Music at NOA
As well as fostering a knowledge, understanding and interest in how music works, our intention is to help to create fully rounded, self-aware individuals.
By the end of Key Stage Three, every student will have taken part in several live music performances to their classmates, and given the opportunity to perform to the whole school and wider community. They will understand what it means to be a musician, and many will be well on their way to becoming accomplished players, composers and critics. We understand that not all learning takes place in the classroom, and this will be taken into account in assessing the learning of each student. To this end, every student will be given the opportunity to attend one or more of our wide range of extra-curricular activities, including individual instrumental lessons, free group lessons on brass, strings, woodwind and even instrument building as well as participation in the choir, samba band, funk band and orchestra. We firmly believe that every child deserves the opportunity to take part in extra-curricular activities, and commit to making these activities accessible to all demographics.
Our students will gain a wealth of musical experience, not only in the context practical work, but in the ability to think critically about music, using the relevant key language and terminology. They will be exposed to music from every style, culture and tradition, from early Western Art Music up to present day Popular Music, via World Music from all corners of the globe. As well as learning how to be musicians, and how to analyse music, they will learn how to be successful music students; the assessment process will mirror that of a Music GCSE from Year 7 upwards (30% Performance, 30% Composition, 40% Analysis). With this embedded from the beginning of secondary school life, students will be well equipped to succeed, and to know what success looks like, in Key Stages 4 and 5.
A school should feel like a community, and every individual should feel welcome and like they have a part to play. Our inclusive approach reflects this: we never withhold opportunities from a student who has shown an interest in music, no matter what their ability or background. This applies to staff, parents and other individuals who take an interest in what we do as a department, many of whom already get involved in school music activities, with some even leading projects in co-ordination with the department. This sense of cooperation in the department and the department’s relationship with the wider community contributes not just to the character of music education at NOA, but to the character of the whole school.