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Drama Department

Walthamstow Academy has a thriving drama department that aims to challenge and stretch the students as performers as well as individuals. Drama is a powerful tool that helps students understand the world they live in whilst nurturing self-confidence, spiritual, moral and cultural awareness and creativity. An enjoyable and varied curriculum is compulsory at KS3 with students participating in 1 hour of drama per week.

 

GCSE Results: 89% A*-C and 50% A* - A

BTEC 2016: 100% Distinction* Grades

Drama Key Stages

Key Stage 3

 

At KS3 we aim to introduce students to a range of topics and issues that stimulate and educate. Students explore many different topics such as Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Kafka’s Metamorphosis, Greek Theatre, and real life issue based stories such as ‘Derek and Bentley’ where students explore crime and punishment. Within each scheme of work students are introduced to a full range of drama techniques such as Physical theatre, Mime and the explorative strategies which students develop through their 2 years of KS3.

At year 9 level, students now opt to take GCSE drama and begin building the foundations for their GCSE. They work on a variety of skills sets, both academic and practical and study the subject over 5 hours a fortnight. New and exciting schemes of work have been written by the teaching staff including Commedia De’ll Arte, performance from text and an in-depth empathetic exploration into the Holocaust.

 

 

 

     

Key Stage 4

 

Drama is an extremely popular option choice at Walthamstow Academy with students participating in 6 hours of drama per-fortnight. Students study the Edexcel GCSE drama syllabus in which students explore a whole variety of themes, stimuli and topics that aim to develop and refine their skillset even further.

Students are assessed practically through their drama and prepare for their written exam through a variety of techniques in lesson.

A section of component 3 exam requires students to answer a question on a live performance. In preparation for this students will see a piece of professional theatre which they will evaluate.

Previous theatre visits have included trips to the West End to see ‘Blood Brothers’ and recently the Theatre Centre production of ‘The Muddy Choir’ by Jess Briton and ‘Rise Up’ by Lisa Evans.

The new GCSE comprises of the following components:

  • Component 1: Devised (40%)
  • Component 2: Performance from Text (20%)
  • Component 3: Written exam – Theatre Makers in Practice (40%)

The current year 11 students began their Unit 1 exam and participate in an emotive piece of theatrical exploration called ‘The Disappeared’ which explores dictatorships and totalitarianism. This is an assessed piece of drama with an accompanying piece of written coursework. They have now started on their final performance piece.

 

Key Stage 5

 

Walthamstow Academy has been ranked within the top 1% of Performing Arts departments nationally delivering BTEC Performing Arts.

 

 

At KS5 we offer A Level Drama and Theatre – a two year course which focuses on the academic grounding of the world of theatre, as well as in depth exploration of both text and stimulus. Our set text is Dr. Faustus (a cautionary tale of hubris as a man sells his soul to the devil) and students explore this practically before entering into the final written exam.

We also offer BTEC level 3 Diploma in performing Arts (Acting). This is offered as a double award (worth 2 A-Levels). Students are exposed to a wide range of varying disciplines within the performing Arts. This course focuses much more on the practical aspects of theatre, training students in disciplines ranging from mask work, directing styles to naturalism and physical theatre.

Students develop their understanding of Theatre as a form of expression and entertainment but also learn how theatre can be a vehicle for social change. Students work with teachers and visiting practitioners as well as working independently as a Theatre company devising from script as well as existing scripts.

All of our BTEC Performing Arts students achieved 100% Distinction* grades which allowed them to access to their first choice university courses, including those at Russell Group Universities. Students have gone on to study Law, Media, Nursing, Teaching, Psychology, English Literature and Performing Arts.

 

 
     

Drama Staff

 

 

Daniel Thorn

Curriculum Leader

Expressive Arts

 Stephen Gill

Teacher of Drama

           

Maria Vassiliou 

Drama Support Assistant

 

 

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