• Curriculum Index
  • Subject Overview
  • KS3
  • KS4
  • FAQs
  • Resources
  • Staff

Subject Overview

Music is a combination of sounds, silence, rhythm, pitch, tone, melody and harmony that communicate emotions and ideas. It has great power to excite and to relax us, to bring back memories and to make us feel nostalgic. Research shows that studying music can help students develop critical thinking, spatial reasoning and cognitive skills. It also helps develop communication skills and encourages creativity and expressiveness. Students who play music as part of a group develop team-working skills, self-discipline, self-esteem and the ability to listen to others.

At Light Hall, all pupils in Years 7, 8 and 9 study Music for one hour each week with specialist staff. The course is essentially creative and gives pupils the opportunity to learn how to listen and appreciate music and to extend their own musical interests and skills. Pupils gain skills on a wide variety of instruments, with a focus on using keyboards and their voices. They can choose to continue studying Music at GCSE in years 10 and 11.

KS3 Overview

  Autumn Spring Summer
yr 7 a
Elements of Music
Indian Music
African Drumming
yr 7 b
Pulse & Rhythm
Performing Arts Festival
yr 8 a
Programme Music
African Drumming
yr 8 b
Latin Arriba
Music & The Media
yr 9 a
Jazz & Blues
Arrangements 1
Arrangements 2
yr 9 b
Songwriting 1
Songwriting 2

a = first half of the term
b = second half of the term  

KS4 Overview

Key Subject Information

At KS4 the music department offers G.C.S.E. Music. Please ask your music teacher if they think this course would suit you.


  Autumn Spring Summer
yr 10 a
Descriptive Music
yr 10 b
Descriptive Music
Salsa & Tango
yr 11 a
Bhangra, Disco & Club Dance
Dance Music & Descriptive Music Review
yr 11 b
Ensemble Performance
Composition Preparation
Dance Music & Descriptive Music Review
Dance Music & Descriptive Music Review


a = first half of the term
b = second half of the term

FAQs (General)

Can I have lessons on an instrument in school?
Yes. Individual or group lessons are available on a range of instruments, with visiting teachers from Solihull Music Service. These lessons currently cost £80 per term for individual lessons or £60 per term for group lessons (2012/13). See your classroom music teacher to get information about these lessons.

Are there any extra-curricular musical activities at Light Hall?
Yes, weekly activities include: Glee Club; Ukelele Club and Guitar Club. There are also other one-off opportunities, including working with visiting professional musicians.


Is this the right subject for me?
If you enjoy performing music in your own time and learning an instrument, having singing lessons or enjoy creating music on computers or in a recording studio, then this is a good subject to choose! If you would like to create music of your own, then composing will give you the opportunity. If you want to broaden your knowledge of all types of music, including classical, popular and world, then this exciting course will give you an appreciation of the diversity of musical styles which exist today!

What will I learn?
You will learn how to improve your performing skills through your work in composing you will gain an insight into how music is constructed from initial ideas through to the finished product. You will also learn how to analyse music in a variety of styles and discover the social and historical context in which music has been composed over the last 400 years or so.

What examination will I take?
OCR GCSE in Music

How will I be assessed?

Performing : You will need to play one solo and one ensemble piece.

Composing : You will need to compose and record two pieces.

The Listening and Appraising component is assessed through an exam. Students listen to pieces from a variety of musical genres and write responses to given questions about different musical elements.

What do I need to know, or be able to do, before taking the course?
You have already gained many of the basic skills needed for this course in your music lessons over the last three years.

  • You have been introduced to creating music of your own in class and this is developed on the GCSE course as you choose two topics for composition. For example, this could be a popular song and a dance track, a classical piece or some world music. There is a wide choice and it can be tailored to your own musical interests and strengths.
  • You have already listened to a variety of music in class and these skills are developed as you study some set pieces taken from the classical, 20th century, popular and world music areas of study.
  • You enjoy making music, either as a soloist or in a group. The GCSE course encourages you to perform music of your own choosing and in any style, as a soloist and also in a group. To take this course, you must be able to offer just one instrument/or voice.

What can I do after I’ve completed the course?
If you enjoyed the GCSE Music course then you can consider pursuing the subject at AS or A2 Level. Your listening skills will enhance the aural perception needed in language examinations. Your performing skills will give you confidence in playing to an audience – useful if you intend to pursue, for example, drama or law. In addition, you may wish to study A Level Performing Arts or Music Technology.


The Music Staff

Miss A. Howells
Head of Music                 
Miss E. Davis
Music Teacher