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Music Department

Subject Outline / Aim

“Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without.” – Confucius

Every significant event in every culture has music as a key part. It feeds the soul and the mind, improves mental health, slows heart rate, reduces stress, lessens anxiety, provides comfort, sharpens physical performance and improves cognition... and more.

And that is just listening.

Playing teaches independence, helps pupils develop organisational skills, self-control, problem solving and improves teamworking, resilience and self-belief.

At Holy Family, we take a hands-on approach to developing music knowledge and skills, with opportunities for pupils to play a range of instruments. Pupils develop music-reading skills, learning to interpret Graphic Scores, traditional Western Notation, TAB notation, Drum Notation and Chord Charts.

Pupils also learn the basics of music sequencing and watch and discuss videos of professional Musicians giving high quality ‘live’ performances; from Tiny Desk Concerts to BBC Radio 1 Live Lounge to the Berlin Philharmonic. Students will listen to and discuss a wide range of music - learning from some of the finest international performers.

The aim is that students enjoy playing, exploring, and creating, are not afraid of taking on challenges or making mistakes, and walk away with the confidence to work things out for themselves.


At KS3 pupils start to read, rehearse, and perform from their very first lesson in Year 7. The Spiral style curriculum is devised so that the knowledge and skills developed at a particular point in one academic year will be revisited and built upon at the same point the following year.

Topics Covered:

Y7 Curriculum

Y8 Curriculum

Y9 Curriculum


Homework tasks are mostly online activities and quizzes which help consolidate knowledge developed in class. We use music-specific website to provide fast, fun, and relevant homework tasks.

Learning Journey:

By the end of KS3, pupils will have played Guitar, Piano, Bass Guitar, Drums, Cajon, and Ukulele. They will have an idea of what their musical strengths are, and if choosing music as an option, they will feel confident choosing an instrument (or two in some cases) on which to focus their efforts for the next three years.


Topics Covered:

Year 10

Year 11

Subject Support Materials / Equipment

Quizzes, challenges and music used in lesson and for homework tasks:

Further information on related topics:


Weekly extra-curricular music clubs and a range peripatetic music lesson options enrich the standard curriculum, providing opportunities for pupils to engage with visiting music specialists, and to have fun making music with friends and staff.

Peripatetic lesson opportunities include:







Clubs for the forthcoming year include:

  • Glee Club: Singing and Dance with elements of Musical Theatre, performing songs from shows.
  • Rock Club: Bookable slots in Music Rehearsal space with PA


  • Annual Performing Arts overnight trip to London’s West End and Galleries
  • Glee Club London ‘Tour’ & various local performances
  • Trips to College Music Depts. Meeting staff/performing and recording


  • Annual Christmas singing events in Local Care Homes
  • Regular Liturgy performance opportunities
  • Service of Light performances/Carol Service
  • Musical Theatre Productions

What are the opportunities beyond school?

Local opportunities beyond KS4 are available at the following. Students in recent years have left Holy Family to Study at:

New College Pontefract:

York College:

Access Creative College at the Jam Factory – York:

What are the opportunities beyond College and University?