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Music Curriculum Design

Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand, with an equal opportunity for all to sing, dance and clap their hands. 

Sir Duke by Stevie Wonder


At Thorpe Willoughby we value music as a unique form of communication that can impact on children’s thoughts, feelings, emotions and actions. We want to foster a passion for life, promote musical potential, develop an understanding and knowledge of music and musical vocabulary and nurture and encourage musical development. 


We have designed our whole school curriculum into half-termly themes and teach our music curriculum within these themes to ensure we make music relevant and meaningful whilst also teaching explicit music skills and knowledge. Our Music Curriculum aims to ensure all children have the opportunity to perform, listen to, review and evaluate music; to learn to sing, create and compose music and to understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated.


We want to engage children to love participating and feel that music and ‘being musical’ isn’t a gift and a talent held by a few, but it is a tool and pleasure for all. We believe these experiences support the growth of each child’s cultural capital.


Our music curriculum has a focus on the significance of famous musicians both classical and modern as well as providing opportunities to explore and learn about significant musical events that celebrate music locally and globally.

We recognise through our music curriculum that subject-specific vocabulary is important for children to acquire. This will support their musical knowledge and understanding. When planning our curriculum, the vocabulary required to succeed is identified, planned and modelled within our music curriculum.


We aim to promote a mutual respect for the role that music plays in people’s lives and create a strong and positive bond within our school and join the community together. We do this through listening, singing, playing, evaluating, analysing and composing across a wide range of historical periods, styles, traditions and musical genres. Our six school values underpin this musical ethos.


What Music Looks Like at Thorpe Willoughby

In our Foundation Stage, we teach Reception-aged children music through the EYFS Statutory Framework and the Development Matters non-statutory guidance. Expressive Arts & Design is one of the four specific areas within the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and is used to develop a child's imagination, creativity and their ability to use media and materials. We ensure our curriculum and both our indoor and outdoor provision areas encourage children to explore a range of musical experiences from singing well-known nursery rhymes and songs to performing songs with others and to develop towards moving in time with music.

Our Key Stages 1 & 2 Music Curriculum is developed around the Primary National Curriculum, England. Music skills are explicitly taught, practised and developed through our half-termly themes over our 2 year curriculum cycle. 


In order to ensure children improve their music knowledge, understanding and skills, we ensure our curriculum builds on prior knowledge, skills and experiences. To ensure a cohesive and progressive Music curriculum through school from Reception to Year 6, we use the ‘Kapow Music’, a digital primary music curriculum resource authored by primary music specialists, to support our planning, teaching and learning and assessment in Music across our school.

Music - Whole School Overview

Music - Progression