The Benefits of Music

Music can soothe, excite, stimulate or calm. It can satisfy creativity through composition and performance. It can enrich the understanding of other nations through the study of cultural variety of music styles and instruments.

On top of that, music brings together intellect and feeling and enables personal expression, reflection and emotional development. Music enables pupils to develop creativity at their own level, and provides opportunities to promote a sense of personal and group identity. Individual responses and diversity are celebrated as there is no right or wrong way to be creative.

Music as Part of Our Curriculum

Pupils’ learning is enriched through developing partnerships and links with Hertfordshire Music Service, MIHC (Music in Hopsitals & Care) and other local schools, offering opportunities for instrumental tuition as well as creative opportunities in the wider community.

We endeavour to provide our pupils with rich and varied learning opportunities in music, using subject specific lessons as well as a cross curricular approach within Creative Arts week. We believe that all pupils should have access to music appropriate for their age and stage of development. Learning objectives follow our music CAPPS (Collett Assessing Pupil Progress System), as well as the National Curriculum guidelines.

We also recommend using online resources provided by AmberPlus - a service providing resources for blind and special needs children.

Extracurricular Opportunities 2017/18

  • Boombuckets
    This is an exciting percussion workshop designed to boost rhythmic and drumming skills. Simply using a bucket and drum sticks, the children explore as many sounds and techniques as possible. Its focus is to develop their listening skills, turn-taking skills and learning to work as a group. This is run by Kris Banks from Hertfordshire Music Service.

    We received a grant to cover costs for this workshop, the award was allocated from the National Music Education Hub funding administered by Arts Council England.

    The following classes have each received a term of weekly boombucket workshops:
    Wrens, Rooks, Ravens, Linden, Elder and Mahogany.

  • Piano Lessons
    Mrs Cripps has been providing weekly piano lessons for eight pupils since September 2017. This has been a real success (see videos and parental feedback). Through piano lessons and practise at home, pupils have developed fine motor skills, coordination, concentration, memory, rhythm, improvisation, communication, interaction, self-confidence and self-expression. In addition to this, there is the sheer pleasure experienced by the pupils, Mrs Cripps and parents involved.

    We are hoping to offer extended hours next year so more pupils can benefit from them.

    Read other experiences via this link to Top Ten Reviews.

  • Percussion Workshops
    21 pupils benefit from a weekly percussion workshop. This is run by parent volunteer, Mrs Guiffoyle. She focuses on developing pupils’ music skills plus their social interaction and communication.

  • Whole School Singing Assemblies
    Run by Mrs Cripps, this is a wonderful opportunity for the whole school community to enjoy singing together. We sing songs from a range of cultures and genres, including pop songs, songs from popular films as well as more traditional songs and rounds. We learn songs for special celebrations (e.g. Harvest, Christmas, Spring) as well as for the superb school productions (Lower School Christmas Nativity, Middle & Upper School Summer Show).

    This also provides an amazing opportunity to develop the whole school community’s use of Makaton through singing and signing sessions.

  • Primary Christmas Nativity

  • Secondary Summer Show – Peter Pan

  • MiHC (Music in Hospitals and Care) Concert with Paul Kerr 6th February 2018
    Professional singer guitarist Paul Kerr performed for the whole school. He had us all singing along to classics such as Randy Newman’s ‘You’ve Got a Friend in Me’ from Toy Story, The Jungle Book’s ‘The Bear Necessities’, and ‘Yellow Submarine’ by The Beatles. There were plenty of children’s songs in there too, including ‘The Wheels on the Bus’ and
    ‘Old McDonald’. This concert was organised by the charity Music in Hospitals & Care and made possible thanks to the generosity of the Neighbourly Charitable Trust.

  • Primary Special Schools Music Festival
    This takes place every year, and is a wonderful opportunity to share music together with other local special schools. This year, Rooks Class will be taking part in the music festival hosted by Woolgrove School.

"John’s enthusiasm for learning the piano has been a delight and a revelation to us."
- Collett Parent -


The videos below show the progress our pupils have made thanks to our new piano lessons.

Parental Feedback

Here's just some of the feedback we've had from Collett parents:

"David really enjoys practising his piano exercises and, although he progresses more slowly than a neurotypical child would, I think it has been wonderful for his fine motor skills in terms of isolating individual fingers and strengthening them. Also, [the lessons are] highly beneficial for his memory and recall skills in remembering the sequences he has to play. It is a wonderful activity for him to do and thank for running the lessons so he gets that opportunity."

"I'm very happy with Ethan's progress, and he really looks forward to learning new pieces. It's teaching him a valuable life lesson about having to work hard to develop his skills."

"John’s enthusiasm for learning the piano has been a delight and a revelation to us. When he was offered the opportunity, we weren’t convinced he would deal with the concentration required for regular lessons. In fact, he has found the challenge hugely enjoyable, thanks to his teacher, who has tapped into his longstanding love of music. Unlike many Collett students, John doesn’t participate in after-school activities and playing the piano has provided him with a new focus outside regular lessons. His progress from one lesson to the next was immediately obvious [...] Music has always been a hugely important part of John’s life and allows him to express himself in a way he could not otherwise. His experience underlines the vital importance of schools providing access to skills and enriched learning beyond the conventional curriculum – not least in the case of the special needs sector."