At Coopersale Hall School all children have many opportunities to learn about and to experience the performing arts. Curriculum music lessons and singing sessions are taught from Lower Kindergarten to Year 6 on a weekly basis. During these sessions children experience a range of music, drama and dance supported by multiple performances throughout the year. Year group singing sessions take place from Lower Kindergarten to Year 2 and lead to participation in the junior choir for all pupils in Years 3 to 6. These lessons include all the main aspects of music; listening, appraising, performance and composition and cover a broad spectrum of styles, history and genres.
Recorder is taught as part of the curriculum in Year 2 and is developed through the upper age groups. Weekly orchestra rehearsals include children who take instrumental tuition as well as those just keen to get involved.
Popular peripatetic tuition is available to pupils in Years 2 to 6 during the school day in piano, violin, flute, clarinet, guitar and voice. Children are often entered in external ‘Grade’ exams and there is a high success rate.
By the end of Years 2 the pupils will be able to:
- Understand and control musical elements with percussion and voice (Tempo, pitch, dynamics, duration)
- Play rhythms using percussion including African drumming
- Play up to three notes on the recorder and decode formal notation with help
- Understand graphic notation
- Sing in two parts
All children in all year groups put on at least two performances to parents throughout the school year. There are additional options for those wishing to perform more, either as soloists or as part of an ensemble. Some of these include:
- Nativity Performances
- Performances to the elderly at Christmas
- Performances in the community including the Epping Christmas Market
- Picnic in the Park – an outdoor concert to parents
- Prize Giving
- Opportunities to perform to the school in assemblies throughout the year
Development is measured by end of unit assessments, observations and questioning. Reports are written by the specialist music teacher and all peripatetic staff.