How about a new approach to revising those set works for GCSE Music? Instead of reading up on them, making lists of keywords to learn and then, finally, getting round to listening to the pieces, what about something that puts all that together and enables you to hear the particular section of the music you have just been revisiting? Explain Everything does just that and is a brilliant learning tool which brings the music to life, allowing you to pause, go back and repeat as many times as you need.
Check out these two examples, the first is on Miles Davis, All Blues and the second is on Mozart, 40th Symphony (1st mvt)
Year 7 have been investigating pentatonic music and discovered that there are a lot of pop songs out there with melodies based on just five notes – a pentatonic scale. Having got to grips with a pentatonic scale themselves they then composed a piece of music using this. Some of them initially found it quite a challenge to stick to the pentatonic scale but here are two examples of what some of the students created. The first is a live performance and the second a piece composed using GarageBand.
Year 8 are in the thick of investigating programme music – music inspired by non musical things such as art, poetry, stories, history, personal life. They have begun by looking at music inspired by the weather, in particular, storms and have listened a range of different musical examples, including the storm movement from Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony. After some careful planning, they set about creating their own storm pieces using the wonderful array of sounds and loops available on GarageBand. Here are a few examples of their pieces: