The Music Department prides itself on providing outstanding teaching whilst evolving to incorporate new technologies and access to high quality resources. We are a highly resourced department which includes our Indonesian Gamelan and Caribbean Steel Pan sets along with two dedicated teaching sets of Mac Books with Sibelius Ultimate and Garage Band.
Enthusiasm is the key word. Students are given many opportunities to learn through a range of activities based on performing, composing and listening. Our aims in the music department are to offer excellent teaching and enrichment opportunities to ensure that all students are able to enjoy, be creative and are keen to participate in the music activities on offer.
Music lessons during Years 7 and 8 are taught in mixed ability groups and concentrate on the main elements of performance, composition and listening and appraising. A variety of topics are explored which develops students' understanding of music through practical tasks and their skills in performing, composing and listening and appraisal.
Year 7 Topics: Elements of Music (‘The Carnival of The Animals’), African Drumming, Blues, Indian Music, Ensemble performance using Time Lapse and Samba
Year 8 Topics: Structure and Melodies – Binary Form, Haiku, Electronic Dance Music, Minimalism and Open composition
Students start a foundation option in music in Year 9 to develop the skills required for GCSE Music.
This includes developing performance skills in ensemble and solo situations, developing skills on Sibelius and writing a variety of pieces including a percussion ternary form piece, ground bass / dance piece, film music snippets and world music.
Students develop their listening skills with Dr T Smith and start analysing the pieces from the GCSE anthology ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Killer Queen’.
In Years 10 and 11 students are required to explore performance and composition as part of their course and will be required to offer the exam board a solo performance, ensemble performance and two compositions. Students will commence with a free composition developing further ideas from Year 9 and then a briefed composition is set by the examination board during Year 11.
Students are also required to study an anthology of pieces, such as Defying Gravity from ‘Wicked’, Bach’s ‘Brandenburg Concertos’ and John Williams’ Theme from ‘Star Wars’. In the exam, they are asked to reflect on contrasts and dictation, as well as respond to general questions on the pieces studied.
All students are encouraged to have vocal/instrumental lessons and we also expect attendance at extra-curricular activities to support their learning. We have a broad extra-curricular programme, where students are given opportunities to lead and mentor younger students, as well as enjoy participating themselves.
Amery Hill School offer instrumental/vocal lessons for all students wishing to participate. The lessons are provided by Hampshire Music Service and are currently offered as group lessons. Instruments offered are:
Strings - Violin, Viola, Cello and Double Bass
Guitar - Electric, Acoustic and Bass
Brass - Trumpet, Cornet, Trombone, Baritone, Euphonium and Tuba
Woodwind - Flute, Clarinet, Oboe, Bassoon
Rock to the Beat – Guitars, Keys, Drums and Voice
Students are able to take exam grades with ABRSM, Trinity and Rock School (outside school) or participate in the Hampshire Music Service Stages.