Lesson 3: The repeating river

Learning about what an ostinato is and how to recognise them in different types of music, children perform vocal ostinatos to represent the stages of a river

Before the lesson

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Learning objectives

  • To perform a vocal ostinato


National curriculum

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Play and perform in solo and ensemble contexts, using their voices and playing musical instruments with increasing accuracy, fluency, control and expression

Success criteria

Cross-curricular links

Attention grabber

Main event


Pupils needing extra support:  Should be given the continuous ostinato, ‘Kshhhhhh’, to sing.



Pupils working at greater depth: Can be given the responsibility of directing the ending of their piece (or the class piece); ask them for suggestions of improvement.

Wrapping up

Assessing pupils' progression and understanding


Created by:
Laura Barr,  
Music specialist
In her 14 year teaching careerA job or occupation in one area of work that is undertaken for a long period of time…., Laura assumed the role of Music Lead, and was Head of Music in a large secondary school.…
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