Welcome to the Drama Department
Croeso i'r Adran Drama
Curriculum Leader: Ms K. Fitzjohn
The importance of Drama in School
Drama in St Richard Gwyn Catholic High School encourages development of the child’s whole personality and imaginations, enabling your child to work in teams to create pieces of theatre. Through the devising process, rehearsals and evaluations, your son / daughter will develop the confidence to perform and an understanding of theatrical terminology.
"Tell me and I will forget. Show me and I will remember. Involve me and I will understand." Old Chinese proverb
Drama is an important subject on the curriculum as it provides learners with an opportunity to learn through kinaesthetic learning. Pupils develop a wide range of personal skills including teamwork, communication, focus, concentration, confidence and trust. The Drama Department prides itself on production work and also plays a key role in enhancing the liturgical aspects of school life. It is our central aim to provide pupils with opportunities to experience a skill based approach to learning and to create an atmosphere where pupils wish to learn.
Key Stage 3
Drama is a compulsory subject for all pupils in KS3 and has recently reflected some exciting changes.
Central to all the Drama work in Year 7 is the development of teamwork within practical tasks. This year, pupils will begin unit 1 by taking part in ‘An Introduction to Drama’ scheme, including playing team building games and developing communication skills. This scheme will result in their first practical assessment; a performance of the poem ‘Louder!’ by R. Stevens. In unit 2, pupils will explore characters from Roald Dahl’s ‘The Twits’. Pupils will be expected to bring in props and costumes for their assessment and develop the role of a narrator. In unit 3, pupils begin exploring devised drama skills and further use of narration by performing their own version of ‘Welsh Myths and Legends’. Pupils will conclude the year working on William Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ and associated oracy task. Pupils will explore and answer ‘Should Shakespeare be taught in schools?’
In Year 8 pupils continue to work in groups and focus on the development of confidence and acting skills. In unit 1, pupils will begin to develop their understanding of melodrama through the study of Pantomimes. Pupils will then move on to practically explore ‘World War One’. Their learning will culminate in a devised performance whereby pupils will represent the life of a Welsh solider in the trenches. In unit 3, pupils begin working with scripts and developing characters from the play ‘Blood Brothers’. They will perform their own version of the opening prologue. Pupils conclude Year 8 by continuing to develop acting skills within the style melodrama, through their understanding of ‘Silent Movies’.
Drama in Year 9 focuses on the development of skills in preparation for key stage 4 learning. This year, pupils will begin unit 1 looking at drama from a historical context; exploring and performing William Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’. Here they perform their own version of the opening prologue. In unit 2 and 3, pupils continue working with scripts by developing characters from the plays ‘Teechers’ by John Godber and ‘Face’ by Benjamin Zephaniah. Key Stage 3 learning concludes in unit 3 with a large Theatre in Education project whereby pupils will work as part of a team to plan, devise, perform and evaluate their own educational piece based on a topic of their choosing.
Key Stage 4
Drama now becomes an option choice in Key Stage 4 with pupils following the WJEC examination course. Both devised and scripted elements become central to the 60% practical weighting of the course, with a 40% weighting in the form of a written exam and written coursework. The course outline is as follows:
Unit 1 – Devising Theatre (40%)
Pupils are required to devise a piece of original theatre in response to a stimulus, using either the techniques of an influential theatre practitioner or the characteristics of a genre of drama.
Each learner must produce a portfolio of supporting evidence, which demonstrates the research, creation and development of ideas.
Learners evaluate the final performance or design under supervised conditions.
Unit 2 – Performing Theatre (20%)
Learners are required to participate in a performance based on the study of two significant extracts from a text which has been performed professionally and/or written for theatrical performance. Learners will gain a deeper understanding of how to interpret a text for performance and realise artistic intentions.
Unit 3 – Interpreting Theatre (40%)
1 ½ hours written exam
Section A – response to a set text (currently ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by William Shakespeare)
Section B – response to live theatre
Key Stage 5
At Key Stage 5, pupils follow the WJEC Drama and Theatre Studies AS/A2 specification in our partnership sixth form with Flint High School.