Please click here for our music progression map:


We believe that music is an essential learning experience for all pupils that strongly supports pupils’ well-being and well-roundedness. Not only does music promote happiness and excitement (being a very visual and aural symbol for the joy of primary school life), but it develops pupils’ cognitive and processing skills, sense of timing, fine motor skills and listening skills. We use the Ark Schools Music Programme for our music curriculum. This is a fully developed musical ‘journey’ that our pupils take from the EYFS up into year 6. Professional musicians come in to teach the lessons, modelling both the technical skill and enthusiasm needed to fully learn and enjoy music. Pupils progress through three distinct areas of the music curriculum.

  1. In EYFS and KS1, pupils develop their voices with a focus on rhythmic and melodic phrases.
  2. In year 3 and 4, pupils learn how to play the djembe drums with a focus on understanding bass and tone.
  3. In year 5 and 6, pupils learn to play the ukulele with a focus on learning specific chords.

In addition to structured lessons, pupils have the option to join the popular school choir which meets weekly and both collaborates with other local choirs and performs at school events throughout the year. For pupils who have a particular skill or desire to learn an instrument beyond our curriculum, we offer individual music lessons for guitar, keyboard, drums, violin, cello and brass. In the summer term, pupils from all year groups participate in an end of year performance comprising singing, djembe drumming and ukulele.

The journey of a musician at Ark Academy



By the end of EYFS, pupils will (linked to the ELGs):

ELG: Creating with Materials

  • Safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function
  • Share their creations, explaining the process they have used
  • Make use of props and materials when role playing characters in narratives and stories

ELG: Being Imaginative and Expressive

  • Invent, adapt and recount narratives and stories with peers and their teacher
  • Sing a range of well-known nursery rhymes and songs
  • Perform songs, rhymes, poems and stories with others, and – when appropriate – try to move in time with music



By the end of KS1, pupils will:

  • Sing longer songs from memory with expression
  • Have a sense of the shape of the melody
  • Use their voices confidently in a variety of ways
  • Listen carefully and recall short rhythmic and melodic phrases
  • Show physical control when playing musical instruments and responding to music
  • Rehearse & perform in a concert situation



By the end of LKS2, pupils will:

  • Memorise simple accompaniment patterns week to week
  • Sing with a clear tone
  • Sing and sometimes play in time with others
  • Rehearse and perform selected music from memory
  • Play simple accompaniments using bass and tone notes
  • Demonstrate an awareness of playing technique e.g. posture, correct hand position etc
  • Imitate short rhythmic phrases
  • Contribute to group compositions



By the end of UKS2, pupils will:

  • Sing with a clear tone
  • Sing and play in time with others
  • Play simple songs using open strings and one or two chords
  • Demonstrate an awareness of playing technique. E.g., posture, correct chord fingering
  • Play simple strumming and plucking patterns. E.g., one chord to a bar
  • Imitate short rhythmic phrases
  • Contribute to group compositions
  • Rehearse and perform selected music from memory and from notation