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Music lies at the heart of Olveston. The children participate in some kind of musical activity every day, whether that is singing, learning an instrument in class or with a peripatetic teachers, performing, listening, composing or evaluating the musical work of others. We believe that music has value as an academic subject, which lies in its contribution to enjoyment and enrichment, for its social benefits, for those who engage in music seriously as well as for fun.

Singing is a large part of Olveston school life. The children sing as a whole school, or in their Key Stage, every day. This has been proven to encourage greater self-esteem, enjoyment and engagement in class, and is a great stress relief. The whole school has taken part in a variety of national singing events over the last few years, bringing much enjoyment and laughter – the effects often being felt for days afterwards.

The children’s formal music education starts as soon as they enter the school. Children are given many opportunities to sing and explore instruments throughout Key Stage 1, with an organised progression of skills, which are re-visited frequently throughout their primary years. By Key Stage 2 children are expected to start composing more structured pieces of music, often in groups. This encourages improved social and listening skills, in addition to the many musical skills that are being taught. The focus of these lessons is on the seven common musical elements: tempo, dynamics, pitch, structure, texture, timbre and duration.

Olveston has a large number of pupils who learn instruments during the school day and they have the opportunity to perform at school celebrations throughout the year. They are all encouraged to perform at the annual Proms Concert, even if they have only been playing for a short while.

As a school we provide whole class instrument lessons for all children:

  • Ocarinas in lower KS1
  • Recorders in UKS1 and LKS2
  • Ukuleles in UKS2