Wider opportunities

Wider Opportunities (WO) is a whole class project which gives all primary children the chance to play an instrument as an integral part of National Curriculum music lessons.

Our WO programme runs in KS2 schools across the borough and covers mixed strings, mixed brass, flute, clarinet/saxophone, keyboard, and guitar. We have provided each school with a class set of instruments which are used for the Initial and Transition stages.

The programme is in four integrated stages:

Term 1
8 weeks
FOUNDATION Musical development through vocal work. Whole class sessions with a vocal specialist.
Term 2
8 weeks
INITIAL Musical development through learning to play an instrument. Whole class sessions with two instrumental specialists.
Terms 3 & 4
20 weeks
TRANSITION Provision for children who wish to continue and enjoy learning in large groups, generally 6-15 children per group.
Term 5 onwards CONTINUATION Ongoing standard tuition in small groups (up to 4 children) for those who wish to continue learning.

Do schools or parents pay for Wider Opportunities sessions?

There is no charge to schools or parents for the Foundation and Initial stages of the programme, as these are whole class activities and are part of the school’s music curriculum.

What happens in the foundation stage?

Working with a vocal specialist, children and class teachers learn basic vocal techniques, enabling them to use their voices safely and imaginatively. They explore musical concepts and ideas and develop the confidence to improvise and create their own songs. They also become familiar with the musical language that will be used in the instrumental stages.

And in the initial stage?

Working with two instrumental teachers and their class teacher, children learn to play instruments in a whole class group and explore different elements of music through playing. The programme broadens the children’s music experience and allows those who are already learning an instrument to share their knowledge with others.

How is the transition stage organised? is there a cost for this?

The Transition stage is the bridge between whole class teaching and standard tuition. Teaching takes place in groups and instruments are provided free of charge. At this stage there is a charge for tuition which is usually covered by parents.

Continuation stage

Children wishing to continue learning are offered standard RMT tuition. Parents will need to hire or buy an instrument at this stage.