The music department aims to give all students the opportunity to develop an appreciation and enjoyment of music through involvement in practical and creative activities. The department makes extensive use of musical instruments including keyboards, African drums, ukuleles and tuned percussion instruments, as well as a well-equipped Mac suite to enhance learning and teaching.
All students develop skills in composing, performing, and understanding music across a broad range of topics, all of which incorporate the main elements of music. Pupils are encouraged to perform in front of each other, and are introduced to a wide range of instruments.
Year 7 get their first experience of music through six diverse topics, including: Rhythm Focus, Stories and Cartoons, African Drumming, Ground Bass, Film Music, Ukulele.
Year 8 continue to broaden their skills in music through six topics designed to follow on from year 7, including: Basslines, Reggae, Programme Music, The Beatles, Ukulele, World Music.
This course is designed to encourage students in years 9, 10 and 11 to enjoy and appreciate music through listening, composing and performing. It builds upon skills and knowledge that students have learned in KS3 Music lessons and in any instrumental or vocal lessons.
The GCSE Music course consists of 3 units:
Unit 1: Performing Music (30% of the final mark)
Students are required to practise and record both a solo and a group performance at any time during the course. Performances may be on any instrument and in any style.
Unit 2: Composing Music (30% of the final mark)
Students are required to produce two pieces of music that they have written themselves at any time during the course. Help will be given to use computers to realise and record ideas. Examples of recent GCSE compositions include pop songs, African drumming pieces and instrumental pieces for students’ own instruments.
Unit 3: Listening to Music (40% of the final mark)
Students sit a 90 minute exam at the end of the course during which students will answer questions on eight set pieces.
The music department offers instrumental lessons and a variety of extra-curricular activities including composition workshops, choirs and the school production.