The Drama department at WIlsthorpe is vibrant and dynamic and aims to instil a lifelong love of Theatre and the Arts in students whilst nurturing and developing social and creative thinking skills. The department has a team of specialist Drama teachers who strive to provide a creative and supportive learning environment where every voice is heard.
The skills that are learnt by studying Drama are invaluable in later life. For example, being able to speak and present confidently in front of people and to have the skill of planning that is required in any production are useful in many careers. Studying drama is demanding and teaches pupils that success only comes from hard work. Studying drama requires emotional maturity and gives students a deeper understanding of themselves. Because it involves using not only their voices and bodies but emotions and creativity, it is able to engender a deep sense of self-esteem. It is also a subject that requires a great deal of peer trust, and so it plays an important role in teaching communication, listening and empathy skills.
Our facilities include a black box studio space, a good-sized drama classroom, the use of a large hall and a classroom for examination revision. The studios and hall are also equipped with state-of-the-art lighting, AV and sound facilities as well as having a large store of props, set, costumes, scripts and other resources for use in lessons and productions.
Outside the classroom students are encouraged to participate in a wide range of extra-curricular opportunities including the annual school musical, summer plays and Drama clubs. We often take students on theatre trips to local theatres including the Nottingham Theatre Royal, Nottingham Playhouse and sometimes further afield, such as London’s West End.
In addition, we have lots of exciting partnerships and projects to get involved with such as The National Theatre Connections project, the Shakespeare School Festival, links with professional theatres, actors and theatre companies and trust wide competitions and performances.
The Key Stage 3 drama curriculum at Wilsthorpe has been designed considering the Arts Council recommendations and Ofsted guidance for drama, in addition to the expectations of the Key Stage 4 qualification. The rationale for this is to raise expectations and standards from the start of Key Stage 3 and ensure that drama knowledge is being understood both practically and theoretically.
Students in Key Stage 3 have one-hour of drama lesson per week as part of their timetabled lessons where they will explore a range of highly engaging topics in a physical and creative way.
In years 10 and 11, the department currently delivers the vocational Technical Award in Performing Arts (Acting) This vocational course is an exciting, creative and practical course. Lessons are a combination of practical learning supported by the theory needed in order to understand the work being studied. Learning takes place through: practical workshops, theatre trips, contextual research, performance rehearsals, small group work, class discussions and independent study. Students are assessed internally and externally through a combination of both practical and written work.
At Post-16 the department delivers A Level Drama and Theatre Studies and the vocational Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate in Performing Arts (Acting)
These courses emphasise practical creativity alongside research and theoretical understanding. Lessons are a combination of practical learning supported by the theory needed in order to understand the work being studied. Assessment takes place through practical workshop and rehearsal observations, researching and applying practitioner theory to performance, contextual research (social/cultural/historical/political), performing original and scripted material for an audience, class discussion and written coursework/exam.
Over the course of two years, students will acquire a variety of techniques that will challenge and enable them to develop their own style in preparation for higher education and a career within the industry.