Performing Arts - Music
At Wymondham High Academy, we believe that music is a demanding academic discipline, developed through exciting practical work. Music is a deeply rewarding subject to study; a unique form of communication that can change the way people feel, think and act. Music forms part of an individual’s identity and brings together intellect, feeling and enables personal expression, reflection and emotional development. An integral part of culture, past and present; music helps us understand ourselves, relate to others and develop a sense of cultural awareness. Too often, financial and other demands can mean that access to high quality instrumental and vocal opportunities remain solely the preserve of those from more affluent backgrounds. This can significantly limit uptake and achievement at GCSE. We feel passionately that the opportunity to excel in music should be available to all students and as such, our KS3 curriculum is unashamedly powerful and is 100% practical, as this is the very best way in which this disparity can be challenged. In recent years we have become OCR’s largest centre for GCSE music entries in the South East of England, with uptake having doubled during the past four years. A powerful and impactful curriculum depends on, more than any other factor, excellent subject specialist teachers. Wymondham High is proud to be a one of only 20 Musical Futures ‘Champion Schools’ nationally, recognising the academy’s position as a regional centre of excellence for teaching and learning in Music. Through this, we have hosted CPD events for primary and secondary colleagues and worked in partnership with awarding bodies to lead training/develop resources. We’ve supported neighbouring music departments in their improvement journeys and have developed strong and long-standing partnership with our local ITT provider and our local music hub. Both Y7 and Y8 begin with a ‘Class Band’ project, whereby we begin by exploring contemporary popular music that the children are familiar with from outside school. Practically workshopping this music as whole class builds confidence, familiarity and engagement amongst the pupils and allows staff to establish the pedagogical approaches that will be utilised throughout the year ahead. We make no excuses for seeking to expose students to the best that has been thought, composed and performed within the artform. Alongside studying the development of the Western Classical Tradition from 1600-1900, students also encounter a range of world music styles and traditions, alongside jazz and an exploration of selected sub-genres of popular music that have changed society. We also pay particular focus to the study of a range of trailblazing artists; both innovators who’ve driven the artform forwards as well as those who’ve managed to overcome significant obstacles to achieve greatness in the face of racial, homophobic and gender intolerance and disability.