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Characteristics of Effective Learning

This teacher talks about the characteristics, playing and exploring, active learning and creating and thinking critic...

What is the place of rote learning

Mick Waters considers the place of rote learning in education and its strengths and limitations.

What engages children in learning?

Purpose, process and audience.

Assessing for next steps in learning

An Early Years teacher defines learning outcomes.

Continuity in children's learning - laying the crazy paving

What is the starting point in planning learning?

Learning from mistakes

Less focussed on outcomes than process, this teacher believes that learning from mistakes helps to build resilience a...

Music service input assists the gifted and talented

Identifying those with an aptitude and providing suitable support.

Music teaching requires specialism.

A strong framework should be taught properly from the outset.

The case for teaching music

In the light of NC and OFSTED framework, should we teach Music?

Learning brass instruments, transferrable skills

KS2 sometimes change instruments as skills evolve. This is encouraged.

Y5 managing progress with practice diaries

Completing a successful lesson, diaries are filled in.

Y5 introduction emphasising reading music

Using a simple tune, these young players concentrate on reading the music.

Y5 trombone warm up and breathing

Warm up, mouthpiece and playing two notes to start a lesson.

Staves and instrument management in KS2

Revising notation finger game manages distribution of instruments in year 5.

Learning brass instruments in KS2.

Whole class teaching to take first steps with a brass instrument.

Y4 brass lesson reflections from teacher.

A specialist visiting teacher on a lesson for brass novices

Y4 sing 'Three Little Birds' for dynamic plenary

Singing at end of brass lesson to internalise piano and forte.

Y4 whole class brass develop their performance of 'Call Me'

Managing a mini plenary, homework and packing instruments away.

Y4 whole class brass, exploring different dynamics

Playing 'piano' and 'forte'. Crescendo is played too.

Y4 whole class brass, video explains loud and soft

Looking at loud and quiet, long and short notes.

Y4 whole class brass, warm up

Using Charanga, class warm-up buzz, put their mouthpiece in play.

Y4 whole class brass, set up

Set up and introduction establishes clear expectations and routines.

EYFS: Commentary

Teacher reflection on first steps in EYFS music.

EYFS: The Name Game

Children respond to the name song, singing their own name to the backing.

EYFS: Nursery rhymes & actions

I'm a little teapot and the 'ABC' song, pulse and actions.

EYFS: Finding the pulse

Listening for a heartbeat/pulse, Reception play along on woodblocks.

Vocal Starters. 'Three Bears' Commentary.

Vocal specialist explains this song can be taught effectively to all ages.

Vocal Starters. 'Three Bears' complete song.

Forensic look at the detail of teaching a role song.

Vocal Starters. 'Old King Kong' commentary

Vocal specialist explains rationale behind using this expressive song

Vocal Starters. 'Old King Kong'

Encouraging participation requiring strong vocal line from children.

Vocal Starters. 'My Name is Joe' commentary

Vocal specialist explains rationale behind this kinaesthetic vocal starter.

Vocal Starters. 'My Name is Joe'

Listening and joining in to a catch-on song with increasing complexity.

A vocal specialist on teaching vocal starters

Vocal specialist makes the case for teaching vocal starters.

Vocal Starters. Loosen up and begin.

Vocal specialist shows how to start a vocal session.

Vocal Starters. 'Give Me Five' commentary

Vocal specialist explains rationale behind 'Give Me 5' vocal starter.

Vocal Starters. 'Give Me Five'

Children respond to teacher actions like 'Give Me 5', Give Me 10, Low 10...

Vocal Starters. 'Have you brought' commentary

Vocal specialist explains the rationale behind 'Have you brought your voice?

Vocal Starters. Have you brought your voice?

Children are encouraged to respond to a question in contrasting voices.

Peter & The Wolf. Pupil conductor

Pupils play chants on instruments conducted by a pupil.

Peter & The Wolf. Planning

The teacher explains the planning around a Y4 module on Peter & The Wolf.

Peter & The Wolf. Performing chants.

Children, conducted by the teacher, perform chants as a whole class.

Peter & The Wolf. Feedback: The Characters

Children's groups feedback to class on chants they have created.

Peter & The Wolf. Creating Characters

Inspired by the music, children create chants for each character.

Peter & The Wolf. Instruments use

Linking instruments and characters.

Performing rhythmic motifs: next steps

The teacher is to develop musical understanding based on one song.

Performing rhythmic motifs: a reflection

A teacher reflects on embedding rhythm and pulse.

Performing rhythmic motifs

Chime bars are used to perform rhythms created from food names.

Generating rhythmic motifs

Using food names, children improvise rhythms.

Performance concentrating on rhythm

Using a simple tune and lyric, children explore tempo and feel pulse.

Listen & Appraise Starter Develops

Listening to an organ piece, children recap their knowledge of tempo.

Listen & Appraise Starter

Encouraging listening children identify instruments in Baroque style piece.

Is Music under threat in secondary schools?

An interview with Professor Martin Fautley that presents evidence on an emerging decline of curriculum time and teach...

Recruiting Students

This student describes how she was attracted to learn the euphonium.

Peer Learning and Individuality

This student speaks eloquently about her experiences in music through peer learning but also as an individual.

Cultivating Extracurricular Music

This student recounts her experience in participating in the extracurricular offer at the school.

Student Perspective

This student recounts his experiences and motivations of learning music at school.

Performance for Learning

In this short video, the group perform part of Corelli's "La Folia" to begin the lesson.

Understanding Simple Devices

This teacher comments on the need for her Y7 class to understand how to use simple compositional devices.

Authentic Rehearsal

This Y12 student discusses the advantage of rehearsing authentically to prepare for performance.

Y8 Lesson: Pupil Commentary

These pupils describe their experience of a song writing lesson recorded earlier that day. Despite the variance in in...

Setting Expectations

This experienced teacher discusses her approach to setting expectations for her pupils in a Suzuki violin lesson.

Posture - Hold - Technique - Musicality

This experienced string teacher discusses the essential elements of a balanced body for good posture, violin hold and...

Suzuki Method in Schools

This teacher has 35 years’ experience using the 'Suzuki' method and is also a teacher trainer. She discusses her wor...

Suzuki Method - Transferable Pedagogy

This experienced Suzuki teacher discusses her approach to developing advanced string technique.

Transferable Skills

This Head of Music discusses the breadth of transferable skills he observes being developed in his students through m...

Peer Assessment 2

This teacher comments on the usefulness of peer feedback.

Supporting School Performances

This teacher discusses the value of having a visiting team of peripatetic teachers. The support for school performanc...

Project Based Curriculum

This teacher discusses the schools approach to music and enterprise.

A Professional Relationship with Students

This teacher discusses her approaches to extracurricular music and the emerging deepening relationships that are form...

Assessment in Music

This teacher offers some advice on assessment in music.

Composition: The Role of the Teacher

This teacher discusses the importance of her role in offering feedback, responding to ideas and encouraging students ...

The Whole Child

This Head of Music acknowledges the importance of music for developing the whole child.

Links with Primary Schools

This secondary Head of Music briefly discusses the importance of making links with surrounding primary schools.

Encouraging Student Involvement

This Head of Music discusses her 'open door' approach to the department.

Music in a Multi Faith School

This Head of Music discusses how music has been used to develop the whole school ethos.

Music and the Islamic Faith

This Head of Music discusses her experiences working in a large secondary school.

Formative Assessment

This Head of Music discusses her approach to formative assessment in Music. Pupil self-assessment and the use of iPad...

Music and the Wider Community

This experienced Headteacher outlines a view on performances in the primary school.

A Broad and Balanced Curriculum

An experienced Headteacher in a faith school discusses the facilitating conditions necessary to embed excellent music...

Differentiation by Outcome

Composition and creativity can lead to varying outcomes within the same task.

Listening & Feedback 2

Listening to student compositions is, in itself, a critical skill for teachers to develop.

Listening & Feedback 1

Listening to student compositions is, in itself, a critical skill for teachers to develop.

Questioning for Creativity

In this Y7 composition lesson, the pupils are encouraged to model approaches to the music elements.

Musical Elements Starter 2

Before this composition lesson begins, the class are focused on a starter activity linking musical elements to defini...

The Saxophone Embouchure

In this short clip, the student exhibits a good saxophone embouchure - flattening the bottom lip, teeth on top, with ...

Strategy for Scale Practice

Modern instrumental lessons provide limited capacity to hear, revise and monitor scale practice.

Scales and Tuning

Scale practice is an important way to develop technique and tuning.

Rhythmic Variation

In this group flute lesson, the girls explore some rhythmic variation to their piece.

Developing Breathing Creatively

In this group flute lesson, the teacher uses a prop to develop the breathing.

Peer Assessment

In this y8 arranging lesson, the groups engage in peer assessment.

Restriction for Freedom

In this Y8 'arranging' lesson, the class teacher offers an 'arranger’s notepad' as a tool to help the groups structur...

Simultaneous Learning

It is often difficult to separate out the component parts of musical learning.

Whiteboards: Assessment for Learning

In this y8 classroom music lesson, the teacher encourages the class to map out ideas for arranging the song "Stand by...

Connecting Physically with Singing

In this Y8 classroom music lesson the teacher takes the class through a series of vocal warm up activities which conn...

Advice for NQT

This experienced teacher discusses her approach to communication with peripatetic staff in a busy department and offe...

Facilitating Creativity

This teacher talks us through her approach to her role in the context of her Y9 composition lesson.

Authenticity in Btec

This teacher discusses why she has chosen to engage with the Btec.

Teaching WCIT

This teacher discusses the pedagogy, content, challenges and solutions of whole class teaching.

The Importance of Ensemble Experience

This experienced Head of Brass discusses his experiences of ensemble playing and motivation.

Difficult Passages

This teacher offers some advice on strategies for approaching difficult technical passages.

Why Perform?

This teacher articulates the benefits of performance and the impact they have on young performers.

Choosing the Instrument

This teacher discusses an approach for students to choose the instrument for them.

Developing Musical Context

Specialist instrumental teachers demonstrate detailed knowledge of the instrument they play.

Developing Accurate Buzzing

In this advanced trumpet lesson, the teacher takes the student through a warm up which will be later linked to the ma...

Modelling the Music

In this intermediate clarinet lesson, the teacher models her musical expectations by performing to the student.

Engaging Boys in Singing

These Whole Class Instrumental Teachers have brought all three year groups to the hall for a larger singing lesson.

KS2 Part Singing

These Whole Class Instrumental Teachers have brought all three year groups to the hall for a larger singing lesson.

When Confidence Grows…

This gospel medley includes When the Saints, Swing Low Sweet Chariot and Sing Sing Sing. This is explored at a differ...

Extending Range

After working on these partner songs, this experienced vocal teacher uses simple key change to migrate the pitch upwa...

Partner Songs 1

In this vocal lesson the teacher introduces partner songs for the first time.

Differentiation 2

Using When the Saints Go Marching In, this experienced vocal teacher takes the group into part singing with different...

Differentiation 1

Using When the Saints Go Marching In, this experienced vocal teacher takes the group into part singing with different...

Developing Quality in Group Singing

This vocal teacher listens forensically to the students singing.

Exit Strategies

Finishing a lesson can be a tool for learning and review.

Behaviour Management

Music, as a subject based in sound, requires teachers to have strategies for managing behaviour including starting/st...

Scaffolding Composition

The periodic direction from the class teacher helps to scaffold this composition lesson so that the class are focused...

Assessing a Creative Process

The current lead Ofsted HMI for Music, Robin Hammerton writes: "Firstly, pupils’ progress in creating and understandi...

Technology & Composition

This teacher utilises the capabilities of Logic for this Y8 composition lesson.

Listening & The Teacher's Role

This teacher is actively involved in the listening activity. Clear questions have been articulated before the example...

Focused Listening

This classroom practitioner uses Saint Saen’s Carnival of the animals to scaffold a composition lesson.

Musical Elements Starter

This classroom practitioner uses whiteboards to recap the musical elements.

Choir Repertoire

This school choir begin approaching new repertoire by learning the African words.

Building Confidence and Participation

This classroom practitioner is in the early stages of building a school choir.

Action Songs

Encouraging an extra-curricular group must involve an element of fun.

Choir Warm Up: Articulation

This classroom practitioner develops the choir warm up further into articulation.

Choir Warm Up: Me Moo Ma

This classroom practitioner has developed a large school choir in a diverse school.

Rhythm Cards

Rhythm cards are a useful starter activity for many aspects of teaching. In this example, the teacher uses an ipad to...

Y6 Brass Performance

This brass group was introduced to the beginning of Swing Low Sweet Chariot.

Part playing 1

In this group brass lesson the teacher introduces Frere Jacques in stages.

Introducing New Pieces

Group teaching offers a excellent opportunity to contextualise learning.

Stages to Learning

In this group brass lesson the teacher uses a backing track on a repeated cycle to stage the preparation for performa...

Clear Instructions

Working with larger groups can unveil some simple problems in the pedagogy of how to approach giving instructions.

Extended Rhythm game

See Rhythm Game for the first stage of this learning game. In this short clip the teacher extends the level of challe...

Rhythm Game

This Rhythm game is an excellent assessment for learning tool. The teacher can see visually if the class are beginnin...

Understanding Duration

This teacher questions the class on note lengths relative to the piece they have just played.

Creative Singing

Singing in whole class teaching offers everyone the chance to engage in the lesson.

Choice and Musicality

In this lesson the teacher offers the children a opportunity to suggest their own musical interpretation for performa...

Aural and Notation

The musical learning in this example explores a mix of aural and notation based strategies to ensure every child can ...

WCIT and the Curriculum

Whole class teaching, when taught well, includes a variety of activity and opportunity to develop and discover musica...

Preparing for Down Time

In this example the instrumental specialist teacher must tune 30 instruments.

Whole Class Set Up: Guitar

Whole class teaching is a partnership between the school and the visiting music teachers.

Language Acquisition

In this short extract from a music lesson the teacher explores singing with a traditional African song.

Articulation with Charanga

In this video the teacher uses the charanga musical school resource to explore articulation on the clarinet.

Btec Performance Appraisal

Btec students are given an opportunity to reflect on their performance.

Feedback During Rehearsal

In this lesson, Year 12 Btec students receive feedback and direction from their teacher.

Preparation for Performance Btec

In this lesson, Year 12 Btec students rehearse for their upcoming performance assessment.

Plenary for Self-Assessment

The plenary in this Year 9 lesson encourages the students to assess themselves in 2 clear areas.

Peer Learning Y9

After working in groups, this Year 9 group return mid lesson to explain the reasoning behind their musical choices.

Authentic Song Writing 2

In this y9 lesson the class are working in groups to write a song from the stimulus 'Orange'.

Authentic Song Writing 1

In this Year 9 lesson the class are working in groups to write a song from the stimulus 'Orange'.

Stimulus for Song Writing

In this y9 lesson the teacher uses questioning and clear prompts to help scaffold and collate ideas for a composition...

Behaviour Management

In this Djembe class lesson, the teacher offers the use of independent practice time for the class to explore solo rh...

Introducing the Djembe

In this Year 7 djembe lesson, the teacher explores polyrhythm using Djembe drums.

Djembe Performance

In this lesson the teacher has worked with the class in sections to devise a structured Djembe performance.


In this year 7 lesson, the teacher explores polyrhythms through Djembe drums. Polyrhythms offer an inclusive way for ...

Students Model BPM

In this Y7 lesson, students lead the class through performance activity linked to understanding tempi and beats per m...

Classroom Assessment Method

This teacher's assessment model is measured in statements constructed with the beginning "I can". The approach is to ...