Head of Faculty: Mr A Psirides
Head of Department: Miss H Townsend
Level of teaching: Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4, Key Stage 5 at The New Sixth

As a Catholic school, whose missions and values are underpinned by the Christian faith, our primary aim in the Music Department is the promotion of the human person. We believe that each student is uniquely gifted and intelligent, with the dignity of a child of God.  Our purpose as a Department is to unfold and nurture the gifts and intelligence of each student, enabling them to flourish as rounded individuals.

In studying Music, students gain a variety of practical and creative thinking skills that will help to prepare them for life-long learning. Students are challenged to constantly integrate the doing, the thinking, and the feeling, and to grow in confidence and self-esteem.

Music is a distinct art form with its own history, body of knowledge, aesthetic values, and cultural contexts that can help students to gain an understanding of the world they inhabit.  We aim through Music to enable students to respect other people.  Students develop their understanding of the Gospel Values, explore their own identity and express their responses.  Students are encouraged to reflect upon the work of the department and act as ambassadors in the wider community.

We are committed to making our lessons relevant, interesting and filled with enthusiasm in order to inspire students and strive for excellence. The quality of teaching and learning in Music will develop students’ sense of personal fulfillment and help them to achieve a positive sense of self.

In Music, students are encouraged to work well with others and shine to achieve personal goals.  We are committed to making our lessons relevant and interesting in order to develop and encourage our student, in which we strive for excellence to meet and exceed our targets.

The quality and the content of teaching and learning in Music will prepare students for life after St Gregory’s, in whatever form that may take.

Instrumental Lessons:

  • Brass
  • Clarinet
  • Voice
  • Violin
  • Viola
  • Flute
  • Guitar
  • Cello
  • Piano
  • Drum Kit & Percussion
  • Saxophone

Key Stage 3 (Years 7-9)

Key Stage 3 Music has been designed to encourage all students to develop in a safe environment, a wide range of musical skills through the study and appreciation of music from many styles, and cultures. The key areas of focus throughout the course are Performance, Composition and Listening/Appraising Music. This balance enables every student the opportunity to gain an insight into a variety of musical genres as well as develop crucial skills in which to prepare for furthering their musical studies at Key Stage 4.

Year 7 Overview

  • Introduction’ – Elements of Music, Sibelius 7 Software, Whole Class Singing.
  • ‘Notation and form’ – how music is written down and how sections of a piece are organised
  • Programme Music’ – music that tells a story!
  • ‘Instruments of the Orchestra’ – from their early beginnings to the present day!
  • Gospel – the history and development of Gospel songs.
  • The Folk Tradition’ – an insight into folk music from around the world

Year 8 Overview

  • Improvisation – learning how to make up melodies on the spot, and incorporate this into Latin jazz music
  • ‘Blue Notes’ – a detailed insight into the world of Jazz & Blues
  • Music for Special Occasions’ – how to write music for that specific occasion!
  • Rock and Roll – a look at the history of popular music in the 1950s
  • Adverts/Jingles’ – writing music for the media
  •  ‘Polyrhythm into Minimalism’ – how the small ideas create something incredible!
  • ‘Reggae’ – from its early beginnings, stylistic features and of course…Bob Marley.
  • 4-Chord Songs’ – how chords have shaped the music we listen to!

Year 9 Overview

  • ‘Film Music’ – listening, performing and composing music for a given genre of film.
  • Music for sporting events – playing music that has been used in sports events and the Olympics
  • Britpop – popular music in the 1990s, its influences from the 1960s
  • Music in the 21st Century – an overview of music since 2000, playing some of the latest chart songs
  • Live Lounge’ – Students choose a popular song and follow the concept of Musical Futures, working in an ensemble or as a soloist
  • ‘Radio’ – looking at the music industry and creating a radio show.

Key Stage 4 (Years 10-11)

Course Code: GCSE Music Edexcel 1MU0
Exam Board Specification:

This course encourages students to become effective and independent learners and critical and reflective thinkers. It allows the use of music technology in performance and as a compositional tool. It is a good preparation for further musical study and provides a foundation for Advanced Subsidiary and Advanced GCE in Music and Music Technology.

This course aims to: –

  • Encourage students to be inspired, moved and changed by following a broad, coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study;
  • Develop broader life skills and attributes, including critical and creative thinking, aesthetic sensitivity, emotional awareness, cultural understanding, self-discipline, self-confidence and self-motivation;
  • Enable students to engage actively in the study of music;
  • Develop musical skills and interests, including the ability to make music individually and in groups;
  • Enable students to understand and appreciate a range of different kinds of music.

A wide range of musical styles will be encountered throughout the course, which will be divided between practical and written study. The course is divided into three units.

Unit 1 – Performing Music 

One solo and one ensemble performance. 

Unit 2 – Composing Music

Two compositions, or two arrangements,
One composition and one arrangement.

Unit 3 – Listening and Appraising

Key Stage 5 (Years 12-13)

Course Code: A Level Music Edexcel 9MU0
Exam Board Specification:

Students who take this course:
Students will have at least a Grade 6 in GCSE Music. They will also have the ability to play an instrument, including voice, to a minimum of Grade 5 standard. Grade 5 Theory of Music is also strongly recommended.

Course Description:
This course is intended to be stimulating and enriching for students and to provide an excellent basis for life-long learning, higher education courses and progression into the music profession. At A Level, students experience and further enhance their knowledge in all three main musical disciplines; performing, composing and listening and understanding.

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