Welcome to the Music Department
The Music Department at Chellaston Academy has a reputation for high quality music making, concerts and for offering opportunities for hundreds of pupils on many instruments. Pupils have the opportunity to take part in a huge range of musical groups including junior choirs, concert band, Ukelele club, Samba Band plus lots more. There are 7 visiting staff who teach a variety of instruments from: Woodwind, Brass, Drums, Guitar and Singing.
We teach in a purpose built building which opened in 2004, and it includes 5 practice rooms, a recording studio and two high specification technology facilities plus two key stage 3 classrooms with keyboards and headphones.
Each pupil receives one hour per week of music in Key Stage 3. This encompasses performing, composing, listening and appraisal skills.
At Key Stage 4 there are pathways to study music for GCSE or take a BTEC Level 2 in Music Technology.
Throughout the year there are a wide variety of concert opportunities for students to take part in. Every Christmas and summer we put on concerts which are aimed at musicians of all abilities. These popular and successful concerts are often sold out and enable students to showcase their musical ability.
The concert will feature groups, ensemble and soloists from all age groups across the school, and from a variety of musical backgrounds and abilities.
There will be an additional events throughout the year, which have included in the past a Band Night in November, and a Music and Drama competition in June.
Unit 1 Performance: Bridging the Gap
This unit is an opportunity for pupils to consolidate the musical knowledge gained at Junior School. Pupils take their current musical knowledge and build upon them by learning basic listening, composing and keyboard skills.
Unit 2 Composition: Strike the Right Chord
The aim of this unit is teach pupils how to perform a variety of chords. Pupils are taught to use appropriate harmony as a device for compositions and performances. Some pupils go on to use devices to sustain and extend musical compositions to achieve different intended effects.
Unit 3 Composition: Vicious Volcanoes
This unit focuses on how different musical elements can be used to compose music e.g. Tempo, different instruments and pitch.
Unit 4 Performance: Pop song structure
The unit aim is to compose music using a traditional pop song structure, which includes intro, verse, chorus and ending. Pupils will develop the lyrics and theme of the song alongside the structure.
Unit 5 Performance: Gospel Music
This unit will see students exploring Blues, Gospel & Spiritual music and learning about the cultural significance of slavery. This unit offers lots of singing opportunities in ensemble work, as well as solo singing.
Unit 6 Composition: All that Jazz
Students learn about jazz music and in particular improvisation, walking bass line and 12 bar blues. They will develop their keyboard skills, mainly how to play chords using the correct finger positions. They will also learn about improvisation and how it can be incorporated into composition and performance.
Unit 1 Composition: Hooks and Riffs
This topic involves students exploring the way music can be altered to create new moods and effects. They will study and analyse several arrangements to gain a solid understanding before arranging a piece of their own.
Unit 2 Performance: Ready for a Remix
During this unit, pupils will learn about Hooks and Riffs and their uses within a variety of musical styles. Initially students will identify the different types of Hooks and Riffs through listening before performing and eventually composing their own examples.
Unit 3 Performance: Music from other cultures
During this topic students will explore music from lots of different countries including India, the Caribbean and Africa. They will analyse and compare the features of the various types of music studied and will evaluate the venue, purpose and occasion.
Unit 4 Composition: Minimalism
In this topic the students will develop their performing and compositional skills by using minimalist musical ideas. The students will have the opportunity to perform on different instruments using Steve Reich and Terry Riley’s compositions as inspiration.
Unit 5 Performance: Baggy Trousers
Students learn pop songwriting skills using baggy trousers by madness for inspiration. They will adapt the music and lyrics from Baggy Trousers into a performance using their own lyrical ideas.
Unit 6 Composition: Hip Hop Shakespeare
This topic explores the use of the voice for rapping and the context of hip hop music, and uses cross curriculum ideas from English, as students have previously studied 'The Tempest'. Using The Tempest as inspiration, the students will compose a rap incorporating their own lyrics and musical ideas.
Unit 1 Performance: Band Performance
Students will learn about major keys and chord progressions and will apply this knowledge in order to change the key of the popular song 'Let It Be' and perform in groups.
Unit 2 Composition: – Film trailer music
The second part of the topic focuses on Film music, and how the combination of music and moving images can work together to enhance a variety of moods. The students will then compose a section of music to accompany a film clip. They are aiming to use as many appropriate musical devices as possible to bring the visuals to life in a convincing way!
Unit 3 Performance: Dance Music
This topic allows students to explore the various styles of dance music both past and present, exploring a range of dance music from the 1960s to present. Students are encouraged to be creative and compose their own tunes as well as playing existing dance songs.
Unit 4 Composition: Music in advertising.
After this the students will then compose a piece of Advertising music based on fictional product. The students will incorporate a wide variety of musical elements to ensure the mood created is appropriate to the product.
Unit 5 Performance: Musical genres.
This topic enables students to learn about a wide variety of genres within pop music including Rock, Gospel, Folk and Funk. The aim is to develop performing skills which will then shape the second part of this unit which focuses on composing a pop song
Unit 6 Composition: Song-writing.
During this final unit, students will compose a pop song which incorporates as many musical elements and ideas that they have learnt so far. They are aiming to write a song incorporating lyrics, a theme, a chosen style, title and a clear structure.
The GCSE course is split into three units.
Unit 1 is a performing unit whereby you can showcase your musical ability as a performer on your chosen instrument, including voice. In Unit 2 you compose two pieces of original music based on what you have learnt so far and in Unit 3 where you can put into practise your musical theory understanding in a exam at the end of the course.
If you need any further help you can see Mr Elliott or Mr Baggott who are running a GCSE catch up session every Monday after school.
The purpose of this component is to assess students’ performing skills in both a solo and
ensemble context. Students should be given the opportunity to rehearse and refine
performances on their chosen instrument or voice, developing technical control, expression
and interpretative skills.
The areas of content covered are:
● solo performing
● ensemble performing
Composing is the creative process by which most of the music we experience came into
the skills needed to compose music for different instrumental
and/or vocal forces.
Students must submit two compositions, of a combined duration of at least three minutes:
● one in response to a brief set by Pearson, of at least one minute in duration
● one free composition set by the student, of at least one minute in duration
● a total composition submitted that is less than three minutes will receive
The students will sit a 1hour 45 minute exam at the end of the course based on the four units.
BTEC is a course which focuses on the practical elements of music technology including computers based music creation, sound capture and editing in the studio and music technology suite. It reflects a real working environment and aims to allow the students to learn about all apsects of the music industry including recording, performance, promotion, advertising health and safety to name but a few!
The course is divided into four units. Three of the units are practical based, and therefore offer music making, recording and editing opportunities. They are also encouraged to work in team in a practical ‘real life’ scenario.
In Unit 1, the students will sit an hour paper based on the organisations and job roles in the music industry. The exam is worth 25% of the final mark; this can be re-taken.
In Unit 2 ‘Managing a music product’ the students manage a music product by recording a CD and packaging it in a professional way which includes organising a launch party.
Unit 6 ‘Introducing Music recording’ the students learn how to capture and create audio and midi sounds in the studio, they also learn how to manipulate these sounds to make them sound as professional as possible.
Unit 7 ‘Introducing music sequencing’. In this unit, students learn how to manipulate sounds and use them in a track that they have produced on the computer. They will then present their ideas to the group.
Chellaston Academy Music Department offers students the chance to learn a wide range of instruments including:
Drums and electric bass guitar - Mr Statham
Brass - Mr Holdgate
Woodwind - Mrs Hampton
Keyboards & Piano - Mr Hampton
Guitar and Bass - Mr Peach
Flute - Mrs Memmory
Vocal Teacher – Mr Morris
More information about our independent peripatetic tutors are available on this page.
Lunch – Year 7 and Year 8 Band (G6)
After school - GCSE Club (G8C)
Lunch - Folk Band (G7)
After school - GCSE Intervention
Lunch – Samba Band (G6) & Fusion (G7)
After school – Chellaston Orchestra (G7)
Lunch - Year 9 Band (G7)
Lunch – Percussion Club (G6)