Erasmus Primary School has a comprehensive Arts curriculum. Visual art is recognised as an essential part of the curriculum and we work to build and develop the skills and artistic talent of every child. In addition, all children participate in needlework and woodwork classes during their time at Erasmus.

The curriculum also includes music, drama and dance. We coordinate regular performances and celebrations throughout the year to provide the opportunity for children to demonstrate their skills and become comfortable sharing their skills with an audience.

Music is integral to the fabric of Erasmus Primary School. Our specialist music teachers are trained to provide a solid musical foundation. We focus on nurturing a love of music, developing understanding, providing experience in musical literacy and instrument playing, and introducing great composers and various musical styles.

We have a dedicated music room, practice rooms and pianos, including a grand piano.

Singing is a major aspect of the programme with children singing together regularly. We believe that singing is a vital component in the development of children. It fosters generosity, improves posture and vocal enunciation, nourishes the emotional side of our being, and develops the capacity to listen.

Children learn songs of praise from a variety of religious traditions that are spiritually uplifting. Singing this kind of fine material helps to bring harmony to the soul. It enables the children to experience a strong sense of unity, which comes from celebrating a shared recognition of the underlying universality of all traditions. A range of other song material is introduced, including the National Anthem that is sung at the beginning of each week.

The classroom music programme includes the Kodaly method for junior students, and all children learn recorder from Year 3. Qualified and experienced teachers and professional musicians provide private lessons in piano, violin and flute.

We recognise art as an essential part of the curriculum. Our approach is to build a classical foundation in art and artistic skills, enabling children to move into other arts as they progress through their education.

Our specialist art teacher, who is also an artist, works to build and develop the skills and artistic talent of every child. We nurture the children’s natural enthusiasm for art and enable them to learn essential skills for accurate drawing, painting and modeling. They learn to enhance their powers of observation and fine motor skills. A firsthand appreciation and experience of producing works of art also builds the children’s confidence in their interpretation of art.

We have a dedicated art room and a kiln on site. We use quality paints, pencils, sculpture materials, reference books and art works.

Every lesson begins from a point of stillness, which heightens and deepens the experience and the ability to focus wholeheartedly on the task at hand.

Studies include careful observation of real objects, bringing the children in touch with what they see. From there they can make meaningful art, which reflects the beauty of creation. The children are introduced to the works of the great masters, they study and copy their work and learn something of the artists’ lives, providing a glimpse into the history of art.

Development of design and creativity is incorporated in various special and classroom activities including needlework and woodwork. These activities involve following directions such as a doll pattern in needlework or drawing up a simple design in woodwork. The children take time to consider and reflect on the process and begin to understand links between input and output. They learn to work with their hands using a range of simple tools such needles, thread and scissors, mixtures and measures, hammers and nails. The activities chosen at Erasmus provide a window into established methods, materials, systems and cultural traditions. They also broaden the children’s perspectives about creative, artistic and leisure pursuits that support intellectual and cognitive skills, fine and gross motor skills, self-expression, enjoyment and satisfaction.

Dance at Erasmus Primary School provides a creative and expressive environment which greatly benefits the children. Dance develops physical awareness, posture and coordination, as well as social and artistic skills. It enhances awareness of oneself and of others, promotes a sense of play and a sense of effort, and it develops creativity.

Each year, students across all year levels participate in a whole-school drama production.  The theme of the production rotates through four classical sources: The Magic Flute by Mozart, The Ramayana (a classical Indian tale in dance form), Shakespeare’s plays, and Homer’s Odyssey. The children delight in these timeless tales and the preparation and performance is a major highlight of the year, forming the main component of our Founder’s Day celebration.

Fine words set to beautiful music carry the words to the heart without any interference. That’s the quality music has, provided the words are worth hearing and the words are well pronounced.

Leon MacLaren

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