Head of Department: Ms Caitlin Meyer

Exam board: Edexcel

 

Power standards

1) Students can sing with accuracy and stylistic integrity

2) Students can improvise appropriately and musically with stylistic integrity

3)Students can compose a piece of music which has a clear sense of style, structure, and purpose.

4) Students can perform an appropriately challenging part showing awareness of musicality

5) Students can communicate the principles of music theory through performance, analysis, and composition

6) Students can demonstrate understanding of the relationship between music and the world around them.

 

Key stage 3 curriculum

Our aim at AGFS is to ensure that every student should gain the necessary skills to be a good rounded musician. They are given the opportunity to create, perform and critique music from around the world and various genres. Above all, their experience of music making should be fun, challenging and exciting.

 

Year 7:

 

Content covered

What is being assessed in the end of term exam

Term 1

  • Introduction to music and musical instruments: inspiring participation beyond the classroom.
  • Composition and DAW early preparations - GCSE considerations
  • Rhythm, Ostinato, and Riffs

(a) clapping rhythms

(b) notating rhythms

(c) layered ostinato composition

  • Musical instrument demonstrations and tasters
  • Pitch (a) sight-singing pitches (b) notating pitches

1a. Notating rhythms listening test

1b. Notating pitches listening test

1c. Terminology Quiz

Practical assessment: composition and performance of original ostinati

 

Term 2

  • Introduction to keyboards: performing a melody (Frere Jacques)
  • Melody writing: composing question and answer melodies
  • Class concert solo performance

2a. Solo performance

2b. Question and answer melody

composition

2c. Terminology Quiz

Term 3

  •  Instruments of the orchestra: Britten Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra
  • Listening and appraising practice and revision.
  • The elements of music
  • Programme music: ‘mood’ composition

3a. Elements of music listening test

3b. End of year listening exam

Practical Assessment: compositional practice

3c. Terminology Quiz

 

Year 8:

 

Content covered

What is being assessed in the end of term exam

Term 1

  • Identify, perform and

create hooks, riffs and

ostinatos within a

musical structure.

  • Recognise their own

contributions to group

performances taking a

solo part.

  • Evaluate how purpose

can affect the way

music is used.

  • Perform existing hooks,

riffs and ostinatos and

create their own with

support.

Practical Assessment:

Compose and perform an ostinato in small ensemble settings.

Theory Assessment

Terminology Quiz

Term 2

  • Pentatonic melodies: Bartok Dance Suite ‘folk’ dance

(a) Sight-singing pentatonic melodies

(b) Listening: Bartok Dance Suite ‘folk’ dance

(c) Notating pentatonic pitches and rhythms revision

(d) Composing a pentatonic folk dance

2a. Notating pentatonic pitches and

rhythms test

2b. Pentatonic folk

dance composition

Term 3

  • Opera: Bizet Carmen

(a) Listening: the characters and plot of Bizet’s Carmen

(b) Performing: the toreador song (voice) and prelude (keyboard)

(c) Habanera composition: using major and minor keys

  • Class concert solo performance

(a) Listening and analysis: Carmen Prelude

(b) Entr’acte composition: combining melodies and broken chords

3a. End of year listening exam

3b. Variations on a Classical march composition

 

Year 9:

 

Content covered

What is being assessed in the end of term exam

Term 1

  • Ground bass

(a) Ground bass performing: Pachelbel Canon, Stand By Me

(b) Pitches, chords and key signatures

(c) Ground bass / 4 chord song composition

  • Music for stage and screen: Video game music

1a. Pitches, chords and key

signatures test

1b. Practical assessment: Ground bass composition

1c. Solo performance

Term 2

  • Minimalism

(a) Listening: Steve Reich and Philip Glass

(b) Minimalism composition

  • The Blues

(a) Performing: improvising and the 12-bar blues chord sequence

(b) Listening and analysing: Louis Armstrong West End Blues

2a. Minimalism composition

2b. West End Blues listening test

2c. Blues performing practical assessment.

Term 3

  • Solo performance
  • Listening and appraising exam practice and revision: GCSE Preparation
  • Bandlab electronic music composition and

sequencing.

  • The most influential musicians of all time:

listening, research and presentation.

3a. Solo performance

3b. End of year listening exam

 

 

Key stage 4 curriculum

The GCSE Music curriculum is broken into three strands of performing (30%), composing (30%) and listening and appraising (40%). Students must be confident enough to perform on a solo instrument and must commit to take peripatetic lessons.

Students will study the Edexcel GCSE Music Specification over Year 10 and Year 11.

Performance:

  • 1 solo performance

Composition:

  • 1 free composition in any genre

All coursework is to be completed during Year 11, so students will begin their work on these units in Year 10.

Listening and Appraising:

Written exam on eight pieces and listening extracts from four areas of study

  1. Classical Music from 1750-1820
  2. Vocal Music
  3. Music for Stage and Screen
  4. Fusion

 

Year 10:

 

Topics

What is being assessed in the end of term exam

Term 1

Music for Stage and Screen

Performance

Students will be expected to perform a solo piece on their main instrument or voice.

Composition

Students will study compositional skills: chord construction and sequences, cadences, structure and instrumentation

Listening and Appraising

Students will study the two set pieces from this genre: “Music for a While” and “Killer Queen”. Related listening to further contextualise the genre will be studied to recognise key features of the genre.

 

Solo performance

 

 

Basic composition techniques

 

Listening and appraising of two set works

Term 2

Vocal Music

Performance

Students will rehearse and perform in an ensemble situation

Composition

Students will complete their “free” composition in a genre of their choosing.

Listening and Appraising

Students will study the two set pieces from this genre: “Defying Gravity” from the musical Wicked and “Main Title/Rebel Blockade Runner”. Related listening to further contextualise the genre will be studied to recognise key features of the genre.

 

 

 

 

Ensemble performance

 

Free composition draft 1

 

Listening and appraising, four set works

Term 3

Fusion

Performance

Students will perform a traditional West African piece on djembes as part of a class ensemble as well as developing their own instrumental studies further in instrumental lessons and workshops.

Composition

Students will study compositional techniques specific to the four areas of study in preparation for the free brief composition.

Listening and Appraising

Students will study the two set pieces from this genre: “Release” and “Samba”. Related listening to further contextualise the genre will be studied to recognise key features of the genre.

 

 

 

Solo performance

 

Completion of free composition

 

Listening and appraising of 6 set works and unfamiliar listening

 

Year 11:

 

Topics

What is being assessed in the end of term exam

Term 1

Instrumental Music 1700–1820

Performance

Students will work in small ensembles to rehearse their final performance of their ensemble piece.

Composition

Students will select a brief set by the exam board and compose a piece of music to adhere to the brief.

Listening and Appraising

Students will study the two set pieces from this genre:

  • JS Bach: 3rd Movement from Brandenburg Concerto no. 5 in D major
  • L van Beethoven: 1st Movement from Piano Sonata no. 8 in C minor ‘Pathétique’

Related listening to further contextualize the genre will be studied to recognize key features of the genre.

 

 

Ensemble performance

 

Brief composition

 

Full listening and appraising

Term 2

Completion of Coursework

Performance

Students will work with their instrumental teacher to rehearse and perform their final solo performance.

Composition

Students will work in controlled conditions to complete both their compositions.

Listening and Appraising

Students will re-visit each of the 8 set works and will complete practice exam papers and essay questions to prepare for the written exam.

 

 

 

Final solo and ensemble performance

 

Final brief composition

 

Full listening and appraising

Term 3

Revision

 

Listening and Appraising

Students will re-visit each of the 8 set works and will complete practice exam papers and essay questions to prepare for the written exam

 

 

 

 

GCSE examination

 

 

Feedback

Written feedback is given every 5-6 lessons as a minimum and verbal feedback is given every lesson. Students received personalised individual feedback on coursework components in KS4 and written feedback on theory work and summative assessments.

 

Ambition and careers

A GCSE in Music can provide many desirable skills that are looked highly upon by employers, such as: commitment, resilience, teamwork and dedication. A GCSE in Music compliments other subjects and can lead to an A Level or BTEC in Music, Music technology, Music production or performing arts.