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Spring 1: What makes a sound

In this topic we will be learning:

Week 1- What sounds can you make?

Week 2 - What sounds can you hear inside? (Writing structure week 1)

Week 3 - What sounds can you hear outside? (Writing structure week 2)

Week 4 - How many sounds can you find in this story?  (Maths week)

Week 5 - Can you make a sound instrument?

Week 6 - How does this sound make you feel?


Communication and Language



  • To use sound language to describe different sounds - ringing, scrape, shake, jingle, dull, loud, bang, crash, low, high, rustle, jumpy, long, quiet. 
  • To name different instruments - xylophone, maraca, tambourine, castanet, triangle, guiro, bells, drum, guitar, flute. 
  • To listen for environmental sounds. 
  • To make voice sounds. 
  • To identify what instrument has been played. 
  • To retell the story Peace and Last through role play - to use language and sounds from the story.
  • Follow simple musical patterns and compose our own.
  • Listen to instructions to stop and play an instrument. 



Enjoy listening to longer stories and can remember much of what happens./ Use a wider range of vocabulary./ Understand a question or instruction that has two parts, such as “Get your coat and wait at the door”. /Understand ‘why’ questions, like: “Why do you think the caterpillar got so fat?”/ Know many rhymes, be able to talk about familiar books, and be able to tell a long story. / Use longer sentences of four to six words. 


Personal, Social and Emotionally Development

  • To learn how to make sounds with our bodies.
  • To copy body actions such as clapping, stamping and waving.
  • To change the way a sound is played.
  • To draw along to music.
  • To use one handed tools  to play instruments.



 Become more outgoing with unfamiliar people, in the safe context of their setting. /Show more confidence in new social situations. / Play with one or more other children, extending and elaborating play ideas./ Help to find solutions to conflicts and rivalries. For example, accepting that not everyone can be Spider-Man in the game, and suggesting other ideas. /Increasingly follow rules, understanding why they are important. / Begin to understand how others might be feeling.


Physical Development


  • To talk about their favourite nursery rhymes. 
  • To choose their favourite instruments and sounds.
  • To discuss how a sound makes them feel. 
  • To discuss our feelings and how music makes us feel – happy, sad, scared. 
  • Take turns to play instruments with friends. 



 Use large-muscle movements to wave flags and streamers, paint and make marks./  Are increasingly able to use and remember sequences and patterns of movements which are related to music and rhythm. / Match their developing physical skills to tasks and activities in the setting. / Use one-handed tools and equipment, for example, making snips on paper with scissors/ Be increasingly independent in meeting their own care needs, e.g. brushing teeth, using the toilet, washing and drying their hands thoroughly.




  • To be able to talk about the sizes of instruments
  • To count movements as they play instruments.
  • To orally count a beat.
  • To discuss the shapes of different instruments. 
  • To categorise instruments by shape and size. 
  • To sing number rhymes - 5 little ducks, 5 little speckled frogs, 1,2,3,4,5. Poem - 1,2 buckle my shoe (nursery)



Say one number for each item in order: 1,2,3,4,5. Show ‘finger numbers’ up to 5. / Experiment with their own symbols and marks as well as numerals. /Make comparisons between objects relating to size, length, weight and capacity. / Extend and create ABAB patterns – stick, leaf, stick, leaf. / Notice and correct an error in a repeating pattern. / Begin to describe a sequence of events, real or fictional, using words such as ‘first’, ‘then...


Understanding of the World

  • To use technology to create music e.g. Ipad.
  • To talk about different instruments people in their family play.
  • To listen to music from around the world.
  • To identify animal, transport and weather sounds.
  • To discuss the features observed on instruments e.g. strings, skin, metal, wood. 



Explore how things work./Talk about the differences between materials and changes they notice. Continue to develop positive attitudes about the differences between people (music culture- instruments from different culture)



  • To listen to audio sounds/stories and talk about what sounds they can hear.
  • To begin clapping syllables in their name
  • To identify the sounds in the story Peace at Last. 
  • To fill in the missing words in nursery rhymes.



 Develop their phonological awareness, so that they can: - spot and suggest rhymes - count or clap syllables in a word - recognise words with the same initial sound, such as money and mother / Write some or all of their name./  Write some letters accurately


Expressive Arts and Design

  • To handle instruments correctly
  • To make different sounds with their bodies.
  • To sing familiar songs and nursery rhymes - baa baa, twinkle twinkle, humpty dumpty, wheels on the bus, incy wincy, row row, mary had a little lamb, Miss Polly, I’ m a little teapot. 
  • To create our own songs. 
  • To create movements in response to music.
  • To change sounds by playing instruments in different ways. 



Listen with increased attention to sounds. /Respond to what they have heard, expressing their thoughts and feelings./ Remember and sing entire songs./  Sing the pitch of a tone sung by another person (‘pitch match’)./  Sing the melodic shape (moving melody, such as up and down, down and up) of familiar songs. / Create their own songs, or improvise a song around one they know. / Play instruments with increasing control to express their feelings and ideas.


Key Vocabulary

Ear, hear, sound, loud, quiet, high, low, whisper, shout, talk, sing, listen, slow, fast, soft, 

Maraca, bell, drum, castanet, cymbal, triangle, shaker, guitar, 

Bang, tap, pluck, shake, clunk, 

Animal noises , Transport noises, Environmental noises