At Key Stage 3 pupils are placed into three separate bands and taught most subjects within those bands.
At Key Stage 3, we aim to give students a diverse and comprehensive experience of the world of drama. To enable this, in each year, we follow a range of dramatic approaches: script-based, skills-based and issue-based.
There is one key task per half term, which will be structured to allow pupils to create, perform and respond to drama, following the Arts Council guidelines.
Year 7: In year 7 students are given an introduction to drama which introduces them to the basic drama skills and drama vocabulary which they will then apply throughout the year. They will be working on Greek Theatre, Devising through the stimulus of Darkwood Manor, and Naturalistic theatre through the use of the play script Mugged. The focus in year 7 will be on group work, characterisation and evaluating skills.
Year 8: In year 8 students begin to broaden their drama skills and are introduced to the theatre practitioner Brecht. They develop their devising and physical theatre skills and are introduced to staging and mise-en-scene. They will also be studying Hamlet by Shakespeare. The focus in year 8 will be on devising skills, application of techniques and evaluation.
Key Stage 4 (Years 9-11)
At Key Stage 4 all pupils follow a core curriculum which consists of English Language, English Literature, Maths, Science, Religious Education, and Physical Education.
At Key Stage 4, we aim to develop students’ knowledge and understanding of the diverse world of drama, exploring drama for a range of purposes and audiences. During the three year course students will be expected to develop their use of a broad range of dramatic techniques, working in a variety of dramatic styles and genres. Students will be expected to work with autonomy to develop higher order performance skills, and to develop a keen awareness of the audience and the messages they are conveying. Students will be introduced to high-quality theatre performances, in respect of which they will develop a critical awareness and the language skills for in-depth analysis.
The GCSE is assessed in 3 Components. Component 1 is an internally assessed assessment in which students develop a devised performance. Additionally, they will submit a portfolio which details the devising process and how their ideas have been developed in rehearsals. For Component 2 students perform two scripted extracts to an external examiner. They will have the option to perform individually, in pairs or as a group. Component 3 is the written exam which will take place during the year 11 exam period. For this exam students will study a set text and explain their creative decisions as performers, directors and designers. They will also write an evaluation of a piece of live theatre seen during the course.
In year 9 students will do a mock of each component in order to familiarise themselves with the requirements of these assessments and so that their strengths and areas for development can be identified. In year 10, students will begin studying the set text for the Component 3 written exam and complete their actual Component 1 devising assessment. Year 11 students will complete the Component 2 scripted performance and prepare for the Component 3 written exam by revising the set text and watching a piece of live theatre.
Key Stage 5 (Sixth Form, Years 12-13)
Key Stage 5 (Sixth Form, Years 12-13)
A Level Theatre and Drama
Component 1- Devising (40% of A Level)
Original group performance
Portfolio evaluating the development process and performance
Component 2- Text in Performance (20% of A Level)
Group performance of key extract
Monologue or Duologue
Component 3- Theatre Makers in Practice (40% of A Level)
Live Theatre Evaluation
Page to Stage: realising a performance text
Interpreting a theatre text
The subject is a stimulating mix of performance and academic study. The course covers the study of plays, devising / improvising, technical theatre and study of key practitioners and their philosophy.
Extra curricular activities
Throughout the school year we aim to offer students in all year groups the opportunity to perform. We have successfully taken part in the Shakespeare School’s Programme, the Barbican Box Project and the National Theatre Connection Festival. These schemes all provide the students with the opportunity of working with professionals in the industry and performing in professional spaces. Additionally, they are able to watch and work with students from other schools in the area. For the second summer in a row, the Ambassador Theatre Group offered students the chance to work towards Hackney in the West End. This 2 week programme was offered free of charge and students also got to watch 2 West End musicals and perform in the West End. We also do in house performances and showcases which students across the school can be involved in.