Lesson 4: Backing track

The children explore four-chord progressions and use vocal improvisation and known melodies over a backing track.

Learning objective

  • To use vocal improvisation and known melodies against a backing track

National curriculum

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Improvise and compose music for a range of purposes using the interrelated dimensions of music
  • Listen with attention to detail and recall sounds with increasing aural memory
  • 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

Before the lesson

Classroom resources

Attention grabber

Main event


Pupils needing extra support: Pupils can work with the teacher or a Teaching Assistant and concentrate on Task 1 – singing songs they can remember from the Presentation: Four-chord progressions.


Pupils working at greater depth: These pupils can combine two or more songs that they know by singing them over the backing track at the same time, and/or combining a known melody with an improvisation. Pupils who have instrumental lessons could use their instruments to play a melody or improvise over the backing track.

Wrapping up

Assessing pupils' progress and understanding


Created by:
Elizabeth Stafford,  
Music specialist
After a brief spell as an opera singer, Liz embarked on a 20-year career in music education, teaching at early years, primary and secondary. After Liz had her daughter, she started her own business Music Education Solutions® Limited, helping teachers…
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