Curriculum Leader: Miss H. Durham

We provide opportunities for all students to learn, develop and combine skills in performance and composition through both curricular lessons and extra-curricular opportunities.

Students are encouraged in lessons to listen widely and experiment creatively with musical ideas, performing to a high standard in every lesson. Each 10 week topic at Key Stage 3 culminates in an official assessment.

The Music Department is proud to support and extend the emerging skills and talents of our students through a broad extra-curricular programme and provision of peripatetic instrumental lessons. Please contact Miss Durham directly by emailing if you would like to enquire about individual musical instrument lessons in school.

The Department fosters a sense of community cohesion through school concerts, extra-curricular activities and events with the wider community. The Department is also the proud home of the Fulford Music Academy which provides after hours music tuition for the entire York community.

The KS3 Music Curriculum at Fulford School

Each year group studies a range of different topics to develop performing, composing and listening skills, some of which incorporate the Department’s JamPod equipment. Students are taught to use this technology to work on ensemble projects where every student is able to learn and develop skills on electric guitar, bass guitar, drum kit, keyboard and vocals…all in a relevant rock band setting! Students are also introduced to the technical skills needed to manipulate and record their work. Students will complete a variety of independent, paired and group work throughout KS3.

Year 7

During Year 7 students will learn about and develop their skills in singing, keyboard skills and African drumming. In addition, students will also develop the necessary skills to perform as an ensemble and will learn how to use the JamPod order to rehearse as a band.

Year 8

During Year 8 students will develop their ensemble skills through use of the JamPod equipment. In addition, students will also further develop their performing, listening and composing skills through Samba drumming, the Blues, song writing and learning how compose in a theme and variations style – taking an existing melody and exploring techniques used by composers to turn this into your own piece of music.

GCSE Music


To develop 3 areas of musical skills and knowledge.

  • Composing
  • Performing
  • Listening with understanding

Type of Work

Composition can be for all types of instruments (including drums, keyboards, guitar, etc.) and voices. You will learn how to create a musical score and recording using Sibelius software. The ‘JamPods’ will also be used to generate and record live composition ideas in lessons, as well as during composition workshops held during a weekly lunchtime slot. One composition will be to a set brief, the other is an entirely free composition.

Performance: you will perform two pieces on instrument or voice. Once again, any instrument may be used, including the guitar, keyboard or drums. You should aim for a standard of Grade 4 or 5 (Associated Board/Trinity Guildhall/Rock School) where possible, though this is not a requirement to study the subject at GCSE level.

Preparation for the Listening paper will involve learning about, and responding to, a wide variety of styles of music. There are 8 set pieces of music that you will study, ranging from classical to popular and world music and organised into 4 Areas of Study.


  1. Composition: 2 pieces, each approximately 2 minutes in length.
  2. Performance: One solo piece and one ensemble performance.
  3. Listening: Based around 4 Areas of Study.


  1. Written Paper (Listening) 40%
  2. Composition 30%
  3. Performance 30%