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The Music Department aims to develop the skills needed to become confident and proficient musicians. Each student is required to develop their skills of listening and appreciation, performing and composing, using a wide range of techniques and instruments from different styles and genres of music. Teamwork and communication skills are very much encouraged throughout the Key Stage. This will create individuals with a sound knowledge of how music works, both in this country and around the world, and provide opportunities for students to develop their musical tastes.

Key Stage 3 Summary

In Year 7, the building blocks of music are introduced, focused on Rhythm, Pulse, Pitch and patterns. Every opportunity is given for students to use their imagination when creating and performing music, using a wide range of keyboard and percussion instruments. An introduction to music from other cultures is given through the study of Chinese Music and the Pentatonic Scale.

In Year 8, there is a general focus on mood and atmosphere in Music, and students explore how to create atmosphere effectively through music by looking at music that has a theme / story attached to it. Students carry this on to look at carnival music (Samba) from Brazil, which has its own unique style and atmosphere. Music Technology is then used to consolidate this work by creating musical Variations, using a different medium to create and manipulate sounds.

In Year 9, the focus is on music written for a particular purpose. Through this, students study what a powerful affect music can have on others, and how it can manipulate thoughts / emotions through Film Music, Blues and Popular Song. Students also continue their study of Music Technology to prepare them for the GCSE course.

Curriculum Overview

Year 7
Year 8

Year 9

Autumn Term

Rhythm and Pulse


Music and Space: The Planets

Film Music

Blues and Jazz
Spring Term
Chinese Music
Music Technology - using Cubase (focus on Remixes)
Summer Term

Instruments of the Orchestra

Pictures at an Exhibition - Music and Art.
Music Technology - using Cubase (focus on musicalĀ  Variations)

Music on Adverts

Popular Song Writing


Key Stage 4 Summary

All students study a 2 year GCSE course, at the end of which they will sit a written paper involving listening questions / extending writing. All GCSE students produce 2 compositions, one in Year 10, the other in Year 11, which supports the skills being covered in the listening / theory paper. Each pupil undertakes 2 performances, one as a solo, the other being performed in an "ensemble" with others, developing teamwork and listening skills. Many opportunities are given for GCSE students to perform throughout the year to showcase their talents.

Curriculum Overview

Year 10
Year 11
Autumn Term

Listening skills - focus on the Areas of Study: Harmony / Tonality, Rhythm / Metre, Instruments of the Orchestra Composition 1 (part 1)

Listening Skills - focus on the strand: Popular Music of the 20th / 21st Century

Composition 2

Ensemble performance (part 1)
Spring Term

Listening Skills - focus on Areas of Study: Form / Structure, Texture / Melody

Composition 1 (part 2)

Listening skills - focus on the strand: World Music

Ensemble performance (part 2)

Composition 2 (Appraisal)

Summer Term

Listening Skills - focus on Areas of Study: Timbre and Dynamics
Strand: The western Classical Tradition.

Solo Performance 1

Exam preparation


Mrs P McElroy (Head of Music)

Mrs J Woods (Teacher of Music)