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Ivybridge Community College

Ivybridge Community College

Music

Music Making for All

At Ivybridge, we have a belief that music is for everyone, regardless of background or prior musical experiences. Every day, we strive to make music relevant to students, and facilitate genuine musical experiences through practical, hand-on music making.

 

Ivybridge champions the Musical Futures ethos with its pioneering use of 21st Century teaching approaches that form the core of our curriculum. We believe that music is best experienced, and therefore all of our lessons focus on students making music, not being told about it. In any lesson, students might play a number of different instruments, challenge themselves by trying different roles in a performance, teach their friends, conduct the whole group, record a performance using real world technology or give their peers guidance.

 

Subject Benefit

The benefits of music within education are huge. Being a musician shows universities and employers that you con work in groups, solve problems, listen and be creative. There is extensive research outlining links between learning a musical instrument and attainment across the whole school.  Most importantly, music making is fun - if offers the chance to make friends and be part of groups of musicians, and gives you the opportunity to be creative.

 

Subject Aims

  • To make music a relevant and engaging subject for every student, regardless of prior musical experience
  • To provide a wide range of musical experiences for all students
  • To offer a wide range of extra curricular musical opportunities, including different genres and ability points
  • To recognise students’ musical interests and respect, and respond to these in the classroom
  • To embrace technology, and new music, and make these an inherent part of the musical experience

What the Music Department Offers

Producing the next generation of Musicians...

The Music Department of Ivybridge Community College, is inclusive, and strives to provide varied, challenging and relevant musical experiences for all students, both inside and outside of the classroom.

 KS3

Key Stage 3

 

Lesson content at KS3 includes everything from Hungarian Folk Music to Rock, from beatboxing to Prokofiev, and students learn individually, in pairs, in bands, and will perform in whole tutor groups.

 

Teaching Groups

Students are taught in mixed ability groups for two hours over a fortnight.

The Aims of KS 3

  • To inspire students to explore music through active and collaborative music-making
  • To develop performance skills across a range of instruments, including vocal skills
  • To use Music Technology creatively

     

    Course Content

    Our Music Department is practical and enthusiastic – we aim to make Music learning as practical an activity as possible, done ‘with’ and ‘by’ our students, not ‘to’ and ‘for’ them.

    Our Schemes of Work are constantly evolving in line with our student’s musical interests – this year we are looking at everything from Guitars to Prokofiev, Blues to Hungarian Folk Music, and Music Technology to a capella singing. We have a belief that music is a collaborative activity, and our students get to work in everything from pairs, up to whole group performances. All students will get to try a wide variety of instruments, and musical experiences in our lessons – performing in a range of contexts, composing different styles, improvising as part of an ensemble, listening to a range of music and understanding it.

    Students work practically, and present their work through audio and video recordings as we believe that Music should be performed and experienced, not written about.

     

    Marking & Assessment

    Assessment in Music is student focussed, and student led.  Marking is completed in line with clear assessment criteria for each topic – allowing students to see what level they are working at, and most importantly how to improve.  Assessment is recorded in students’ progress trackers allowing them to monitor progress over the course of topics, and the year. 

    Reporting

    Reports will be made through the Interim Report and College profile system.

    How you can assist your child

  • Encourage them to listen to Music (Services like Spotify, Apple Music & Google Music are brilliant to allow students to listen to a range of music).
  • Encourage them to rehearse – there are loads of opportunities to do this at lunch and after school within the department.
  • Get them to experiment with Music Technology (there are so many free, or very cheap apps allowing students to make music now on tablets and PCs – Audiotool, Audiosauna, Garageband, Soundation etc.)
  • Speak to the Music department if your child wants to learn an instrument
  • Encourage your child to get involved with Music outside of lessons in the many extra-curricular activities on offer.

KS4

Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4 we run the AQA GCSE Music Course. This GCSE is ideal for students who enjoy listening to music, performing music and creating their own music. Students do not need to be having instrumental lessons to take GCSE Music but they do need to be dedicated to improving their performance skills on their chosen instrument/voice.

 

Teaching Groups

Students are taught in mixed-ability groups.

The Aims of KS 4

  • To promote student’s musicianship through active listening and collaborative music-making.
  • To develop performance skills on their chosen instrument(S) or voice, both as a soloist and as part of their own ensembles.
  • To develop creativity through practical music-making and composing.
  • To explore the vast range of musical software available to create and record their own music.
  • To inspire students to explore a wide variety of musical genres.

     

    Course Content

    This is a practical course where students will explore and develop an understanding of music through rehearsing, performing, creating, composing, listening and recording. Students will develop their performance skills on their choice of instruments and will work collaboratively with others on a number of different projects, including creating, performing and recording their own EP. They will develop their own compositional style through listening and studying the music that they like to listen to as well as being encouraged to explore a wider variety of musical styles. They will also become familiar with a range of different notational and recording musical software allowing them to take full ownership of the creation, performance, recording and editing of their own music.

    Marking & Assessment

Current specification assessment weightings (Yr 11)

20% Unit 1: Listening to and Appraising Music

20% Unit 2: Composing and Appraising Music

40% Unit 3 Performing Music

20% Unit 4 Composing Music

 

New specification assessment weightings (Yr 9, and 10 onwards)

40 % Component 1: Understanding Music

30 % Component 2: Performing Music

30% Component 3: Composing Music

 

How you can assist your child

  • Encourage them to listen to a wide variety of Music (Services like Spotify, Apple Music & Google Music are brilliant to allow students to listen to a range of music).
  • Encourage them to rehearse – there are loads of opportunities to do this at lunch and after school within the department.
  • Speak to the Music department if your child wants to learn an instrument
  • Encourage your child to get involved with Music outside of lessons in the many extra-curricular activities on offer.
  • Encourage them to use GCSE revision and theory websites such as BBC GCSE bitesize and www.musictheory.net
  • Encourage them to experiment with Music Technology (there are so many free, or very cheap apps allowing students to make music now on tablets and PCs – Audiotool, Audiosauna, Garageband, Soundation etc.)

 

 

 KS5

Key Stage 5

At KS5 we offer AS and A Level Music and also BTEC Music courses - allowing students to focus on the music they are inspired by, and learn performance, compositional and technical skills that will best prepare them for the next stage of their development as a musician.

 

AS Level course

We are following the AQA specification for AS Level music.

 

Course Content & Assessment

40% Component 1: Appraising Music

Students will develop their critical listening and analytical skills by studying and listening to a wide range of music. They will focus on two areas of study, one of which will be the Western Classical Tradition, studying in detail chosen set works and developing a contextual understanding of this music.

30% Component 2: Performing Music

Students will continue to develop their performance skills on their chosen instrument or voice before selecting and performing a 6-minute recital programme of their choice.

30% Component 3: Composing Music

Students will study a range of different composers and their compositional techniques before composing, recording and notating two compositions in a musical style of their choice. One composition will be completely free choice and the other will be based on a brief set by the exam board.

 

A2 Level course

We are following the OCR specification for A2 Level music.

Course Content & Assessment

40% Unit G354: Performing Music 2

Students will rehearse and prepare for a 15-minute recital of their choice to a visiting examiner and will develop a critical understanding of the interpretive choices of the performer.

30% Unit G355: Composing Music 2

Students will continue to develop their performance skills on their chosen instrument or voice and put together a 6-minute recital programme of their choice.

30% Unit G356: Historical and Analytical Studies in Music

Students will develop their critical listening and analytical skills by studying and listening to a wide range of music. They will focus on 20th Century vocal music and also Music for the Stage, studying in detail chosen set works and developing a contextual understanding of this music.

 

BTEC Music Course Aims

BTEC Music is a practical course that focuses on hands on music making, and has direct links with the music industry. It gives learners the knowledge, understanding and skills that they need to prepare for employment in the music industry, as well as valuable skills for other career paths. The focus is on modern popular music but students are required to work in a wide range of familiar and unfamiliar styles within this general area. The course features units on including music performance techniques, working and developing as a musical ensemble, music performance session styles, and in their second year, students work towards a large-scale public concert where they are responsible for all aspects of the performance, its organisation and promotion.

 

BTEC Course content

The course combines six units. ‘Music Performance Techniques’ is a compulsory unit where students will work towards a live gig scenario and the final assessment will be the performance itself. We then choose one of two specialist units where students can either focus on solo or ensemble skills. Where we can choose units, we will negotiate these with students on the course and choose the best units for the group. Although some activities will require students to work as individuals, most learning takes place in group and workshop situations. Students will often be taught specific practical techniques and theory during lessons and expected to work on these independently through personal practice and group rehearsals outside class and then reflect on this in a rehearsal log. Occasionally, presentations are given by visiting music industry professionals. All of the coursework assignments are also designed to help improve general skills such as communication, working with others and self-management.

 

Marking & Assessment

BTECs are not exam-based qualifications. You will be studying real life, work-based case studies and will complete projects and assessments, which contribute to achieving each unit studied. Each Assignment Brief will be a real world, musical scenario allowing you to gain further understanding of the world of music.

 

Depending on the unit, and specific assignment, your evidence might be a final gig, audition, practice diary, video diary, PowerPoint document – or it could be something different.  We are happy for you to submit evidence in a way that works for you. Students will be given regular individual and group feedback on their progress and will work to meet targets set by themselves and teachers.

 

How you can assist your child

There is an expectation that students who undertake the BTEC Music course will fully immerse themselves in the music making process. Primarily, this consists of listening to and appreciating a range of different musical styles and artists. However, we would also encourage students to be going to watch gigs and live performances, or be actively watching to and listening a variety of music using platforms such as Youtube.

You can actively encourage your son/daughter by discussing music with them and supporting them in their development as musicians in any way you can.

 

Additionally, it can be of real benefit to students have instrumental/vocal tuition in order to support them in their development as musicians. The college has a range of peripatetic staff who can really help students grow as musicians and help them to progress alongside the music performance work that the course consist of.  

 

Further opportunities/Career

 

BTEC Music is a course that is really valued by Universities - especially those looking for contemporary musicians and those who want to specialise in Pop, Rock, Jazz, Contemporary Instruments, Music Technology, Band Playing, and Professional Musician Skills. BTEC Music also offers many transferable skills that employers are looking for - whether or not they are considering a career in music and can let students; develop self-confidence, develop their team working skills, extend creative skills through arrangement, problem solving and composition and encourage them to develop skills in self-evaluation and refinement.

 

Possible career paths include;

  • Higher Education
  • Contemporary Music Universities - BIMM, ACM, Leeds College of Music etc
  • Professional Musician (Band Member, live musician etc)
  • Session Musician
  • Music Venue Manager
  • Music Teacher
  • Music Technician

 

Facilities

Department Facilities

We have two main live performances rooms, each set up with an acoustic drum kit, PA, and a variety of guitar and bass amps, many guitars, basses, electric drum kits and keyboards. We Utilise JamHubs to facilitate band rehearsing and hove 5 JamHub setups that ore used in our 'JamHub Suite'. We have a variety of practice rooms to allow instant rehearsal for budding rock bonds, and 5 dedicated rooms for instrumental tuition.

 

We hove extensive ICT facilities - which are again used as on integral part of learning - we use Propellerhead's Reason across all key stages, and hove various recording options - including portable digital desks capable of studio-quality recording, a fully-equipped studio with 24-channel digital desk, and a range of studio microphones.