Singing can improve pupils’ learning, confidence, health and social development. It has the power to change lives and build stronger communities - National Plan for Music, DFE

Our Vision

Every child and young person will have the opportunity to sing and access high quality vocal opportunities. Music educators will be trained to lead, inspire and demonstrate good practice in singing.

Vocal Strategy

This Vocal Strategy document is intended for Edsential Musical Routes Tutors, Headteachers, Senior Leadership Teams and Music Leaders. It contains:

  • Information about the Hub’s own strategic aims for high quality singing in schools and within our out-of-school provision, showing the vocal progression routes and vocal support on offer
  • Detailed guidance to help schools to devise their own vocal strategies, and to ensure that there is high quality singing and a good vocal progression route within school.

Benefits of Singing

  • Singing is one of the most accessible forms of music-making.
  • Elicits positive emotions and engenders a strong sense of connectedness with friends and teachers.
  • Energises and gets children moving and dancing.
  • Singing distracts children from negativity and stress, improves their mood and helps them to feel safe, calm and comfortable.
  • Songs are powerful communicators and give children a channel through which they can express emotion, ideas and find their voice in the world.
  • Gives a sense of achievement, a feeling of self-confidence, pride and self esteem
  • Through songs, children can learn about all aspects of the school curriculum and the world around them.
  • Singing can improve mood, memory and cognitive performance.

Our Aims

  • To raise the profile of singing – it’s importance and benefits.
  • To offer support to schools to develop their own singing strategies.
  • To offer extended opportunities to schools, enhancing what they already offer.
  • To raise the standards and the profile of singing within all schools.
  • To provide access and inclusion for all children, including disengaged or vulnerable young people, Looked After children and those with Special Education Needs or Disabilites.
  • To provide professional development for teachers in response to their needs.
  • To provide in-school support and delivery where necessary to improve or enhance existing provision
  • To provide identifiable and clear progression routes for singing in local areas.

The Vocal Strategy links into the following strategies and priorities

Current Provision:

  • Singing in some of our music centres
  • County Youth Choir Y3C open to all students aged 11-18 years
  • Big sing opportunities with some of our partners and in our music celebrations and Showcase concerts
  • Music celebration concerts and showcase concerts with vocal contributions and projects led by Vocal Strategy Lead
  • Various specialist vocal tutors providing 1:1 and small group tuition

Aims for Provision:

  • Singing should be an integral part of the First Access or Wider Opportunities Provision
  • Curriculum music provision should have singing embedded at the core
  • Bespoke Vocal Projects and Festivals, both for school clusters and across the hub area
  • Providing more performance opportunities, such as celebration events, one off singing days and festivals
  • Support and development of school choir and singing groups – both in schools and out of schools
  • Providing or sign-posting to high quality CPD – for example Halle, Sing Up
  • Developing and enhancing EYFS singing and Leaps and bounds project
  • Actively sign-posting pathways for gifted and talented pupils – Y3C and other pathways –LIPA, Halle, Youth Choirs, National Youth Choirs
  • Develop partnerships with wider variety of vocal organisations who are currently providing singing opportunities in our area – AmaSing, Young Voices, Sing Up

Resources Development

  • To develop an online resource library alongside the Singing Progression Plan below, accessible from our website, with topic themed suggestions for schools and age guidance and suitability
  • CPD training focused on this resource library to introduce and encourage teachers to use it
  • Subscribe to Sing Up to access songbank, encourage schools to engage and have access to free CPD training and Big Sing for schools

Singing Progression Plan

Early Years -> KS2

Useful tips for devising your own school Singing Strategy

Schools can find their own singing strategy priorities by answering the questions below:

  • Is there whole school singing, how regularly, and what form does it take?
  • Is there classroom singing time on a regular basis?
  • Are there whole class instrumental programmes incorporating singing?
  • Is there a before-school choir, a lunchtime choir or an after-school choir?
  • Is there a boys’ choir?
  • Does the school engage with vocal provision and CPD from Edsential Musical Routes and partners?
  • Does the school signpost pupils to singing events/music centres/choirs run by the Hub and partners/

What does high quality singing provision look like

  • Singing with confidence and together in unison
  • Singing in parts
  • Singing in different languages
  • Singing a range of genres and styles
  • Singing with a sense of ensemble and able to follow a conductor
  • Communicating both musically and with emotional meaning and expression
  • Singing with an understanding of good posture and breath support
  • Excellent performance and presentation skills