Course Explorer | Highcliffe School

Course Explorer


Subject Mission Statement

Within Performing Arts Drama we aim to celebrate, encourage and nurture the development of students creativity, skill base and knowledge of Drama and Theatre.



KS3 Intent Statement

The performing arts subjects, drama and dance, are incorporated within the KS3 curriculum to help create depth and balance through a more creative and practical skills base. This broad and balanced approach is inclusive and diverse in its organisation and delivery. Students are introduced to core knowledge, understanding and skills at the start of KS3 that is then developed and embedded in preparation for the GCSE specification at KS4.
Students are introduced to transferrable skills at this key stage to develop more effective and confident learners at KS4 and beyond; these skills are also highly regarded by Higher Education providers and employers. Through creative problem solving and group work, students focus on becoming independent, responsible and more effective communicators. This is explored practically through scripted and devising units of work that have students creating, performing and responding through a rich and varied experience of contexts, genre and styles of theatre.
Students follow a curriculum where the focus of progress is on improving skills and nurturing wellbeing. Students have varied experience of performing arts input at KS2 so the Performing Arts curriculum at KS3 celebrates and encourages students as individuals.
The Performing Arts Curriculum is enhanced by extra-curricular opportunities available to students across KS3. Further genre and styles of theatre are explored and skills are developed inclusively for those students preparing for and participating in practitioner workshops and live theatre performances. Opportunities to perform for their peers across year groups or more formal audiences are offered at Highcliffe School or within the local community.

KS3 Learning Journey


“Love the art in yourself and not yourself in the art…
… Create your own method. Don't depend slavishly on mine. Make up something that will work for you! But keep breaking traditions, I beg you…
… The greatest wisdom is to realize one's lack of it.”
Konstantin Stanislavski

KS4 Intent Statement

The KS4 curriculum continues to help develop depth and balance through a practical, creative and more reflective skills base. This broad and balanced approach is inclusive and diverse in its interpretation of the specification. Students develop and apply core knowledge, understanding and skills from the start of KS4 following the OCR GCSE Drama specification.
Student learning follows on from the strands of creating, performing and responding at KS3 by more formally promoting the academic aspects of the subject through: Devising Theatre, Presenting and Performing Texts and the Performance and Response at KS4.
Our KS4 Curriculum allows learners the opportunity to develop research skills, they problem solve through exploring, experimenting and working collaboratively using effective analysis, evaluation and communication skills. Preparing for final performances students improve their independence, sense of responsibility and confidence.
The above developed transferrable skills at KS4 enhances students’ adaptability preparing them for Higher Education and employment. A rich and varied experience of contexts, selected set texts, genre and styles of theatre are further experienced, changed and adapted to suit the cohort and students as individuals.
At KS4 literacy is promoted through extended writing and extended oral work, combined with the use of key subject specific language. Progress made is regularly identified in learning through tracking and celebrated by sharing best work and by rewarding it through the rewards policy.
The Performing Arts Curriculum at KS4 is enhanced by extra-curricular opportunities available to students at KS4. This supports student’s independence allowing them to organise their own group rehearsals outside of lessons with their peers, or promoting ownership of their progress theoretically by utilising coursework drop in sessions.
To prepare KS4 students for future learning and careers they have opportunities to work with professional practitioners and Performing Arts Companies, taking part in various workshops either in school or off site in professional settings. There is a multitude of diverse opportunities to access watching live theatre and performing in professional venues both locally and nationally.

Qualification Details

Exam Board: OCR
Qualification Title: Drama
Qualification Specification Code: J316
Qualification Webpage: Click here to visit the OCR webpage for the specification.

Why should I study this course?

An opportunity to be creative, inventive and take risks with your work. GCSE Drama offers you a practical and theoretical environment to investigate professional theatre practitioners and explore how drama is made.

Although group work takes place there is a large emphasis on developing as an independent learner. Personal attributes of critically thinking and being an effective decision maker will be quickly developed and are vital skills that are needed and valued in further education and employment.

Learning about professional theatre makers and playwrights will open up endless theatrical possibilities. This will therefore provide the freedom to experiment with your own work, and help you focus on developing your personal style.

What knowledge and/or skills will I need?

A successful completion of KS3 Drama and a passion for the subject will help motivate you in your independent learning and meeting of written coursework deadlines. Full participation in evening performances of your own work developed during the course to live audiences.

What a GCSE Drama student looks like:
• A willingness to take risks
• Energy and enthusiasm
• Commitment and creativity
• Confidence
• Self-Discipline
• Imagination
• A passion to perform

What will I study in this qualification?

How will I be assessed?

Devising Drama (01/02)
60 Marks Non-exam assesment
30% of total GCSE

Learners will research and explore a stimulus, work collaboratively and create their own devised drama.

Presenting and Performing Texts (03)
60 marks
Non-exam assessment (Visiting examination)
30% of total GCSE
Learners develop and apply theatrical skills in acting or design by presenting a showcase of two extracts from a performance text.

Drama: Performance and Response (04)
80 marks
Exam assessment 1 hour 30 minutes (Written paper)
40% of total GCSE

Section A: Learners will explore practically a performance text to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of drama.
Section B: Learners will analyse and evaluate a live theatre performance.

Possible Career Paths

Teaching drama in education, private drama school teaching, community drama work, youth and freelance workshops. Writing, directing and performing in various sectors. Performing Arts administrator within a Theatre Company, Arts Centre, Arts Council or Education Authority. Other careers include Health Practitioner, Movement Therapist, Critic or Journalist, Researcher, Set, Lighting or Costume Designer and/or Technician for productions or performances.


The A Level in Drama and Theatre is a practical, engaging and creative course. It will provide learners with opportunities to: interrogate drama and the work of others, to explore a range of theatrical genre’s and styles as a practical and theoretical art form, and to work independently to create their own drama performances making informed artistic choices. The main purpose of this qualification is to study drama and theatre in an academic setting; interrogating this art form and applying knowledge and understanding to the process of creating and developing drama and theatre. This will be in the form of their own written documentation and performance work. This course provides a fantastic opportunity to ignite and engage creativity, passion and interests. It provides freedom to experiment and take risks with their work whilst working on developing their own style.

Qualification Details

Exam Board: OCR
Qualification Title: Drama & Theatre
Qualification Specification Code: H459
Qualification Webpage: Click here to visit the OCR webpage for the specification.

Entry Requirements

Standard Sixth Form entry requirements

What will I study in this qualification?

Possible Career Paths

Drama and Theatre performance and/or academic related degrees, Theatre Production, Drama Therapy, Drama Teaching in the private or public sectors, Events Management, Journalism, Media and Marketing. In addition to the Performing Arts sector specific content, this qualification provides learners with the opportunity to develop all-round performance skills and desirable transferable skills, such as: • Self-confidence and self-presentation • Personal discipline, time management and organisational skills promoting independence • Communication skills – performing, communicating and presenting ideas to different audience types • Collaborative skills – with a focus on self-management, teamwork and participation All skills are highly regarded by Higher Education and employers.

Who should I speak to if I need further information?

Mrs Wills
Mrs Walker

    Owned by: MDS | Last Published: 20/09/2019 09:53:36 | Next Update: N/A