The study of music is beneficial to children and adults of all ages and here at OBA we aim to spark and nurture a passion for music in all our students by developing skills in performing, composing and appraising music.  Students are offered a wide range of internal and external opportunities to perform, and it is our aim to empower students to use these opportunities to improve key transferable skills such as resilience, confidence, team work, increased memory and emotional development.

Curriculum overview

Year 7

Curriculum includes:

  • Keyboard skills
  • Singing
  • Introduction to music production
  • Soundscapes
  • Notation and arranging
  • Studying a range of styles of music including blues, classical and pop music

Year 8

Curriculum includes:

  • Music for film and TV
  • Rap
  • Guitar skills
  • Samba band
  • Podcasting
  • Notation and arranging
  • Remixing skills

Year 9

Curriculum includes:

  • Solo performance
  • Expanding on guitar, keyboard and production skills
  • Songwriting
  • A battle of the bands project
  • Research and presentation
  • An in-depth look into the music of The Beatles
  • GCSE foundation group

In Key Stage 4 students will be studying the music syllabus set by AQA. This course requires enhanced critical listening skills and contain exams where you are required to identify specific features and elements in a wide variety of musical styles. 

The GCSE course also contains practical and composition elements where students will be expected to perform 2 pieces on their chosen instrument to a Grade 4 standard, in addition to composing 2 pieces of music in class.

Students will be expected to attend after school sessions and mandatory peripatetic classes (during school time) on their chosen instrument. Peripatetic lessons are free.

In Key Stage 5 students study the Rock School Live Subsidiary Diploma (Level 3).  This is a vocational qualification which allows students to undertake a balance of practical (performance, composition and recording) work mixed with theory and written elements.  There is also an externally-assessed exam unit comprising performance and written elements, which learners complete during school time.

Students are required to study a mix of compulsory units as well as choosing their own to tailor their learning to their specific areas of interest and passion.  Current examples of units taught include Studio Sound Recording, Preparing for an Audition, Planning for a Career in the Music Industry and Composing Music.

Please download the learning journeys below: