheme is also complimented by Ark Music Week which takes place in the final summer term every year. Ark Music Week allows students to fully immerse themselves in a musician or musical band over the course of a whole week and encourages links to other subjects such as English, Art and Reading.
Singing and playing
Singing is at the very centre of our Charanga based music curriculum, allowing pupils to improve their pitch, notation and timing skills on a regular basis. In addition, children also have the opportunity to play the Glockenspiel across all year groups and learn the Recorder in Year 4. We also offer pupils the chance to receive either violin or guitar lessons from specialist peripatetic teachers. From Year 4 upwards, pupils are also offered the opportunity to sing in the school choir, allowing them to widen and build upon their singing skills learnt in class.
At Ark Little Ridge we pride ourselves on providing pupils with many different opportunities to perform. Every pupil performs to parents at least once a year at Christmas time. In addition to this, pupils are able to perform to each other many times over the course of the school year such as at Harvest and during ARK Music Week. In Year 4, pupils are given the exciting opportunity to play in a recorder ensemble as part of the Hastings Music Festival at The White Rock Theatre. Choir pupils are often given the chance to perform in assemblies as well as at important school events such as the Christmas and Summer fayres. Pupils who receive private lessons through our peripatetic teachers are also given the opportunity to play in assemblies at least once year. As a result, music plays a prominent role in our day to day community at Ark Little Ridge.