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Over 650 Number of pupils who currently study at Newton Preparatory School 1991 The year that Newton Prep opened
Newton Prep children are focused and motivated to succeed in their academic studies.
Newton Prep Parent
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Music

Over 650 Number of pupils who currently study at Newton Preparatory School 1991 The year that Newton Prep opened
Newton Prep children are focused and motivated to succeed in their academic studies.
Newton Prep Parent

Music is an exciting and vital part of daily life at Newton Prep.

Musicals, concerts and recitals featuring our own performers fill the music calendar each term. Every child has the opportunity to participate in a wide range of activities, from action-packed classroom lessons to the extensive extra-curricular music activities and individual lessons.

Our String Programmes at Year 1 and 2 start our littlest beginners off on the right musical foot, then, as they travel through the school, they will find there is something for everyone to enjoy at every level: singing or dancing, plucking or blowing, bopping or jamming.

Our more senior and advanced pupils enjoy the challenges of our High Ability chamber music programme.

Music technology is explored in the classroom and is offered as an extra-curricular club.

More recently, we have been very fortunate to have a new art music wing built onto the eastern side of the school, which houses a beautiful Recital Hall, custom-designed classrooms, a recording studio, music technology lab and dedicated practice rooms.

Music Ensembles

  • Chamber Choir (Years 5 - 8)
  • Orchestra (Years 3 - 8)
  • Windband (Years 4 - 8)
  • Crossbows (Years 4 - 8)
  • Senior Choir (Years 4 - 8)
  • Barbershop Chorus (Years 7 - 8)
  • Chamber Music (Years 3 - 8)
  • Year 1 Strings
  • Year 2 Strings
  • Melodic Minors (Year 3)
  • Year 2 Choir

Year 1 and 2 Strings Programme

The Year 1 and 2 Strings Programmes are run for these year levels as an introductory instrumental music course.  Starting lessons at this age provides children with a strong base for future musical development as well as reinforcing skills learned in other subjects.  Children also enjoy the novelty of learning on their own instruments and the social aspects of playing together.  Students take a weekly shared or individual lesson with one of our specialist string teachers.  Parents can opt for shared or individual lessons in Year 1, but individual lessons are recommended from the beginning, as children progress more quickly with their teacher's undivided attention.  Students also come together once a week to take part in an ensemble session together with all other Year 1 string players.  Games to develop posture, listening skills, playing and performance skills are undertaken, as well as the practice of increasingly challenging repertoire.

In Year 2, the process is continued, with all children taking an individual lesson as well as the ensemble lesson once a week.  Shared lessons are not available from this point.  More advanced material is explored and note-reading is investigated in more detail.  Children continue to polish the etiquette and skills required for group performance.  Both Year 1 and 2 String groups perform several times throughout the year, at Lower School events and recitals, and at the whole-school Music Concerts.

Paid Activities - Mtech and Composition Using Computer Technology

This fantastic computer composition club allows pupils to work with visiting specialists from Mtech once a week to develop composing skills using Cubase, a music sequencing software package.  Students will have the opportunity to create polished ‘electronic' compositions and learn how to publish these themselves, eventually loading them onto the web for family and friends to see and enjoy.

Peripatetic Music Lessons

The Music Department offers extra-curricular music lessons for most orchestral instruments as well as drum-kit, singing and piano.  Theory lessons can be taken in preparation for theory exams.  Instrumental staff are well-qualified and experienced, many being professional performers as well as teachers.  Children take a 30-minute lesson once per week, though in some cases, teachers will recommend a 45-minute lesson for more advanced individuals.  Lessons rotate through the teacher's timetable each week, so that students do not miss the same lesson continually. 

Teachers and parents keep in contact via music homework diaries provided at the commencement of lessons, though parents are welcome to make more regular and immediate contact by phone or email with their child's tutor.  Instrumental teachers also welcome parents to observe lessons, especially those of younger learners, so that a more thorough understanding of the work underway, and techniques to be practised, can be gained.

Children who take lessons outside school are strongly encouraged to take part in all the school's extra-curricular musical groups and events. 

Performance Opportunities

The Music Department runs a number of concerts, recitals and other performance opportunities each year.  All ensembles take part in  the  Summer Concert held in the school's auditorium. Individuals and small groups may play at one of a number of year-group-based recitals, or at Music and Tea afternoons, which take place once every half term.  Individuals or groups also perform at half-termly Music Assemblies for Upper School at the beginning of daily assemblies.

As well as in-school concerts, Upper School singers and instrumentalists take part in annual musical days at schools such as Charterhouse. Masterclasses with visiting professionals also take place, for ensembles and individuals. 

Our Year 4 Carollers visit local retirement homes at Christmas to sing for appreciative audiences, and take some Christmas spirit and fun out into the community.

Trips and Visits

The Music Department provides an interesting and varied programme of trips and visits which correlates to and enhances the experiences of class music.  Currently:

  • Years 3 and 4 visits the LSO at the Barbican to take part in a children's Orchestral workshop once a year.
  • Year 5 meets one or more working opera singers, through the Education Department of one of the opera companies in London.
  • Year 6 takes part in an Indonesian Gamelan workshop.
  • Year 7 works with the Djembe School when they visit in the Autumn Term in a day-long workshop and performance.
  • Year 8 undertakes a day's training in electronic composition, run by the LSO St Luke's education group.

Masterclasses

2008 marked our first piano masterclass.  Pianists had the opportunity to work with Young Musician of the Year finalist, Peter Roper-Curzon on their piano pieces.

Over 650 Number of pupils who currently study at Newton Preparatory School 1991 The year that Newton Prep opened
Newton Prep children are focused and motivated to succeed in their academic studies.
Newton Prep Parent