Drama at Waseley Hills aims to teach students, through a knowledge-based curriculum consisting of both substantive and disciplinary knowledge, how to make effective choices about all elements of performance, from the volume of their voice to the best type of lighting to use to create meaning for an audience. This will not only enable them to reach a level of mastery within the subject but will also develop their interpersonal, decision making and problem-solving skills. They will also learn how to express these decisions in written work which, to begin with, will be scaffolded through their pre-existing knowledge of the practical element of the subject.
Alongside this, they will learn the knowledge of how to evaluate and analyse performance which will enable them to write critically about their ability to create drama as well as their own and another person’s ability to perform drama, which will foster a mindset of continual improvement and development within performance.
To broaden their understanding of what drama is and how it can be performed and used, students will develop their substantive knowledge and study different types of theatre from within Europe at different times. In addition to this, they explore different practitioners from around the world and investigate the different aspects and techniques of their individual types of theatre.
The role of Drama for the whole-school is not only to learn knowledge but to give them a much wider and valuable experience which will develop them as human beings and prepare them to leave education and be empathetic and productive citizens of the world. There are also strong links within the Drama curriculum to the Personal Development curriculum, in which students will learn a variety of transferable skills, such as collaboration and confidence, which they can use throughout their life in variety of situations to be successful.
The curriculum is sequenced through the different elements of performance and is rooted in our KASE values of Knowledge, Attributes, Skills and Experiences. These will range from the most basic and continuous elements of performance and characterisation, through to more complicated and thought-provoking elements such as analysis.
In each year of study students will move through the spiral curriculum exploring dramatic conventions, genre and style, application to text, devising and theatre review, developing knowledge and skills to a mastery level in all areas. The knowledge covered in years 7, 8 and 9 covers these key concepts but builds in complexity. This sequence of learning continues and builds as students who opt to continue their study of the subject in Year 10 explore these key components in depth through their GCSE, following the OCR specification.
Meaningful experiences are provided for all students by regularly watching examples of live theatre either through streamed and recorded performances or by visiting local and national theatres, providing vital cultural capital for our learners. These experiences are embedded within the curriculum in both Key Stage 3 and 4.
Years 7 – 9:
During Key Stage 3 students are assessed on their knowledge and skills under the descriptors: Emerging, Developing, Secure and Mastery. These knowledge and skills are mapped against the three core strands of the subject: Creating, Performing and Responding. Students are provided with regular whole class feedback and participate in peer and self-assessment against clear success criteria to ensure they can respond and upgrade their work. Summative assessment takes place at the end of each unit of work in which students receive individual feedback and assessment grade formed from the EDSM criteria.
Years 10 – 11:
During Key Stage 4, students will be assessed using the GCSE criteria at a GCSE level to ensure they are aware of what criteria they need to reach for each component. Formative assessment for Key Stage 4 happens each week as they are questioned about their knowledge from the current and relevant previous learning. The knowledge learnt within the GCSE components will also be assessed through their performances for which they receive constant feedback as well as written comments on their written work. The summative assessments will take place at the end of each composite, assessing the knowledge learnt within the composite. They will also sit their OCR GCSE exam which will assess all of the knowledge learnt.