Our goal for Music education is that children are confident to appreciate, create and perform music, by developing:

  • practical music knowledge and understanding of the raw materials of music;
  • an increasing body of musical skills, perceptions and theoretical knowledge, through direct engagement with musical processes; and
  • increasing personal independence and discrimination as performers, composers and listeners of music, enabling them to make well-informed musical choices.

Music is largely taught by specialist teachers and is organised so that pupils follow a clearly-defined developmental programme of activities and skills which takes them from Nursery through to Year 6. Throughout this programme pupils build a progressive body of musical skills: musicianship, vocal work, choral singing, improvising, composing, listening, instrumental playing and ensemble work. These experiences of active music-making serve to enrich and broaden our children’s education and give them vital opportunities for participation and personal expression, and prepare them for musical experiences at secondary school and beyond.

All pupils receive a weekly class music lesson. These vary in length from thirty minutes for younger pupils to up to an hour for pupils in Year 6. The ideas and concepts taught in these lessons fulfil and develop the requirements of the National Curriculum. Under the broad areas of performing, composing, listening and appraising, pupils are taught practical musicianship skills and encouraged to develop their personal musical interests.

Singing is at the heart of most lessons: the materials and repertoire experienced through singing, performing and listening are later analysed and the rhythmic, melodic, formal and harmonic features are considered, examined and analysed. Pupils then work through a series of practical activities to develop these skills and concepts. In this way, theory follows practice and pupils can develop deep understanding of musical processes by engaging actively with the raw materials of music. 

As well as weekly class music-making there are singing assemblies for all pupils. Pupils in Year 3 learn recorder in addition to their class music lessons. Recorder is taught in groups without charge to parents. This is an ideal opportunity for pupils to consolidate and extend the musical skills learned in class music sessions and to further their ability to read from music notation.

Instrumental lessons, for pupils in Year 4, are available in guitar, flute, violin, cello, brass and clarinet. Additonally, the school is part of the Hackney Music Hub which provides tutors in African dance and drumming (Year 4) and Samba (Year 5). Both of these are offered to pupils without any charge to parents.

The school has a KS2 orchestra which pupils are invited to join upon reaching the required standard. There are two choirs – KS1 and KS2. There is also after-school guitar tuition.

During the school year there are many opportunities for musical performance including shows, concerts and special assemblies. At Christmas there are separate shows involving Foundation stage, KS 1 and KS2. There is an instrumental performance at the end of the spring term and several other formal and informal instrumental performances throughout the year. Year 3 recorder players share their work with parents and visitors at the end of the summer term and Year 6 perform a Leavers’ Show at the end of this term too. Pupils are given opportunities to take part in borough-wide musical performances, such as Pure Voices, and out-of-borough events such as the Hackney Music Festival. There are often musical items in class and other assemblies during the year, and instrumentalists and choirs often perform informally at the KS2 Singing Assembly on Wednesday mornings.

For questions about the provision of Music at William Tyndale, please contact the subject leader, Danielle Looker, via

Music Curriculum Overview and Knowledge & Skills Progression