Composition for stages 4 and 5.

Jim Coyle
Inspiring Music Educator
Teaching composition is often the hardest part of a music teacher's practice, particularly in stages 4 and 5. Educator and composer Jim Coyle offers a variety of sugges...
Target Audience
Classroom music teachers involved in teaching stages 4 and 5.

Learning Areas

Teaching Standards

General Description

Composition activities are often the hardest to program and it can be difficult to obtain good outcomes.
This course is a series of workshops outlining ideas for composition tasks for elective and non-elective music classes from year 7 to year 10. The tasks include ones involving staff notation and others without staff notation. High- and low-tech activities are offered.


Classroom music teachers involved in teaching stages 4 and 5.

Available Delivery Formats

This course contributes to 5.0 professional development hours.


  Start Date Location Availability Price    
Enrol Now 06/11/2017 Northern Sydney 4 places available $339 + GST Enrol Now


Composition in non-elective stage 4 classes

2 hours

In this session, we will undertake two composition tasks that are proposed as models for assignments for this stage. One of them will be a highly-scaffolded notation activity, the other will involve minimal use of staff notation.
Participants will create and perform compositions (performance in groups) and have an opportunity to reflect and review their work.

Composition in elective stage 5 classes

2 hours

This session will focus on notated compositions for small instrumental groups. Participants will create and perform two compositions that are offered as models for stage 5 work. One will be more highly scaffolded than the other. The session will conclude with a plenary discussion on the outcomes of these tasks and their possible use in participants' schools.

Bridging the gap to stage 6 composition

1 hour

This session will focus on work offered in Year Ten music and will offer ways that this work could be extended to create a strong platform for future HSC composers.

What To Bring

Computer or device with Noteflight software installed (preferable to have Sibelius software installed too).
A musical instrument that you can play somewhat, but not extremely well.

No Reviews

There are no reviews of this format at this time.

About the team

Jim Coyle


Jim Coyle is a music educator with over twenty years teaching experience. His aim is to engage and inspire students from kindergarten through HSC and into tertiary studies.

Jim is a well-known figure in New South Wales music education; he is a regular keynote presenter at Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s Meet the Music seminars. Jim is also the author of a large number of published classroom resources for students from primary school to year twelve and in 2015 began doctoral research at Sydney Conservatorium of Music.