KS3: MYP Drama


The Drama curriculum at Stationers’ Crown Woods Academy has been carefully planned to embed the best practice from early iterations of drama in education and in response to the rigorous academic demands of the 21 Century national and IB MYP curriculums.   We want our students to become reflective global citizens and use drama as a vehicle to engage with the big issues of modern Britain and the world in an experiential and immersive way, whilst also preparing them to become articulate, creative, collaborative, reflective and passionate theatre thespians. 

Our curriculum is inclusive and diverse by design as we firmly believe that drama has the power to connect with all people and connect people together, in a world where we need to encourage unity and equality. By following a spiral structure, the curriculum will also constantly challenge and nurture students, building their skills, abilities, knowledge and understanding. In order to build these skills, we must first build knowledge, and this comes from varied exposure to all facets of Drama. It is vital to explore iterations of Drama from as broad a range of cultural and historical perspectives as possible. Not only will students encounter traditional elements such as Stanislavsky’s Naturalism, or Brecht’s political Epic Drama, but they will also encounter the physical theatre of the local theatre company, Punchdrunk. In-line with the MYP Drama curriculum, students will be able to identify similarities and differences between these styles, genres, and practitioners, thus developing their critical thinking and analytical skills. At KS3, learning is contextualised under a ‘real world’ learning concept which helps improve student engagement and motivation. 

We consider quality oracy and literacy as the golden thread through the curriculum and a confident grasp of language will equip them in all aspects of life. Students will learn to develop their physical and verbal expressive skills, alongside their written and analytical skills and the synthesis of these different modes of communication is key to all aspects of the Drama curriculum. A vocabulary-rich curriculum and a consistent and thorough focus will be placed on developed, verbal responses from year 7. Each lesson will have a set of key terms (MYP Approaches to Learning & Learner Profiles) at its core, which will provide students with an anchor and context for their learning that day. They will be challenged to connect these terms to those encountered in previous lessons and years, thus deepening their understanding and richness of their vocabulary. When they are able to use these terms in speech, the effort to use them in their written responses will lessen and students will grow in confidence and ability. 

Our enrichment offering is extensive and goes far beyond creating and watching performances. It is also important that the academic study of Drama is seen in as exciting and enjoyable a light as the typical enrichment offerings of skill-based rehearsal clubs or performance watching opportunities. Enrichment in Drama must place what is learned in the classroom in a different context to what can be encountered in stand-alone or separate situations. By the same token, year-long enrichment opportunities can enable students to develop and maintain their skills and passion between modules spent studying Drama in the classroom. In the wider life of the school, it is vital to nurture a thriving passion for performing arts by performing in-school productions, which encourage students to make long-term commitments to developing their performance and technical skills with the end goal of delivering a live performance. Whole-school productions feed both the enthusiasm for Drama, as well as enabling students to develop their academic skills to be demonstrated in formal assessments.

  • Modules 1 & 2 – Gothic Horror: Hades Hall (Devised Theatre)
  • Modules 3 & 4 – Shakespeare: Macbeth by William Shakespeare  (Scripted Theatre)
  • Modules 5 & 6 – Greek Theatre: Medea by Euripides (Text Exploration)
  • Modules 1 & 2 – Mime and Commedia dell’arte (Text Exploration)
  • Modules 3 & 4 – Historical, Social and Political Theatre: Extra! Extra! Act All About It! (Devised Theatre)
  • Modules 5 & 6 – A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness & Siobhan Dowd (Scripted Theatre)


Module 1 & 2: Blood Brothers by Willy Russell (Scripted Theatre)

Module 3 & 4: Theatre in Education: Fear and Freedom (Devised Theatre)

Module 5 & 6: DNA by Dennis Kelly (Scripted Theatre) 

  • Modules 1 & 2 – Blood Brothers by Willy Russell (Scripted Theatre)
  • Modules 3 & 4 – Theatre in Education: Fear and Freedom (Devised Theatre)
  • Modules 5 & 6 – DNA by Dennis Kelly (Scripted Theatre) 

At KS3, drama is taught for 1 hour per week, therefore our schemes span 2 modules. This will allow students to engage in more meaningful and deep learning and be prepared for success in the summative assessments (assessment of learning) . Our teachers are skilled at balancing the transition of theory to practise and vice versa, to ensure that the drama curriculum is both a knowledge and skills rich curriculum. As Drama is a ‘visual’ and dialogic subject, formative  assessment (assessment for learning) takes place in every lesson via verbal teacher, self and peer reflection and feedback. This allows students to work as reflective and collaborative practitioners who refine and improve work (mastery) each week  in preparation for the summative assessments.   A lesson typically takes the form of:

  • Retrieval Practice
    All lessons begin with a ‘Do Now’ activity that is retrieval based. In Drama, this can take the form of quizzes, agree/disagree, or a practical response, such as creating a still image or thought-track. 
  • Clear Explanation and Instruction
    The sharing of the lesson’s ‘Key Questions’ and ‘Key Vocabulary’, followed by learning tasks that introduce new knowledge, ideas and concepts. This can take the form of textual analysis, media clips, exemplar materials or teacher demonstration. 
  • Modelling, Scaffolding and Worked Examples
    Students are guided through the new learning process, skill or knowledge and are given time to experiment under teacher supervision and guidance which will include high levels of teacher questioning, ‘spotlighting’ of work and support. This is an opportunity to learn through failure and practise. 
  • Formative Assessment
    Teachers will check for understanding multiple times a lesson. This may involve cold calling, probing questioning, process questioning, mini white boards, Google forms and choral response and ‘spotlighting’ of work. The teacher will use these checks to adapt their lesson as necessary and to provide whole class feedback.
  • Independent Practice
    Typically, students work for between 20-25 minutes in small groups (independent to the teacher) to apply by creative with the new learning. Throughout this time, the teacher will assess student work from a distance and intervene through skilled questioning and modelling, without taking the onus from the students to take ‘ownership’ of their learning.

Students are able to engage with the world in a confident and creative way and have an appreciation for the world of theatre. They can appreciate theatre as an audience member for entertainment purposes and as a critic in a balanced and informed manner. Their grasp of language and oracy skills will ensure their success whatever career they wish to pursue. Due to the collaborative nature of Drama, they will be able to work as part of a team to achieve a shared vision. 

  • Outcomes for students across all key stages and groups
  • Destinations data
  • Attendance and participation data 
  • Behaviour logs 
  • Engagement in enrichment activities
  • Stakeholder feedback
  • Progress towards the Gatsby benchmarks.

KS4: GCSE Drama


This course engages and encourages students to become confident performers and designers with the skills they need for a bright and successful future.

Because performance is paramount

We’ve built in as much opportunity as possible for students to do what they like best – participate in performance.  All students devise drama.  All students explore texts practically and work on two text-based performances.  Students can choose to develop as a:

  • performer
  • designer (lighting, sound, set, costume, puppets)
  • performer and designer.

Whichever option they choose, students can be sure to gather many invaluable skills, both theatrical and transferable, to expand their horizons.

Aiming for success

Our written exam paper is designed to help all students realise their full potential. We use a variety of question styles and ask students to combine what they’ve learned about how drama is performed with their practical experience and imagination. When setting the paper, the quality of marking is at the forefront of our minds. We know how important it is that your students get results that reflect their achievements.

Clear progression to AS and A-level

This specification ensures continuity for students progressing from GCSE Drama to AS and A-level Drama and Theatre. Students who go on to AS or A-level are already familiar with studying a whole set text for the written paper. They have built solid foundations in reviewing a live theatre production and in interpreting key extracts.  All of these aspects feature in the AS and A-level as well as the GCSE.

Transferable skills

Students learn to collaborate with others, think analytically and evaluate effectively. They gain the confidence to pursue their own ideas, reflect and refine their efforts. Whatever the future holds, students of GCSE Drama emerge with a toolkit of transferable skills, applicable both in further studies and in the workplace.

Students can:

  • apply knowledge and understanding when making, performing and responding to drama
  • explore performance texts, understanding their social, cultural and historical context including the theatrical conventions of the period in which they were created
  • develop a range of theatrical skills and apply them to create performance
  • work collaboratively to generate, develop and communicate ideas
  • develop as creative, effective, independent and reflective students who are able to make informed choices in process and performance
  • contribute as an individual to a theatrical performance
  • reflect on and evaluate their own work and that of others
  • develop an awareness and understanding of the roles and processes undertaken in contemporary professional theatre practice
  • adopt safe working practices.

Schedule of learning

  • Module 1 – Islamic Beliefs
  • Module 2 – Christian Beliefs
  • Module 3 – Religion & life
  • Module 4 – Christian practices
  • Module 5 – Islamic practices
  • Module 6 – Revision & consolidation

Schedule of learning

  • Module 1 – Religion , peace & conflict
  • Module 2 – Revision & crime and punishment
  • Module 3 – Crime & punishment
  • Module 4 – Revision paper 1
  • Module 5 – Revision paper 2
  • Module 6 – Consolidation & examination

Exam Board Information

KS5: A Level Theatre Studies

Course Outline

What’s assessed:
  • Knowledge and understanding of drama and theatre
  • Study of two set plays, one chosen from List A, one chosen from List B
  • Analysis and evaluation of the work of live theatre makers
How it’s assessed:

Written exam – 3 hour, open book exam (80 marks, 40% of A Level)

  • Section A: one question (from a choice) on one of the set plays from List A (25 marks)
  • Section B: one three part question on a given extract from one of the set plays from List B (30 marks)
  • Section C: one question (from a choice) on the work of theatre makers in a single live theatre production (25 marks)
What’s assessed:
  • Process of creating devised drama
  • Performance of devised drama (students may contribute as performer, designer or director)
  • Devised piece must be influenced by the work and methodologies of one prescribed practitioner
How it’s assessed:
  • Working notebook (40 marks)
  • Devised performance (20 marks)
  • 60 marks in total and 30% of A-level
  • This component is marked by teachers and moderated by AQA.
What’s assessed:
  • Practical exploration and interpretation of three extracts (Extract 1, 2 and 3) each taken from a different play
  • Methodology of a prescribed practitioner must be applied to Extract 3
  • Extract 3 is to be performed as a final assessed piece (students may contribute as performer, designer or director)
  • Reflective report analysing and evaluating theatrical interpretation of all three extracts
How it’s assessed:
  • Performance of Extract 3 (40 marks)
  • Reflective report (20 marks)
  • 60 marks in total
  • 30% of A-level
  • This component is marked by AQA.

The Religious Studies A level course is designed to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to construct informed and balanced arguments in response to philosophical, ethical and theological dilemmas. Students will gain a rigorous understanding of knowledge, belief, and thought central to an understanding of both ancient arguments and issues within the modern world. Students will develop their critical analysis skills in order to help them make sense of contemporary events.

Exam Board Information

AQA A Level Theatre Studies