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Educating young people who are blind or vision impaired

Music

The Music Department at NCW provides a practical, hands-on curriculum that all students can benefit from, expanding their awareness and love of music. Performing, Listening and Composing are at the heart of the Music curriculum.

The areas of study chosen in Key Stage 3 reflect the key concepts and processes, range, content and curriculum opportunities that are advised by the Department for Education. The styles of music studied at for GCSE or RSL Certificate at Level 2 and A Level or BTEC at Level 3 are also taken into consideration and introduced throughout Key Stage 3 to ensure a smooth transition to Key Stage 4 and 5.

Within the Music Department, we offer a wide range of instrumental lessons delivered by specialist visiting teachers:

  • Woodwind
  • Brass
  • Singing
  • Musical Theatre
  • Piano
  • Percussion
  • Guitar
  • Organ

The instrumental lessons are all on an individual basis and are personalised to meet the needs of the student. Entering ABRSM or other external music exams encouraged with a 100% success rate from Grade 1 to Grade 8 and beyond to Diploma, with over 75% at Distinction.

Extra-curricular activities are offered that encourage ensemble skills and a strong social aspect to music making. Not all of our groups require the student to be studying an instrument.

Students can choose from:

  • Choir
  • Musical Theatre
  • Folk Band
  • Jazz Band
  • Brass Band
  • Recorder and Flute Group
  • Guitar Club
  • Ukelele Group
  • Rock School
  • Drum Ensemble

Head of Department:

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Mrs Jo Christie

Examples of adaptations for vision impaired students

  • Teaching Braille music when appropriate, improving a student’s music literacy and when ready, entering students into the GTLA Braille Music Awards. We have a 100% pass rate with our students regularly winning National Braille Music Awards.
  • Providing Braille music scores for set works at GCSE and A Level.
  • Modifying performance music to large print or Braille music.
  • Recording audio talking guides for set works at GCSE and A Level.
  • Instrumental teachers delivering lessons by ear and providing audio guides for practice between lessons.
  • The visiting music teachers are encouraged to learn music Braille to enhance the students’ music literacy.
  • Using Music Technology software that functions with voiceover and key command including Logic Pro X and QWS.
  • Workshops with ex-students Andre Louis and James Bowden, experts in Logic Pro X, MuseScore and QWS.

Courses

A Level:

  • Eduqas – Development of the Symphony 1750-1900, Musical Theatre, Into the 20th Century, Performance and Composition

GCSE:

  • Eduqas – Musical Forms and Devices, Music for Ensemble, Film Music, Popular Music, Performance and Composition

BTEC:

  • Level 3 Performing and Music Technology – units chosen specifically to suit the strengths of the individual students including; Ensemble Performance, Practical Theory and Harmony, Composing, Studio Recording Techniques, Music and Sound for Media and Mixing and Mastering Techniques.

RSL Certificate:

  • Instrumental Study, Musical Knowledge of Popular Music Styles and Live Music Performance.
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