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Buxton Community School

Buxton Community School


Head of Department: Shairon Rodgers (

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Private Peaceful
In this unit pupils are assessed in a baseline performance piece. They build on any drama techniques which may already have been explored in Key Stage 2 and learn new ones. Your child will look at extracts from the story ‘Private Peaceful’ and will use strategies such as body as prop, narration, roleplay and still image to explore aspects of the story.

This unit explores Angela Carter’s story of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ and the fairy story ‘Beauty and the Beast’ and looks at the idea that appearances can be deceptive. We also look at how someone’s environment can affect their life.

Science and Technology
You can assist your child in finding out about Mary Shelley’s story of ‘Frankenstein’, the issue of cloning and what are the world’s greatest inventions.

People and Power
Your child may be asked to find out about the world’s great leaders and to decide what makes a good or bad leader. In this unit your child will work as a team member to make a tough decision.

Communication and Other Cultures
In this unit your child will learn how people communicate with each other with and without words. We look at how we can communicate when we speak different languages or come from different cultures.

Going Global
This unit does require your child to do several research homework’s; all are easily accessible on Google or any of the other search engines. If you do not have access to the internet at home your child may easily access it in the school library at break, lunchtime and after school. Within this unit we discover the Native American culture, the first white settlers to land and construct Jamestown and the real Pocahontas. Your child will also be asked to find out about the Australian Aboriginal culture and the first convicts to arrive at Botany Bay.

A Sustainable World
This unit looks at the effects of the pollution on our environment through an exploration of a scientific expedition to a South Pacific island which has been polluted by a mysterious black mass. Your child may be asked to draw an imaginary map of the island with a key to show where different places are.

Year 8

In Year 8 we tend to set fewer homeworks in Drama as the focus is on practical learning, collaboration, characterisation, sharing ideas, performance skills and performing. Youngsters learn how to become an appreciative audience member and how to evaluate their own performances and those of others.

You may help your child to find out about research tasks, to find a suitable prop or costume for a pending assessment performance (this does not have to be too elaborate). As characterisation is a main element of Key Stage 3, you can simply help your child by encouraging them to get into different characters using facial expression, body language, gesture and using a different voice or regional accent.

The Selkie Wife – an Irish folk tale which explores the prejudices within a community when a beautiful but strange and different lady appears as the wife of the local fisherman Patrick.

Darkwood Manor – This unit looks at Mrs Brown’s attempts to sell her haunted house Darkwood Manor bringing to life local characters in the nearby village. The focus is also on how to create atmosphere, mood and tension through using drama and production elements.

The Identification – uses Roger McGough’s poem to explore the life of young Stephen before his disappearance in a mysterious explosion and requires students to attempt various different characters.

Greek Theatre (Drama history) – this unit gives pupils a background to the origins of theatre and explores the conventions of Greek theatre. We also look at the Greek tragedy of Antigone and the story of Prometheus.

Mime and Mask – in this unit your child will experiment with the techniques of mime and explore mask work focusing on movement and gesture.

Shakespeare’s King Lear – “He’s only got himself to blame!” We look at Shakespeare’s famous tragedy of King Lear and discover why he only has himself to blame.

Year 9

Year 9 Drama becomes more issue based in order to prepare students for Year 10 GCSE Drama if they should opt to take it. We expect students to continue to work on the aspects highlighted in Year 8 but that their work becomes more sophisticated and thoughtful. We also encourage students to consider how important Drama is in preparing them for the world of work as it is the skills learnt and practiced in Drama which employers look for when seeking prospective employees, like collaboration, working as a team, creative thinking, dealing with other people, confidence, presentation, leadership, to name but a few.

Again your child may be asked to prepare research for a pending lesson like homelessness, terrorism or prejudice (Martin Luther King/Rosa Parks). Costume and props may be asked for to enhance a pending performance and again imaginative and effective characterisation is the key to gaining the higher Year 9 levels along with evaluative comments, constructive criticism and thoughtful debate.

Mystery Pictures
The story of Susie James. Your child will piece together the evidence seen in two pictures drawn by Susie which will take them on a mystery that has a variety of outcomes.

Medieval Morality Plays (Drama history)
In this unit we explore the conventions of the medieval morality play in which Everyman is tempted by the seven deadly sins.

Stone Cold
Here the theme of homelessness is linked to the story Stone Cold and deals with the issues facing Link on the streets.

This unit looks at the tragedy of Hillsborough and encourages empathy through seeing this tragic event from the eyes of those involved and also looks at the Taylor enquiry, the failings of the police to control the situation and the ongoing struggles of victims’ families to gain justice.

The story of Rosa Parks and her fight for equality in 1950’s America.

Gender stereotypes
We look at how young people perceive each other in terms of gender roles.

Situation Comedy
In this unit pupils will explore the conventions of situation comedy and will devise and script their own situation comedy using stock characters.

We explore the issues of terrorism from African and Middle Eastern countries to closer to home events in Northern Ireland and Manchester looking at the effects it has on ordinary people living in those areas.


Study of the full play 'Face'.

Key Stage 4

In Year 10 students will be building on the skills and knowledge to prepare them for coursework and examination in Year 11 by participating in theme and issue based schemes of learning which are tailored to the course requirements.

Year 11 – OCR’s GCSE (9 – 1) in Drama (J316)


Unit 01/02:  Devising drama

Non-exam assessment:  internally assessed, externally moderated

30% of qualification                                                                                      60 MARKS

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

Unit 03: Presenting and Performing Texts

Non-exam assessment:  (Visiting examination)

30% of qualification                                                                                      60 MARKS

  • Learners develop and apply theatrical skills in acting or design by presenting a showcase of two extracts from a performance text.

Unit 04:  Drama: Performance and response

Written examination:  1 hour 30 minutes

40% of qualification                                                                                      80 MARKS

Learners will explore practically a performance text to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of drama.

Learners will analyse and evaluate a live theatre performance.