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St Andrew's College Dublin St Andrew's College Dublin

Music Curriculum



All students regardless of socio-economic status, physical or intellectual ability, should be offered the opportunity to discover and explore their innate potential as musicians, and to increase these natural capacities through formal music instruction.  The goal of music education in the Junior School is not only to form an appreciation of the music of others, but also to encourage children to shape their own unique musical identity through academic study and performance opportunities.  Music education should be guided by the purpose of crafting independent musicians, capable of performing, evaluating and creating music.

In the classroom we aim to help students achieve both an aesthetic and academic understanding of music, as well as, practical music skills.  Music education at primary level lays the ground work for music literacy through a balance of activities in singing, instrument playing, note reading, improvisation, composition, music listening, music history, movement and dance.


  • Music education is part of a balanced curriculum which aims to develop the whole spectrum of the child’s intelligence. It involves learning in the major domains of knowledge, skills, attitudes and feelings, and the senses. It therefore contributes to the wider curriculum in a myriad of ways.
  • All children have musical potential and music education celebrates individual differences among them.
  • Children bring their own unique interests and abilities to the music learning environment.
  • Young children are capable of developing critical thinking skills through musical idea


  • To enrich the Junior School through concerts and performances and provide opportunities for musical expression by students
  • To provide an atmosphere for quality individual instruction, mentoring and advisement
  • To provide an atmosphere of artistic enrichment that will create a musical influence on the Junior School
  • To strive to maintain qualitative growth while pursuing ways to ensure that resources such as staff, facilities, curricula and equipment are sufficient to support the programme
  • To provide direct collaborative experience of music through participation in ensembles including choir, orchestra and group performances which contributes to the child developing creativity and self-esteem.
  • To ensure that prescribing the outcomes of this artistic activity does not run the risk of removing the sense of discovery and creation.
  • To ensure our music programme encourages skills of perseverance and self-discipline and encourages children to employ and develop their problem-solving and higher-order thinking skills, in the form of musical decision-making and self-evaluation.
  • We will undertake annual self-evaluation to ensure quality teaching and learning is to the highest standard for all pupils.


  • All children will be supported to develop skills to the best of their ability
  • Develop musical performance skills commensurate to their level of experience
  • Demonstrate an aural application of music theory
  • Train and develop skills for accurately hearing and matching sounds
  • Discriminate differences of pitch and duration in single voice and in combination
  • Understand the information in a musical text : pitch, rhythm, articulations, tempo and dynamics
  • Master the basic materials of music and the rules governing their arrangement and organisation
  • Perform, vocally and instrumentally, from a range of musical styles and traditions relevant to the class level
  • Recall and perform expressively musical phrases and pieces, using untuned percussion (K1) or string instruments (K2-P6), from memory or from notation, as appropriate
  • Improvise and compose rhythmic and melodic patterns in response to music, movement, ideas, poems, stories and art works



  • To enable the child to enjoy and understand music and to appreciate it critically
  • To develop the child’s openness to, awareness of and response to a wide range of musical genres, including Irish music
  • To enable the child to develop his/her musical potential and to experience the excitement and satisfaction of being actively engaged in musical creativity
  • To nurture the child’s self-esteem and self-confidence through participation in musical performance
  • To develop sensitivity to music through making physical, verbal, emotional or cognitive responses
  • To foster greater social bonds among fellow classmates and create a positive and encouraging atmosphere which promotes healthy social interaction through performance.


Music lessons are once weekly for all K2 – P6 pupils. The children learn to play violin in their class groups from K2 and can choose violin, cello or double bass from P3 onwards.