Shapwick is proud of its successful track record in this subject. Our students leave the course as confident young adults and many go on to develop their specialism in the Performing Arts at sixth form college and University.

For those students who choose not to specialise in post-16 education, the Drama course helps them in many other ways. All our students are given the chance to experience success and find speaking in public and interviews, much easier. They naturally experience greater self esteem which allows our students to be more resilient and more eager to take part in future projects. The transferable skills that can be brought to bear across the curriculum, is of obvious benefit.

The GCSE course includes the study of set scripts, many of which are quite demanding, but experience shows that pupils usually thoroughly enjoy these studies and do well in the written exam. The course covers all aspects of the theatre, and students can find or create costumes and design and construct scenery. They also learn about stage make up, stage and costume design, puppetry and the use of masks. They enjoy the opportunity to try different acting styles and of course and they visit the theatre regularly to see professional and amateur productions.

The drama department has access to a large wardrobe collection, stage lighting, PA equipment, a portable stage, and the students take great pleasure in utilising Shapwick’s Hayloft and Drama Studio which are used as versatile performance spaces.

Drama GCSE

Exam Board: Edexcel
Syllabus: 1DR0

Pattern of Assessment:

External Assessment – Final Written Examination (40%)Section A examines students knowledge of a studied play. Section B examines the students evaluation of a live theatre performance seen during the course.

External Assessment - Performance from Text (20%) Students work to perform 2 extracts from a range of well-known and performed texts.

Internal Assessment – Devised Work (40%)Students devise a themed performance or provide design realisation for said theme. (15 marks)Students present a portfolio, (printed or verbally) charting the development of their devised piece, analysing and evaluating its effectiveness. (45 marks)

Course Content:

This course helps develop students ability to analyse and critique performance work. The course explores and evolves the students knowledge of performance (Vocal & Physical, Theatrical Styles, Scripted and Improvised Performance, Puppetry and Mask-work), and also touches on technical aspects, such as: Set, Costume, Sound Design and others.

All students will be involved in performance work, either performing or in a backstage/design capacity. The students will also attend performances outside of school and will develop critical vocabulary to assess professional performances. This will be the foundation of their written work, where they reflect on themes and performance styles.

This is an excellent choice for students who wish to develop their public speaking & other social-skills and its great for developing students’ self-esteem. This course will stretch students who have previously performed and challenge their preconceptions of themselves as performers. It links easily with Art or Design & Technology subjects, with many transferable skills.

For those students who wish to develop their performance skills post-16, it is an excellent grounding to take into any BTEC or A-Level Performance-based course. Transferable skills open opportunities to public services, leisure & tourism and any project-management orientated course.