Drama is a wide ranging subject at GCSE level. It can involve: thematic work, improvisation, physical theatre, costume, set design, make-up and masks, puppets, lighting and sound, and even stage management.
The following resources have been selected as the best for GCSE Drama:
GCSE Bitsize Drama: If explorative strategies like Still image/freeze frame, Thought-tracking or Narrating are new concepts, GCSE Bitsize Drama is a great place to begin. The site features text information and handy videos on many of the strategies students will be expected to utilize. Areas covered include Exploring, Responding and Performing. Students and teachers will find inspiration for their productions from the Galleries section, while the WJEC section includes vital tips on how to create a group and give a top-level ‘devised performance’. The Expression Gallery is an exhaustive collection of images of people of various ages and backgrounds, displaying a myriad of expressions, everything from elation to frustration. As conveying emotion is so important in drama, students can find inspiration on how to express the inner worlds of the characters they are portraying. Another highly popular section for students is the Messageboard, where members discuss everything from the nature of GSCE drama to favourite characters, ideas for costumes and scripts and how to overcome stagefright.
Class Clips – Drama: Use your desktop, mobile or tablet device to watch a host of fascinating videos on everything from Criticism to Interpreting and Staging and Stage Design. See how Shakespearean plays have been given new life through costume design and find all the inspiration you need from magnificently designed sets from the past.
Pinball: Have you ever used mind maps to brainstorm, organise your thoughts or notes and see how different ideas within one subject are connected to each other? If so, you need to log onto Pinball, a dynamic new way of introducing students to the concept of thinking/mind maps. One of the activities on Pinball, entitled Curve Ball, helps you find new, unexpected ideas that can send you on completely new creative tangents. Wild Reels, meanwhile, can be very useful for stage design, since it invites users to mix up words, images and colours, to find inspiration for a unique backdrop to the dramatic action.
Teachit.co.uk: This handy site, aimed at teachers, includes a host of useful resources for GCSE AQA, including evaluation guidelines for devised, improvised and scripted performance work. Find interesting schemes of work which approach classic plays from a new perspective, discover different approaches to scripts and learn how to explore character and role.
Pinterest: Find inspiration for everything from vintage right through to modern interpretations of Elizabethan designs and stage make-up ideas. One of the most useful aspects of Pinterest is the frequency with which users upload new content. Creating new boards and re-pinning inspiring work allows students to create a rich bank of ideas for future reference.
YouTube: Videos of past drama performances by GCSE Drama students are an excellent way to glean the level that will be expected in performance assessments. Video performances can also provide inspiration on new ways to interpret iconic works. Excellence in drama depends upon your ability to entertain or provoke thoughts, feelings and strong reactions. See what kind of performances elicit these responses in you and use them to make your audience feel the same.
We hope that you have found these resources useful. If you would like to share any other websites that you think are also great, then please tell us about them in the comments.