Drama

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Shakespeare once said ‘All the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players’.  At The Misbourne we believe our school is our stage, we use it well and our students are more than merely players, they are our creative inspiration.  Every student has the chance to reach their ambition, follow their dream, be creative and play many different roles and characters.  Students get the opportunity to find out about productions, theatre companies and discover many new exciting and emerging concepts of theatre.  Of course developing confidence, communication and co-operation also features heavily in our work.  We are proud of the work our department does, the amount of exposure to professional work and our facilities which give the students opportunities to learn and perform.  Ultimately we love what we do and this passion, commitment and our expertise are shared and communicated with pride and confidence.

Curriculum

Key Stage 3 (Years 7, 8 and 9)

In Key Stage 3 Drama projects, pupils learn to use different drama strategies such as polished and spontaneous improvisation, thought tracking and body props to create and perform drama. Students then appraise their work in order to improve drama in the future, encouraging them to analyse drama they meet in their day-to-day lives eg television, films and live theatre. Emphasis is also given to developing essential social skills and working in small groups.

In Year 7 students undertake a baseline test in drama based on creating, performing and responding to devise a fair and challenging target for their progress through Key Stage 3. They explore drama skills through various topics and complete a scripted piece each year to help prepare them for Key Stage 4 and beyond. Modules include Physical Theatre, Using the Voice, The Tempest and Theatre in Education.  They finish Year 7 with “Ernie’s Incredible Illucinations” by Alan Aykbourne.

In Year 8 students explore characterisation and genre, devising for the stage, fairy tales and world theatre. Students cover a script per year with a performance of extracts from the play “Living with Lady Macbeth” by Rob John.

In Year 9 students begin the year with a module on mask and mime and end the year with a unit on verbatim theatre with a particular highlight being script work from “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time” by Simon Stephens based on the novel by Mark Haddon.  This gives the students the opportunity to immerse themselves in a challenging project which is also fun and draws together all the skills and knowledge they have gained and developed over the three years.  It is also excellent preparation for those who wish to continue into Year 10.

Key Stage 4 (Years 10 and 11)

BTEC/GCSE Equivalent (Exam Board: Pearson/Edexcel)

In Years 10 and 11 students study BTEC Level 1/2 First Award in Performing Arts (Acting) (Pearson/Edexcel exam board) the course is an equivalent to a GCSE but is marked on a different scale Pass(C), Merit(B) and Distinction(A).

BTEC Performing Arts (Acting) (Level 1/2 First Award) is a vocational course made up of three assignments. One of which is externally assessed where you will be expected to write a letter of application in controlled conditions and prepare two audition speeches on a set theme. The other two assignments are internally assessed and you will learn about devising, script work, the process of production, acting skills and techniques. The course covers different styles of theatre, practitioners who have influenced theatre today, improvisation, physical theatre, mime and monologues.


Department Staff 

  • Mrs Jeffery
  • Mr Ingram

Clubs, Excursions, Trips and other interesting Projects

Working with our colleagues in the Performing Arts Curriculum Area, there is an exciting and busy programme of clubs and trips as well as special projects.

Clubs – Our programme of drama clubs is continually evolving to engage as many of our budding young performers as possible and utilising the skills of our drama teachers and older students.  Currently we have a Key Stage 3 Drama Club, involving performing to an audience in lunchtime concerts and at events such as The MizFest. The drama department also puts on a yearly performance, most recently our musical Back to the 80’s and our version of William Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.  The productions are all inclusive and we encourage everyone to get involved, both performing and backstage.


Trips – We aim to provide a full range of trips covering all key stages and a wide spectrum of theatre. This includes trips to the National Theatre as well as West End and regional venues. Recently this has included Woman In Black, The Play That Goes Wrong, War Horse, One Man Two Guvnors, Blood Brothers, The 39 Steps and Wicked.

Homework and Assignments

At Key Stage 4 students are expected to complete roughly 30 minutes homework for each Performing Arts lesson in their timetable.  This could be focused on any of the course study areas, such as creating, performing and responding.  Homework in Key Stage 4 could be a formal written task to support coursework or it could be practically based e.g. learning lines from a script or researching the social and historical context of a piece.


Past Examination Results

Summer 2016

100% Distinction* - Pass BTEC Level 1/2 Performing Arts (Acting)

100% Distinction * Level 3 BTEC Performing Arts (Acting) Subsidiary Diploma
 
Useful Websites and Resources

www.nationaltheatre.co.uk

www.ticketsource.co.uk/themisbourne

www.qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/btec-firsts/performing-arts-2012-nqf.html

www.qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/btec-nationals/performing-arts-2010.html