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Music at Red Hill

Purpose of study:

Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. A high quality music education should engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians and so increase their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement. As pupils progress, they should develop a critical engagement with music, allowing them to compose, and to listen with discrimination to the best in the musical canon.

Our subject leader for Music is:

Mrs J McGarry

Our essential learning objectives for Music at Red Hill Primary school are to enable children:

  • To perform.
  • To compose.
  • To transcribe.
  • To describe music.

There are many opportunities across the year, in every year group, for children  to use their voices expressively and creatively by singing songs. There are also many opportunities for children to listen to high quality, live music, often produced by talented musicians in our own school!

Singing assemblies are an important feature of every week for all children.

Many children also have the opportunity to learn to play a musical instrument (including guitar, woodwind and brass) thanks to our talented, visiting instrumental teachers. The school also uses some Pupil Premium funding to offer instrumental tuition to some children who may not otherwise be able to afford it.

School assemblies and the Summer Concert give our musicians the opportunity to gain confidence and experience performing in front of an audience.

Class teachers use a music scheme called ‘Music Express’ to support whole class teaching.

Year 1


Children will be exploring all sorts of sounds, from all sorts of places.

They will then explore the duration of sounds, long or short, linking it to firework night, sound waves and winter.


Children will be exploring pulse and rhythm. They will be exploring with their bodies, claps, drums and thunder!

They will then learn about pitch with their voices, playing high and low games and linking it to stories.

Children will also be learning about songs and music from China and performing some of these as part of the Chinese New Year assembly celebration.


Children will be exploring instruments and symbols, learning about beats and sound shapes. They will be learning about loud and quiet.

Finally in year 1 children will be exploring timbre, tempo and dynamics, linking this to their learning about the outdoor environment.

Year 2


Children will begin year 2 learning songs and music for their year group harvest performance. They will then explore duration, learning about long and short sounds. They will have fun exploring pulse rhythms.


Children will learn about pitch, linking it with fossils and dinosaurs, then explore instruments and symbols playing with cartoon voices and tunes.


The weather and the story of Noah’s Ark will allow the exploration of timbre, tempo and dynamics. Children will then explore events and sounds of the day.

Year 3


All of Year 3 is fortunate to be taught to play the recorder by a music specialist in the Spring term. In the second part of the term, children will be practising to play and perform for parents and carers using their voices and instruments as part of our Christmas Nativity production.


Children will be exploring descriptive sounds through ‘Animal Magic’, learning about animals in music and how we can make sounds like animals moving. Children will then be learning about the pentatonic scale, moving on to sing two pentatonic songs at the same time.


Children will be painting with sound, which means exploring how music links to images and feelings. We will end Year 3 exploring favourite singing games and inventing some of our own.

Year 4


We will begin by exploring rhythmic patterns. This will include lullaby rhythms and unsquare rhythm. We will even learn a clean school rap. In the class orchestra we will explore arrangements including Christmas calypsos, rhythm, jives and melodies.


Children will be exploring melodies and scales, pitch movement and pitch melodies. In painting with sound, they will be exploring sound colours, exploring how music links to images and feelings. We will be exploring descriptive sounds as part of animal magic unit linking with our topic on sound and our French work in ‘Carnival of the Animals’


Children will be exploring signals, looking at melodic signals, Morse code, signal calls and signal responses. We will end Year 4 exploring descriptive sounds.

Year 5


We will begin with cyclic patterns including rhythm and pulse. We will also be exploring rounds. We will be listening to music and learning songs from the Second World War era to perform as part of our Remembrance Assembly. 


We will be songwriters, exploring lyrics and melody. In groups, we will try to draft and write a new song.


As part of our ‘Earth and Space’ topic we will journey into space and explore sound sources. We will be thinking about outer space sounds, moon landings and moonscape recordings.

Year 6


Year 6 children perform a service of carols, readings and the Christmas Story at the Church of the Annunciation. Preparation for this is in the second part of the autumn term.


As part of their topic ‘Where in the World,’ children will be learning about music from different cultures and traditions and further developing their understanding of the history of music.


In the summer term, year 6 will be putting into practice everything they have learnt about playing and performing in solo and ensemble/group contexts for their Leavers’ Concert. Many musicians will also perform for the last time in the summer concert.