Music: Key Stage 1

Lesson plans and teacher videos to instill confidence in your teaching of Music

Teacher skills videos

Composing and improvising KS1
Singing KS1
Pulse and rhythm (all key stages)
Notation KS1
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Useful resources for teaching Music

Choose your topic

We make teaching music simple with engaging lessons based on popular themes, from animals and festivals to to space and superheroes, all supported by teacher videos. You can rearrange the order of units within year groups in our music scheme of work, but not move units between year groups. See our planning resources for further information.

Year 1

Pulse and rhythm (Theme: All about me)

Children learn to identify the difference between the pulse and rhythm of a song and consolidate their understanding of these concepts through listening and performing activities.

Tempo (Theme: Snail and mouse)

Use bodies and instruments to listen and respond to pieces of music with fast and slow speeds; learn and perform a rhyme and a song focussing on fast and slow.

Musical vocabulary (Theme: Under the sea)

Journey into the unknown and explore under the sea through music, movement, chanting and the playing of tuned percussion instruments.

Vocal and body sounds (Theme: By the sea)

Children make links between music, sounds and environments and use percussion, vocal and body sounds to represent calm or stormy seas.

Timbre and rhythmic patterns (Theme: Fairytales)

Through fairy tales, children are introduced to the concept of timbre; learning that different sounds can represent characters and key moments in a story. They explore clapping along to the syllables of words and phrases before creating rhythmic patterns to tell a familiar fairy tale.

Pitch and tempo (Theme: Superheroes)

Learning how to identify high and low notes and to compose a simple tune, children investigate how tempo changes help tell a story and make music more exciting.

ARCHIVED Classical music, dynamics and tempo (Theme: Animals)

Children use their bodies and instruments to listen and respond to pieces of classical music that represent animals. They learn and perform a song as a class and compose a short section of music as a group, with a focus on dynamics and tempo.

Year 2

West African call and response song (Theme: Animals)

Using instruments to represent animals, copying rhythms, learning a traditional Ghanaian call and response song and recognising simple notation, progressing to creating call and response rhythms.

Orchestral instruments (Theme: Traditional Western stories)

Children are introduced to the instruments of the orchestra and practice identifying these within a piece of music. They learn how different characters can be represented by timbre, how emotions can be represented by pitch and how changes in tempo can convey action.

Musical me

Children learn to sing the song ‘Once a Man Fell in a Well’ and to play it using tuned percussion. Using letter notation to write a melody.

Dynamics, timbre, tempo and motifs (Theme: Space)

Developing knowledge and understanding of dynamics, timbre, tempo and instruments. Learning to compose and play motifs.

On this island: British songs and sounds

Creating sounds to represent three contrasting landscapes: seaside, countryside and city.

Myths and legends

Developing understanding of musical language and how timbre, dynamics and tempo affect the mood of a song.

Sample lessons

Sample lessons 1