Thursday 09 April 2020


Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3, students in Thornhill receive one lesson of music per week in years 7 and 8 following a varied curriculum which enables them to improve their performance, composition, listening and appraising skills. Students play and perform in a range of solo and ensemble contexts using their voice and playing instruments. They improvise, compose and extend and develop musical ideas by drawing on a range of musical structures, styles, genres and traditions. Students use staff and other relevant notations. They identify and use the elements of music expressively and with increasing sophistication, including use of tonalities, different types of scales and other musical devices. Students listen with increasing discrimination to a wide range of music and develop a deepening understanding of the music that they perform and to which they listen. Each topic will last half a term and will end with a formal assessment that will be given a National Curriculum Grade. Students will also have the opportunity to learn to play a variety of different musical instruments and complete graded examinations.

Year 7

  • The Elements of Music
  • Christmas Song Composition
  • Ostinato
  • The Popular Song Structure
  • Improvisation

Year 8

  • Modes
  • Riffs - Stand by Me
  • World music - Reggae
  • Popular Song - Rap

Students are entitled to a sensitive response to their work and an assessment that will help them develop their skills to a higher level. Emphasis is placed on activities which best motivate the pupils and give them an enriched learning experience, these include: rhythm work, instrument work, singing and the use of ICT to record and evaluate performances.

Key Stage 4 GCSE Music

Student are given the opportunity to continue their studies in Music, and follow a three-year GCSE course which is designed to allow candidates to study Music through the integration of performing, composing and listening with opportunities to use music technology following the AQA syllabus.

A high quality music education should engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians, and so increase their self-confidence, creativity and sense of achievement. 


Unit 1 – Listening to and Appraising Music  20%

Unit 2 – Composing and Appraising Music  20%

Unit 3 – Performing Music  40%

Unit 4 – Composing Music  20%


The Music department offers a wide variety of extra-curricular activities as a valuable extension of the curriculum. We run a successful choir, vocal groups, dance groups, rock bands, steel pan band  and theory class and produce termly concerts. We are currently working hard on our forthcoming Thornhill annual school musical production. 

10 Important facts you should know about music

  1. Music improves learning skills
  2. Music boosts pupils socail development
  3. Music fosters team working
  4. Music builds life skills
  5. Music underpins better behaviour
  6. Nusic encourages creativity
  7. Music is for Life
  8. Music is an educational building block
  9. Music is for Fun
  10. Music is for everyone


Curriculum and Learning Progression

Music can be studied at AS and A level and degree level. A wide range of post 16 courses exists at Sixth Form and performing arts colleges.

Careers in music

Performance and Live music,  Music Production and Studio Engineering, Composer and Arranger, Record Labels, Music Media, TV, Radio, Music Journalism, Education, Music Therapy.