Drama

Subject Overview

The aim of Drama in the curriculum is to provide opportunities for students to develop their confidence, self-awareness and understanding of others. Students are encouraged to become skilled communicators and lessons are heavily focused on group work. The department exists within an ethos of mutual respect for all, where students feel safe to challenge themselves creatively and explore complex subjects through performance. An appreciation of theatre and stage craft is developed through both the teaching and the extra-curricular opportunities to perform and attend live theatre.

Miss Kate Turner

Drama Teacher

Mrs Lauren Osborne

Drama Teacher

Our intention at KS3 is to equip students with the wide range of performance strategies needed as a foundation for further study of Drama. We teach these skills through varied units, which explore theme, story and historical events; this ensures that students are not only developing the skills needed to make thoughtful work, but also that they are engaging in the world around them. The other primary focus at KS3, is to foster a culture of mutual respect and support, teaching students the importance of positive communication, group work skills and creative problem solving.

In KS4, much of what we do is directly linked to the Eduqas GCSE Drama specification – teaching the set texts, written exam technique and building on the practical skills needed to succeed. We introduce students to a range of influential theatre practitioners and companies, who inform their work at GCSE. We also run mock units across Years 9 and 10, to ensure students are ready and prepared for the demands of the course. The first half of Year 9 acts as a foundation course, building the creative language and resilience needed to access the GCSE units.

KS5 follows a very similar structure to KS4. The focus at KS5 is on creating thoughtful and original theatre-makers, who have a voice and a conscience and want to make work of value, reflecting the world around them and considering experience and stories from the personal to the global.

Year 7 Overview

Students are taught the following topics in Year 7:

  • Bullying – Introduction to drama skills and conflict resolution
  • The Titanic – Exploring a historical event and considering empathy and imagination
  • Matilda – Character work
  • Rabbit Shoots the Sun – Physical theatre and more stylised drama
  • Greek Theatre – Historical style of theatre, choral work
  • Time Travel – Imagination and storytelling.

Year 8 Overview

Students are taught the following topics in Year 8:

  • Melodrama – Physical comedy and theatre history
  • Macbeth – Classic text-based work with a focus on ensemble storytelling
  • Georg’s Suitcase – Exploring a family’s experience of the holocaust, demanding much more maturity and thoughtfulness from students. Beginning to move towards GCSE-style workshops
  • The Mystery – Process drama, teacher in role, whole class improvisation – exploring the possible reasons for a teenage boy’s unusual behaviour
  • Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Exploring a more contemporary text and exploring a character who for many seems ‘different’ from them – considering how others experience the world
  • Theatre in Education (Social Media) – Exploring a specific type of theatre and marrying it with a contemporary social issue.

GCSE Overview

Students are taught the following topics in Years 9 to 11:

Year 9:

  • Surrealism – This is designed to push the students and make them realise that theatre can be much more than is seen at KS3 – introduction to Artaud and Grotowski.
  • Stephen Lawrence – This scheme explores the events and issues surrounding the murder of Stephen Lawrence – students are introduced to verbatim theatre and monologue.
  • Bouncers – Text-based unit – Students explore this highly comedic script and the stylistic features of John Godber.
  • Theatre Review – students see a live production and are introduced to the skills of review writing.
  • The Hunger Games – Students explore this contemporary story, with opportunities for improvisation, stage combat, and recorded soundscapes.
  • Devising Mock – Students are introduced to, and complete, a whole Component One mock.

Year 10:

  • Introduction to practitioners – Stanislavski, Brecht, Frantic Assembly.
  • Study of Set Text – DNA – Practical workshops and written exam practice is completed side by side.
  • Scripted unit – Students complete a Component 2 mock.
  • Theatre Review – Students see a live production and develop the skills of review writing.
  • COMPONENT ONE – Students complete their devising unit and accompanying portfolio (40% of their final grade.)

Year 11:

  • Re-Cap DNA and exam practice
  • Theatre Review – Students see a live production and develop the skills of review writing prior to Year 11 mock. Mocks.
  • COMPONENT TWO – Students complete their scripted performance unit and perform to an external examiner.
  • COMPONENT THREE – Revision, exam technique and study leave. Students sit their exam in the summer.

A-Level Overview

Students are taught the following topics in Years 12 and 13:

Year 12:

  • Practitioner Workshops – Developing and deepening students’ understanding of influential practitioners (Artuad, Stanislavski, Brecht and Frantic Assembly), as well as introducing the work of PunchDrunk and Kneehigh theatre companies.
  • Study of Set Text – Colder Than Here – Students complete practical exploration of the text as well as exam question practice alongside this.
  • COMPONENT ONEDevising – Students complete their devising unit and written portfolio which is internally assessed. Revision and internal examination week.
  • Live Theatre Review – Students see some live theatre and are introduced to the style of questions asked in the exam and exam technique for responding to these questions.

Year 13:

  • Study of Set Text – Woyzeck – Students create their own directorial interpretations for the text. Work on this will be completed throughout the year.
  • COMPONENT TWO – Students complete their scripted performance unit – 1 group piece and 1 monologue is performed to an external examiner.
  • COMPONENT THREE – Revision, exam technique and study leave. Students sit their exam in the summer.
  • Whole School Show
  • Theatre Trips
  • WaddFest
  • Visiting Theatre Companies
  • Directing opportunities
  • Script writing opportunities
  • Lesson support and challenge opportunities