Changing Schools, Changing Lives with Primary School Music Education

Imagine a music-centred school. Music as foundation subject. But also driving cognitive growth, peer relationships, school spirit, community engagement. Learn how.

Schools

NPME’s New Landscape for Music Education

If music were very much at the heart of your school curriculum and culture, what would you see? What would you hear? What would you feel?

Step inside Sing Education provision and you’ll find amazing things happening across all these dimensions:

?️ Curricular lessons. Whole school assemblies. Instrumental clubs.

?Singing. Keyboards. Laughter.

? Achievement. Progression. Pride..

We know what good school music looks like and want every child to have this opportunity. And we’re not alone.

click here to download the national plan for music education summary for primary schools
Click HERE to download the National Plan for Music Education summary for Primary Schools

 

Music as A Foundation Subject

According to the refreshed National Plan for Music Education (NPME 2022), primary school music is meant to “to enable all children and young people to learn to sing, play an instrument and create music together, and have the opportunity to progress their musical interests and talents, including professionally.” GOV

That’s why we’re so encouraged this is already happening in many school settings – albeit with some clear and persistent constraints. “The vast majority of schools have appointed music leads (with varying expertise), as it is a foundation subject. However, music specialists are still very rare in most schools.” MT

male teacher is showing how to play the ukuele
Male sitting at a brown table, in staff room, looking at laptop,Sing Education mug on table, whiteboard in background.

Too Few Music Teachers Qualifying

To add to the complexity, there’s a twin-stranded crisis brewing, namely the shortage of instrumental teachers being graduated nationally, combined with an ongoing difficulty in retaining peripatetic music staff. “Some staff have struggled to stay in schools when they haven’t felt part of the team or facilities are not the best. This was much compounded by Covid.” MT

Without specialist skill, schools will likely be unable to meet the ambitious new targets set for heads, schools, parents and pupils by the NPME. Moreover, it’s clear that recently updated music education objectives are meant to sit squarely within existing primary school curricula and timetabling – not as an afterthought or add-on.

Experts in the sector with considerable leadership and classroom experience, go on to warn that “[t]he Model Music Curriculum (MMC) is, quite frankly, beyond virtually all non-music specialists (even though many are brilliant) at Key Stage 2 and only possible, in my opinion, in Key Stage 1 with significant CPD, probably including weekly music lessons with a tutor themselves.” MT

So what can you do? 

click here to download the national plan for music education summary for primary schools
Click HERE to download the National Plan for Music Education summary for Primary Schools

Take A Page from this Headteacher’s Book

Sing Education suggests you follow the lead of one brave, visionary educator we learned about, whose commitment to music is very much in keeping with our own ethos. 

Speaking to her school’s music lead, an experienced headteacher of a recently merged academy trust primary “was [courageously] setting out her vision for her new, enlarged school, and she wanted music at the heart of it.

This headteacher (a non-musician) passionately explained how she believed she needed specialist music provision. She wanted a choir, an orchestra, all children to have lessons with a specialist and regular concerts with the best peripatetics (peris) in the city MT

The potential benefits of this uncharted, but very laudable, course of action? 

Clear and outstanding.

a girl and a boy are learning to play the ukulele

Primary Music Education Pays Multiple Dividends

According to UKMusic, the collective voice of the UK’s world-leading music industry:

  • The music industry relies on a talent pipeline of accomplished and dedicated music students to produce the highly skilled professionals of the future. UKM
  • Musical skills need be nurtured at the earliest opportunity. This needs to begin at primary school and play a significant part in continued curriculum learning. UKM
  • There are educational, health and wellbeing benefits to young people having access to creating music. According to the Cultural Learning Alliance, participation in structured arts activities can increase cognitive abilities by 17%. UKM

Is this too much to hope for? Too much to achieve?

With the publication of the refreshed National Plan for Music Education (NPME) this year and a strong specialist music provider like Sing Education by your side, we hope you will bravely answer, “Certainly Not!” 

To learn more about Sing Education, including how our music provision, online instrumental lessons and at home learning resources contribute to a well-rounded music curriculum, please visit www.singeducation.co.uk/schools

For even more info, practical tips and guidance, click below to download your FREE “National Plan for Music Education Primary School Summary”

click here to download the national plan for music education summary for primary schools
Click HERE to download the National Plan for Music Education summary for Primary Schools

 

About Us

Founded in 2014 and serving more than 16,000 children each week, Sing Education is a first class provider of primary school music education. Focusing on high-quality, singing-led tuition, we deliver a complete solution for schools which includes teacher recruitment, training and management, bespoke curricular resources and educational consultancy services. 

Through music lessons, singing assemblies, choirs, after school clubs and instrumental tuition, Sing Education works with students from Nursery right through to Year 6. Our core philosophy is that “Every Child Has A Voice,” and, as educators active in the classroom, our directors and teachers know firsthand how much young learners benefit from exciting, rewarding music education. 

 

#SingEducation #MusicChangesLives #HubsAndSpokes

 

Sources:

  1. The power of music to change lives (Gov.uk) GOV
  2. NPME: Building a musical culture in a primary school – the nuts and bolts for success (Music Teacher Magazine) MT
  3. As above
  4. As above
  5. As above
  6. Policy: Music Education (UKMusic.org)  UKM
  7. As above
  8. As above

about the author

Articles by this Author

Whole Brain Music – Engaging Language, Maths and Motor Skills Music is in our genes. Literally. The fossil record shows evidence of ancestral musicality that goes back millions of years. And today our brains are still wired for music – right hemisphere for creative expression, left for acquiring complex skills. That’s why music is so successful in maths learning, as well as supporting pupils with EAL needs.
Sing Education hires the top musicians, trains them appropriately and inspires positive values for stress-free teacher management at schools.
Drawing on the Kodály approach, using singing games, percussion and multi-sensory learning, our lessons enable good musical progression.

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