Resources for Schools

School Governors Guide

The school governors guide to Music Education, developed by Arts Council England (ACE) in partnership with the National Governors Association (NGA) and Music Mark, provides valuable information for governors of schools across England about the importance, benefits, and value of music education within and beyond a school’s curriculum. Click here to visit the Music Mark website where you can download the guide.

Progression Framework for Music KS 1-2

Nottingham Schools Trust and Nottingham Music Hub have developed a Music Progression Framework for KS1-2: a carefully sequenced progression route integrating the work of schools and the music hub into a city-wide framework where all aspects work together, meeting both the requirements of the national curriculum for music and the DfE National Plan for Music Education and Model Music Curriculum..

This second edition of the progression framework, currently in draft form, has been revised to align with the new DfE Model Music Curriculum.


PDF file Download

City schools are welcome to download a copy of the framework (click above) and adapt it for their use as long as they give credit to Nottingham Schools Trust and Nottingham Music Hub. Editable and up-to-date versions of the framework, along with resources, are available via the music hub SharePoint site. Contact for information on how to access this

The framework outlines carefully sequenced learning across key stages 1 and 2, and is designed as a city-wide approach that can be interpreted and delivered in different ways. There is no pressure for any school to use it, but we hope it will be helpful for schools in light of the Ofsted framework, as the framework shows carefully sequenced progression and clarifies how music hub initiatives and extra-curricular activities are part of an integrated whole.

The common framework will also make it easier to develop common resources and CPD. We are inviting schools with good resources for particular areas of this framework to upload them to a shared site, so that over time we build a rich, shared resource base tied to agreed progression mileposts cross the city.

For access to the shared site or more information on the framework, please contact

The framework has been developed and refined by staff from:

Model Music Curriculum for KS 1 - 3

The Department for Education has just published the new model music curriculum for children aged 5-14 in Key Stages 1, 2 and 3.

The curriculum shows a lot of promise, featuring great composers from around the world and focusing on a range of genres and styles.. Download the full curriculum by clicking on the link below.

Model Music Curriculum KS1-3

PDF file Download

Music Network Sessions

The Music Network sessions are held once a term in collaboration with the Nottingham Schools Trust. Meetings focus on a range of topics and the agenda is shared with participants beforehand. The sessions are FREE and any Nottingham City School's music staff can attend. These sessions are a fantastic opportunity to network with peers, share resources and discuss new topics relevant to music education.

The latest network meeting was held online on 25th May 2021 and was attended by 30 music leads from across Nottingham City Schools. The main topic for the session was the new Model Music Curriculum and its implementation in schools. Please see below resource documents from the session.

Nottingham Music Hub Presentation on MMC

PDF file Download

MMC Overview by Sutton Music Service

PDF file Download

Singing Circles by Sue Nicholls

In a pre-recorded EYFS workshop for the MEHEM 'Road to Recovery' conference, Sue Nicholls offers delegates a FREE song book that she wrote in the first lockdown. The resource book is called 'Singing Circles' and the activities promote communal singing, language acquisition and social play. As the title suggests, the songs are sung in circles using scrunchies, Lycra sheets and parachutes as props. Please see below the resource files for running Singing Circles. The information booklet provides details on how to run these sessions and the folders below have the required MP3s you can download.

Singing Cirlces - Info Booklet

PDF file Download

Nottingham Music Hub

The Nottingham Schools Trust

Bluebell Hill Primary School

Carrington Primary School

Claremont Primary School

Crabtree Farm Primary School

Djanogly Sherwood Academy

Fernwood Primary School

Greenfields Primary School

Haydn Primary School

Heathfield Primary and Nursery School

Melbury Primary School

Middleton Primary and Nursery School

Mellers Primary School

Nottingham Academy Primary

Portland Spencer Academy

Radford Academy

Robin Hood School

Rosslyn Park Primary and Nursery School

Scotholme Primary School

Seely Primary School

Southglade Primary and Nursery School

Southwold Primary School and Early Years Centre

Walter Halls Primary School

Westglade Primary

Exam Strategy

As part of our ongoing support, Nottingham Music Hub provides opportunities for children and young people to gain accreditation through grade exams.

Music Medals

Music Medals are assessments and teaching resources from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM). Year 4 students learning an instrument in schools where Nottingham Music Hub runs or supports the whole class ensemble tuition programme are all given the opportunity to work towards a Music Medal, earning a music qualification at a young age, which can have a positive impact on children's confidence and motivation to continue with music.

Music Medals are also available for our Area Band participants to take.

There are five progressive levels – Copper, Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Most of our pupils achieve the Bronze Music Medal.

Students have to complete three tasks for this award:

1. Ensemble
Students will learn a piece throughout the year and perform the piece as a massed orchestra, which will be filmed at one of our events and sent to ABRSM for assessment (if required). Nottingham Music Service has negotiated with ABRSM to accept one of our Area Band pieces which have been accredited by ABRSM and form the ensemble part of the assessment.

2. Solo
The candidate plays one piece from the solo repertoire list for his or her instrument and medal. Students learn this with, and are then assessed by, their instrumental teacher in school time.

3. Musical Task
The candidate selects one option test from a choice of four:

◦ Call & response

◦ Make a tune

◦ Question & answer

◦ Sight-reading

Each test helps to build musicianship skills yet candidates can play to their own individual strengths. Again this is assessed by their teacher and then sent to ABRSM for verification. (The solo and option assessments are between March and June).

ABRSM and Trinity College London Grade Examinations

In addition to Music Medals, we also offer support to our continuing students to take Grade examinations for the above exam boards.

Students who are taught in city schools by our core teaching team are eligible to take these exams in the July of each academic year. The music service supports this by helping with the cost of exams and by providing workshops in the lead up to the exams.

For further information please contact the music team at

Artsmark Offer

Artsmark is the creative quality standard for schools, accredited by Arts Council England. It provides a clear framework for teachers to plan, develop and evaluate arts, culture and creativity across the curriculum.

Nottingham Music Hub is an Artsmark partner organisation, and can support schools in applications for silver, gold or platinum status. Most schools in the city are already engaging with music hub activities, so chances are you already have some excellent evidence for meeting Artsmark criteria.

For example:

Nottingham Music Hub initiatives such as the Great Orchestra Experiment, Christmas in the City, Noise from the Next Generation and Sing City provide opportunities for young people (YP) to prepare for live performances, showcase their work and experience exciting, inspiring and engaging live music from a range of cultures

Christmas in the City, Summer Sing and other singing events provide CPD for teachers and shared good practice resources across schools.

Whole Class Ensemble Tuition, In Harmony programmes, Area Bands, the innovative Music Camp and the Robin Hood Youth Orchestra family of ensembles give YP the chance to develop their skills over a longer period of time. The many schools engaging with these integrated progression routes will be able to utilise data collected for the DfE, showing that Nottingham city schools lead the way in terms of equality and diversity in music education.

Get in touch with us for help and advice about using music hub initiatives as part of your Artsmark application. For more information about Artsmark, click here or contact The Mighty Creatives for support with the application process.

Nottingham Music Hub