Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College
An Outstanding Catholic School


Welcome to the Music Department

Department Members:

Mr Emanuele Amatruda

The Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College Music department is extremely active in all areas of the subject. From practical elements including ensembles to written forms such as composing and history and analysis, Music is alive and thriving at the Convent.

Students are encouraged to start learning an instrument during KS3 and the Convent encourages this further with a heavily subsidised programme to allow every student the opportunity. Through private instrumental lessons, students are further encouraged to join one of the many ensembles offered at the convent. The school choir has grown dramatically over the last few years with the average number remaining around 80 girls. The choir recently represented the school at Wembley Arena for the ‘Voice in a Million’ event and performed carols at ‘Westfield’ Stratford. A number of the girls had solo parts and sang with the Stage Choir. Students in KS3 are given various ensemble opportunities to help them consolidate their learning and enjoy their music with likeminded students.

The number of GCSE students taking music has grown over recent years and a higher number of these students are being retained for A level music courses. GCSE students are very active in the school community through music. The KS4 Vocal Ensemble has performed at nursing homes and at the Jack Petchey Award, Brent Town hall. The Year 11 Rock Band competed at the Battle of the Bands in April 2014 and was joined by a newly formed Year 10 Rock Band.

Music is a dynamic subject and provides students with another outlet for expression. It is an extremely accessible subject and students are encouraged to contribute to school life through this subject.


Key Stage 3 – 1 lesson per week

Key stage 3 curriculum is designed to provide to the students a broad knowledge of all the different aspects of Music: composing, performing and appraising. Since from the first lessons both theory and practice are integrated in order to help students to develop knowledge and practical skills. Topics covered in the Year 7 curriculum are: notation and rhythm, structure composition, elements of music and instruments of the orchestra. Year 8 curriculum covers: chords and melody, blues, reggae and film music. Students are encouraged to actively develop their skills and express their creativity through different styles, instruments and activities. Performance work is regularly shared and evaluated.

 Key Stage 4 – 1 double and 1 single lesson a week

Music is a popular choice at GCSE and our students benefit from the supportive and well equipped environment that the school provide. The current specification running in GCSE Music is the Edexcel Specification.


Year 11 Edexcel Specification


Unit 1 - Performing Music - 30% Internally Assessed - externally moderated


Overview of content

  • One Solo Performance
  • One Ensemble Performance


Overview of assessment

  • Recordings of both solo and ensemble performances (on CD/MD/MP3)
  • Scores, professional recordings or written commentary (for Realisation) for both performances


Unit 2 - Composing Music - 30% Internally Assessed - externally moderated


Overview of content

  • Two compositions, or
  • Two arrangements, or
  • One composition and one arrangement


Overview of assessment

  • Recordings of both compositions/arrangements (on CD/MD/MP3)
  • Notated scores or written commentaries for both compositions/arrangements


Unit 3 – Listening and Appraising - 40% Assessed by External Examiner


Overview of content

  • Knowledge and study of set works in the Areas of Study


Overview of assessment

  • A 1-hour and 30-minute written paper
  • All questions relate to the set works
  • The paper will be in two sections
  • Section A: eight compulsory questions in response to extracts from the set works that will be played on a CD during the examination (68 marks)
  • Section B: one question from two optional questions on the set works, requiring extended writing (12 marks)
  • A total of 80 marks for the paper.