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Drama at Key Stage 3

Year 7

The Units covered during weekly Drama lessons in Year 7 are designed to equip pupils with a wide range of drama skills and techniques which will enable them to create and develop their own pieces of Drama. Pupils in Year 7 also work with text-based stimuli and, along with all other Key Stage 3 pupils, they work practically on a play by Shakespeare.

Term One: Drama Toolkit – a scheme teaching and embedding the skills and techniques required to devise their own pieces.

Term Two: Jabberwocky – a scheme exploring a text-based stimulus of the Lewis Carroll poem to encourage pupils to creatively apply the skills they have already learned.

Term Three: Pantomime – a scheme that looks at the theatrical conventions of the genre (asides, use of stock characters etc) and allows pupils to develop their own versions.

Term Four: The Titanic – a scheme exploring an historical event from a range of different perspectives, designed to strengthen pupils’ reflective skills.

Term Five: The Masks We Wear – a scheme encouraging pupils to examine the different masks we wear, from the traditional make-up of a clown to exploring the issues faced by those who suffer disfigurement (use of Face by Benjamin Zephaniah).

Term Six: A Midsummer Night’s Dream – a practical exploration of Shakespeare’s tale of midsummer madness, pupils learn the history of Elizabethan theatre and perform in the open air.

Year 8

Drama in Year 8 builds on the skills and techniques covered in Year 7 with a greater emphasis on addressing the needs of the audience and of blending and layering skills and techniques in order to effectively communicate their ideas.

Term One: Only a Game – this scheme examines why human beings play games, how and what we learn through playing games and what the consequences can be when games get out of hand.

Term Two: Storytelling – a scheme exploring why we tell stories and the role of stories in all types of drama. It also looks at stories – and drama – from other cultures.

Term Three: Spies – a very popular scheme exploring the skills of plot and character development. Pupils find themselves caught up in an international spy ring and are forced to make what could be life and death decisions.

Term Four: Song Lyrics – the stimuli for this scheme are a variety of song lyrics which the pupils explore using a range of drama skills and techniques, this will lead to an assessed devised performance.

Term Five: Macbeth – a practical exploration of Shakespeare’s bloody depiction of ambition, murder and betrayal.

Term Six: Melodrama – a scheme examining the conventions of this style of theatre and encouraging pupils to develop their own response to it.

Year 9

Pupils develop their existing skills further and tackle more complex and challenging themes in their drama lessons. Most pupils will have fortnightly lessons, though some may have drama weekly as part of developing essential social and team-working skills.

Terms One & Two: Crossing the White Line – a scheme exploring the life and the extraordinary talents of Walter Tull. Tull was only the second black player in the football league and the first black officer to lead his troops into battle during World War I.

Terms Three & Four: Henry V – a practical exploration of one of Shakespeare’s greatest history plays.

Terms Five & Six: Year 9 Film Festival – pupils develop their own idea for a short film; creating a plot, selecting suitable locations and sourcing props etc. Entries will be judged by a panel of staff and prizes awarded.

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