Year 7 Curriculum

The following units of work are studied in year 7 (2 lessons per week):

  • Elements of music, Instruments of the Orchestra and programme music
  • World Music: Samba drumming; African drumming; Isicathamiya; Calypso; Reggae (at least 2)
  • Performing: Singing; Guitar; Saxophone or Trumpet; Glockenspiel; Multitracking on the keyboard
Unit Details
Elements of Music
  • Elements of music: pitch, dynamics, duration, beat, rhythm, tempo, texture and timbre are explored using singing and listening tasks. This fundamental musical terminology is a useful tool when talking or writing about music, whether at GCSE, A level or as part of a student's general knowledge.
Instruments of the Orchestra
  • Instruments of the Orchestra are studied through interactive listening. The pirmary focus is on learning to recognise the different instruments as this skill is required of students at GCSE and A level.
Programme Music
  • Students discover how the elements of music and instruments of the orchestra are used to create programme music. Music studied includes the Peer Gynt Suite by Grieg and the Carnival of the Animals by Saint Saens.
Samba drumming
  • This unit is rich in SMSC as students gain insight into the Rio Carnival and the economic conditions in Brazil as well as Samba Drumming. There are also cross curricular links with History, Geography and Maths. Students learn the names of Samba percussion instruments as well as the terms polyrhythm, syncopation, call and response and improvisation through experiencing the challenges and rewards of playing Samba rhythms in an ensemble.
African drumming
  • This unit is rich in SMSC as students gain insight into the traditions of music making in Africa. They learn African drumming as an oral tradition and discover that music making is very much a part of every day work and play in Africa. Students learn the names of African drums as well as the terms polyrhythm, syncopation, call and response and improvisation through experiencing the challenges and rewards of playing djembe drums in an ensemble.
Isicathamiya
  • This unit is rich in SMSC as students gain insight into the socio economic conditions of apartheid South Africa. They learn to sing an Isicathamiya song in three part harmony and develop an understanding of the vocal terms a capella, close harmony, unison, melody, harmony, ensemble.
Calypso
  • This unit is rich in SMSC as students gain insight into the socio economic conditions of the Caribbean Islands with the increasing popularity of Calypso songs as protest songs in the early 20th century. In singing Calypso songs they learn about syncopated rhythms and call and response by experiencing them first hand.
Glockenspiel, Multitracking on the keyboard
  • Students receive tuition on both instruments in groups of 8 to 16, depending on class size. There are a range of Glockenspiel pieces for students to choose from. They range from pre- grade 1 (Lazy Latin) to grade 4 (Harry Potter theme) in difficulty. GCSE students have been known to achieve an A grade for playing the Harry Potter theme tune with finesse.
  • Multitracking tasks range from the creation of a simple 4 bar loop of a well known pop song ('Symphony' in 2017) to the well know Einaudi 'Andare'. There are plenty of options for students to choose from, depending on their ability levels on the piano.
Guitar, saxophone and trumpet
  • Students learn guitar in groups of 4- 8 for half the year. They choose whether they would like to learn saxophone or trumpet, in groups of 2 - 4, for the other half of the year. Lessons are weekly and last 20 minutes. They are free as they are part of the year 7 curriculum. Students showcase their skills at the Christmas Concert and the Spring Concert. They finish the year with an opportunity to take an internal grade 1 exam on the instrument they study in the latter half of the year.
Singing
  • Students prepare 2 songs, as a class, which they have the opportunity to showcase at the Christmas Concert and the Spring Concert. They are encouraged to develop their intonation, ensemble and communication skills as well as learning to work as a team.

November 2018

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