Music at Clifton Hall School

Many students at Clifton Hall are actively involved in music making of many kinds.  Whether learning an instrument, studying music formally in the curriculum or performing in one of the School's many ensembles and choirs. All students are actively encouraged and supported in the development of technical skill, musical knowledge and, more fundamentally, in discovering a love of music for life.

What are we looking for from the pupils, in the music department?

1) ENJOYMENT - Smiling as they are engaging with the process - showing an empathy and a positive engagement with the process.

​2) ATTENTIVE LISTENING - Listen when given instructions. Listen to a repeated rhythm (played solo) and then find a rhythm that fits with this and join in. Wait – and listen – before joining in.

3) ABSORPTION IN THE MUSIC - Moving their body with the music; tapping their foot; nodding their head; playing by physically moving their body; watching what the leader (or others) are playing and focusing clearly on them, even when everything around them seems chaotic.

4) COMMITMENT TO THE PROCESS - Body language and eye-contact; make a ‘mistake’ and then readily work to rectify and change it; try things out which might be quite complicated, but then persevere until they are sorted out, and; offer ideas towards a piece or process.

5) INCLINATION TO EXPLORE - Suggests ideas and then observing who responds demonstrates self-confidence and a willingness to offer creative responses in front of a group. Observe how other individuals play and ‘play with’ their instruments; how they might find a different way to contribute (the first to use the voice, for instance, in a group improvisation); how they might (when first offered an instrument) take an unusual one or try out many different techniques and approaches as soon as they’re given it.

6) INCLINATION TO LEAD - Volunteer to start a piece/process. Keep their own part going while assisting others (sub-leading) and those who lead changes within a piece once it has begun.

7) MEMORY - Using call-and-response songs and games (with one part where the call and the response differ) - Grasps these cues after they are taught and then return to them at the end. Repeat the games/songs the following day/week to assess musical recall.

Sing, play, and move from memory, a large number of songs. Achieve mastery of musical skills, such as musical reading and writing, singing and part-singing. Improvise and compose, using their known musical vocabulary at each developmental level.

9) EXPRESSION - The way they explore a new instrument when given it for the first time (e.g. the recorder or glockenspiel); how they use their body when asked to create a body rhythm; how they respond verbally when asked a question about an exercise; how readily they’re able to create a short solo (e.g. 1 bar) within a structure.

S5 - Recommended Listening 

S5 - Recommended Listening 

Senior Music

S1 and S2 MUSIC
Pupils receive 1 hour and 10 minutes of class music per week. Students are encouraged to bring their instruments to class to use in practical activities. Activites develop listening, performing and composing skills. Please open the curricular map below to find out the kind of topics the pupils study in S1 and 2.

S6 - Recommended Listening 


S1 - S2 Curricular Map coming soon

Pupils in the Junior school receive one and a half hours of class music a week from J1 - J3. When pupils reach J4 - 7, they join Clifton Hall School Junior Choir and receive one hour of class music a week. 
Currently Junior School follow: several elements of NYCOS resources such as Going for Bronze, Silver and Gold; Music Express; Singing Sherlock; Charanga Music School and several other materials.

National 5 Music Course

Here you can find a year plan for the National 5 Music course and the pupils' handbook, which should keep you up-to-date with your assessment deadlines.


Pupils in S3 can opt to study Music and the school follows the SQA National 5 course, which pupils are presented for in S4.
Pupils can continue their music studies in S5, with the Higher and Advanced Higher Music course.
NATIONAL 5 MUSIC YEAR PLAN                                          NATIONAL 5 PUPIL HANDBOOK

MUSIC BLOG - NAT 5 -click on the website to the left

Advanced Higher Music Course

Higher Music Course

Here you can find a year plan for the Advanced Higher Music course and the pupils' handbook, which should keep you up-to-date with your assessment deadlines.
Here you can find a year plan for the Higher Music course and the pupils' handbook, which should keep you up-to-date with your assessment deadlines.
HIGHER MUSIC YEAR PLAN                                              HIGHER PUPIL HANDBOOK
YEAR PLAN 2017-18
You can click on this website to find useful listening and coursework help for NAtional 4, 5 Higher and Advanced Higher Music.
Summer  Term:

Friday 25th May, 7pm - The Lion King
Saturday 26th May, 2pm - The Lion King

Friday 22nd June, 7pm - The Addams Family
Saturday 23rd June, The Addams Family

recitals every Tuesday - visit the noticeboard to sign up.
Trinity Exams
Thursday 7th June - Killick Room
Clifton Hall School Edinburgh
Clifton Hall School is an independent day school located near Newbridge in Midlothian, Scotland. It is divided into the Nursery, Junior and Senior Schools and educates pupils from nursery to Senior 6. 

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Clifton Hall School                   [email protected]
Clifton Hall Road
EH28 8LZ                                       0131 3331359