The Music Department is a thriving department with lots going on both in and out of the classroom. In lessons pupils experience lots of exciting genres of music from Classical Programmatic to African or Samba drumming; students even get to learn about how music affects popular culture by studying film music and having a go at writing their own pop song! Students also learn how to play the keyboard, drums, guitar and bass, compose using real instruments and computers as well as developing their singing skills. The department is highly resourced with a wide selection of classroom percussion instruments, keyboards and other instruments available for use by the students. There are also 15 computers each with a variety of music software including Sibelius and GarageBand.

Schools Voices 2023

We were involved in this year’s Schools Voices project with Bath Festivals and Bath Philharmonia.  Here is the song we wrote with St Mark’s and Kingswood schools called “Hive”.

Music GCSE remains a popular choice at Oldfield; many students choose to further their musical development by taking music in Year 10. In lessons they are taught to appreciate all forms of music as well as being given the opportunity to perform and compose in their chosen style. Lessons are exciting and enjoyable as well as being motivating and challenging.

Music A Level is also offered at Oldfield. Whilst studying music students can expand their knowledge even further through thorough analysis and exploration of important works and composers, Bach Chorale training, composition development and high quality performances.

Outside of the traditional music classroom many students learn to play an instrument with one of the specialist tutors that come into school on a weekly basis. Currently we offer guitar, bass guitar, drum, flute, clarinet, saxophone, violin, viola, ‘cello, brass, singing and piano lessons. However, we are always looking to expand the provision and if the instrumental lessons required by a student are not available we will do our best to locate a specialist and offer the relevant tuition. There are also many extra-curricular activities for pupils to join at Oldfield such as Choir, Band, Ukulele Group and a special Year 7 Handbell group. These ensembles perform regularly throughout the year both in and out of school.

Teaching and Learning

KS3 – Students are taught in mixed ability tutor groups during years 7, 8 and 9 and have two hours of Music per fortnight. The Music curriculum is designed to introduce a range of music styles and to allow the students to develop listening, composing and performing skills. Both traditional music making and ICT are used to support composing and performing. There are many opportunities for them to develop their work through extra-curricular provision.

KS4 – The students who take music as a GCSE option follow the AQA syllabus and support their theoretical knowledge with composition and performance work. Students have the chance to record their own music using the Apple computers in school and they perform to audiences throughout the two years at school functions.

Extra Curricular Opportunities

Students from all years are encouraged to take instrumental and singing lessons in addition to their curriculum music. Those who choose to do so have weekly sessions with instructors who are specialist teachers of particular instruments. Grades can be taken by the students when their playing reaches the required standard.

Students are encouraged to join bands and groups who perform at various school functions.

The Music department organises the annual Christmas Festival in the local Church which is always a popular and significant part of the school calendar. In addition the Music students perform in regular concerts at the school, and also play at celebration ceremonies and school open evenings.