‘Wider opportunities’ – KS2
‘Wider Opportunities’ in Music provides the chance for a whole KS2 class to learn a musical instrument for one academic year completely free of charge. Pupils are provided with an instrument for the duration of the year and offered free loan of the instrument for one year if they wish to continue into a second year.
Lessons take place for one hour every week and are delivered by two specialist instrumental teachers and one curriculum music teacher.
In early lessons, the instrumental aspect of this tuition focuses on fundamental technique development whilst later sessions allow pupils to apply their skills and knowledge in band and orchestra ensemble experiences as they work towards a range of performances. Simultaneous to the instrumental development run general musicianship sessions delivered by class teachers or visiting curriculum music teachers. These activities complement the instrumental progress and a carefully planned scheme of work ensures that pupils make the appropriate links.
Projects are available in Brass, String, Woodwind, World Percussion and Guitar.
The scheme is designed not only to reach those pupils involved directly but also to enrich the musical activity of the school as a whole.
At the end of the ‘Wider Opportunities’ year each child is given the opportunity to continue with lessons. These take on the same format and costs as those lessons already delivered by the Instrumental Teaching Music Service, though pupils receive a free instrument for a year and where possible schools offer a subsidy.
Wigan Instrumental Teaching Service has prioritized schools whose pupils are least likely to access instrumental music experiences through traditional lessons by referring to the Income Depravation Affecting Children Index (IDACI). There are currently 76 Wigan Primary Schools receiving Wider Opportunities with another 30 schools due on-line in September 2010, when every school will have been offered this package.
“Musical Futures is a new way of thinking about music making in schools. It brings non-formal teaching and informal learning approaches into the more formal context of school. We believe music learning works best when young people are making music, and when their existing passion for music is reflected and built-upon in the classroom.”
Although not exclusively, Musical Futures approaches are aimed at secondary school music and Wigan Instrumental Teaching Service offers support through:
- Loan of class sets of ‘rock instruments’ (electric guitars, amps, drum kits, etc.)
- Specialist instrumental and technical support to help classroom practitioners develop the necessary skills to lead the project on their own.
- Teaching ideas and resources which help pupils succeed in their music making.