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In This Section

MUSIC

The Music Department at Highcrest works in recently refurbished and re-equipped teaching and learning accommodation, comprising one large classroom three smaller practise rooms and one recording studio. Students have access to a wide range of instruments, including Steel Pans, a full Samba Batucada, Indian Dhol drums and African Djembe drums. Electronic keyboards are supplemented by Apple MacBookPro laptop computers, using Sibelius, Cubase and Garage Band software. A range of instrumental tuition is available, both individually and in groups. The Department currently runs a Choir, an Orchestra and African drumming accompaniment with xylophones ensemble and contributes to school events and regular concerts. Students can also learn instruments on an individual basis and are encouraged to initiate their own projects.

Music Curriculum

During the course of KS3, the curriculum sets out to achieve a number of things: to impart a set of key skills in music, to enhance pupils’ creativity to broaden their understanding, appreciation and application of a wide variety of musical forms. In addition to classroom work, pupils are encouraged to take part in extra-curricular music activity, such as the school choir, orchestra and other clubs.

YEAR 7

During Year 7, pupils’ understanding of music is explored through a set of descriptive processes, exploring verbal description, pictorial and graphic representation, and finally through conventional music notation. Sound production is explored scientifically, transferring this understanding to how orchestral and other instruments work and sound. Pupils explore musical composition and basic structures on electronic keyboards and rhythmic work through African drumming.

YEAR 8

Pupils build on skills acquired in Year 7 and start to broaden their musical cultural horizons. Rhythmic and structural understanding is extended by composing using repeating patterns (Ostinato). Relating words to music and acquiring an understanding of basic harmony are achieved during a study of Reggae. Playing and composing for large groups on tuned and untuned percussion is addressed during an exploration of Indonesian Gamelan music and extended rhythmically when playing and composing Brazilian Samba. Extended compositional form builds on previous studies through working on theme and variations. The KS3 curriculum is intended to provide a skillset in music which will stand pupils in good stead should they opt not to continue with music at the end of Year 8. It also offers a sound preparation for those students who wish to extend their studies into Years 9 , 10 and 11.

YEAR 9, 10, 11

GCSE Music looks at four broad areas of study, each of which covers a wide variety of topics. These are: 1. “My Music”, which looks at music relating to each pupil’s chosen instrument; 2. “Shared Music”, which looks at music for ensembles; 3. “Music for Dance”; 4. “Descriptive Music”, which incorporates Film Music and Programme Music. Students extend their skills in performing, composing, listening and appraising throughout the course, and prepare to deliver two assessments each in performing and composing and prepare for a time-limited composition task and a listening examination at the end of the course. Students have access to a range of music technology throughout.  The Music Department at Highcrest works in recently refurbished and re-equipped teaching and learning accommodation, comprising one large classroom three smaller practise rooms and one recording studio. Students have access to a wide range of instruments, including Steel Pans, a full Samba Batucada, Indian Dhol drums and African Djembe drums. Electronic keyboards are supplemented by Apple MacBookPro laptop computers, using Sibelius, Cubase and Garage Band software. A range of instrumental tuition is available, both individually and in groups. The Department currently runs a Choir, an Orchestra and African drumming accompaniment with xylophones ensemble and contributes to school events and regular concerts. Students can also learn instruments on an individual basis and are encouraged to initiate their own projects.