Learning in the performing arts allows students to work in new and creative ways and share these experiences with each other. We encourage learners to be expressive, active, and practical and to extend this beyond the classroom by getting involved in after-school activities and the community. We are also very proud of our wide range of extra-curricular activities.
The department has a strong ethos of working as a team and this is supported by curriculum and extra-curricular projects that bring performing arts and other subjects, such as art, together. In doing this, we are encouraging students to see the wider picture of the Arts and how they collaborate and interlink in the world of work and different cultures.
Students are taught drama and music as separate subjects in Key Stage 3 and have one lesson per week in years 7 and 8 and undertake modules in year 9. Currently, students attend lessons in their tutor groups in Year 7 and then mixed ability groups in Years 8 and 9. Dance in KS3 is taught as part of the PE curriculum on a carousel of topics.
In drama, there is an emphasis on working collaboratively and creatively to explore a range of texts or issues to enhance their understanding of drama and their command of a variety of theatrical techniques. In music, students work on three key areas: listening, composing and performing. Students are encouraged to develop their skills using a variety of instruments, singing and working in pairs, groups and as individuals. Students who already play an instrument will be encouraged to make use of their skills and peripatetic lessons are available in a range of instruments (including voice). In dance, students work on three key areas – composing, performing and evaluating and cover a range of styles and stimuli as they develop an appreciation of dance to support self-esteem and body image.
In Music, students work on three key areas: listening, composing and performing. Students are encouraged to develop their skills using a variety of instruments, singing and working in pairs, groups and as individuals. Students who already play an instrument will be encouraged to make use of their skills and peripatetic lessons are available in a range of instruments (including voice).
Currently, the college offers students the opportunity to select GCSE Music, BTEC Dance or GCSE Drama and aim to extend knowledge and skills from key stage 3. Learning in lessons is extended through a varied and extensive extra-curricular programme. At this level, students are also encouraged to become leaders in their field by sharing their skills with students in the lower school and work with our feeder primaries.
At Post-16, courses in drama and music are offered as part of the Concorde Partnership and these include both AS and A Level courses as well as Level 3 BTEC.
The department has a strong extra-curricular programme, including clubs for drama, dance and music as well as the opportunity to take part in public performances at musical evenings and college productions. Student leadership in the arts is actively encouraged and the department has a strong history of providing big impact days and workshops which enable students to work with external practitioners such as the Bristol Old Vic. Additionally, students are able to have paid music lessons in school which cover a range of instruments.
For the latest news and information about the department please see our Arts Department bulletin:
Spring 2016 Bulletin