Music - KS4


Progress Leader: Mrs S. McKay
Teaching Staff: Mr J. Lyon
Instrumental teachers: Mrs Edgars, Miss Bennett, Mr Howard, Mr Bannister, Mrs Wright, Mrs Edwards
Link Governor: Mr P. Sharples


The chosen exam board for GCSE Music is EDUQAS. Through the next 2 years, students will develop and broaden the skills and knowledge learnt at KS3 and start to specialise in their chosen instrument/instruments. Through EDUQAS, students will gain the opportunity to learn the context from a variety of styles, such as; musical theatre, jazz, blues, popular music, film music and western classical music. Students will also get to study 2 set works in detail as they develop an understanding of context, the composition ideas and the elements of music found in the pieces. At the end of year 11, students will submit 2 performances and 2 compositions as part of their NEA portfolio and take a listening and appraising examination.


Students will study 4 areas of study (AOS) through the key disciplines: performance, composition and listening.

AOS 1 – Structure and Devices – students will learn the key compositional devices and how music is formed into a structure. This topic relates to Western Classical Music and students will study the set work Badinerie by J. S. Bach.
AOS 2 – Music for Ensemble – Students will learn the context of Musical Theatre, Jazz, Blues and Western Chamber Music. They will understand how textures, grouping and instrumental ensembles.
AOS 3 – Film Music – Students will develop a greater depth of knowledge of the Film Industry and how composers are used to respond to briefs, use musical elements to create mood and atmosphere and how they use sonority to create a soundtrack.
AOS 4 – Popular Music – students will develop an understanding of popular music and the varying styles within this genre by studying: Pop, Rock, Bhangra and fusion. In this topic students will also study the set work Africa by Toto.


The course requirement is 60% NEA and 40% examination


A solo performance lasting 3 – 4 minutes
1 ensemble performance lasting 1 minute or longer
1 free composition.
1 composition in response to a brief set by EDUQAS

Listening examination

The listening exam lasts 1 hour and 15 minutes and will consist of questions relating to the AOS with pieces of music.


AOS 1 Forms and Devices
• Understanding key structures and forms in Western Classical Music
• Embedding an understanding of periods of music from the Baroque to Romantic period.
• Developing an understanding of devices and how they are used in pieces of music
• Analyse Badinerie by J. S. Bach
• Developing technical and expressive control of their instrument.
• Embed ensemble skills focusing on accuracy and technical control of instruments/voice.
• Develop compositional understanding and embed devices and structure
AOS 2 Music for Ensemble
• Understanding context of Musical Theatre, Jazz, Blues, Western Chamber Music from Baroque to the Romantic Period.
• Understand how ensembles work together and key terms used to describe musical ensembles
• Develop an understanding of the Voice and how it is used in music making
• Embed textures and discriminate textural changes in music.
• Developing technical and expressive control of their instrument.
• Embed solo skills focusing on accuracy and technical control of instruments/voice.
• Develop compositional understanding with a focus on texture and ensemble writing.
Preparation for coursework
• Embed compositional technique
• Develop students compositional voice
• Develop solo performance and looking at the role of the performer in the music industry
• Review and recap listening skills for AOS 1 and AOS 2


AOS 3 Film Music
AOS 4 - Set Work Toto
• Develop an understand of mood and atmosphere
• Understand the role of the composer
• Embed understanding of elements of music and how they are used in soundtracks
• Understand Thematic development
• Learn how music technology is used in Film Music
• Understand the context of Africa by Toto
• Analyse Africa by Toto
• Completion of NEA composition and solo performance
AOS 4 Popular Music
• Understand the genre and sub genres of popular music
• Embed understanding of elements of music associated with Popular music
• develop how music technology is used in popular music
• Learn how vocal sounds are used in popular music
• How instruments and voices are combined.
• Understand context and key styles associated with Bhangra and Fusion.
• Completion of NEA brief composition and ensemble performance
Revision of Areas of Study for Listening examination.
Submission of NEA.


Key stage 4 band, Key stage 4 choir, songwriters club, keyboard club.
Instrumental lessons on the following disciplines; Piano, Percussion, Vocal, Brass, Woodwind, Guitar, Strings.


Ask them what they think about specific performances? Why was it created? What instruments can you hear? What is happening to the dynamics in this piece? What is the tonality? What is the tempo? What period of music/ what is the style of music? To ask your child to perform a piece of music they have been learning or creating to develop confidence in their ability.
Encourage them to follow official profiles of the performers/plays/musicals they study on social media.


Visit concert locations (Liverpool Philharmonic/Bridgewater Hall Manchester) Orchestra’s Liverpool Philharmonic, Halle Orchestra, Manchester Camerata, RNCM for regular concerts throughout the week and weekend.


Live Performances on YouTube
BBC Music
BBC Proms
Black Classical Music: The Forgotten History
Spotify/ Apple Music:
Specific playlists for styles of music/famous artists and bands


The AB guide to music theory: Eric Taylor
Music Theory for Young Musicians


Music Theory
Halle Orchestra
Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
The Beatles Story Museum
British Music Experience
BBC Bitesize Music 


Musician, Singer, Instrumentalist, Session Musician, Composer, Conductor, Orchestral Musician, Film composer, TV Composer, Video Game Composer, Army Musician, West End Performer, Music Producer, Music Therapist, Music Teacher, Sound Engineer, Special Effects Technician, Arts Administrator, Talent Agent, Music Journalist, Director, Copyright, Music Psychologist.


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