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Marden Vale

C E Academy

With God, all things are possible - Matthew 19:26








“Music should belong to everyone.”

(Zoltan Kodaly)







At Marden Vale, we recognise that music plays an important part in helping children to feel part of a community, therefore, we provide opportunities for all children to create, play, perform and enjoy music both in class and to an audience.  At Marden Vale, we do value music because it is a must powerful and unique form of communication that can change and impact the way children feel, think and act. We believe that teaching music helps the body and the mind work together. Overall, we aim to nurture and encourage musical development across the school.


Aspects of musical learning and development in Early Years setting:

  • Hearing and Listening
  • Vocalising and Singing
  • Moving and Dancing
  • Exploring and Playing


The aims of music instruction in the Early Years:

It is evident that music-making, singing and dancing support the general development and well-being of our very young. Regular musical activity, both child-led and adult-led help, contributes to children’s acquisition of language and communication. It also aids their personal and social development, their physical agility, well-being, imagination and creativity. Musical activities also reinforce understanding of maths; making sense of our world; and strengthen literacy skills.


Music national curriculum overview – KS1 and KS2

The Primary Music National Curriculum for KS1 and KS2 covers the following:

  • Singing
  • Playing tuned and untuned instruments
  • Listening to recorded and live music
  • Composing and improvising
  • Understanding music history
  • Understanding notation


Curriculum aims:


We want every child to be happy and enthusiastic learners of Music and be eager to achieve their very best in order to fulfil their creative and musical talents. We encourage children to participate in a variety of musical experiences through which we aim to build the confidence and wellbeing of all children. Our central aim is that children leave Marden Vale with a wide range of rich memories formed through inspiring and engaging musical experiences.


Our core aims are for children to:


  • Be confident performers - listen to, review and evaluate music
  • Be composers - pupils are taught to sing, create and compose music
  • Be musicians - have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument 
  • Be critical and reflective listeners
  • Understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated.




Our whole curriculum is shaped by our school vision, which aims to enable all children, regardless of background, ability, additional needs, to flourish to become the very best version of themselves they can possibly be.


EYFS Music

EYFS teachers deliver the EYFS Music expectations using the EYFS Developments Matters objectives (alongside with the Musical Development Matters guidance) and, in addition, the whole school Charanga scheme. Due to the cross curricular nature of the EYFS curriculum, Music, songs and rhymes are threaded through every EYFS area of learning.


KS1, KS2

Music teaching at Marden Vale delivers the requirements of the National Curriculum; teachers plan lessons (1 session per week) using the Charanga Scheme of Work. Charanga Musical School Units of Work provide children to understand musical concepts through a repetition-based approach to learning which enables a more secure, deeper learning and mastery of musical skills. The curriculum ensures students sing, listen, play, compose, perform, improvise and evaluate. Children are also immersed in the works of composers from diverse backgrounds. This is embedded in classroom activities as well as the weekly singing assemblies; musician of the month activities; whole-school music projects; concerts and performances; the learning of instruments; and the joining of ensembles.

In UKS2, we are trialling the Kodaly approach supported by the ‘Go for Bronze’ (NYCOS) comprehensive resource (Level 1 and Level 2) which uses traditional songs to help teach musicianship. Using the Kodaly method under the guidance of our Music Subject Lead, pupils can develop listening skills, sight-singing, ear training, learn how to play instruments, compose, improvise, sing, dance, analyse, read and write music.


At Marden Vale, we also recognise that staff have musical abilities that can be utilised to supplement our musical curriculum. Alongside our curriculum provision for music, pupils also have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument should they wish to, regardless of their background, in an after school teacher-led club. Whilst we are a singing school, pupils also have the opportunity to join the school choir; it is open to children on a weekly basis.


We are very proud of our musical achievements at Marden Vale. We welcome parents to our annual music concert and productions throughout the year to share the musical ability we have at our school.




  • Whilst in school, children have access to a varied programme, which allows students to discover areas of strength, as well as areas they might like to improve upon.
  • The integral nature of music and the learner creates an enormously rich palette from which a student may access fundamental abilities such as: achievement, self-confidence, interaction with and awareness of others, and self-reflection.
  • Music will also develop an understanding of culture and history, both in relation to students individually, as well as ethnicities from across the world.
  • Children are able to enjoy music, in as many ways as they choose- either as listener, creator or performer.


To show musical attainment and record progress, children are completing Assessment Tasks (at the end of a unit) which are designed for each year group. These tasks link to “I can” statements as well as provide a “musical” assessment experience, practical in nature (not just assessment for assessment’s sake). The assessments are recorded using an IPad (Showbie) with the evidence stored in accordance with school procedures and used as evidence to show ability and progression over time.

The progression assessment tasks are based on the DSAT Music Progression Document written by music specialists and subject leaders from four DSAT Primary Schools (Sophie Boud – Trinity, Devizes; Jessica Knapp  -   Southbroom St James, Devizes;  Carolyn Marchment - St Bartholomew’s, Royal Wotton Bassett; and Nikoletta Kulcsarne Olvaso - Marden Vale, Calne). Clare Murray (Regional Director of Education - DSAT) was leading and overseeing the collaboration; the Progression Document is now widely used across the Academy.