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Our learning

Department Vision and Priorities

The Drama department’s Vision is to provide every student with the opportunity to experience Drama at its very best. A diverse and engaging curriculum allows all students to build their confidence and knowledge as well as develop their speaking and listening skills, benefitting students in whatever choices they make. We are a dynamic department that has high expectations of ourselves and all our students. Our lessons, curriculum and consistency provide a wide variety of strategies, mediums and elements for all students to experience.


Over the last year the department has worked hard to ensure that results remain on an upward trend and are proud to be amongst the best performing departments in the school. We continue to strive for excellent results and aim to continue to improve over the coming years.


Through Drama, pupils contribute to the department and the wider community. The Drama department runs KS3 Drama club every Wednesday and KS4 Drama Company every Tuesday. These clubs run all year round for students and lead to performances and productions inside and outside of school. This year students have performed at the famous Barbican theatre as part of The Barbican Box project. There have also been performances at Stratford circus Theatre as part of the successful Newham Arts Festival where our KS3 Drama club performed an adaptation of ‘1984’.

Students have been on many educational visits to the local and west end theatres in support of their learning inside and outside of the classroom in Drama. As well as these large scale performances pupils are given the opportunity to perform to peers and parents throughout the year. This year we held a successful Christmas Concert where students performed ‘Scrooge’ the classic Christmas tale and a Fabulous Summer Showcase where students performed ‘Alice’ an adaptation of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ these performance brought our school community together as well as successful engaging and contributing to the wider community. We are proud of our student’s talent and commitment and look forward to what the future has to hold.


Drama plays a key role in students’ overall wellbeing and development. Giving them the skills to communicate, work as part of a team as well become confident individually. In Key Stage 3 pupils are regularly asked to go into role as professionals ranging from police officers, investigators to teachers. Pupils are encouraged to speak from a different perspective and use professional language to make decisions. This allows students to develop empathy and gain an understanding of others their situations and decision making as well as prepare them for any working environment.


Pupils think creatively and work as part of a team in every lesson across both Key Stages. Personal Learning and Thinking Skills have been placed at the core of learning, providing pupils with transferable skills that they can use in the real world.

We are very proud of all our achievements in Drama and we aim to continue to aid all our students to aim highly and to become successful at all they do with us.



Drama is taught by three full time specialist teachers Miss Wiltshire (Head of department), Mr Wallis (Assistant Headteacher) and Ms Merrifield. We are an experienced, dynamic, creative and passionate team of adults, who communicate effectively to deliver consistently challenging and insightful lessons to engage and enable the students at Cumberland to reach their potential and make exceptional progress.




In Year 7 and 8 pupils study Drama for 1 hour per week. We provide a broad, creative and stimulating Curriculum for all students who study Drama at KS3 level. Students experience man different Genres of performance and build on a variety of skills and knowledge over the two years.

Year 7

Half term 1

Half term 2

Half term 3

Half term 4

Half term 5

Half term 6


  Intro to Drama   / Storytelling







Terrible Fate of Humpty Dumpty


Leaving Home


The Party


Writing for Performance


Group work, evaluation,

STILL IMAGE, SPOKEN LANGUAGE, thought tracking, narration, transitions




Discussion on belief, teacher-in-role, HOTSEAT, Physical theatre, still image, thought tracking, sound collage, whole class in role.


Scrip, Mime, Role play, characterisation, Slit scene, cross cutting, consequences. Abstract and naturalistic theatre.




Look in detail at creating an extended piece of work based on a set text that develops PHYSICALISATION and CHARCTERISATION, though MOVEMENT and EXPRESSION.


Introduction to script writing and key skills used in developing script.

Using a stimulus text pupils create a three scene play around the set scene.








Year 8




Heaven & Hell


Performance Project

PLOT, ROLE, style, movement, USE OF SPACE, SPOKEN LANGUAGE, stage fighting


Introduction to melodrama. Playing larger than life characters.


Introduction to the history of Pantomime.


Using a script, characterization, internal dialogue, monologue and soliloquy.




BERKOFF WALL TECH, ABSTRACT THEATRE, THE POWER OF PERSUASION, PERSONIFICATION OF EMOTION. (Context of how society uses media persuasion to promote the seven deadly sins


Introducing different styles of script.

Using a range of Drama strategies, mediums and elements to explore different scripts.









Using all the knowledge gained throughout the two years of KS3 to devise a 15min performance project that contains elements of abstract and naturalistic work.


Split focus between planning and performing.




Drama is an extremely popular subject at GCSE stage and we have over 250 students completing the drama qualification in years 9, 10 and 11.In Year 9, 10 and 11 pupils who have opted to study Drama GCSE will have two hours per week. Students undertaking GCSE Drama will be assess in three key units. Unit 1 and 2 are internally assessed and Unit 3 is assessed by an external examiner.

Year 9

Year 10

Year 11

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Attainment in the Drama Department

We have seen an upward trend regarding the results in our department’s results over the last few years and we strive to maintain this over the years to come.







GCSE percentage A*-C










The Drama department aims to deliver effective and personalised feedback that will lead to pupils understanding how to improve their work and feel consistently supported in doing so. The feedback and marking is relevant to the Drama specialism and reflects the constraints that the Drama team work within. In KS3 pupils attend one hour of Drama per week and the Drama department is constantly looking at how we can best deliver feedback that will be retained and used by the pupil to improve. Feedback is given orally in all lessons and pupils are supported in what they need to do in order to produce their best on a consistent basis. Peer assessment is used in most lessons and group work is a vital tool for pupils to model good work and demonstrate high level thinking skills.


Each KS3 pupils is assessed each half term using the Drama assessment criteria. Each assessment focuses on different aspect of the Drama criteria. In the lesson following assessment, pupils evaluate the work produced in the assessment and give themselves a target based on the level received and the feedback from the teacher. The target is agreed with the teacher and the pupil notes the level and target in their planner for future reference. The levels are then transferred by the class teacher on to the school’s information management system at the end of each half term.

Once per term the assessment for each class will be recorded and used for evaluation and evidence purposes. The class teacher will go through each group performance and rehearsal process, highlighting good work and identifying room for improvement. A DVD helps to support pupil progress and gives them a whole new perspective on the work produced.



KS3: Students who study Drama at KS3 received homework in the form of ILP’s (Independent learning Projects) twice a year. These tasks compliment the skills and knowledge acquired in their Drama lessons and prepare our students for assessments tasks and teacher feedback.


KS4: Students who study Drama at KS4 will receive planning and preparation time in lessons for their practical exams and written controlled assessment. They will be set homework tasks in preparation for this when it is required.





Cumberland School

Oban Close, London, E13 8SJ



T. 020 7474 0231

F. 020 7511 2510




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