Drama is taught in tutor groups in KS3, providing students with a fantastic opportunity to get to know their peers by predominately working in pairs or small groups.
We also offer GCSE and A Level Drama for those seeking further challenge and pursuit of a role within the arts industry. Our curriculum enables students to discover their full potential, building charisma and confidence that will transfer to a number of other subjects. We encourage a positive working environment, where our students feel safe to express themselves in a creative forum and receive feedback that is both supportive and constructive in order to excel.
Key Stage 3
Year 7 is a fantastic opportunity for students to get to know each other, learn how to work as a team by developing collaborative skills and engage with exciting topics. We explore a variety of stimuli to enthuse students and support a love of creating and performing Drama. Topics include Storytelling, Silent Movies, The Haunted House and Superheroes! By the end of Year 7, students will be equipped with the essential Drama Toolkit in order to develop and refine their skills in Year 8.
In Year 8, more skills, styles and genres are added to the Drama Toolkit. Students explore different mediums of creating Drama and cover a range of new topics, including TV and Radio, Commedia Dell’arte, Physical Theatre, Comedy, Making a Change and The Holiday. These schemes of learning offer a broad insight into theatrical history and the styles of theatre that underpin the types of Drama we see today. Students are expected to work at a higher level and use their initiative by adding conventions that will help to both support and embellish their ideas. By this point, we hope that Year 8 students will have developed confidence in their performance and collaborative skills by working well with other members in their form group. They must be able to share their appreciation for performance by being an effective analyst and evaluator of performance work.
By the end of Year 8, students should feel fully equipped to start devising their own pieces of theatre which will demonstrate their understanding of a range of style and genres. The Year 9 topics once again offer a well-rounded exploration into different strands of Drama. They begin by considering the purpose and creation of theatre, investigating how the relationship between actor and audience can be manipulated to evoke different reactions. Students then begin their journey back in time to look at the origins of theatre including Greek, Medieval Morality Plays and Shakespeare. Once students have established a thorough understanding of the basis of theatre, they start to explore the works and methodologies of influential theatre practitioners associated with different styles of Theatre. Students should start to see how theatre has been shaped and draw links between the history of theatre and the emergence of new styles and theatrical experiences. These practitioners range from Stanislavski, Brecht and Artaud to more modern Theatre Companies including Punchdrunk, Frantic Assembly and Kneehigh.
The final aspect of Year 9 is to experience what it’s like to study GCSE Drama, looking at the two main practical elements of the course. First, students are given a range of stimuli and will devise their own piece of theatre over a number of weeks. They will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform it in front of an audience and receive feedback on their finished piece via the use of peer feedback. Finally Year 9 students will study The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time and will stage specific extracts of the play for the final production.
There is an opportunity to further develop Year 9’s appreciation and enthusiasm for Drama by opting to select a Drama module. The purpose of each module is to continue to encourage students to take risks and enjoy making theatre. Many of the topics compliment and further extend the learning of the main Drama curriculum. Students use Site-specific Theatre, experiment with Invisible Theatre, extend their knowledge of Physical Theatre and learn about the role of theatre makers and designers. There’s even an opportunity to work as a puppeteer by and produce your own play that requires the use of your very own puppet within a devised piece of theatre.
There’s a lot on offer and we hope that students develop a real passion for creating Theatre, develop collaborative skills to become good team-players and finally enjoy themselves.
How parents/carers can support learning
Parents/carers can support the learning of our Drama students by offering help at home with the demands of learning lines and rehearsing for upcoming lessons/shows. We love to share all of the fantastic work that students are producing and post regular updates of what we’re doing on our social media platforms. We also offer showcase evenings where parents/carers are invited to see the final performances of extra-curricular, GCSE and A Level work.
Extra curricular actvity
The most exciting event of the year is the Whole School Show where we see our talented students take to the stage and perform a professional production in The Sandpit Theatre. We run a variety of exciting extra-curricular clubs including Young Actor’s Company, Musical Theatre Club and Impro Club. Students are encouraged to see as much theatre as possible in order to fully embrace all that Drama has to offer; we therefore offer a number of theatre trips to see a wide range of productions. GCSE and A Level Drama and Theatre students are required to see a piece of live theatre as part of the course.
AQA Specification for A Level Drama
OCR Specification for GCSE Drama
National Youth Theatre