HARLINGTON UPPER SCHOOL

    Music

    Music is a universal language that embodies one of the highest forms of creativity. Music is all around us. It is the soundtrack to our lives. Music connects us through people and places in our ever-changing world. It is creative, collaborative, celebratory and challenging. In our schools, music can bring communities together through the shared endeavour of whole-school singing, ensemble playing, experimenting with the creative process and, through the love of listening to friends and fellow pupils, performing. The sheer joy of music making can feed the soul of a school community, enriching each student while strengthening the shared bonds of support and trust which make a great school. 

    Outside the classroom

    Music at Harlington Upper School is a vibrant affair! Students are encouraged not only to participate in, but also lead the many extra currcular music opportunities that are offered to them.  Current music groups include Year 9 Voice Box,  6th Form Chamber Choir, Harlington Voice Box, Ukulele group, Guitar group, Percussion group, Orchestra, Jazz, String, Wind and Brass ensembles and Harlington Jams.  It expected that, as part of GCSE/RSL/A’level music courses,  students attend at least one activity associated with their instrument/s and Harlington Voice Box on a weekly basis and partipate in the main school concerts.

    Students have the opportunity to take part in various music trips, including orchestral concerts, operas and shows. School concerts, band nights and lunch time gigs, are a regular feature of the school calendar and the bi-annual whole school musical provides another opportunity  for students to perform.

    We have an excellent, dedicated and highly motivated team of visiting instrumental and vocal teachers (VMT’s) who prepare their students to achieve in the external instrumental/vocal  exams as well as support them towards their KS4 and 5 exams whilst also playing a full part in the Music Department’s Tours to Europe.

     

    Year 9

    The course will provide an opportunity for students to develop their performance skills in a variety of musical styles. It is particularly appropriate for students who wish to pursue music at Key Stage 4 and beyond.

    All students are taught basic keyboard and vocal skills and existing musicians are encouraged to use their instruments in lessons.  Students will also be given the opportunity to compose their own music and learn about the fundamental aspects of music through listening and appraising. 

    Students work individually, in pairs and in larger groups, depending on tasks set.  To complement the music curriculum we offer instrumental and vocal lessons as well as many extra-curricular activities.

    Year 10 and 11

    The school’s policy with regard to instrument tuition is that parents will pay the cost of lessons for the Autumn and Spring terms for students taking Music GCSE or the Music Practitioners Level 2 course. 

    Parents will also pay the cost of the lessons in the Summer term, however the school will refund the cost of the final terms lessons at a rate of one lesson per week, per student taking Music GCSE.

    The refund will be given on the proviso that the student has a 100% attendance record at peripatetic music lessons throughout the academic year (other than where the student is absent for the day due to sickness or on an approved trip) and regularly attends an ensemble group (where one exists) for their instrument, and participates in school music events such as concerts or productions.  The refund will be made during the following Autumn term.

    Course

    GCSE Music

    Exam Board/Syllabus

    Edexcel  Syllabus 1MUO

    Grade Equivalences

    9 to 1

    Assessment Route

    Written paper (Listening) (40%)

    Performance as a soloist and as a member of a group (30%)

    Composition (30%)

    The GCSE Music course provides skills for students to pursue further study in three key areas of performance, composition and analysis. The qualification requires students to demonstrate theoretical music knowledge through the studying of set works, perform effectively on an instrument/voice, ideally to a Grade 4 standard, and to compose two contrasting pieces.

    Performing

    This component is internally assessed and externally moderated. Students will be assessed on a solo performance, for a minimum of one minute, and an ensemble performance, again for a minimum of one minute. Together, the performances must total a minimum of 4 minutes.

    Composing

    This component is internally assessed and externally moderated. Students will be assessed on two compositions. One composition will be to a set brief, minimum of one minute, and the other will be a free composition, again for a minimum of one minute. Together the compositions must total a minimum of 3 minutes.

    Appraising

    This component is assessed by written exam and will cover four genres of music:

    Instrumental Music 1700 – 1820

    Vocal Music

    Music for Stage and Screen

    Fusions.

     

    Course

    Music Practitioners Level 2 Award

    Exam Board/Syllabus

    RSL

    Grade Equivalences

    Level 2 Pass, Merit, Distinction and Distinction*

    Assessment Route

    Written and practical portfolio

    Live Music Performance, is externally assessed.

    The Level 2 Music Practitioners course provides skills for students to pursue further study in performance, studio production and composition. The qualification requires students to demonstrate theoretical music knowledge, perform effectively on an instrument/voice, develop rehearsal skills and repertoire, as well as music technology skills.

    The course consists of three units

    Music Knowledge Development

    This unit is internally assessed. Students will complete a:

    Research project of two contrasting modern musical styles, which explores artists/bands/producers, important recordings and performances, and imagery/fashion associated with the style.

    Listening analysis project, which requires learners to recognise musical features such as; tonality, tempo, instrumentation, lyric content and production techniques.

    Live Music Performance

    This unit is externally assessed. Students will:

    Plan a live music performance (repertoire, lighting, projections, costume, ticket and poster design)

    Undertake an effective rehearsal process

    Perform in a live environment to a target audience

    Reflect on the success of the performance

    Composition

    This unit is internally assessed. Students will:

    Create a piece of music in a defined style of their choice

    Reflect on the finished music and consider its strengths & areas for development.

    Year 12 and Year 13

     

    Course

    GCE A Level Music

    Exam Board/Syllabus

    Edexcel - 9MU01

    Grades

    A*-E

    Course Entry Requirements

    In Addition To The School Sixth Form Entry Requirements

    GCSE Grade 4 in Music

    Assessment Route

    There are 3 modules to each course. 60% of the course is based on performance and composing coursework of which all is marked externally. There is a written exam at the end of each year, which assesses understanding of set works studied, four part harmony skills and general aural awareness. In Year 12 students perform for 6 minutes; In Year 13, students perform a recital lasting between 8 minutes. Solo and group performances are both permitted and the recital can use music of any style. Students are required to complete two compositions/two technical studies each year. However, the performing and composing elements of AS are able to be re-visited and developed in A level. The Music Department does not enter students for examination in Year 12; however, students are expected to complete the units as stated above for internal assessment purposes and to ensure progression into Year 13 is of the projected standard required for success in the Course.

     

    The ‘A’ level Music course is particularly suited to those individuals who are able to demonstrate competent performance skills. This would typically be indicated by a minimum of a ‘5’ in Music GCSE (with an “6/7” in the performance unit- unit 3), and/or grade 5 standard in either Music Theory or Performance. A significant element of the course is practically based with much scope for students to develop their own skills and interests. Students can choose to perform and compose in a musical style of their choice.  The department is fortunate enough to have 2 suites of computers with the music packages Cubase and Sibelius for student use. Such ICT facilities aid with both the creative process and professional standard score writing.

    A wide variety of extra-curricular activities exist including; Orchestra, Wind Band, Jazz Band, Brass Band, String Group, Ukulele group , Harlington Voice Box, Harlington Jams,Sixth Form Chamber Choir,  Music tours, concerts and productions. Students are encouraged to attend at least 2 activities per week, enhancing their musical experience at HUS.  

    The course develops a range of musical skills as well as giving students a broad musical background and repertoire. They serve as a sound basis for meeting the demands of university and college music courses. Indeed A’level Music is highly regarded by the Russell Group of Universities due to both the academic rigour and the creative aspects of the courses.  The qualification is relevant to careers in the Music Industry as well as other careers that demand lateral thinking skills, independence and self- motivation to name but a few.

    The A level music course provides opportunities for the development of creativity, improvement of performance skills and the acquisition of musical vocabulary and knowledge. Students A’ level music can expect to:

    • Perform regularly on their chosen instrument in class as well as participate in a variety of extra-curricular activities and musical groups.

    • Develop composing and creative skills through short composing projects, extended composition coursework and the use of ICT.

    • Listen to and analyse music from a wide range of musical styles, writing about it using musical vocabulary.

    • Learning Strategies:

    • Students will be expected to work independently in developing their own performance and composing skills. They will also be expected to work within a team and perform in class and whole school ensembles.

      Students will be expected to carry out background reading and listening on relevant topics.

      Staff will offer guidance and support in practical work and coursework alongside a range of strategies suited to the more academic elements of the course.

      It is recommended that to study A’ Level Music, students have a performance standard of a minimum grade 4-5 at the end of year 11 (in consultation with the Head of Music); however, instrumental / vocal exams do not have to have been taken.

     

     

    Course

    Music Practitioners Subsidiary Diploma

    Exam Board/Syllabus

    RSL MUSPRA Level 3

    Grades

    Di- P

    Course Entry Requirements

    In Addition To The School Sixth Form Entry Requirements

    Grade 4 at GCSE/Pass at RSL Level 2

    Assessment Route

    There are a number of units that students have to complete to reach the points required- There are 2 compulsory units, Rehearsal and live music performance and Careers in the Music Industry- the remaining units are chosen to suit each year’s cohort, preparing them for both entry to tertiary education and the music industry. The course is 100% coursework based and students are expected to complete all work to strict deadlines. Students have the opportunity of working on mock assessments to prepare them for the controlled conditions of the assessments issued by the exam board.

    The Music Practitioners Level 3 course is particularly suited to those individuals who are able to demonstrate competent performance skills. This would typically be indicated by a minimum of a ‘5’ in Music GCSE/Merit in Music Practitioners Level 2 (with a “6/7” in the performance unit- unit 3 of GCSE and Merit/Distinction in MP Level 2 performance), and/or grade 4/5 standard in either Music Theory or Performance. A significant element of the course is practically based with much scope for students to develop their own skills and interests. Students can choose to perform and compose in a musical style of their choice. The department is fortunate enough to have 2 suites of computers with the music packages Cubase and Sibelius for student use. Such ICT facilities aid with both the creative process and professional standard score writing.

    A wide variety of extra-curricular activities exist including; 6th Form Chamber Choir, Harlington Voice Box, Ukulele group, Guitar group, Percussion group, Orchestra, Jazz, String, Wind and Brass ensembles and Harlington Jams. , Music Committee, Music tours, concerts and productions. Students are encouraged to attend at least 2 activities per week, enhancing their musical experience at HUS.

    The course develops a range of musical skills as well as giving students a broad musical background and repertoire. They serve as a sound basis for meeting the demands of university and college music courses. The qualification is relevant to careers in the Music Industry as well as other careers that demand lateral thinking skills, independence and self- motivation to name but a few.

    The Music Practitioners course provides opportunities for the development of creativity, improvement of performance skills, an understanding of the careers open to them in the Music Industry and the acquisition of musical vocabulary and knowledge to create high level written work.

    Music Practitioners Level 3 students can expect to:

    • Perform regularly on their chosen instrument in class as well as participate in a variety of extra-curricular activities and musical groups.
    • Develop composing and creative skills through short composing projects, extended composition coursework and the use of ICT.
    • Listen to and analyse music from a wide range of popular musical styles, writing about it using musical vocabulary.

    Learning Strategies:

    Students will be expected to work independently in developing their own performance and composing skills. They will also be expected to work within a team and perform in class and whole school ensembles.

    Students will be expected to carry out background reading and listening on relevant topics.

    Staff will offer guidance and support in practical work and coursework alongside a range of strategies suited to the more academic elements of the course.

    It is recommended that to study Music Practitioners Level 3, students have a performance standard of a minimum grade 4 at the end of year 11 (in consultation with the Head of Music); however, instrumental / vocal exams do not have to have been taken.