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Our music curriculum ensures that every pupil develops a confident voice of expression, through the creating, performing, and critical engagement of music.

Our musical voice, be it an instrument, singing or a response to music, is a way for students to be heard, listened to and seen. It gives pupils the power to express their emotions and react to them through music. This drives their enthusiasm to listen to performances and encourages students’ determination to refine their work.

Students at Paddington are given the opportunity to perform, listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions, including the works of great composers and musicians. They learn to sing and to use their voices, to create and compose music on their own and with others, have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument, use technology appropriately and progress to the next level of musical excellence.

We have a thriving musical culture at Paddington. 90 students currently receive piano, violin, guitar, drum or singing lessons delivered by our team of music teachers at Paddington. Students work hard to develop their technical skills on their chosen instrument and love engaging in the joy of making music. Our students are also currently rehearsing for a production of the musical ‘Matilda’, and our biannual showcase performances (including solo and ensemble musical performances) provide pupils with the opportunity to make music and share it with the rest of the school community outside of their lessons.

Year 7

In Year 7, students are introduced to essential, foundational knowledge on the interrelated dimensions that form the basis of all musical understanding, such as rhythm, melody and tonality, all through the lens of repetition and contrast. Students explore these elements through a range of musical genres including samba, classical and folk music. Students are taught to read notated music for the keyboard with fluency, as well as exploring percussion, voice, and guitar. Through this practical instrument use, students begin to develop instrument-specific skill and an ability to listen to and unpick the essential musical concepts. Students develop confidence as an individual and a group performer through solo and ensemble practice. 

Year 8

In Year 8, students are introduced to more complex dimensions of music, such as texture and structure, and begin to explore how music can tell a story and create emotion through considered use of the musical dimensions. Genres of music featured in this year include jazz, reggae and blues amongst others. Learners become more fluent on a chosen instrument that they are to specialise in, playing with increasing expression. They identify and understand different musical contexts and traditions and draw inspirations from these styles and genres when composing their work, combining both technical and constructive aspects of music. Students also learn how to evaluate their own and other’s work and articulate their ideas clearly and confidently using their musical understanding.  

Year 9

In Year 9, students further their ensemble experience through working together on extended compositions, such as arranging for a band and creating a cover version. They combine their knowledge of theoretical music knowledge and their specialised instrument use to perform confidently, with accuracy and expression. Students develop knowledge on more advanced harmony and textures, as well as allowing more varied genres to influence their work. They develop their analysis and evaluation of music through listening, discussing and extended writing. Students also learn how the musical dimensions are used effectively in music for screen, including the use of music technology for this purpose.

Throughout Key Stage 3 students use Logic Pro on Mac computers, developing production and composition skills whilst understanding more about technical musical construction.

Key Stage 4

In music in Year 10 and Year 11, students explore and develop their musical skills and understanding through the three disciplines of performing, composing and appraising music. Students explore the subject through four interrelated areas of study: musical forms and devices (studied through western classical traditional music), music for ensemble, film music and popular music. Students build on the musical understanding they developed in Key Stage 3, exploring music in depth both practically and theoretically. Students learn how to analyse music across different genres. They also use music technology to compose and create their own musical piece. Students develop their fluency on their main instrument and perform both solo and in group ensembles.


#hardwork #integrity #excellence

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