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The Marlborough Science Academy

Drama

Key Stage 3 Drama

Drama develops many transferable skills such as confidence, public speaking, group work, creativity, problem solving and communication.

Our aim for the Drama curriculum at Key Stage 3 is to provide opportunities for students to develop communication skills, explore alternative viewpoints and create their own content based on a variety of stimuli.

In Year 7 we cover the following:

  • Introduction to Drama: Developing confidence and building skills for creative work
  • Pantomime: Looking at the codes and conventions of this genre
  • Car Jacked: Cross curricular work based on the school’s ‘Big Read’ title
  • Mad Scientists and Zombies: Approaching and analysing text
  • Urban Legends: Exploring the nature of storytelling, students will be looking at Urban Legends and the tale behind them
  • Harry Potter: This is a cross curricular project with English, exploring the writing of JK Rowling

In Year 8 we cover the following:

  • Skills for Devising: This unit starts to develop students’ skills for building their own performances, in preparation for GCSE.
  • Teacher in Role: With the teacher in role as one of the characters, students have to use their understanding of vocal and non-verbal communication to solve a problem.
  • Devised Performance: Students will work on a devised teacher led performance based on a play that will engage them in work developing the class as a production company with varying roles and responsibilities
  • Romeo and Juliet: Students will perform a variety of scenes from a well-known play and will learn lines from this performance and adapt the piece through a variety of workshops
  • Scripted Performance and Stagecraft: Students will take on varying production roles and perform a short play working towards individual targets and roles to come to together in a final whole class performance.
  • Monsters of the Past: Students will engage in a GCSE style workshop applying a variety of the skills learnt in the past two years and gaining a better understanding of the application of these skills in post scripted and devised work
Drama Key Stage 4 

Students who choose to study Drama at Key Stage 4 will follow the AQA GCSE Drama course.

Drama is made up of elements of practical work alongside evaluation and analytical written work reflecting on the practical process.

The areas covered in the course include:

  • A selection of set texts with a focus on learning how to analyse plays as well as exploring them practically
  • The development of a performance work both from a script and devised piece, this may be as a group, in pairs or as a solo performer
  • The option to select a technical aspect for some of the course assessment; this can include sound, costume or lighting
  • Looking at different theatre practitioners and their different styles and genres
  • Visits to the theatre to develop critical understanding and produce an evaluation of the experience

The course is assessed through:

  • Controlled Assessment

This takes the form of a devised performance (worth 10% of the final grade) plus a working notebook charting the process and inspirations of the students’ devised performance (worth 30% of the final grade). 

  • Examination

A 1 hour 45 minute examination worth 40% of the final grade. The examination will cover directorial interpretations of set texts and evaluations of live theatre experiences.

A practical examination - the performance of two extracts from one play – that students can contribute to as a performer or designer worth 20% of the final grade.

Apart from careers in the arts and teaching, Drama develops public speaking, presentation skills, critical thinking, teamwork, cultural awareness and personal reflection; these transferrable skills are all important and can be invaluable in the workplace. Students who study Drama can go on to gain employment in careers including Law, English, Journalism, Broadcasting and Education. The course also provides a pathway into A level Drama and Theatre Studies.

Drama and Theatre Studies Key Stage 5 

Students who choose to study Drama and Theatre Studies at Key Stage 5 follow the AQA Drama and Theatre Studies A level course.

All students who choose to study Drama and Theatre Studies will also be offered the opportunity to study for a LAMDA medal (Grade 6/7 depending on prior experience) which carry UCAS points. We also have specialist teachers, two drama studios with lighting and opportunities to extend learning through extra-curricular involvement.

Course Content:

A-level Drama and Theatre offers students the opportunity to explore drama as a practical art form, in which ideas and meaning are communicated to an audience through choices of form, style and convention. Students will:

  • create, perform and respond to drama and theatre
  • develop the creativity and independence to become effective theatre makers
  • explore the relationship between theory and practice in a range of theatrical styles and periods and historical, social and cultural contexts
  • learn how relevant research, independent thought and analysis of live theatre production can inform decision making in their practical work and put this understanding into practice
  • experience the ways in which theatre makers collaborate to create theatre.

The subject content details the knowledge, understanding and skills that students are expected to develop throughout the course of study and is divided into three components:

  • Drama and theatre
  • Creating original drama
  • Making theatre

For the practical components students choose to work as performers, designers (students may choose lighting, sound, set, costume or puppets) or directors.

Assessment:

Assessment will be throughout the course with coursework and performance elements assessed in school and moderated externally. There is also a written examination and final performance examination which will performed to a visiting examiner.

  • Non-Examination Assessment

There are two components that will be assessed during the course:

  • Component 2: Creating original drama – students will have to create a devised piece influenced by the work and methodoligies of one prescribed practioner. A working notebook, detailing the process of creating the devised drama will be assessed along with the actual performance (students may contribute as performer, designer or director). The assessment will be worth 30% of the final grade.
  • Component 3: Making theatre – a practical exploration and interpretation of three extracts, each taken from a differet play. Extract 3 must have the methodology of a prescribed practioner applied to it and be performed as a final assessed piece which will be assessed by an AQA examiner (students may contribute as performer, designer or director). The assessment will be worth 30% of the final grade.
  • Examination
    • A 3 hour examination worth 40% of the final grade based on knowledge and understanding of drama and theatre, the study of two set plays and the analysis and evaluation of the work of live theatre makers.

Apart from careers in the arts and teaching, Drama and Theatre develops public speaking, presentation skills, critical thinking, team work, cultural awareness and personal reflection.

The transferrable skills from Drama are important in developing skills which will be invaluable in the workplace. Many of our students go on to study courses in the arts, however just as many find Drama a great facilitating subject for careers including Law, English, Journalism, Broadcasting and Education.