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Head of Department
Mr R Butler
Organisation of the subject:
Students have 1 lesson per week.
Key Concepts (The big ideas underpinning the subject)
Music is an expressive subject whose effect is primarily subconscious. As such, it has a universal appeal which we seek to develop and formalise within the consciousness of the pupil.
Learning in Music at UVHS is an integrated practical experience and involves students gaining the confidence and ability to:
- Compose: create and develop their own ideas stylishly in a wide variety of genres.
- Perform: play their own compositions on a variety of instruments accurately in front of others, as well as pieces by other composers.
- Evaluate: listen to, and constructively comment on, the work of other students as well as pieces by established composers/songwriters. Also, refine their own compositions as a result of careful formative self-assessment.
What will your child be learning?
- Vocal and instrumental skills
- Rehearsal and performance techniques
- Improvisation skills
- Exploration of the basic elements of music: melody, harmony, rhythm, texture, structure and instrumentation and context.
1. Basic Elements
2. Graphic Scores
3. Rhythm & Notation
5. Music of China
6. Programme Music
Key 'Learning Capacities' in this subject
- Be able to work both independently and collaboratively to create original ideas and explore and evaluate a variety of musical styles.
- Rehearse work thoroughly, persevering with challenging passages and, as a result, perform to a high standard.
- Gain the confidence to interact with, and perform in front of, an audience.
- Develop social skills such as offering ideas to others in a constructive manner, sharing thoughts with peers to overcome problems and both listening to and respecting the views of others.
- The application of musical techniques learnt in previous years to shape and enhance both composition and performance work.
How will your child be learning?
- Individual, paired and group practical work to create and develop a variety of compositional and performance tasks.
- Whole class discussion and evaluations.
- Individual and small-group teacher/student learning conversations.
- Using classroom percussion instruments, keyboards, own instruments and computer software (Mixcraft and Sibelius).
How will learning be assessed?
- Half termly assessments of both composition and performance work through a project spanning most, if not all of the half-term.
- Learning conversations during lessons (often recorded in exercise books) on how your child’s work is being refined and developed through the rehearsal process and what they can do to improve.
What can you do to support your child?
- Speak to your child about what they have been learning.
- Consider them taking instrumental and/or vocal lessons—the school offers tuition on most instruments and over 25% of the student body take advantage of this.
- Encourage them to take part in extracurricular musical activities both in and out of school.
- Encourage your child to experience live music.
Equipment needed for this subject
- Pen, pencil, planner and exercise book.
- UVHS hosts a vast range of extracurricular music clubs offering a multitude of opportunities outside the classroom as well as regular concert trips across the North-West and beyond to see the best in concerts and musical drama.