What Is A Common Approach?

A Common Approach is a vocal and instrumental curriculum that:

  • encourages a holistic approach to teaching and learning
  • provides broad and balanced family-specific Programmes of Study
  • suggests learning objectives and related teaching activities
  • strengthens agreed levels and standards of learner attainment
  • aids progression and differentiation through its spiral structure
  • supports learning in a variety of contexts
  • offers guidance on planning and assessment

Five Programmes of Study identify the progression of musical skills from beginner to advanced levels. For each Programme of Study, learning objectives are suggested, together with related teaching activities. Some of the objectives and activities are generic, others are specific to instruments or instrument families. Programmes of Study are provided for:

The progression of technical and musical skills in A Common Approach is relevant to all vocal and instrumental teaching, including individual, small-group, large-group and whole-class lessons, with suggested activities taking into account this variety of contexts. Whole-class lessons sometimes focus on teaching the wider music curriculum through an instrument, and the holistic approach of this resource supports that. Where learners progress to group or individual lessons following their whole-class experience, the use of A Common Approach in both situations will support a smooth transition. 

In the short video below, editor and coordinator Catherine Brentnall asks ‘what is A Common Approach?’ and introduces how you can use it in your teaching practice.

For a quick walkthrough of the site and an introduction to the Programmes of Study, take a look at our other videos Exploring the A Common Approach resource and The Programmes of Study.