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The Wavell School

Year 10 Music

GCSE Music


There are four Areas of Study with two set works across course; this enables students to have a clear focus point for their study and supports the research into the various features and characteristics of each genre.  Below is a grid showing the four Areas of Study with an overview of what is learnt in each one.

Area of Study 1

Area of Study 2

Area of Study 3

Area of Study 4

Musical Forms and Devices

Music for Ensemble

Film Music

Popular Music



Set Work and overview of learning

Overview of learning

Overview of learning

Set Work and overview of learning


Set work: Bach’s Badinerie


Development of Western Classical Music


Structure and Form


Musical Devices


Sonority, texture and Timbre


Chamber Music


Musical Theatre


Jazz and Blues


How elements are used to create different moods and effects




How film music is created


Set work: Toto’s Africa


Structure and harmony of popular music




Pop melodies

Specification at a glance

Exam Board: EDUQAS

Specification Code: C66QS



 Completion Time



Unit 1

Performing Music


(15% solo)

(15% ensemble)


During Year 11

Performing Skills – Internally assessed and externally moderated

Unit 2

Composing Music



Minimum of five hours under Controlled Assessment

During Year 11

Composing Skills – Internally assessed and externally moderated

Unit 3

Listening and Appraising Music


1 hour 15 minute written paper

June of Year 11

Listening Skills

What will my child study during Year 10?






Solo performance prep

Song writing

Extending and altering chord progressions

Elements of music

Analysis of set works



Solo performance prep and assessment

Melody writing


Compose using minimalist techniques

AoS 3: Music for Film


Solo performance and assessment


Developing ideas

How to structure a composition

Free composition begins

AoS4: Popular Music

Set work study

AoS 1: Musical Forms and Devices

Set work study

Key skills and concepts learnt in each area of the course:



Rhythm and pitch reading

Instrumental technique

Expression when performing

Tone production

Reading cues (key sig, time sig, dynamics, tempo markings etc.)




Learning how to identify describe and evaluate musical features in pieces from the AoS outlined above:

Melody: shape, intervals, phrase structure

Instrumentation and Sonority: Identification and understanding instrumental techniques

Rhythm, tempo and metre: Identifying time signatures and tempo

Harmony and Tonality: Learning how to identify key signatures. Hearing chord progression and tonality


Identifying Texture, Dynamics Articulation and Structure

Being able to place music in time and occasion.

Understanding why composers and artists have used certain techniques and devices 


Analysis of set works


How to generate and develop musical ideas

Creating a chord progression

Extending and developing harmony

How parts work together

Idiomatic writing

Writing for Drum Kit


How will my child be assessed and how will I know how well they are doing in Music in Year 10?

The following areas will be assessed to show us a working grade for each student in year 10:

  • Performance Assessment: Students will be asked to record their performance piece each half term. They will be marked using the GCSE assessment criteria and given their mark and teacher comments as feedback. Students are encouraged to practise regularly (3/4times a week as a minimum) to prepare for the assessment. They are also encouraged to show their progress regularly by sharing their work in lesson time
  • Composing Assessment: Composing work will be monitored weekly and students will receive feedback each composition lesson.  Their skills will be matched against GCSE assessment criteria. Marks are given for each section of work completed in Year 10
  • Appraising: Listening skills will be assessed regularly through listening activities done in class. They will have a mock exam in the summer which will be based on the AoS they have covered in Year 10.

What homework will my child be expected to do in Year 10 in Music?

Students are encouraged to practise their instrument or voice at least 3 to 4 times a week.

They will also be asked to complete listening tasks and revision tasks at home. Homework will be given once every four lessons and will often be activities from focus on sound: http://portal.focusonsound.com This website can be accessed through their school log in and password.

How can I support my child to do well in Dance during Year 10?

Encourage your child to practise their instrument or voice regularly – this is vital to ensure good grades. Practising takes great discipline so incentives or the option to practise instead of doing a household chore might work for your child.

Listen to a wide variety of music. Talk together about the different elements. Can they hear the chords changing? Can they identify the time signature or if it is in a major or minor key? What instruments are being used? This is great for car journeys.

My child is struggling during the course, what additional help is available to help them keep up?

Come along to catch up sessions, join an ensemble/extra-curricular group and catch up on theory by using websites suggested throughout the course.


http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/music/ - basic information and musical knowledge


www.spotify.com/uk - both set works available for free

http://gcse-pod.co.uk/ -basic music theory

Updated July 2023