Our music department is committed to embracing and nurturing the academic and performance abilities of any pupil who is interested in music.
Research suggests that individuals who are musically trained show better working memory, improved language abilities, increased attention span, creativity, emotional resilience and empathy, as well as showing increasing attainment in other subject areas, than those who have no musical training.
In addition, true progress in Music can only be achieved by discipline, hard work and organisation, all of which are core values of JMCC.
Over the last months as students have been at home, one of the biggest challenges has been how we enable students to have experiences of practical music without equipment or instruments. With the return to school, we are anxious that the students are able to develop skills in performance and composition in a range of musical instruments and styles, which we consider to be at the very core of musical development.
The Music curriculum is underpinned by three core components as laid out in the National Curriculum: performing, composing and listening and appraising. Listening and appraising runs through every part of every lesson, but more specific skills are developed through homework quizzes. The curriculum aims to strike a reasonable balance between performance and composition as these are equally weighted at GCSE. Pupils are given opportunity to develop skills on a wide variety of instruments (keyboards, ukuleles, guitar, bass guitar, drums, djembes, boomwhackers) in order to develop a specialism which they can take through to GCSE. They are also exposed to a wide variety of musical styles.
Assessing the impact of Music teaching
The planning has been sequenced with the following things in mind:
KS3: balance of performance and composition focused units, as well as alternating familiar and unfamiliar musical styles to keep pupils engaged.
KS3: mixture of classical/film, popular and world music units to ensure pupils are experiencing a breadth of musical material in line with the Eduqas GCSE specification.
KS3: to enable students to experience a wider variety of instruments and styles, in Years 7/8 the units are rotating when classes are taught at the same time to get the most impactful use out of the equipment.
KS4: Y10 starting with popular music, again to enable students to get to grips with the style of teaching and content of the course in a musical genre with which they feel more confident.
KS4: Theory to be taught through popular music and film music (composition focus) as more engaging.
KS4: Classical musical to be final unit when pupils are more comfortable with key concepts and terminology
The progression of all students
Core principles of the KS4 curriculum
Performance: to be able to perform with ‘accuracy, technical control and expression and interpretation’ at a GCSE-appropriate standard of difficulty (instrumental Grade 3 or higher).
Composition: to be able to compose music with ‘creativity and development of musical ideas’, ‘technical control of musical elements and resources’ and ‘structure and stylistic coherence’ as well as being able to respond to a brief.
Listening and Appraising: to be able to analyse familiar and unfamiliar music using musical language in a wide range of musical styles.
The Relevance of Music as a subject area
Students should have:
Music as a subject needs to deliver experiences which increase cultural capital, which can be achieved through a variety of means:
The relevance and importance of the Music curriculum
The curriculum acknowledges that whilst not every child may take to music, or continue performing and composing throughout their lives, all children can achieve and become true musicians, and that every child should have as wide-ranging a musical experience as possible to ensure that they are given every opportunity to unearth an aptitude for and/or a love of music that is often found in unexpected places. We believe that self-expression and creativity are vital to mental wellbeing and achievement, and that the rigorous demands of performance enable students to develop discipline, commitment and resilience in the face of struggle, which is ultimately what will lead them to reach their potential in all areas of life. We celebrate the fact that Music does not follow the norms of ‘ability’, as we see many SEND students reach outstanding achievement where in other subject areas they might struggle, and we value communication and human connection, particularly for EAL students who are able to fully engage with the curriculum through concrete examples and non-verbal communication
LEARNING SCIENTIST PRINCIPLES
Retrieval practice: this takes place every lesson, most obviously in the form of low-stakes quizzing. However, it is more subtly present in students’ interpreting sheet music, use of fine motor skills in the development of muscle memory, and drawing on problem solving in order to evaluate their own performance, identify and correct mistakes.
Interleaving: homework quizzes regularly test key words linked to the musical elements – this continues through all 5 years. In assessment and retrieval practice quizzes these concepts are often interleaved to closely replicate the GCSE Listening exam. In addition, it is the combination of these concepts in a practical sense that makes successful performers and composers, and this is reflected in assessment criteria.
Spaced practice: homework quizzes regularly recall information from several lessons previous. Broader units of work cover the ‘big’ areas, such as pitch/notation and rhythm, and these are revisited and built upon throughout the curriculum.
Elaboration: attention is drawn to the wider application of key concepts in different styles and genres, with explicit links being drawn between different instruments.
Concrete examples: no musician could ever communicate without an instrument in their hand to demonstrate their point! This year staff will be using the visualizers to demonstrate performance work, as well as continuing to build upon our bank of high quality examples from last year.
Students benefit from the teaching of staff who maintain active professional performing careers. A variety of talented peripatetic instrumental teachers come into school to deliver high quality lessons to students on a private basis. Students are entered for performance exams with a variety of internationally renowned exam boards, and are incredibly successful. For more information about instrumental lessons, please see the information listed below:
At Judgemeadow we offer instrumental and vocal lessons with a variety of outstanding private peripatetic teachers. There is a cost involved, but this is a wonderful opportunity for students to develop their interests and valuable life skills. Pupils receive their instrumental/vocal lessons during the school day but all communication regarding the arrangement and payments are made directly between parents/carers and the instrumental/vocal teacher.
The provisions are as follows:
|Instrument||Name of Teacher||Teacher contact details|
|Woodwind (flute, clarinet, saxophone)||Ms Su Robinsonemail@example.com|
|Piano||Mr Martyn Hill|
|Drum Kit||Mr Damon Clarridgefirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Guitar (electric, bass & classical)||
Mr Michael Haddon (Noise Tuition)
Ms Lornette Ford (Leicester Vocal Tech)
Brass (trumpet, cornet, trombone)
|Mr Alan Holfordemail@example.com|
|Violin, Viola||Ms Tamaki Dickensonfirstname.lastname@example.org|
If you would like to start playing a musical instrument or continue to learn, then please contact the relevant teacher. If you already have lessons and would like to continue with a teacher not on our list then please ask your teacher to contact Mrs O’Hara
If you have any questions regarding instrumental/vocal tuition please feel free to talk to or email Mrs O’Hara (email address at the bottom of this page)
Judgemeadow students perform in several concerts each year, ranging from major performances in school, to informal concerts, assemblies or recitals that introduce pupils to the experience of performing in public for the first time. A number of students go on to study music at A level, and many of our past students have gone on to study music at major universities and music colleges.
You can hear our student performances for yourself by visiting the Judgemeadow Soundcloud page where their exceptional talent is showcased.
Students can be entered for performance exams with the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music in consultation with their instrumental/vocal teacher. The college is an examination centre for the ABRSM. This means that students are able to take their graded practical exams during a week towards the end of each term.The department recognises that music exams are not the most appropriate target for all young musicians, and informal or formal performance opportunities are therefore integral to the school's concert programme with a view to providing appropriate goals for every student.
Mrs Rosalyn O'Hara