GCSE Drama: Creating an Outstanding KS4 Curriculum

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This new course designed for all teachers of GCSE Drama, regardless of exam board. This new course aims to guide teachers in designing an outstanding, well-structured and coherent Drama curriculum, encompassing Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4 – core, GCSE &/ or vocational. Delegates will explore ways to ensure a high quality KS3/KS4 curriculum structure, planning, programming, sequencing and aligning learning objectives with assessments. This will ensure your core Drama structure meets the needs of all while also feeding nicely into your examination options through a careful structure of pathways and a seamless progression of learning experiences from Year 7 to Year 11.


  • Gain a deeper understanding of curriculum design principles and how to apply them effectively to create a coherent and progressive Years 7 – 11 Drama curriculum.
  • Acquire practical strategies for aligning learning objectives with assessments, ensuring a targeted and purposeful approach to student learning at each stage.
  • Learn how to integrate theoretical work into the curriculum to enhance students’ conceptual understanding and skills without taking away from practical allocated time.
  • Develop personalised action plans to design or enhance the Drama curriculum, tailored to the needs of your students in your school context.
  • Learn more about how to build in the ‘wider’; enriched curriculum into your overall curriculum map
  • Strengthen your ability to  track and monitor student progress, identifying areas for improvement and intervention.


Key Essentials: what makes a rich and flexible Years 7 – 11 Curriculum?

10.00 – 10.30am
  • Creating a well planned, ambitious and relevant curriculum which is thoughtfully implemented and sequenced across Years 7 to 11
  • Ensuring the content is precisely linked to the examination specification.
  • The key components of curriculum design: learning objectives, content selection and the role of assessments
  • Examining your current curriculum and the extent to which it comprehensively takes the journey through developing the knowledge, understanding and skills required for final outcomes
  •  Does your curriculum inspire to go beyond and requirements of the examination?

Establishing Key Pillars and Concepts At The Start of the Course

10.30 – 11.30am
  • Establish the power of Drama, how this power works and why
  • Create the right culture and environment in the Drama department and in the classroom to maximise the impact of teaching and learning
  • Explore how students engage with GCSE Drama
  • Identify and rectify gaps in essential Drama knowledge, theory and terminology
  • Build in cultural diversity into your curriculum from the start
  • Social, historical, cultural and political context – methods and approaches to incorporate into student learning from the start

Morning Break

11.30 – 11.50am

Establishing Key Pillars and Concepts At The Start of the Course

11.50 – 1.00pm
  • l Implementing the full two year journey into your enriched curriculum – ensuring an integrated, cohesive curriculum journey, knowledge, understanding, skills, the ‘wider’ curriculum, assessment, feedback, rapid progress, excellent study skills, exam techniques
  • Developing performance skills for GCSE and beyond
  • Teaching technical theatre in a pupil-centred, engaging way
  • Approaches to set texts: optimising written outcomes and understanding through practical work
  • Ensuring your curriculum builds in the learning space to broaden the dramatic experiences
  • Ways to develop imagination and foster creativity – ideas and strategies for maximising achievement in composition
  • Assessment, Marking, Feedback – setting smart targets and embedding assessment into the curriculum planning to make for rapid student progress


1.00 – 2.00pm

Establishing the Wider or ‘Super-Curriculum’ into your Curriculum Programming & Structure

2.00 – 2.45pm
  • Approaches to incorporate the ‘wider’ curriculum into your curriculum
  • Essential history and context for GCSE dramatists
  • How to build wider reading and experience of live theatre into your GCSE Drama course
  • Stretching able students in higher order thinking, advancing intellectual curiosity as part of your curriculum planning

Afternoon Break

2.45– 2.55pm

Achieving High Academic Standards

2.55 – 3.40pm
  • Key points and key messages for students to succeed in Component 1
  • Teaching approaches and methods for supporting students with their Creative Log
  • Discussing and analysing successful and less successful performances

Final Thoughts: What Your Students Need to Do To Access the Top Grades

3.30 – 3.50pm
  • Measuring the effectiveness of your enriched curriculum on academic standards and other achievements
  • Using assessment data to identify key areas strengths and weaknesses to foster responsive curriculum planning
  • Maintaining rigorous assessment procedures to promote rapid progress
  • Incorporating effective feedback techniques into your curriculum teaching and learning cycle
  • Implementing intervention strategies to extend higher order thinking in able students and to accelerate learning attainment in weaker students
  • Implementing high quality learning and study skills and habits into your curriculum




London | Thursday 07 December 2023

Please select your preferred date

London | Thursday 07 December 2023

This course, tailored to suit, can be delivered in your school. Discuss this further with our CPD team on 01625 532974 or click below to make an enquiry.


Matt King-Sayce is a successful and experienced Head of Department, speaker, coach, examiner and educational leadership consultant with almost two decades of experience in arts and cultural education. He has led teams to achieve consistently outstanding results and high value added scores, which are above the national average.


  • Teachers of GCSE Drama
  • Heads of Drama
  • Heads of Performing Arts
  • Senior Leaders responsible for Creative Subjects


  • A specially prepared folder of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance

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