There is an exciting and varied curriculum for music at Icknield High School. A wide variety of topics are taught giving a firm grounding for pupils wishing to take music to GCSE. In years 7 and 8 pupils have one lesson of an hour per week. Year 9, 10 and 11 pupils have five hours per fortnight and the teaching is based around performing, composing and study of set works (listening and appraising). Exam board is Edexcel. All lessons are held in the music block which has two classrooms: MU1, the performance room, MU2 the technology room and an additional five practice studios which are also used for instrumental teaching and small group work.

KS3 Music Curriculum

Year 7, each module of work is for one half-term’s learning and is organised around 6 lessons.

Module 1 Samba (UnderstandingSchool Band 14 Rhythm)
Module 2 Play your own tune (Understanding Pitch)
Module 3 Hari Krishna Hari Rama (Learning about the effect of Tempo)
Module 4 Learning about the effect of Dynamics
Module 5 Building Structures
Module 6 Understanding timbre and texture

Year 8, each module of work is for one half-term’s learning.

Module 1 Understanding the Blues
Module 2 Development of style in Early Music, Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque
Module 3 Learning about North Indian Classical Music – Raga
Module 4 Learning about the standard conventions of Classical Music
Module 5 The musical language of Africa
Module 6 Understanding the Romantic Style

Year 9, each module of work is for one half-term’s learning.

Module 1 Music and Words (Rap Project)
Module 2 Folk music of the British Isles
Module 3 Music in the media
Module 4 Performance Skills
Module 5 20th century music
Module 6 20th century popular music

KS4 – GCSE Music –

Course descriptor

This course has three elements:

Performing 30%
Composing 30%
Listening and Appraising 40%

The performing and composing are coursework elements and are assessed under controlled conditions. Listening and Appraising is assessed in an examination at the end of the course. There are four areas of study, each with set works (specific pieces of music) which are listened to studied and analysed. These provide focus for study in the Listening and Appraising paper.

Performing 30%

This requires students to develop their skills in performing both as a soloist and as part of an ensemble. At the end of the course students submit:
• One solo performance
• One ensemble performance
Each performance is recorded and submitted along with a score of the music or the stimulus for the performance. It is internally assessed under controlled conditions and externally moderated.

Composing 30%

This unit requires students to develop their skills in composing and/or arranging. NB each composition or arrangement must be based on a different Area of Study.
• Two compositions or
• Two arrangements or
• One composition and one arrangement.
Each composition must be recorded and accompanied by a score in a suitable format or a written commentary.

Listening and Appraising 40%

Areas of Study and Set Works for the listening paper:

Area of Study 1 – Western classical music 1600-1899
• G F Handel: Chorus And the Glory of the Lord from Messiah HWV 56
• W A Mozart: 1st Movement from Symphony No.40 in G minor K550
• F Chopin: Prelude No 15 in D flat major, Op.28

Area of Study 2 – Music in the 20th century
• A Schoenberg: Peripetie from Five Orchestral Pieces, Op. 16
• L Bernstien: Something’s Coming from West Side Story
• S Riech 3rd movement (fast) from Electric Counterpoint

Area of Study 3 – Popular music in context
• M Davis: All Blues from the album Kind of Blue
• J Buckley: Grace from the album Grace
• Moby: Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad? From the album Play

Area of Study 4 – World music
• Capercaillie: Chuir M’Athair Mise Dhan Taigh Charraideach (Skye Waulking Song from the album Nadurra
• Rag Desh:
1. A Shankar: Rag Desh from the album Live at Carnigie Hall
2. SD & Hdhandhada: Rag Desh from the album Mewar Re Mira
3. B Wertheimer & S Gorn Rag Desh parts 1-3 from the album Piyagitah: The Nightingale
• Koko: Yiri

Student will study these works from an aural perspective and also through study of the scores where appropriate. They will also learn about background and the wider historical and social context in which the music was created.

This course is very focussed and well suited to those who play a musical instrument and/or sing. It is an excellent preparation for A level music.