As Reception follows the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum, we relate the musical aspects of the children’s work to the objectives set out in Development Matters which underpin the curriculum planning for children from birth to 5 years old. Music in Early Years is taught as part of the topic work covered during the year. Music lessons are planned for using the Expressive Arts and Design (Being Imaginative and Exploring and using Media and Materials) areas of learning, however, lessons also focus on other areas of learning, such as Communication and Language. Music is also explored across the curriculum in order to support others areas of learning, e.g. singing songs to learn to count in Maths.
Within Reception, learning is built upon following children’s experiences in Nursery. Phase 1 phonics is revisited in Autumn 1, as children enter Reception at different starting points, so they revisit; environmental sounds, instrumental sounds, body percussion, rhythm and rhyme, alliteration, voice sounds with the main focus on oral blending and segmenting. As children progress through Reception, lessons are taught from children’s starting points and then progress to teaching towards the Early Learning Goals.
Children learn to join in with simple songs and rhymes and begin to build a collection of songs throughout the year. Children progress from exploring the sounds of a range of different instruments to tapping out simple rhythms to then experiment with changing different sounds (voices and instruments). They learn to move to the pulse of the music when listening to a range of music and move their bodies in response to different pieces of music, responding to changes in tempo.
In the Summer term, children sing songs, make music and dance and experiment with ways of changing them. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through music (Expressive Arts and Design – Being Imaginative and Exploring and Using Media and Materials). When performing, children create their own rhythms by exploring and changing sounds. They also incorporate movement in response to music.