WHY STUDY MUSIC?
Music is open to everyone entering Year 10. Music focuses on performing, composing and developing an understanding of how music is made.
WHAT DOES THE COURSE INVOLVE?
The course offers opportunities for instrumentalists and singers to further their skills in solo performance and ensemble work in addition to learning about and using various techniques seen in a range of musical styles. You will compose music in different styles, initially starting on simple building blocks and improving on your work overtime. Lessons are generally split between completing composition coursework and developing their understanding of music for the exam (end of Year 11), with performance mostly worked on independently or with the peripatetic music staff. Hedingham School’s Music Department have a friendly team of excellent visiting music teachers; you will receive school-funded instrumental lessons each week to help build your performance skills over the duration of the course. In addition to this, we will be continuing the exciting opportunities that previous students have had in recent years, such as being involved in trips, workshops and concerts (including the next whole school musical).
HOW WILL I BE ASSESSED?
Performance (Coursework): Have you ever thought about all of the things that need to happen before a gig or concert? Over the course of this unit, you will explore performance skills and make decisions as you prepare for performance. After a year, your skills are assessed as a solo and ensemble performance. 30%
Unit 2 Composition (Coursework): Have you ever wondered who writes the music that surrounds us? This unit will require you to develop a portfolio of basic composition ideas, some of which will be developed further and two of which will be completed. 30%
Unit 3 Appraising Music: (Externally assessed exam) What is the formula to the best music in the world? In an hour long exam you will answer a range of questions to show your knowledge of this question. You will spend time learning about the context and construction of different styles of music, such as classical, pop/rock, and film music. 40%
WHAT ELSE SHOULD I CONSIDER?
GCSE Music is an ideal course for anyone who enjoys music, is interested in performing and composing music and learning about how music works. You should be prepared to work hard but also have fun! The course is within a streamlined music curriculum (with Key Stage 3 having previously been introduced to some of the course’s concepts) and there is a pathway progression to A-Level Music and BTEC Level 3 in Music or Performing Arts from Year 12. The course also develops a range of skills, techniques and personal qualities essential for working life, in music or otherwise.
All students have experienced playing instruments in Key Stage 3 and there is no expectation that you need to be a certain performance level on an instrument you simply need a desire to want to get better. For example, you will take responsibility for attending the school-funded music lessons and practising your instrumental skills in your own time. You will also need to remember that you will be expected to perform in front of small audiences from time to time during lessons (peers and music teachers).
For further details of this course, see Mr Cull, Leader of Music.