The Ripley Academy


Music is taught at KS3 once a week and the students learn a variety of skills including performance, composition and listening and appraising whilst studying various styles of music that are both interesting and enjoyable.  

At KS4, students study from western classical to dance music, descriptive and ensemble music.   Pupils focus on their chosen instrument and work on a solo and ensemble performance and creating two compositions.

At KS5, students continue to develop their skills in performance, composition and listening and appraising focusing on particular set works and composition briefs set by the exam board.

At Ripley Academy students are able to have instrumental lessons. We have peripatetic tutors that visit the school throughout the week to teach brass, woodwind, voice, drums and guitar lessons.  The music department prepare for some major events in the school calendar such as the presentation evening and Christmas concert in which various ensembles will perform. There are a number of extra-curricular activities and GCSE catch-up sessions at lunchtime and after school, see the timetable below.

  Lunchtime After school (3-4pm)
Monday Keyboard Club  
Tuesday Vocal Harmony Group GCSE catch up (Coursework)
Wednesday   GCSE catch up (Coursework)
Thursday School Choir Glee Club

For any more information about the department, instrumental lessons or extra-curricular activities, please do not hesitate to contact Miss L Close (Teacher of Music).

Music at KS3

Elements of Music

Rhythm & Pulse

Instruments of the Orchestra

Caribbean Music

The Treble Clef 


Rock ‘n’ Roll

Film Music

Dance Music



Popular Song

Music at KS4 – OCR specification 

Unit 1

One solo performance (15%)

One composition (10%)

1 commentary (5%)

Unit 2

One ensemble performance (15%)

One composition (10%)

1 log and evaluation (5%)

Unit 3 One creative task composition (20%) based on a given stimulus to create a short composition in a 45 minute examination 20%
Unit 4 One listening test (20%) based on solo accompaniment, ensembles, dance and descriptive music.  20%

Music at KS5 – AQA specification 

AS Level

Unit 1

Influences on Music

1 hour 45 minutes written examination

30% of AS

15% of A Level

Unit 2

Composing: Creating Musical Ideas

Externally Assessed Coursework

30% of AS

15% of A Level

Unit 3

Performing: Interpreting Musical Ideas

10-16 minutes internally assessed performance

40% of AS

20% of A Level


A2 Level

Unit 4

Music in Context

2 hours 15 minutes written examination

20% of A Level
Unit 5

Composing: Developing Musical Ideas

Externally Assessed Coursework

15% of A Level
Unit 6

Performing: A Musical Performance

10-15 minutes externally assessed performance

15% of A Level