Curriculum Leader: Miss H. Durham


The Music Department provides opportunities for all students to develop their performing, composing and listening skills. Students are encouraged to develop their confidence, independence and teamwork while exploring instruments such as the ukulele, keyboard and African drumming through a range of musical genres.


Students are encouraged to listen widely and experiment creatively with musical ideas, performing to a high standard in every lesson.


The Music Department is proud to support and extend the emerging skills and talents of our students through a broad extra-curricular programme and provision of peripatetic instrumental lessons.


We offer the following instrumental lessons in school:

  • Strings
  • Classical guitar
  • Electric/acoustic guitar
  • Singing
  • Piano
  • Drums
  • Woodwind
  • Brass
  • Theory/composition


Please contact Miss Durham directly by emailing if you would like to enquire about individual musical instrument lessons in school, or students can collect a letter from the Music Department in school, giving further details.


The Music Department fosters a sense of community cohesion through school concerts, extra-curricular activities and events with the wider community.


Extra-curricular music clubs, dates/times to be confirmed: Keyboard club, Orchestra, Jazz Band, Choir, GCSE Support.


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Throughout Year 7 and 8 students develop their performing, composing and listening skills through a range of musical genres. Students have the opportunity to work independently, in groups and as pairs, with the opportunity to explore a range of instruments. The Year 7 and 8 curriculum is designed to encourage students to develop a passion for music while preparing them for Eduqas GCSE Music should they wish to continue with their musical studies at this level.


Year 7

During Year 7 students will explore the following projects, each culminating in a half-termly assessment.

  • Find Your Voice – developing singing technique and singing as an ensemble, while also exploring beatboxing and body percussion.
  • African Drumming Skills – developing ensemble skills, rhythm reading and rhythmic composition using djembe drums.
  • Keyboard Skills – developing note reading skills, culminating in a performance of a piece of music on the keyboard.
  • Written in the Stars – exploring rap, lyric writing, and developing ensemble performance skills.
  • Ukulele Skills – introduction to ukulele chords, developing tablature reading and ensemble skills.
  • Carnival of the Animals – students combine the skills they have gained throughout the year to compose a theme for a chosen animal, learning how to notate their music.


Year 8

During Year 8 students will explore the following projects, each culminating in a half-termly assessment:

  • Programme Music – Building on composition skills developed in ‘Carnival of the Animals’ in Y7; developing appraisal skills.
  • Ukulele Skills – developing performing skills and reading tablature notation.
  • Film Music – developing composition skills. Students will explore how to create a piece of music to fit with a given film clip, exploring the techniques used by film and video game composers. Students will explore music technology to create compositions.
  • Blues – exploring the roots of Jazz, Blues and Rock ‘n’ Roll music; developing performance, listening and composition skills.
  • Reggae – developing ensemble skills through a Reggae performance, exploring the historical context of this style.
  • Fusion Music – learning about how styles of music can be fused together to create new genres of music, such as Bhangra music.


Year 9

  • Video game music – exploring music technology to compose a video game soundtrack.
  • Stand by Me – using the song ‘Stand by Me’ to explore composition and arrangement techniques, and the components which make up a song.
  • Reggae – In 2020-21, Y9 students will explore this style, having not explored this in Y8 2019-20.
  • Electronic Dance Music – developing students’ appraisal skills by listening to a variety of music, and using music technology to explore EDM composition techniques.
  • Battle of the Bands – students combine the skills they have gained through KS3 in an ensemble performance of a chosen song.

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Eduqas GCSE Music (for students completing GCSE Music in or after June 2021)



To develop 3 areas of musical skills and knowledge.

  • Composing
  • Performing
  • Listening with understanding

Type of Work


Composition can be for all types of instruments. You will build on the composition skills learned in KS3 to create music for your chosen instrument/s. You will explore how to write a detailed score using Sibelius and Noteflight software, as well as how to develop ideas practically.


Performance: you will complete two assessed performances. You can either perform two ensemble pieces, or one solo and one ensemble. You should aim to perform a piece at ABRSM/Rock School (or other exam boards) grade 3 standard or above. Pieces of grade 4 standard and above will enable you to access the higher marks more securely.


Listening: Preparation for the Listening paper will involve learning about, and responding to, a wide variety of styles of music. There are 2 set pieces of music which you will study in detail for the final exam. The remainder of the exam involves responding to unfamiliar pieces of music and applying your understanding of the elements of music.


Eduqas Syllabus and Assessment

  1. Composition (30%): 2 pieces, each at least 1.5 minutes in length.
  2. Performance (30%): One solo piece and one ensemble performance OR two ensemble pieces.
  3. Listening (40%): Based around 4 Areas of Study..


Current Y11 students are only required to submit one composition and one performance, in line with adaptations to this year’s GCSE course. There is no requirement to submit an ensemble performance this year. This only applies to current Y11 students, not Y10.


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