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Wimbledon High School

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From playing glockenspiels and ukuleles to composing music to accompany film clips on Sibelius 7, students at Wimbledon High School engage with music by being practical and creative. 

Without music, life would be a mistake - Friedrich Nietzsche

Our curriculum is focused on academic rigour and understanding within a framework which is both supportive and enjoyable. The academic curriculum is matched with the co-curricular timetable so that students are immersed in musical creativity throughout their school day. 

Years 7, 8 and 9 (Key Stage 3)

Music is a central part of the Key Stage 3 curriculum with a generous teaching provision, starting with 180 minutes over two weeks in Year 7, 135 minutes in Year 8 and 90 minutes in Year 9. Year 7 students focus on musical confidence and musical literacy, working towards ABRSM Grade 1 Theory which is then extended to Grade 2-3 Theory in Year 8. By Year 9, students have greater musical literacy and are able to tackle the demands of higher standard music-making and further study. Students are encouraged to perform music as a soloist and ensemble, to compose in a range of musical styles and to listen to music with a critical ear. 

Years 10 and 11 (Key Stage 4) GCSE Course

At GCSE, the Edexcel specification is followed. The course is divided into the three main elements: performing (30%), composing (30%) and listening (40%). A range of musical styles – from Western Classical Music to Popular Music – are covered to give a broad understanding of the key musical genres. Creativity is at the heart of musical learning and the girls are encouraged to link performance, composition and analysis together to develop their musical curiosity.

Key Stage 5 (AS and A2)

At A Level, the AQA specification is followed. This is an exciting qualification with a strong focus on independent learning achieved by use of seven contrasting areas of study. This is a linear qualification with coursework units in Performance and Composition in each Sixth Form year, submitted at the end of Year 13. These papers involve producing different recitals as a soloist and/or ensemble, as well as learning to compose to a brief. These units make up 60% of the qualification.

The listening paper  is based on seven areas of study - candidates must study area of study 1 and then 2 other areas of study.

  • AOS 1: Western Classical Music (Compulsory Unit)
  • AOS 2: Pop Music
  • AOS 3: Music and Media
  • AOS 4: Musical Theatre
  • AOS 5: Jazz
  • AOS 6: Contemporary Traditional Music
  • AOS 7: Art Music from 1910

This involves listening to extracts of music critically, analysing music and writing convincing arguments in an essay format to discuss how composers have written music for their chosen genre. 

Both A Level and GCSE Music are popular options in both Year 12 and 13 with outstanding results; the girls have achieved 100% A*/A at GCSE and A Level in 2015 and 2016.

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