Year 7

Pupils have had varied exposure to Music at Primary school so in Year 7 Music we begin by exploring the basic elements of Music through various topics including Film Music and Keyboard work. Other schemes this year include Melody and accompaniment, where pupils will use keyboards and ukuleles to learn how to read music using a range of notation types and to play as part of an ensemble. The final scheme is Composing to a brief, where pupils compose using midi keyboards in an exam style composition format.  All schemes allow pupils the opportunity to develop and demonstrate their critical listening skills, performance skills, creative composition and music technology skills. Pupils have the opportunity to use different notation through different instruments and will also become familiar with software programs such as Logic Pro through the use of the Apple Mac computers.

Modules/Units to be covered and a summary of each with key outcomes:

YEAR 7 Elements of Music Melody and Accompaniment Composing to a brief
1.         Base line

2.         Elements

3.         Elements

4.         Singing

5.         Tech- Film

6.         Tech- Film

1.         Ukulele- Chords

2.         Ukulele- Chords/Tab

3.         Ukulele- Chords/Tab

4.         Keyboard- Chords

5.         Keyboard/Band

6.         Band- Performances

1.         Composing melodies

2.         Programme music elements

3.         Composing using elements

4.         Composing using elements

5.         Assessment of piece

How pupils are to be assessed:

Pupils use Peer and self-assessment in every lesson and are given verbal feedback each lesson. During each scheme, pupils complete assessments in both listening (written) and performance/composition.


Year 8 

At the end of this academic year, pupils will have had the opportunity to explore fundamental principles of music based on the national curriculum and a continuation of the year 7 programme of study. Schemes of work will give students opportunities to compose, perform and to use their critical listening skills. Pupils will work as part of an ensemble to create their own band performances of well-known popular music pieces

Modules/Units to be covered and a summary of each with key outcomes:

YEAR 8 Popular music Dance Music Remix and song writing
1.Intro and chords

2.Chords and rhythm

3.Chords, rhythm, Tab recap

4.Group preparation

5.Group preparation




1.Key functions of logic

2.Composing to a brief

3.Dance music listening (mix tape)

4.Project- Effects and processing

5.Project- Effects and processing

6.Project- Assessment


1.Listening and examining genres

2.Initial remix ideas based on genres

3.Remix ideas

4.Inputting samples

5.Remix- Assessment

How pupils are to be assessed:

Pupils use Peer and self-assessment in every lesson and are given verbal feedback each lesson. During each scheme, pupils complete assessments in both listening (written) and performance/composition.




Music is an exciting practically based course that will enable pupils to develop their all-round skills as a versatile musician. Pupils will enjoy and encounter a wide variety of musical styles and traditions on this course.

The course is divided into 3 key areas of study:


Pupils will develop skills as a performer throughout the course, they are expected to prepare both solo and ensemble pieces through performance sessions within practical lessons


As part of the course, pupils will learn about different styles of music and be able to discuss key features of the music. Three areas of music are studied and pupils are expected to discuss various elements of music through these areas: World Music, The Western Tonal Tradition, and Popular Music.


Through the course, pupils will produce 2 compositions that are related to the areas of study completed in their listening work. Compositions range from song-writing, writing for their own instrument, writing for a group, all whilst using the latest ICT equipment available in the music department.



Each of the three areas of the course is assessed to make up your final GCSE grade.

Performing (30%)

  • 2 performances, 1 solo and 1 ensemble.
  • Together the performances are worth 40% of your overall grade.
  • The performances are teacher-assessed.

Listening (40%)

  • 5 hour exam which will assess listening skills.
  • The listening exam is worth 40% of your overall grade.

Composing (30%)

  • 2 compositions. Both completed in lesson time in a set amount of time.
  • Composition 1 is externally assessed and is worth 20% of the overall grade.
  • Composition 2 is teacher assessed and it also worth 20% of the overall grade.


Homework/extra-curricular commitments

  • Commitment to the music department by playing your chosen instrument (including voice) by regular practice and regular lessons with a specialist tutor who plays your instrument. Instrumental tutors available includes: vocals groups includes ‘Harmonix’, Chamber choir, Boys choir, Guitar group, String group, African group, Samba band and school ensemble.
  • That you join one of the music groups which you might already be a member of. The groups are great fun and all ensembles perform in concerts both inside of school
  • Revise key concepts and features regularly to help prepare yourself for the listening exam




Music Technology enables learners to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of the music technology industry. It’s suitable for learners who are motivated and challenged by learning through hands-on experiences. The qualification allows learners to gain practical skills in creating music using technology.

This qualification is aimed at learners with an interest in music production and recording and is designed to sit alongside GCSEs in the Key Stage 4 curriculum. It’s a vocational qualification equivalent to GCSE at grades A*-C.

The qualification provides an introduction to the music technology industry and enables learners to acquire, develop and apply the skills and knowledge required for further academic and/or vocational study.

What Will I Study?

During the Music Technology course you will use the iMacs and Logic Pro X to create their own pieces of music and to document the processes. Pupils will study the following units of work:

Unit No Unit title
Unit 01 Using a digital audio workstation (DAW)
Unit 02 Creating music
Unit 03 Studio recording
Unit 04 Sound creation


What Skills Will I Develop?

Throughout their study of this course pupils will develop their Music technology editing and arranging skills. Learners will develop skills in operating a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) creatively using audio, MIDI, hardware and editing tools. Pupils will create musical projects in response to briefs, reflecting industry skills. They will plan and undertake a recording session for a given scenario and will explore sound creation and apply their knowledge to a given brief. Learners will also develop skills to analyse stylistic elements of music and will engage in a review of technical and creative processes.



Learners will be assessed continually through practical project work, coursework, written exam, written portfolios and through giving presentations.


Homework/extra-curricular commitments

As part of their course is practical work based on the iMacs pupils will be expected to regularly attend EPS sessions to work on and complete their projects outside of class time. In addition to this they may on occasion receive homework on the topic of keywords related to music technology.



Penketh High School recognises the importance and value of learning a musical instrument and the impact it has upon pupil achievement. At present, we offer the following instrumental lessons:

Voice/Woodwind                    Mrs. A Paton-Jones

Percussion/Drums                  Mr. Simon Ashcroft

Keyboard/Piano/Bass            Mr. Ray Kelly  & Mr. Josh Kelly

Guitar                          Mr. Mark Jackson

Brass                                       Mr. Richard Jones

Strings                                     Mrs. Anna Baranek

Ukulele                                   Mr. A Guggiari


Lessons are in school time and are run on a rota system so that pupils do not miss the same lesson every week. There is a small fee for all instrumental lessons (which is subsidised by the school). For information regarding fees, please see the attached Instrumental Tuition Fees letter.

Pupils learning drums, guitar and bass guitar are able to access school instruments in their own time but we do recommend that they have their own. We do have a limited library of other instruments that can be borrowed and this works on a first come first served basis. If you have been studying an instrument for a while and are developing through graded exams it might be more preferable for you to own your own instrument than borrow a school model.

Pupils are also very welcome to join any of the extra-curricular groups at no cost and are highly recommended. This will enhance your performance/ensemble and technical skills as well as being great fun. Ensembles include: Harmonix Group, Chamber Choir, African Drumming, Samba Band, Wind Band, Boys Choir, Ukulele Orchestra, Guitar Group and many more…




A one to one, 20 minute lesson is £8. Therefore, over a half term (6 weeks), lessons will amount to (6 weeks x £8 per lesson) £48. This includes any missed lessons without a weeks prior notice.

These fees are competitively priced in line with local schools and offer better value than group tuition being offered in the area.


You will receive an invoice from the tutor at the start of each half term for the lessons of that new half term. Payments for lessons are payable direct to the tutor. Please note, it is vital that lesson payments are prompt to avoid the possible cancellation of the lessons. If you have any issues in paying for lessons, it is vital that you contact the music tutor.

In the case of genuine hardship please contact school to discuss possible alternative arrangements Pupil premium pupils are entitled to fully subsidised lessons.


What happens if my child wants to stop having lessons? A notice period of one half term must be given in writing by either party if lessons are to be discontinued.

For any further queries regarding instrumental lessons, please contact the music department via email on

NOTE: this must be given in writing, directly to the music tutor concerned by the end of the half term that precedes the final half term, eg by the last week of the summer term if stopping at the autumn half term, failure to do so will render the signed liable for the fees for an additional half term. This agreement will remain in force until either party gives notice.