Faced with the doom, gloom and misinformation surrounding music education there is a danger of forgetting that more children are now learning music in the classroom and making more progress in the subject than ever before.
This is one of the reasons why Heinemann has produced an entirely new version of their highly successful Music Matters course.
The materials have been very well researched and reflect a clear understanding of what is needed in the average key stage 3 classroom. For each of the three years 7 to 9 there is a pupil's book and a teacher's resource pack with teaching notes, a selection of photocopiable pupil sheets and a set of characteristic pupil expectations. There is a CD of listening material as well as a CD-Rom covering the ICT requirements of the course.
There is also a copy of assessment materials spanning the whole key stage,so that teachers can trace individual pupil's progress.
Most important of all, the materials are designed to cater for the very wide range of abilities to be found in music classes, even within the most highly selective of schools. They can be used flexibly, either on their own or in conjunction with projects from the earlier course.
Aelwyn Pugh is inspector for curriculum with music for Liverpool Education Authority