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Substrand 4.1: Using different dramatic approaches to explore ideas, texts and issues

This substrand stresses the importance of providing a variety of situations, texts and stimuli for pupils’ drama work. These texts and stimuli include not only dramatic texts but also stories, poems, visual and aural objects and media texts, as well as pupils’ own fiction and non-fiction writing. The emphasis is upon the use of drama techniques rather than the quality of the drama itself. Drama is the vehicle through which ideas are explored, though the quality of outcomes may well be enhanced by quality drama.

Recognising pupil progression

Pupils' progress in this substrand is distinguished by the increasing complexity of the ideas pupils explore through drama, and their ability to select with discrimination from a widening range of dramatic approaches, as they think critically about challenging themes, issues, texts and ideas.

Select the relevant year headings below to find out which specific skills you might want to emphasise, depending on the level of your pupils.

  • Year 7

    Explore ideas, texts and issues through a variety of dramatic approaches and conventions.

  • Year 8

    Use specific dramatic approaches and conventions in structured ways for effective exploration of ideas, texts, issues and themes.

  • Year 9

    Use a wide variety of dramatic approaches and conventions to analyse complex and challenging ideas, texts, issues and themes.

  • Year 10

    Use a wide variety of dramatic approaches and conventions to analyse complex and challenging ideas, texts, issues and themes by using a wide variety of dramatic approaches and conventions.

  • Year 11

    Draw on a repertoire of dramatic approaches and conventions to pursue original and inventive lines of thought when exploring ideas, texts and issues, and transfer them to other ideas and texts.

  • Building pupils' skills

    Help pupils to explore drama texts and to use dramatic techniques to develop critical thinking about ideas and issues in different curricular contexts.

  • Developing pupils' skills

    Help pupils to use drama techniques and conventions to explore ideas, issues and relationships, working in role to present different perspectives.

  • Securing and extending pupils' skills

    Help pupils to use dramatic techniques to analyse increasingly complex texts, ideas and situations and to develop their analytical writing.