Brighton Aldridge Community Academy

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Creative & Technical Options - Year 9

We are giving you the chance to choose some of your creative and technical subjects in Year 9.

All Year 9 students will continue to study a core programme of English, Maths, Science, Humanities, PE and a language (or alternative). Students will also study three of the following creative and technical subjects:

1. Art (most students will study Art as part of a well-rounded curriculum)

2. Computing (only available to students on track to achieve a Grade 5 in GCSE Maths)

3. Design Tech

4. Drama

5. Food Tech

6. Music

You can find out more about each of these subjects on this webpage or in the booklet given out at school. You can also talk to your tutor, Head of Year or teacher if you have more questions.

To select your subjects, please log in to your BACA Google (email) account and complete the Google Form by Friday 28 May 2021. Find the form here.


Most students will study Art in Year 9 as one of their 3 creative and technical subjects as part of a well-rounded curriculum.

In Year 9 Art, you will work under the heading ‘Myself and Others’. This focuses on the concepts involved in recording the human condition. Themes and processes include figurative sculpture, portraiture, visceral art, printmaking and Graphic Pop Art.

Projects are 2 or 3 dimensional in nature but the starting point for all projects is based on work from direct observation, printed resources and/or imagination. We are moving toward a paperless system for most homework using Google Classroom/Satchel One. This consists of termly literacy assignments and artist research. Drawing homework tasks complement and build upon topics studied in class. This prepares you for the rigour of studying GCSE Art and Design from Year 10.

Assessment objectives

1. Develop ideas through investigations informed by contextual and other sources, demonstrating analytical and cultural understanding

2. Refine ideas through experimenting and selecting appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes

3. Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions in visual and/or other forms

4. Present a personal, informed and meaningful response demonstrating analytical and critical understanding, realising intentions and, where appropriate, making connections

Specialisms – methods, techniques and processes

  • Fine art: painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, alternative media
  • Graphic communication: illustration, multi-media
  • Photography: lens-based imagery, digital imaging
  • 3D design: ceramics

Computer Science

In Year 9 Computer Science you will further develop computing skills in line with the main computing strands. You will develop your computational thinking skills and apply them to text based programming language. You will develop an understanding of artificial intelligence (AI), debate the ethical issues around the application of information technology and evaluate the impact it has on society. You will also look into cryptography and how encryption works and evaluate whether this has a positive or negative impact in the way society uses cryptography. All of this will require you to use theoretical and practical solutions to problems that computers now have in the real world. This is done by understanding how computers work and thinking and programming solutions.

Assessments will be based on

  • Creating programming solutions to a common problem
  • Evaluating the impact of computing and artificial intelligence in society
  • Being able to use truth tables for logic gates and will be able to translate high level code (Python) into machine code (binary)
  • Evaluating your programming solutions
  • Use logical reasoning to predict outputs, showing an awareness of inputs. Selects similarities and differences in situations and uses these to solve problems (pattern recognition).

All these will be tested throughout the school year either by assessments or class based activities.

Progression opportunities include Computing in Years 10-11 and at A Level, employment in an IT/Computing/Engineering role, apprenticeships in a range of computing and IT businesses and starting up your own computing/game design business.

Due to the level of Maths involved in the programming element of this course, all students will require an “On Track to Achieve” Grade 5 or above in Maths.

Design & Technology (GCSE)

In Year 9, you will actively engage in Design and Technology (DT) ‘learning by doing’ to make decisions, consider sustainability and combine skills with diverse knowledge and understanding in order to design and make quality products. You will explore ways in which aesthetic, technical, economic, environmental, ethical and social dimensions interact to shape designing and making. To add inspiration you will analyse existing products and produce practical solutions to needs, wants and opportunities, recognising their impact on quality of life. This allows you to develop skills of creativity and critical analysis through making links between the principles of good design, existing solutions and technological knowledge.

Assessment will be based on

  • Your ability to carry out investigations and how to make design decisions.
  • Writing of design specifications.
  • Designing in a range of communication methods such as Isometric and Orthographic.
  • Quality of manufacturing products from design to manufacture.
  • Evaluating your design and manufacturing decisions 
  • Understanding of material properties and uses and manufacturing processes

All these will be tested throughout the school year either by assessments or class-based activities. 

After Year 9, we offer a GCSE in Design and Technology. This will give you a much deeper understanding of materials and how they can be manipulated and the need to be sustainable to aid our combat against climate change. Design and Technology is a popular choice for careers including fashion designer, tailor, product designer, architect, software engineer, civil engineer, carpenter and many other industries.


Year 9 Drama is a fast paced, exciting and enjoyable subject.

You will further develop your ability to recognise and explore dramatic potential in a range of exciting styles including physical theatre, stage combat, comedy and devising. Along with studying classical and contemporary writers and practitioners (Brecht, Stanilavski and Frantic Assembly), you will have the opportunity to create original pieces of theatre. 

Performance is paramount; pupils will explore the demands of live theatre from the perspective of a director, performer, technician and critic. You will have the opportunity to explore production skills as well as performance - for example, how to incorporate lighting and costume design into your work. Alongside performance and theatre technique, you will develop a strong set of holistic transferable skills such as confidence, teamwork, time management and self discipline.  You will be assessed in a final performance and written reflection at the end of each topic in three areas: performance; application of techniques through rehearsals; and reflection.

The Year 9 Drama course prepares you for further study of Drama in Years 10, 11 and beyond, which opens many doors for jobs in the creative industry, as well as aiding you with the confidence to apply the unique drama skill set to general school life.

Food Technology

Food Technology in Year 9 builds your knowledge and confidence in the kitchen. You will learn more about nutrition and how to prepare balanced meals as part of a healthy meal plan. You’ll also learn important skills for safely and hygienically storing, preparing and presenting food.

Food Technology is a great subject to take whether you are interested in a career in the hospitality and catering industry or simply want to gain important life skills for the future. Taking Food Technology in Year 9 will also help prepare you to go on to Hospitality and Catering in Year 10 and 11.

The hospitality and catering sector includes restaurants, hotels, bakeries, cafes, pubs and bars as well as airlines, tourist attractions, hospitals and sports venues. Employment in the sector can range from waiting staff and catering assistants to chefs, hotel managers and food technologists in food manufacturing.


Will you be the next person to find their place within the music industry?

In Year 9 Music, you will develop their performance skills and introduce guitar to the list of instruments you have learned. You will also develop your Music Technology skills using Logic Pro X.

During the course of the year, students will study Songwriting, Drum and Bass, Band Skills, Solo Performance, and more. You will be assessed on performance, composition, and listening skills within these topics and the work completed in Year 9 will form the knowledge base to succeed in Year 10 BTEC Music.

Music is an excellent subject to improve confidence, independence, and communication, as well as develop real musical talent in your chosen interest. Music is a varied and wide-field offering various opportunities from performer to composer, teacher, session musician, and sound producer, to name a few. The music industry is a major part of the creative and cultural industries in the UK with over 145,000 full-time jobs in the music industry contributing £4.5 billion to the economy.

Choosing your subjects

Please complete the Google Form (link below) by the end of term, Friday 28 May 2021. You must log into your BACA student Google account (email) before completing the form.

Please remember:

  • Most students will be required to study Art in Year 9 as one of their 3 creative and technical subjects as part of a well-rounded curriculum
  • You will need to choose at least 4 subjects, and let us know which ones you prefer - 1 will be your first preference, 2 will be your second preference, and so on
  • Due to class sizes and timetabling, you might not be able to do your top 3 subjects.
  • Once you have submitted the form, you cannot edit it. Please make sure you are happy with your choices before you click submit.