Music is taught to all children from Reception to Year 8. Lessons cover a variety of different genres ranging from folk music to jazz, from current pop music to classical music. Children are involved in composing, improvising and performing, all geared to their different developmental stages. We aim to introduce them to music they would not otherwise hear and to encourage a broadminded approach to the vast musical resources we now have at hand with the help of the internet. Topics this year have included Mongolian throat singing, Native American drumming, Beethoven's 5th Symphony and Elvis Presley.
In Reception to Year 5, we use the innovative music notation teaching method, Stave House. Through games, songs and stories, children learn both treble and bass clef which helps them develop further in their instrumental lessons. Roughly 75% of the school have instrumental lessons on one or more instruments, all taught by our selection of excellent visiting musicians. We offer orchestral instruments, percussion and singing, with regular opportunities to perform in assemblies and at afternoon concerts each half term.
At South Lee, there are two choirs for the older children and one for the younger pupils. The Chamber Choir and Serenata, a hand-picked group who sing to a high standard, perform at venues in and around Bury St Edmunds, often being invited to participate in exciting events. We have had great success with auditions for the National Youth Choir of Great Britain, which is something the children aspire to belong to.
Children may choose to join any of our ensembles - String Orchestra, Pre-Prep Fiddlers, Saxophone Ensemble, Brass Ensemble, Ukulele Club, Guitar Club and Flute Choir. Children may also be involved in orchestral days at host schools such as Uppingham and Oakham.
We are a Trinity exam centre, which enables children to take their music exams in a familiar setting. Pupils regularly reach Grade 5 by the end of their time at South Lee. Almost every year we have a music scholar moving onto schools including Woodbridge, King's Ely, Framlingham and Wymondham College.