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Music Subject Leader - Kate Barrett

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Vision for Music at OJS

At Oatlands Junior School, the high-quality Music Curriculum aims to engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians, and so increase their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement. As pupils progress, they will develop a critical engagement with music, allowing them to compose, and to listen with discrimination to the best in the musical canon.  The Music Curriculum will give children the opportunity to:


  • play and perform in solo and ensemble contexts, using their voices and playing musical instruments with increasing accuracy, fluency, control and expression
  • improvise and compose music for a range of purposes using the inter-related dimensions of music
  • listen with attention to detail and recall sounds with increasing aural memory
  • use and understand staff and other musical notations
  • appreciate and understand a wide range of high-quality live and recorded music drawn from different traditions and from great composers and musicians
  • develop an understanding of the history of music.


Choir and peripatetic music lessons also take place each week led by specialist music teachers from Encore!, music provision from the Red Kite Learning Trust. 

2020-2021 Long Term Plan

How is Music taught and what it look like at OJS 

Music is taught to each class for one hour a week, two weeks out of three, by the school music teacher.  It is taught using a scheme called Music Express, exposing children to varied and rich opportunities to build on the three key aspects of the music curriculum.

-Listening and appraising. 



Children are given the opportunity to listen to and watch a wide range of high-quality live and recorded music drawn from different traditions and from great composers and musicians, learn about the structure and musical elements involved in these pieces and then put these skills into practise through individual, group and whole-class compositions and performances using their voices and school instruments. 


However, the school also offers lots of other fantastic opportunities for pupils to take part in music, including:

-The OJS school choir which often take part in wider events such as Remembrance celebrations, VE Day events and a Christmas Concert and the Harrogate Convention Centre. 

-The Oatlands Christmas Concert at St Marks Church.

-Peripatetic music lessons during lunchtimes and after school with specialist music teacher from Encore! 

-Involvement in the Harrogate Competitive Festival for Music Speech and Drama.

-Visits to St Aidan's to see their orchestra and choir perform.

-The Oatlands Summer Concert. 

What your child will leave OJS knowing, understanding and appreciating in music 

By the end of your child's time here with us at Oatlands Junior School, they will have a real sense of enthusiasm and passion for music and its place in their lives and others, across different settings, times and cultures. They will be able to talk about musicians and pieces of music they have enjoyed listening to and explain why using musical terminology; they will be able to talk confidently about and appreciate the range and families of instruments that exist; they will develop their musical performance skills and have time to rehearse, evaluate and refine solo, group and whole class performances of things that they have composed and most importantly, they will be able to reflect fondly on those memorable moments where they have watched or performed in school-wide celebrations such as the Christmas Concert, the Harvest festival and our Remembrance services or perhaps even inter-school competitions and concerts! 


What pupils at OJS think about music 


'I enjoy learning to play the violin and using the bow.' ~ Year 3 Pupil


'I like singing and learning to play different instruments!' ~ Year 4 Pupil


'You get to discover a new passion for an instrument!' ~ Year 5 Pupil


'I like making songs with my friends.' ~ Year 6 Pupil 



Autumn 2021

Year 3 

The year 3s have been listening to the famous Baroque composer, Antonio Vivaldi. His most famous work is the 4 seasons; the year 3s have listented to 'Winter' and this has inspired some fantastic poetry decorated with matching wintery scenes. 

Year 4 

The year 4s have been reading on notes for both the treble and bass clef and played both the melody and the accompaniment to Jingle Bells! 

Year 5

The year 5s have mastered '12 Days of Christmas' on the glockenspiel and have also used their note reading skills to play the first lines to their songs which they are singing in their Christmas Singalong! 

Year 6 

The year 6s have been recapping what they learnt on the ukulele and playing the chords to accompany Silent Night. 

They have also done some practise reading standard notation and are ready to play along to Feliz Navidad for our Christmas Singalong! 

HGS Music Funday - 4th November 2021

Your child is invited to join Encore! for a day of fun and music making at Harrogate Grammar School on Thursday 4 th November 2021. The day is for all young Orchestral playing instrumentalists, (Strings, Brass, Woodwind, Percussion) and Singers. We would like to invite instrumental students of approximately Grade 1 standard and above, but String players who are competent with the bow and happy to read open strings and first fingers and singers with enthusiasm are also invited. Unfortunately, we are not able to accommodate keyboard players and Guitarists this time, but we have plans to expand the format for future years.


The day is being run by Encore!, the in-house instrumental and vocal teaching provision at Harrogate Grammar School. The Funday will be in the style of a workshop, with an emphasis on playing and singing together as an ensemble, but we will also have other musical activities on offer to break up the day, especially for young players who need to blow their instruments or sing for long periods of time!


The day will start at 10am, but we will be happy to welcome students from 9.30am. It will take place in the Forum, located in the Sixth Form block. Students are asked to bring a packed lunch. Young musicians from Harrogate Grammar School will work alongside the invited instrumentalists and answer any questions they may have about Music at HGS.


Friends and family are invited to an informal play-through at 4pm in the Forum. The play-through will highlight the day’s work and also showcase some of the musicians and Encore! teachers at Harrogate Grammar School.


If you would like to register your child for the course, please complete the application form via the link below.




Summer 2021

Year 6 Violins

The year 6s spent the final summer term recapping what they had learnt in Year 3 on the violin and taking on lots of different challenges with their instruments, including some violin olympics!! 

Year 5 Ukuleles

The Year 5s spent the sumer term mastering the 4 chords of C, G, F and Am to play along to some fantastic songs including 'Let it Be' by the Beatles. 

Autumn 2020

12 Days of Christmas

Some of the year 6s have done a fantastic job of learning and performing the ‘12 Days of Christmas’ on the glockenspiels. They did a fantastic job of listening to one another and trying to keep the same steady pulse throughout. Well done Meerkats and Cheetahs. Below are a couple of snippets of their performances to enjoy. 




Each year 6 class will get the opportunity to learn to play the ukulele across the year, this term it was the Flamingos.

They learnt four specific chords which are used in many songs - C major, G major, A minor and F major. They also had a go at a couple of Christmas songs and learning how to read TAB music so they could pluck the strings to play the melody of Silent Night. Here is a video of one of the Year 6s playing with the chords in the background. 

Silent Night

Peripatetic Music Lessons 

We are very lucky to have still had our fantastic peri teachers coming in and teaching the children to play the cello, violin, piano and guitar. Here are some of our guitarists performing the songs they have been learning. 


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The year 3s have been learning the violin this term with Miss Jowett. They have done an amazing job and all finished their last lesson playing the backing music to Jingle Bells as Miss Jowett played the melody. A huge well done to all the Badgers, Foxes and Owls. 

Pupil Performances 

Whilst the children have been at home during our school closure, they have been sending in videos showcasing their fantastic musical talents. Here are just a few examples:

Holly Linford.mp4

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Samir Evans.mp4

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St Mark's Christmas Concert 2019

The Christmas Concert has been a real success! Each year group learnt their own song to tell the story of the nativity, the OJS choir performed the two Christmas songs they have been working on this term and we also had a few exceptionally brave and talented solo singers performing 'Once in Royal David's City' and 'Child in a Manger Born.' 

Guitar Performance

Some of the children who have been having guitar lessons at school put on a great show in assembly. They performed as a group the songs they have been learning this term, finishing with a festive number called 'Feliz Navidad.' They were absolutely fantastic!


Christmas Carollers 

The OJS choir have been spreading the Christmas cheer this week, walking to St Michael's Hospice and Larchfield Manor to perform the songs they have been learning along with some well-known traditional Christmas Carols. 


Summer Music Concert - 4th July 2019

Within school, we have some extremely talented and hardworking musicians and singers who were all brave enough to perform in front of their peers and families in this year's Summer Concert.  The performances were of an extremely high standard, inspiring others to want to take part in the opportunities provided within school. Thank you to all the pupils who performed and all their efforts which kept us all so entertained and in awe! 



3H Violin Recital


On Monday 26th February, 3H had the pleasure of performing for their friends and family in their very own violin recital. The children loved having the opportunity to share what they have learnt during their lessons with Mr Jackman during the Spring term. As well as learning to play the violin and read music, they also learnt all sorts of musical terms and vocabulary and can now describe music using words such as 'piano', 'forte', 'allegro' and 'adagio'. 


All of the children thoroughly enjoyed their lessons with Mr Jackman - so much so, that some of the class have even signed up to continue their violin tuition!

Harrogate Competitive Festival for Music, Speech and Drama

Jack Brierley (Year 6) is doing a fantastic job leading a choir group at school who will perform in the forthcoming Harrogate Competitive Festival for Music, Speech and Drama.   The choir children will be performing two songs: 'Hallelujah' written by Leonard Cohen and 'Higher' by Sigma. Jack will be performing the music on piano. The event will take place at Harrogate High School in March. The songs already sound fantastic so we are very excited to hear how our very talented children get on! 


The Harrogate Festival choir group include: Jack (6M), Layla (4H), Florence (5/6C), Amina (4H), Phoebe (6FW), Olivia (4H), Eve (4H), Liberty (3/4K), Emma (5/6C), Sophie (6FW), Kathryn (6FW), Esme (3/4K), Jasmine (6M). 

Traditional Christmas Carol Performance at St. Mark's Church

A very big well done to all the children for performing at our Traditional Carol Concert at St. Mark’s Church on Monday. It was a really enjoyable evening with lots of festive cheer, even managing to get full audience participation whilst singing ’12 Days of Christmas’!  Thank you to everyone involved.

Carolling at Larchfield Manor, Harrogate

Choir have had a very busy but enjoyable week spreading lots of festive cheer. In addition to St. Michael's Hospice, Choir also visited Larchfield Manor Residential Home in Harrogate to perform to the residents and staff. The children sang beautifully and very much enjoyed the gingerbread treats at the end! 

Carolling at St. Michael's Hospice, Harrogate

This week, Choir were warmly welcomed by staff and residents when they visited St. Michael's Hospice in Harrogate to perform carols and Christmas songs.  There was lots of Christmas cheer as the children performed to an eager audience who really enjoyed listening and joining in. The children even got to meet a huge and well-loved Leonberger 'Pets As Therapy' dog who was part of the audience!


Choir have been busy practising their Christmas songs which they will be performing shortly for a variety of different audiences. They are really looking forward to performing to the residence, patients and staff at Larchfield Manor Residential Home and St. Michael's Hospice next week.  They are also performing at St. Mark's Church for our annual school Christmas performance. 

3M Violin Concert

Last Monday, all the children in 3M performed a violin concert for their parents and carers. They have been learning to play the violin during their music lessons with Mr Jackman, a specialist Music teacher from Harrogate Grammar school.  This concert was a wonderful celebration of all the children have learnt this term in Music. 

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  • North Yorkshire, HG2 8QP
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