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About Consilium

Consilium Academies is a multi-academy Trust working across the North of England. It has nine academy schools located in Yorkshire, the North West, and the North East. Consilium is dedicated to enriching lives and inspiring ambitions for both students and colleagues.

Performing Arts

Performing Arts: our spiral curriculum at aims to connect ‘The Arts’ through play and passion.


‘Music is the universal language of mankind’

(Henry Wadsworth Longfellow)

At Washington Academy, we believe our students deserve an ambitious and enjoyable music curriculum that develop skills and knowledge that enhance curiosity as our students prepare for future learning or employment.

Our aims are to create the best musicians, give students memorable opportunities and ensure students leave us ready for their next chapter.

We pride ourselves on supporting our students to think, act and speak like professionals working in the field. This is explored and achieved through quality teaching that challenges students to understand the complexities of different styles, genres and culture capitals within music, requiring them to explore, discuss and demonstrate their understanding in a range of creative ways.

It is vital that all students in our family have experiences across multiple genres of music; we want students to be able to play a range of instruments through their learning journey.

Music is a highly challenging subject that teaches students transferable skills including commitment, confidence, public speaking and independent learning. Much like a foreign language, music is an academic subject and a means of communication as well as an art, beneficial to mental health and wellbeing. We understand the importance of students being given different ways to express themselves and this is encouraged in the music department.

Students are challenged in lessons to demonstrate understanding and creativity through performance, composition, collaboration with their peers and through evaluation of their work. The development of these skills, at key stage 3 and 4, helps us to see an increase in self-confidence and creativity in our students. This personal development will be highlighted through independent work, ensemble performances and compositions. Students become equipped to apply these in external settings such as shows and employment opportunities.

The curriculum has been rigorously planned to develop knowledge and skills, with topics that seamlessly link together to highlighting continuation. A wide range of strategies are used across the curriculum to develop knowledge and allow our students to find a ‘way in’ to the music. We expect and encourage

students to use key musical terminology within their work. The curriculum embeds all the core values and expectations of a Washington Academy student, ensuring that they students strive for excellence in the work they produce. This is showcased through their resilience when learning new skills, students are encouraged to thrive to complete their work to a high standard and put themselves outside of their comfort zone.

Our curriculum at Washington Academy goes beyond what is taught in the classroom, whilst we want students to achieve the best examination results possible, we believe our curriculum goes beyond what is examinable.

As a department we offer extracurricular opportunities for those who want to develop their musical skills and abilities beyond the classroom. Individual instrumental lessons are available to key stage 4 students. As a department, we also have a collection of extracurricular clubs that students can take part in, from choirs and ensemble bands. We expose our students to live music including visits to the theatre and to other live concerts, as well as inviting artists into the Academy to perform and work with us. All pupils involved in music are given regular opportunities to perform to develop their confidence and understanding as musicians.

Information relating to what your child is learning throughout the academic year is available.

For more information, please contact Miss Wighton.

Year 7

  • Autumn Term 1:  Keyboard Skills
  • Autumn Term 2: Form and Notation
  • Spring Term 1: Rhythm
  • Spring Term 2: Building Bricks
  • Summer Term 1: Sonority City
  • Summer Term 2: Folk Music

Year 8

  • Autumn Term 1: All about the bass
  • Autumn Term 2:  Themes and Variations
  • Spring Term 1: All that Jazz
  • Spring Term 2:  Off Beat
  • Summer Term 1:  Saharan Sounds
  • Summer Term 2: Video Game Music

Year 9

  • Autumn Term 1: What makes a good song?
  • Autumn Term 2: Hooks and Riffs
  • Spring Term 1: Film music and motifs
  • Spring Term 2: Pop songs and dance music
  • Summer Term 1: New Directions
  • Summer Term 2: Samba

Year 10

  • Autumn Term 1:  Component 1: Exploring Music Products and Styles AND Component 2: Music skills development
  • Autumn Term 2:  Component 1: Exploring Music Products and Styles AND Component 2: Music skills development
  • Spring Term 1: Component 1: Exploring Music Products and Styles
  • Spring Term 2:  Component 2: Music skills development
  • Summer Term 1: Component 2: Music skills development AND Component 3: Responding to a music brief
  • Summer Term 2: Component 2: Music skills development AND Component 3: Responding to a music brief

Year 11

  • Autumn Term 1:  Component 2: Music skills development
  • Autumn Term 2: Component 2: Music skills development
  • Spring Term 1: Component 2: Music skills development AND Component 3: Responding to a music brief
  • Spring Term 2:  Component 3: Responding to a music brief
  • Summer Term 1:  Component 3: Responding to a music brief
  • Summer Term 2:  Final preparation for GCSE examinations


‘Great theatre is about challenging how we think and encouraging us to fantasise about a world we aspire to.’ (Willem Dafoe)

Every student deserves to achieve more than they think they are capable of, not just academically, but through creative expression. In Drama, we strive to develop a love of theatre and live performance for pleasure, as well as education.

The intent of our drama curriculum is to enrich the cultural, emotional and artistic understanding of our students by exposing them to a diverse range of performance styles, plays, texts, practitioners and cultural theatrical traditions. We want students to engage with cultural, social, moral and historical contexts which they may never otherwise come face to face with.

Students in key stage 3 study a ‘theatre timeline’, starting with the development of Greek Theatre, morality through musicals, commedia dell’arte, restoration comedy, Victorian theatre and post war performance. Studying this way at key stage 3, supports our students in key stage 4 English, having an extra secure knowledge of specific time periods to strengthen their understanding of language and literature alike. Each student will study a Shakespearean play each academic year. The Bard played a crucial part in the development of the English language and his storytelling continues to inspire young writers to this day.

Our aim is to equip our students with the confidence to express themselves, with clarity, across range of situations, taking them out of their comfort zone.

Drama naturally explores a wide breadth of cultural diversity and values within Britain and exposes the students to local, national and international issues. We enable students to develop a thirst and passion for all aspects of theatrical arts such as performance, design, directing, scriptwriting and backstage disciplines. Students gain an understanding that drama isn’t just about performing, as they gain an insight to technical theatre, including set design, costume design and both lighting and sound design too.

We ensure our students experience a diverse drama curriculum to develop them socially, morally and academically, in preparation for their futures. Our rationale is underpinned by a commitment to wider curriculum opportunities including visits to theatres and opportunities for students to take part in performance events.

We have strong connections with many professionals that enable us to strengthen our students experience with rehearsals and practical projects, writing workshops, theatre tours and performances and the opportunity to meet professional actors, technical workers and directors.

Information relating to what your child is learning throughout the academic year is available.

For more information, please contact Miss Wighton

Year 7

  • Autumn Term 1:  Greek Theatre
  • Autumn Term 2: Greek Theatre
  • Spring Term 1: Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
  • Spring Term 2: Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
  • Summer Term 1: A Midsummer Nights Dream
  • Summer Term 2: A Midsummer Nights Dream

Year 8

  • Autumn Term 1: Commedia Dell'arte
  • Autumn Term 2:  Commedia Dell'arte
  • Spring Term 1: The Restoration Era
  • Spring Term 2:  The Restoration Era
  • Summer Term 1:  Romeo and Juliet
  • Summer Term 2: Romeo and Juliet

Year 9

  • Autumn Term 1: The Woman in Black
  • Autumn Term 2: The Woman in Black
  • Spring Term 1: War Horse
  • Spring Term 2: War Horse
  • Summer Term 1: Macbeth
  • Summer Term 2: Macbeth

Year 11

  • Autumn Term 1:  C2 - Developing Skills and Techniques in the Performing Arts
  • Autumn Term 2: C2 - Developing Skills and Techniques in the Performing Arts
  • Spring Term 1: C2 - Developing Skills and Techniques in the Performing Arts AND C3 - Responding to a Brief
  • Spring Term 2:  C3 - Responding to a Brief
  • Summer Term 1:  C3 - Responding to a Brief
  • Summer Term 2:  Final preparation for GCSE examinations