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St Peter's School

Key Stage 3 Drama

Year 7

Students are introduced to the building blocks of drama: making, performing and evaluating.  The focus is on developing teamwork and trust to ensure improved self confidence. Students learn the skills for role play and the basics for improvisation as well as discrete techniques including freeze frame, mime, status, dumbshow and comic movement. They start to prepare, share, perform and evaluate their work in class.  Students begin to consider the relationship of the individual to society in different creative contexts and historical periods.

Autumn Half Term 1: 6-8 sessions
Introduction to Drama: Freeze Frame, Status, Melting up and down, Mime, Basic Improvisation, Performing, Role of Audience, Evaluating.

Autumn Half Term 2: 6-8 sessions
Creating Drama from different texts: Sound Collage, Choral speaking, Choral Movement.

Spring Half Term 1 6-8 sessions
Teacher in Role: playing a character from another historical period; exploring Shakespeare in extracts from The Tempest ; learning about a theatrical convention- Dumbshow.

Spring Half Term 2 6-8 sessions
Exploring Outsiders in society in the present: creating drama  from The Midwich Cuckoos by John Wyndham. Introduction to genre; developing role play, choral movement and mime, responding to a Narrator.

Summer Term 1 6-8 sessions
Developing understanding of genre and theatre: introduction to comic acting and situation through Commedia del Arte.


Summer Term 2 6-8 sessions
Introduction to creating tension: developing understanding of how to combine all skills learnt in Year 7 to devise, perform and evaluate a piece based on The Tell Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe.

Year 8

Students are given the opportunity to deepen their understanding of individual character in both devised and script based drama by using interior monologues, thought tracking,  conscience alley, parallel scenes and flashbacks. Elements of production are introduced- students are encouraged to find out for themselves what contribution sound, lighting, costume and different spaces make to a performance. They consider the impact of society on the individual further in the past - and in the future! They build on their understanding of genre by exploring different forms of melodrama. Programmes of study are extended to allow more sophisticated exploration of topics and application of skills, and production elements.

Autumn Term:
The Witches Workshop
A series of workshops developing teacher in role, introducing students to the idea of researching a historical character and adapting it in role play. Introduction of Conscience Alley as a means of highlighting moral dilemmas for a character.
Use of Forum theatre to explore consequences of group decisions. 
Exploring different interpretations of Act 1 Scene 1 of Macbeth, including production elements. Preparing and performing the scene. Considering audience reaction in the student’s evaluation.

Spring Term:
Timeship
Students learn to work from a script. They explore character motive using thought tracking and interior monologue. Students consider how different production elements can communicate meaning to an audience in performance.

Summer Term:
Melodrama
Students compare and contrast 3 versions of the genre.
They learn stock gestures and apply them to a classic 18th century melodrama plot.
They develop their understanding of the genre by creating a Silent Movie of a devised melodrama plot.
Finally they consider soap opera as current form of melodrama.

Year 9

Autumn Term:
Students participate in a series of workshops to build skill levels and awareness of the 3 main strands of Drama at GCSE: Drama Strategies, Drama Medium and Drama Elements. They apply these skills and understanding to a scheme of work “ Setting The Fuses” exploring different ways of creating tension on stage. They add to their understanding of Genre and Theatre History by considering the conventions of Pantomime, culminating in a performance at Christmas!

Spring Term:
Students explore the elements of naturalism and non naturalistic theatre through the topic of mental illness via Roald Dahl’s The Landlady and an exploration of Bedlam Hospital.

Summer Term:
Students prepare for devised performance shared with family and friends at a showcase at the end of the year.

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