Music at Holy Trinity Academy involves students in two lessons per fortnight at Key Stage 3 (Years 7 and 8), and five lessons per fortnight as an option at Key Stage 4 (Years 9-11). We are committed to developing creating and performance skills in all our young people, whilst also encouraging them to be self -analytical, through observing and listening to their own and others’ work.
In Music, all students have the opportunity to experience music through the key areas of composing, performing and listening. There is the opportunity for students to learn to play an instrument and for students to develop their musical skills in a wide range of extra-curricular activities.
In Year 7, students learn how to use staff, graphic and other relevant notations appropriately in a variety of different musical contexts. They begin the year with a vocal music topic, exploring different vocal textures and techniques, before studying the basics of Rhythm and Pulse. They also explore the different sections and Instruments of the Orchestra, and are also introduced to the use of Pentatonic scales through Chinese Music.
In Year 8, pupils continue to develop creative skills in a number of composing topics. We explore the influences of modern popular music through Jazz and Blues, learning how to perform key features of these styles. World Music is also a focus in Year 8, where pupils learn musical terminology and features through the practical contexts of African Music, Indian Music and Reggae. This provides opportunities for pupils to work both independently, in smaller groups, and also as a whole class ensemble. Pupils learn how composers use soundscapes to create an intended atmosphere in a Music and Space topic which is based on Gustav Holst’s The Planets.
Music is offered both at GCSE and A Level. The GCSE and A Level courses follow the AQA specification, building on the three key areas of Understanding, Performing and Composing.
In Year 9, students use the skills developed in Years 7 and 8 to create extended pieces of music. They explore and compose music for a specific purpose, through the contexts of Fanfares, by composing music for a special occasion, and Film Music, in which they create their own soundtrack for a James Bond film, using leitmotifs, cue sheets and storyboards. Practical performance opportunities involve individual, small group and whole class work, particularly in our topic on Samba, where students learn to listen to and respond to others in the group. Pupils explore Popular Song in which they explore features of song structure and texture, before producing their own cover version of a piece of music.
In Years 10 and 11 we prepare for the practical coursework aspect of the GCSE by developing composing skills, learning set works and practicing solo and ensemble skills.
Instrumental lessons are offered to all students through weekly visits from peripatetic teachers through Telford and Wrekin Music Service. Currently, lessons are offered in Keyboard, Guitar, Drums, Strings (Violin and Viola) and Brass (Trumpet, Trombone and French Horn).
This is a fundamental part of Performing Arts at Holy Trinity Academy and our students respond with great commitment and enthusiasm to the many dance, music and drama clubs we hold each lunch time and after school. We believe very firmly that the skills acquired in these clubs feed back into our lessons, enhancing the quality of outcomes and promoting a strong interest in the Arts. As a result of these clubs we are able to hold annual dance productions and music concerts as well as musicals and serious dramas. Most recently, we have staged the Wizard of Oz, Little Shop of Horrors, Gizmo, Private Peaceful and Disco Inferno. These have been in addition to our Evening of GCSE and A Level dance performance and choreography, our dance productions, Arts Week music concerts, Christmas Concert, Carol Service and school Christmas fair.
The above plays and the musical were all directed by our Arts Award students at Silver and Gold level, in order to fulfill the leadership aspect of the course. We have also worked with our feeder primary schools, providing after school clubs run by our Arts award students.