Mr P Lewis – Head of Department

About Music

The Key Stage 3 course is made up of three components: Performing, Composing and Appraising.

In Year 7, pupils are taught through three main activities: Performing, Composing and Listening. Pupils study modules such as ‘An Introduction to Music’ and ‘Music of the American West’. The performing activities begin with keyboard work and develop into Classroom Orchestra performances. Pupils perform pieces such as ‘New Surroundings’ and ‘Barn Dance’. Pupils listen to music such as ‘Pachelbel’s Canon’ and ‘Hoe Down’.

Pupils also learn to perform through singing e.g. ‘Three Popular Chants’, ‘Skip To My Lou’ and ‘Croen Y Dafad Felan’. Instruments such as keyboards, tuned percussion, guitars and drum-kit are available to pupils.  Pieces performed include ‘New Surroundings’, ‘Barn Dance’ and ‘Robots’. Pupils also listen to a variety of music ranging from ‘Hoe down’ to ‘Adiemus’.

During Year 8 pupils learn to understand and perform in triple and quadruple time. Pupils perform pieces such as ‘Cartoon Capers’ and ‘Blues Waltz’. Pupils listen to a variety of extracts which use different time signatures. They also learn to perform through singing e.g. ‘Oom Pah Pah’ and performed instrumentally through classroom orchestra on a choice of instruments which included keyboards, tuned percussion, guitars and drum-kit. Pieces included are ‘Cartoon Capers’ and ‘Star Wars’.

Pupils also compose music with other pupils in a group, individually through improvisation and in pairs, through the use of I.C.T. and listen to a variety of music ranging from the ‘Raiders March’ to ‘Indian Raga’.  Music is also explored through a variety of topics including ‘Timekeeping’, ‘Fanfares’, ‘Music In Wales’ and ‘Music From India’.

In Year 9 pupils are taught the influence of African music. Pupils perform and appraise Jazz and perform pieces which reflect the influence of the syncopated rhythms of African music. Pupils also learn about Spirituals. Pieces performed include ‘Swing That Music’ and ‘Going Home’. Pupils compose through improvisation and pupils also listen to extracts from several styles of Jazz.

Jazz pieces listened to include ‘Swing That Music’ and pop pieces such as ‘All Time Low’, ‘Someone Like You’ and ‘Hallelujah’.

At GCSE, there are three strands of learning: the Western Classical Tradition, Popular Music of the 20th & 21st Centuries (includes a wide range of pop, film and musicals) and World Music.

During the course, pupils learn about and develop their performing, composing and listening skills, Rhythm & Metre, Harmony & Tonality, Texture & Melody and Timbre & Dynamics.

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