Music gives all children the ability to express themselves creatively and with imagination. It is an integral part of all cultures and opens up an avenue for cross curricular learning whilst providing the opportunity to bring a topic to life.
At Great Missenden School the intent is to inspire a love of music, promote understanding and give children the ability and confidence to make music.
- Every child receives at a minimum a 1 hour dedicated music lesson each week delivered by a specialist music teacher
- A progressive approach is taken and children learn to listen, understand, compose and play music from reception upwards, with skills and knowledge increasing sequentially year on year (progression of skills document is in the documents section at bottom of this page)
- We take a very practical, skills based approach to the learning and children will sing and/or play instruments in every music lesson.
- Whole class practical musicianship is taught in music lessons throughout KS1 and KS2 (Drumming, samba band, ukulele, band skills, classroom percussion) We will conftinue to take all necessary precautions in relation to COVID to keep the children safe and follow the guidelines for music learning in schools.
- Throughout their time at the school children are exposed to a huge range of different musical genres and styles from all over the globe - past and present. (Listening calendar is in the documents section at bottom of this page, but is not an exhaustive list)
- We use IT and apps within the music classroom and on stage to aid music making, tuning, composition, production and performance
- All children have the opportunity to take part in extra-curricular musical activities in the form of lunchtime or after school clubs.
- KS2 children have the opportunity to take instrumental lessons if they wish. These lessons are delivered during school time by teachers from the Bucks Music Trust (BTM)
At Great Missenden school we are musicians, we are singers, we are composers we are performers and we listen to a wide range of music. Enjoyment of music is a key focus; enhancing well-being, self-confidence and a sense of achievement for the children.
Music assessment is on-going throughout the year and children are encouraged to discover, identify and develop their own areas of strength. Alongside the ‘taught musical skills’ children learn to formulate an opinion and to participate and collaborate with others; enhancing teamworking skills and building an awareness of self and others.
Musical experiences stretch beyond the National Curriculum with visits from professional musicians, composers and theatre companies. Every child rehearses and performs at least once in front of an audience each year*. Outside the classroom there are also optional additional performance opportunities. Over a third of the pupils at the school chose to take part in the ‘Stars of the Stage and Screen’ concert in early 2020; a showcase of the after school performing arts clubs and a celebration of music and dance at Great Missenden School.
**In 2020/2021 we were unable to have an audience, but have filmed performances which have been shared with the school community in-line with COVID19 rehearsal and performance guidelines
We want our children to leave Great Missenden with an enjoyment and a love of music. All children at our school will have experienced taking part in live performances to an audience; giving them increased confidence to speak and perform in public. We hope that they will take this knowledge and their musical experiences with them into year 7 where they can continue to build upon the skills they have learned as they progress through their secondary education.
Class Music News - Sept 2021-Jul 2022
Concert Plan for Autumn Term
We are so excited to be back to singing in person and making the most of our newly refurbished music room. So we are jumping straight into preparing for various events this term. We are planning for these concerts to be face to face, so long as restrictions around COVID do not change.
9th 3pm Ted Hughes and Childrens’ Poetry – Small group of year 6 – poetry recital/chanting
8pm – Recital of Autumn Poems – Year 6 Chamber Choir https://www.little-missenden.org/song-recital.html
21st – Year 4 to lead Harvest Festival at the Church
27th – Carol singing in Great Missenden for Christmas Festival (details TBC) This event will be open to all children to sign up to and details will be sent nearer the time.
December (dates and times TBC and will be updated in the school calendar ASAP)
EYFS and KS1 nativities
Year 3 to lead Christmas Service at the Church
Performing Arts Show – This will involve children who take part in drama club, KS1 dance, KS2 Gym and Dance, Orchestra, Rock band and both KS1 and KS2 choirs.
Little Missenden Festival Ted Hughes Project - Music and Poetry
Children in year 6 chamber choir began rehearsals today for a really exciting concert taking place next month as part of The Little Missenden Festival.
In 1968 Ted Hughes wrote a series of poems for the children at Little Missenden to recite at Harvest Festival. At that point the school was a combined school so the poetry was written with year 6 children in mind. The Festival has comissioned composer Julian Phillips to set these poems to music and we have been invited to sing (as Little Missenden is now an infant school thats feeds into GMS) The concert where this new work of music will premier will honour Ted Hughes and his involvement with The Festival. We are so lucky that Professional Composer, animateur and educater, John Webb, will be leading rehearsals alongside the adult vocalists, pianist and Mrs Hulbert. The workshops will involve a visit from the composer and a dress rehearsal and performance with well known pianist Iain Burside and professional singers.
A further group of children will begin rehearsing in 2 weeks for a recital of the poetry; part of the same event.
The children were amazing today and I can't wait to see how the project unfolds! The concert will take place on Saturday 9th October
Class Music News - Sept 2020-Jul 2021
Biggest Sing - World Record Attempt
This week our remote choir club took part in a Guiness World Record attempt as part of a live audience directly to the O2. The children sang remotely alongside Billy Ocean, YolanDa Brown and Ruti as part of the Young Voices 'Biggest Sing' The children have been rehearsing via zoom they have worked incredibly hard and their performances in 3 separate bubbles were all amazing. Young Voices are currently submitting all the evidence to the Guiness World Records organisation and I will update children and parents once we have heard whether the record attempt is successful. We are part of the attempt for 3 separate records, keep your fingers crossed! Well done to all the children who took part!
Year 4 - Learning to read music and follow on screen
Year 5 - Songwriting and digital composition
There may be lots of restrictions in place for music and the performing arts because of COVID, but that hasn't stopped the children at Great Missenden putting on amazing performances this Christmas. Well done to all children who took part in the following productions in a COVID safe manner this Christmas:
EYFS - Christmas video including a wonderful 12 days of Christmas song
KS1 - Nativity - great acting with all singing outside and some instrumental work too!
Year 3 Production of Silent Night - rehearsed and performed in bubbles with acting, dancing, singing, soloists and instrumental work.
Year 5 - Singing performance of In the Bleak Midwinter recorded safely in bubbles with distancing up at the church. This was included in the Oxford Diocese Christmas service and the local Church crib service on Christmas Eve.
Remote Choir - video of 2 fabulous songs, recorded in a COVID safe manner in 11 different bubbles and edited together for an amazing performance.
With hours of music recorded for parents to watch we can't share it all here but you all did wonderfully and I share a couple of examples below.
Remote Choir performance extract
Learning to use tracks in GarageBand to record separately in bubbles but sound like a choir #COVID19
Year 5 - learning to recognise and notate pitch aurally
Year 4 - Boomwhackers (covid safe practical musicianship - reading and playing music from onscreen notation)
Year 1 - Exploring Vivaldis 'Autumn'
Year 2 - Indian Music composition
Over the past couple of weeks the children have been listening to and learning about North Indian Classical instruments. Using their new knowledge and searching for these instruments on the app Garageband the children have created a fabulous composition to be proud of. Enjoy!
Collectively the children have created their first composition inspired by their passion for combating climate change.
They created the backing track themselves using online software, wrote the lyrics, came up with a tune and recorded it for you to enjoy.
For the remaining weeks of song writing club the children will be writing their own songs (individually and in small groups) and I look forward to the results.