Through fun games and activities, students are encouraged to learn about how to work as a team and to improve their confidence. They are introduced to a range of drama techniques and are encouraged to explore their creativity and imagination.
As they progress, they are encouraged to develop their improvisation skills creating characters, as well as exploring a range of scripts.
At KS4, students can choose GCSE Drama.
At KS5, Drama and Theatre Studies is an A level linear option, where students develop their practical and written skills in greater detail. We are running the A level, and from September 2016 we will not be offering AS qualifications.
The Drama department has two specialist rooms, A101 and A203, both with lighting and sound facilities.
In addition, the department uses the Theatre, which is well-equipped with sound and lighting facilities, as well as a projector. The raked seating can be removed, to provide a more flexible space for rehearsals and examination performances. School productions and examination performances often use the stage area (Dance Studio), which includes a white cyclorama.
The department has access to laptops and iPads, allowing students greater research opportunities, as well as providing more opportunities to become involved with technical theatre. Practical work is filmed on digital camcorders and worked stored on portable hard-drives.
Within lessons, and at lunch-times and after-school, support is available for all GCSE, and A level students – this can include small group or individual support, developing both written and practical work.
A level students experience workshops led by practitioners, to improve their examination performances.
GCSE and A level students are encouraged to take part in regular theatre visits, as this is a compulsory requirement for their examinations, as well as providing further opportunities to learn about the theatrical process.
Lunch-time weekly Drama Clubs for Years 7, 8 and 9 allow students to develop their skills further and talented students are encouraged to attend. Termly lunch-time performances provide opportunities for them to share their work.
Whole-School productions rotate every two years, providing further opportunities for students to get involved, both as performers and technicians.
GCSE and A level rehearsals take place during lunch-times and after-school, as well as occasional Saturdays.
‘An Evening of Performing Arts’ and the Christmas Concert, provide performance and technical opportunities for GCSE and A level students.
‘Superstars’ is a whole-school talent show, run by Performing Arts staff and students.
Arts Leaders help organise and run some events, supporting Performing Arts students.
GCSE Performing Arts students provide technical support for the annual ‘Summer Sizzler’, organised by Media Arts.
Assessment and Monitoring
Key Stage 3 – during every Unit of Work, students participate in a practical performance task, and formally peer and self assess their work.
Key Stage 4 and 5 – students are assessed regularly in every area of the courses, focusing both on the practical and written aspects.
Any students requiring additional support, are identified as early as possible, in order to improve their progress.
The VLE contains resources to support individual units of work, for KS3, 4 and 5.
Students use props and costumes from the department store cupboards, throughout KS3, 4 and 5.
In Year 7, students watch a range of televised pantomime performances and study extracts from The Terrible Fate of Humpty Dumpty.
In Year 8, students study two texts Romeo and Juliet and Willy Russell’s Our Day Out. They also complete an improvisation unit.
Year 9 focus on developing their devising skills in order to prepare for the GCSE course.
GCSE Performing Arts students study the script of the latest school production (Wizard of Oz 2016; Oliver 2014; Peter Pan 2012) and develop technical and design ideas.
GCSE Drama students study Blood Brothers and create drama performances from a range of stimuli.
A level students study The Glass Menagerie and The Servant of Two Masters as well as performing devised and scripted work.
A2 Drama students study A View from the Bridge and A Servant to Two Masters, as well as researching different theatre styles.