Our goal is to nurture the social skills of all pupils in an environment of expressive play, which allows them the chance to explore drama as a gateway to the creative world and to themselves as individuals. The core values we uphold are respect; try; reflect.
Key Stage 3
In Year 7, we introduce pupils to initial key skills such as still image, improvisation, mime, and script writing to encourage the exploration of a variety of stimuli. Our lessons will provide opportunities to try different styles, roles and ways of telling a story.
In Year 8, encourage development of skills such as stage combat, design elements, and breaking the fourth wall. Pupils will be guided through the creation of more developed naturalistic characters, and will navigate new techniques for communicating a message to an audience.
Drama develops highly valuable skills:
- Cooperation – pupils work together and support each other to improve their work
- Creativity – all drama uses and fosters the imagination
- Confidence – pupils develop their ability to present themselves to an audience
- Communication – sharing ideas, advising each other and speaking clearly in public are all developed through drama
- Empathy – all drama is a reflection of real life and helps us understand the feelings and experiences of other people
- Analysis – developing understanding of media and theatre performances helps pupils to gain a deeper understanding and be more critical of what they watch.
- the skills of using voice, body and face to communicate a range of characters and situations
- how to use lighting, sound, props and costume to suggest location, time of day, atmosphere, period, action, character
- writing their own scripts for scenes
- improvising a wide range of scenes to explore situations and characters’ behaviour
- published plays and how to interpret these analysing how theatre & film performances create different effects on the audience.
Key Stage 4
Drama is a popular option at GCSE and students have 5 lessons a fortnight. The course involves the exploration, creation and performance of theatre for a range of audiences, using a variety of styles and forms.
We study the Edexcel course, which involves 40% written exam, 20% performance of play texts and then 40% performance of a devised piece with accompanying coursework. The course builds on the skills learnt and developed at KS3 and the course is structured to enable students to progress and develop their knowledge, setting them up for the same examination board if taken at A level.
Key Stage 5
At A level, we study the Edexcel course. The course involves the study of theatre from different periods of history; exploration, analysis and performance of more challenging plays and productions; the study of key theatre practitioners; the role of the director and designers in a theatrical production. The course involves a 40% devised performance with accompanying portfolio, 20% group performance and individual monologue and then a 40% written exam with 3 sections.
Trips to local and national theatres enrich and widen students’ understanding of theatre. Some productions that we have recently been to see include:
- “Peter Pan” (Bristol Old Vic)
- “The Woman in Black” (Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham)
- “The 39 Steps” (Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham)
- “The Winter’s Tale” (RSC Stratford)
- “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” (Cotswold Playhouse, Stroud)
- “Tristan & Yseult” (Bristol Old Vic)
- “Othello” (Frantic Assembly)
- “Richard II” (RSC)
- “War Horse” (Hippodrome)
Pupils gain a great deal from visiting professionals; not only the enjoyment of seeing high quality performances and a wider understanding of theatre, but inspiration for their own work. We aim to give all year groups the opportunity to see at least one professional performance in school every year. Frantic Assembly were our most recent visiting theatre company.
Miss D Barratt
Head of Performing Arts Faculty
Mr J Blake
Miss S Hind
Mrs J Daniel
Mrs N Watson