Performing Arts - Music

‘Speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord’ (Ephesians 5:19)

Music education can help spark a child's imagination or ignite a lifetime of passion. When you provide a child with new worlds to explore and challenges to tackle, the possibilities are endless. Music education should not be a privilege for a lucky few; it should be a part of every child's world of possibility’. (Hilary Clinton)

Powerful knowledge

  • Students will develop the three disciplines of Performing Music, Composing Music, Listening and Appraising Music.
  • Students have high expectations of themselves in music Performance. Through individual tuition from specialist teachers they learn and practice the necessary techniques to become confident, expressive solo and ensemble performers.
  • Students can express themselves through creative music Composition, demonstrating a full understanding of the compositional techniques and stylistic awareness relating to the chosen genres of music featured in their individual compositions.  
  • Students develop a wide range of Listening and Appraising skills which, through critical analysis enable them to understand and appreciate in context the various genres of music to be studied.
  • Students are taught the three strands which are developed together with the aim to build personal skills students can draw upon to succeed, not only in music lessons but also beyond school life.
  • Students through this in depth study, develop the core principals of Problem solving, Perseverance, Diligence, Team work, organisation and taking responsibility for their musical development and achievement.
  • Students hone social skills, self-evaluation, interpersonal skills, and develop sense of achievement.

Curriculum intent:

The curriculum is structured based on the expectations for GCSE & A Level Music; key concepts and skills required by the end of these courses are fed down into schemes of work from Year 7 upwards. This is designed to raise expectations and standards from the start of Key Stage 3 and ensure that musical knowledge is being understood both practically and theoretically. Year 7, 8 and 9 will study various musical genres, (historical and cultural) and through these different cultures and styles will explore, develop and refine their musical skills. Each project will focus on one of the 3 subject specific skills, so that over the key stage students will return to these concepts enabling them to build and advance their knowledge and skill set further as the progress through the Key Stages. Students gain confidence and develop leadership skills, always being aware of the strengths and weaknesses of their fellow students.

KS3

The Key Stage 3 curriculum is designed to embody cultural capital, giving all students regardless of background a wide range of musical skills to nurture musical appreciation, cultural awareness and understanding of the various genres to be studied which are in turn linked to the GCSE 9-1 specification. Continuity is maintained throughout the year groups as work becomes more challenging utilising the skills developed from previous units of work. High expectations throughout ensure musical progress, personal development and achievement.

Transition learning opportunities

Year 4/5 days – Music/Drama lead sessions. Instrumental/Vocal sessions to assist assessment of performance experience and skills from primary school years.

Amasing Project Storyhouse Theatre Chester – Invaluable performance experience in a professional environment with hundreds of other primary school children and professional musicians and singers

KS4

Our focus is on nurturing a love of, and passion for music through performance, composition/analysis and listening and appraising disciplines. Students have a free choice of Solo and Ensemble performance with an expectation of performance level Grade 4 and above. There are many opportunities to perform both within the class environment and outside venues to build confidence and performance technique. Students compose two pieces of music, one of which is free choice, the other to a given brief set by the examination board. Students are encouraged to experiment with various musical structures and musical elements to give them a firm foundation from which to compose to their full potential. We prepare students to realise their full potential in all aspects of their music studies.

Curriculum enrichment

Our extensive extra-curricular music programme enables and supports musicianship in students of varying abilities, giving opportunities for students to experience a wide variety of genres and musical ensembles. As well as all-inclusive ensembles for mixed ability students who want the enjoyment of performing with others and developing their musical skills, such as ‘VoiceBox (Contemporary Choir), The City Jazz Orchestra & Singers (45 piece Rhythm & Blues Orchestra), These ensembles through weekly rehearsals, concert engagements and annual overseas tours are able to challenge and stretch the students, preparing them for further studies and possible careers in music. School Productions have provided the opportunity to stretch and challenge the students; either by performing in the Production Band, or by auditioning to be a member of the cast, where the expectation is that all cast members and musicians develop performance talent and professionalism. These events are not only to encourage enjoyment in the arts but also for students to learn about professional expectations and performance discipline. There are many other opportunities for students to be involved in musical performance through in school concerts and festival events.

Cross curricular integration

Psychology – The importance of stage presence, and musical communication skills.

Drama – “Being a good audience” linking with our performance opportunities where students perform in front of others and respect is shown by the audience.

English – Verbal presentations of various recording artists, composers. Musical analysis verbal understanding through question and answer sessions.

History – The understanding of music in its cultural and historical context. The emergence of the various art forms over time.

Transition learning opportunities

Year 4/5 days – Music/Drama lead sessions. Instrumental/Vocal sessions to assist assessment of performance experience and skills from primary school years.

Amasing Project Storyhouse Theatre Chester – Invaluable performance experience in a professional environment with hundreds of other primary school children and professional musicians and singers