Trinity and the Model Music Curriculum

Trinity and the Model Music Curriculum

Picture of Natalie Christopher

BY: Natalie Christopher
13 May 2021

Following the March 2021 release of the Model Music Curriculum, Natalie Christopher, UKI Sector Support Manager, Music and Partnerships, takes a look at how Trinity College London can support music teachers and non-music specialists looking to use this as inspiration for their future delivery.

Whether you are a primary, secondary or visiting teacher, if any part of your role involves teaching in-school music lessons, it is unlikely the release of the DfE's Model Music Curriculum (MMC) has escaped your attention and there has been a very engaging debate going on in the sector that you can check out online. Released as "a non-statutory resource that provides a practical framework through which statutory requirements of the curriculum can be met", it is designed to be an optional model "intended to be used by specialist  and non-specialist music teachers at Key Stage 1 and 2 (Primary level)... and by specialist music teachers in Key Stage 3". Its aim is "to provide a strong core set of competencies and shared knowledge" through singing, listening, composing and performance/instrumental performance. The MMC is a tool to be used, as needed, to develop the requirements of the National Curriculum and provide a stimulus for lesson planning.

What this looks like in practice will, naturally, differ depending on the individual setting. Those involved with the development of the MMC have been eager to highlight that this is a non-statutory document and that, where music provision is already strong, teachers may only want to refer to it for some additional ideas.

For those looking to implement the MMC and wanting help in doing so, your local Music Education Hub should be your first port of call and, from the discussions I have had with some of the Hubs, they are working very hard to put a range of support, CPD and training in place. Alongside the Hubs, we at Trinity hope we can also support you with blog posts planned on particular areas we think we can support on, particularly in the areas of training and assessment. We plan to take a look at how the musical skills articulated in the MMC are mirrored throughout the range of Trinity's music exams and how they might be used to bridge the gap between classroom and instrumental music lessons.

We will also be shining a light on Trinity's Certificate for Music Educators (CME). The CME was developed following the release of the National Plan for Music Education (2011) and designed to train teachers in the fundamentals of music teaching. Trinity, with our strong history in music pedagogy, is one of only two awarding bodies selected to offer the qualification and we are proud to have some of the country's most eminent music education specialists involved in its delivery, assessment and development. We will be taking a look, in a separate blog post, at the content of the course and how it aims to develop your music teaching.

Finally, we will explore how Trinity's Arts Award suite of qualifications might support or enhance your delivery of the MMC. On our Arts Award blog, we will be highlighting how the Discover, Explore and Bronze levels of the award map succinctly with the MMC across the three key stages, offering a progression route that encompasses musicianship in its widest definition, and supporting the development of 21st century skills alongside the arts.

Watch out for all of these posts coming in the coming weeks on our blog and social media channels!

Having launched the first of our Coffee Mornings in March this year, we will also be hosting one of these to discuss the MMC on Thursday 3 June at 11am. This will be an informal get-together of music teachers of any setting to come together and share their thoughts, concerns, questions and ideas. This will also be an opportunity to inform the kind of support Trinity offers in the future in relation to this so please do sign up!

To attend the Trinity MMC Coffee Morning on Thursday 3 June at 11am, please register here.


Photo by Caleb George on Unsplash

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