The focus is built around practical music, with all students learning how to play a musical instrument, learning how to sing together, and (in Year 8) using music technology to explore the creative process involved in writing and performing music. During these sessions, students develop their ability to listen critically to the music they are playing, to music performed by others and, most importantly, to each other. Music is taught in two sessions: in the first session, students are taught as an ensemble of fifteen Stringed, Woodwind or Brass instruments and, in the second session, they come together to sing as one large choir, covering a range of songs from Gospel, West End Musicals and Classical music.
We believe that these sessions demonstrate our commitment to providing an innovative approach to music teaching which takes the best elements of whole class instrumental teaching and builds on it to ensure that every child develops the high level of musical skill, knowledge and empathy that comes from learning to play music as part of an ensemble.
Year 7 Overview:
Term One: Instruments of the Orchestra – Students will develop their note-reading and ensemble performing skills through using their instrument to perform music from Dvorak’s New World Symphony. In singing sessions, students will learn repertoire linked to Communions and the school Carol Service as well as songs written in a Western Classical style.
Term Two: Film Music – Students will explore how different musical elements are used to depict characters or themes in film music through performance, analysis and composition. In singing sessions, students will prepare and present a musical production of Joseph and His Technicolor Dreamcoat.
Term Three: Music for Celebration – Students will study works by Elbow, Handel and Beethoven in order to learn about different approaches to composing celebratory music. Their instrumental studies will culminate in a whole-year ‘orchestral’ playing Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’. In singing, students will develop their understanding of songs in a range of styles from around the world.
The music department offers students the opportunity to study Music at GCSE level. The course we follow is that developed and assessed by AQA.
As part of their induction, we will identify your child’s level of playing experience in order to place them in the appropriate ensemble. At the end of each term, your child will be given two grades:
- Practical musicianship – a summary of the marks achieved through performing as a soloist, an ensemble performer, and as a composer
- Listening and Analysis – a summary of the marks achieved through listening and terminology tests
In addition to learning an instrument as part of the music curriculum, there will be many opportunities for your child to extend their musical learning further:
- Joining the School Choir
- Ensembles outside lessons for those making exceptionally good progress
- Invitation to join the William Perkin Orchestra
- Music Tech club
- Opportunities to join the Training Strings and the Concert Band
- Individual and small group instrumental lessons
- ABRSM aural and theory training
It is our expectation that all students will continue their learning outside the classroom and so students will keep a musical learning workbook updated with records of their progress in and out of lessons. They will also be expected to develop their knowledge of music theory and prepare for the end of term listening exam. Students may wish to hire a musical instrument from Ealing Music Service so that they can continue their practice outside school.Back to the top
At William Perkin, we give the students the opportunity to develop computational thinking skills to get an understanding of how computer systems work as well as how to solve problems. Students are taught about the digital world works ensuring that they are computer literate, able to communicate safely digitally (an essential skill in this age of technology) as well as having an understanding of the key principles of how computers and networks all work. This knowledge is also put to use through programming which then takes that understanding to the next level.
In Years 7 and 8, students are given the opportunity to explore programming through various tools with each year building their skills from the previous year. This enables the students to have an opportunity to explore a range of programming software, including the BBC Microbit & Python (a key programming language used in industry).We also offer a range of wider learning opportunities for the students after school which includes a highly popular computing club that enables students to further enhance their programming skills outside the curriculum.
We start the Computer Science GCSE in Year 9 in order to best prepare the students and to give them an insight into what will be covered in more depth in Years 10 and 11. The Computer Science GCSE enables students to work with real-world, practical programming techniques and problems that give them a good understanding of what makes technology work. We then build further on the principles of computing learnt in KS3 building up the bigger picture of the IT world.
We also offer a second path, of Information Technology, which focuses more on the skills required to plan and manage projects, in particular in the IT industry, looking at different planning tools as well as the Project Life Cycle and the relevant laws.Back to the top
PE and Games lessons at William Perkin take place in the afternoons as Core Electives (a double period) and Extended Electives (after-school sessions). This allows enough time for students to fully engage with competitive matches. Specific skills are taught and students learn how to adapt these skills into game situations.
Students take part in a variety of core sports such as Football, Netball, Rugby, Dance, Cricket, Rounders and Athletics.
After school students are offered a wide range of activities as well as the main stream team sport practices. Examples include kickboxing, Volleyball, Badminton & Ultimate Frisbee.
Football (Boy’s and Girl’s), Cross Country, Netball, Cricket, Rugby, Badminton, Basketball, Indoor and Outdoor Athletics, Rounders and more to come!
This is a very popular course at William Perkin. Students choosing PE as an option in Year 10 get to study all things sport and are assessed on their practical performance in 3 sports. Anatomy and physiology; movement analysis; health, fitness and well being; sport psychology and socio-cultural influences are the key topics of this course.
The amazing sports facilities at William Perkin are open to the community so please do get in touch with the school office for more details.Back to the top
Art, Design & Textiles
In Art and Design, students will work with traditional and new media to develop confidence, competence, imagination and creativity. The study of artists and designers is strongly embedded in the curriculum and students will learn to appreciate and value images and artefacts across times and cultures and they will understand the contexts in which they were made. Students reflect critically on their own and other people’s work; they learn to think and act as artists, craftspeople and designers, working creatively and intelligently. Multi-stage projects, deadlines which cover several weeks of work at a time, and open ended outcomes all encourage students to act independently and take responsibility for their own progress – functional skills that are critical to successful adult life.
Students will study 3 projects throughout the year which will give them the opportunity to experience a range of disciplines which include Fine Art, Textiles, Ceramics and Graphics. Students will receive a 15-minute lesson prep task every lesson. This is for them to practise what they’ve learnt or prepare them for their next lesson. Students will also receive 1 extended homework essay per project. Students are assessed on their artist analysis essays (50%) and sketchbook with final outcome (50%).
Students can choose to either specialise in Art or Textiles. Both disciplines produce 2 coursework units over Year 10 and Year 11 (worth 60%), and 1 exam unit (worth 40%). They will be assessed on 4 areas, artist analysis, experimentation, drawing and final outcomes, all with equal weighting. Once the title of their project is given, students are then encouraged to explore the topic in more depth and to build on their creative skills through learning and doing. It is important for students at this level to explore their own interests in ways that are both personally relevant and developmental in nature.
It is our expectation that all students will continue their learning outside the classroom. Students are welcome to use the art rooms at lunch and after school. There are several art clubs including designing and making of costumes for the school play, as well as plenty of exciting Art competitions throughout the year. For high achieving students who have chosen Art or Textiles GCSE, they can also get involved in the ‘Futures Programme’.Back to the top
The Drama curriculum at William Perkin encourages students to work creatively and collaboratively to create meaningful and powerful performances. Each year group studies at least one play text, creates their own devised performance from a set stimulus and learns how to critically evaluate their own creative processes and final performances. Students consistently work on their physical and vocal skills as well as their confidence and learn how to give helpful and constructive verbal feedback to their peers.
In Years 7 and 8, students study the plays ‘Oliver Twist’ and ‘Noughts and Crosses’. Students study the overall plot of each play before focussing on integral characters and scenes which are then performed for assessment. Students also create their own original performances based on verbatim theatre, poetry, dream/nightmare worlds and physical theatre. These performances are created entirely by the students using different stories, images, poems and music as a starting point.
In KS4, students study and perform key scenes from various plays including ‘Two’, ‘DNA’, ‘The Crucible’ and ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’. Students also create their own original performances based on a wide variety of stimuli and their own independent research. Students also get to attend live theatre performances which not only motivates them to become better performers and inspires more imaginative and creative ideas, but also allows them to practise their critical and analytical skills.
Each year, all William Perkin students have the opportunity to get involved in the whole school production. This opens up opportunities for all students to become actors, stage managers or theatre technicians. There is also a KS3 Drama club which uses Drama exercises and activities to increase confidence and performance ability. KS4 students who are passionate about Theatre can get involved with the ‘Futures Programme’Back to the top