Drama and Performing Arts at Walton Hall Academy
Our aim in Drama is to help students to explore the world around them and to ignite their creativity, passion and interest in drama and the theatre. Through our lessons students are given the opportunity to develop their understanding of drama practitioners and performance styles. They will experience live theatre and have the opportunity to be involved in school productions.
In Drama, students are required to make independent decisions and be self-critical, but also take into consideration the thoughts, feelings and ideas of others. A supportive learning environment is extremely important in any drama lesson offering students a positive learning experience and varied, and exciting performance opportunities. We use a range teaching styles in our drama lessons to enable high levels of engagement.
Key Stage 3 Drama
In Key Stage 3 our schemes of work are designed to provoke debate and encourage empathy.
Year 7 drama is the key to the successful integration of our new students. Students spend the first half term getting to know each other and establishing key rights and responsibilities. Topics studied are still image, role play, character analysis, mime, thought tracks, soundscapes, split-scene, devising drama and group workshops.
In Year 8 we will continue to build upon techniques and conventions whilst addressing social issues relevant to the students at this age. Students will be introduced to Shakespeare, Shakespeare’s language, Romeo and Juliet and Macbeth. Year 8, also have time spent on a script that will be performed at the school’s annual Christmas performance.
Year 9 is the time to prepare students who intend to study for a BTEC in drama whilst continuing to build upon the social skills and confidence that are the key to future success in all subject areas. Schemes of work include developing understanding of drama practitioners (Stanislavski, Brecht, Grotowski, and Artaud), performance styles, physical theatre, approaches to performing a script and creating a portfolio.
Key Stage Four Performing Arts
When entering Key Stage 4, students have the opportunity to select performing arts as an option. Students complete BTEC accreditation through this course at Entry Level 3 or Level 1. Students complete unit assignments that are very often shaped around preparation and delivery of an end of year performance.
Throughout the units of work students explore ideas through workshops that develop their skills in acting, singing and creative media. Learners gain a taste and appreciation of performing arts through their knowledge and experience in the process. As the course develops students acquire, practise and develop the necessary technical, practical and interpretive performance skills that help them to succeed when performing live to an audience.
Students with more complex learning needs also have the opportunity to learn through drama. The focus of the lessons supporting communication and interaction skills whilst also further developing recall. Students in these groups also have the opportunity to contribute to the summer performances.
Key Stage Five Performing Arts
In Post 16, students continue to complete units towards their BTEC qualification building up Level 1 certificates and diplomas. Throughout Post 16, units of work have included:
- Promoting A Performing Arts Event
- Preparing Performing Arts Work
- Exploring Music Performance Skills
- Presenting Performing Arts Work
- Exploring Acting Skills
- Exploring Musical Theatre Skills
Option Choice (BTEC and Enrichment)
Students work through a series of BTEC Entry Level 3 and Level 1 units creating pieces of work that they perform throughout the year.
Autumn Term - An introduction of the course where students will explore ideas through workshops developing skills in singing, dancing and acting. There is an emphasis on employability and students will focus on skills such as reliability, motivation and communication with others. As part of the course, time is spent on songs that will be performed during the annual Christmas performances.
Spring Term – Students work on the year’s final production piece which combines the singing, dancing and acting skills. Underpinning the performance work is the key skills of teamwork, collaboration and reliability. Throughout the term there are often opportunities for students to perform within the academy and at events within the community.
Summer Term – End of Year Production. Students work with staff, volunteers and other students to put together a production that runs over two nights and an in house matinee. They will be given the opportunity to learn about props, costume, scenery, lighting, music and the importance of each aspect in creating a full show. Previous productions include Summer Nights, Wizard of Oz and Hairpiece. Students work together to promote and deliver the performance to the wider community.