Key Stage 3

At key stage 3, pupils have two lessons of music per fortnight and follow the National Curriculum in order to develop their skills in performing, composing and appraising music focusing on the musical elements.

Music is a practical subject designed to give pupils the opportunity to work with each other and express themselves through music developing their imagination and creativity.  Pupils are encouraged to engage with and enjoy making music through active involvement in performing, composing and appraising and explore a wide range of stimuli, develop their ability to communicate and express their creative ideas and reflect on their work.

Music brings many benefits to learners’ health and well-being, some of which come directly from the intrinsic pleasure of making music.  Music develops learners’ self-esteem and confidence, resilience and perseverance, self-discipline and commitment.  Pupils also develop personal qualities such as being able to work in a group, the ability to communicate and co-operate effectively with others.  They will understand and participate in the creative process required to produce successful performance work.  Music also contributes to learners’ spiritual and emotional development, and promotes awareness and valuing of their own and other cultures.

During music lessons all students are develop critical thinking and problem solving skills through the processes of planning, developing and reflecting. Students complete this over time and during live music-making.  Students choose suitable resources for performing and composing, create and develop musical ideas and reflect on their methods of working.

Pupils will gain experience on a number of instruments in a class situation.  They will study basic violin and cello, tuned and un-tuned percussion looking at world music including Gamelan, African Drumming, Renaissance lute duets and the world of Jazz and blues using keyboards and guitars.


Key Stage 4

At KS4 students will study the WJEC GCSE music syllabus.  They will continue to develop the skills highlighted in Key Stage 3 – performing, composing and appraising.

The WJEC specification encourages an integrated approach to the three distinct disciplines of performing, composing and appraising through four interrelated areas of study.  The four areas of study are designed to develop knowledge and understanding of music through the study of a variety of genres and styles in a wider context.

  • Musical Forms and Devices
  • Music for Ensemble
  • Film Music
  • Popular Music

The aims of the course are:

  • To develop candidates’ interest and enjoyment of music
  • To develop candidates’ own musical interests and skills including an understanding of how to make music individually and in groups
  • To enable candidates to evaluate their own and others’ music
  • To develop understanding and appreciation of a range of different kinds of music
  • To develop broader life-skills and attributes including critical and creative thinking, cultural understanding, self-discipline, self-confidence and self-motivation.

Extra-Curricular Music

We have a large number of pupils involved in extra-curricular music.  They support a full SATB choir, orchestra, jazz ensemble and rock band.  We have a strong tradition of school productions that are run by the music department and have included Little Shop of Horrors, West Side Story, ‘13’, Jesus Christ Superstar, Guys and Dolls, Beauty and the Beast, Hairspray.


Instrumental Lessons

We have a strong team of peripatetic staff that offer tuition on piano, stings, voice, brass, woodwind, drums and guitar.