Intent: The Big Ideas in Drama at Atherton High School

For every student to gain knowledge on the theatre and explore the world around them through a variety of artistic forms and creative opportunities.

Students will build knowledge about significant historical periods of theatre and identify how it has evolved.

Students will gain knowledge on how to create theatre, appreciate artistic decisions and experiment with different approaches.

Students will build knowledge on the principles of acting and character development and explore relevant social issues through performance work.

 How the Drama curriculum contributes to the school’s curriculum intent

Our curriculum supports students from all backgrounds, including those who are disadvantaged, so students can access a high-quality, knowledge-rich curriculum. Our school community believes strongly in providing disadvantaged pupils with a curriculum that enables them to reach the academic standards of their non-disadvantaged peers. Our goal is to bring our young people into the big conversations of our disciplines, to bring depth to our curriculum, so they can understand the world around them.

Knowledge – Knowledge is at the heart of every scheme of learning. Students will be taught the key component knowledge explicitly and revisit weekly to ensure any knowledge gaps or misconceptions are corrected promptly. Essential knowledge will build throughout the journey of learning to enable all students to develop deeper knowledge of key concepts and progress effectively through the curriculum. Students will have the opportunity to apply this knowledge in practical activities and engage in learning collaboratively.

Vocabulary rich – We have selected a challenging list of vocabulary, to enrich learning and deepen subject knowledge. Students will be taught drama and theatre specific terminology and its meaning to enable them to speak and write like a specialist when analysing and evaluating performance work.

 Aspiration – Through a knowledge rich ambitious curriculum drama students will build knowledge on the origins of theatre in the 6th century as well as the influential Elizabethan period by studying Shakespeare. Students will explore a variety of scripts, experimenting with characterisation skills and focusing on the writer’s and actor’s intentions. Students will work through the process of devising drama using stimuli that inspire them and historical events to educate their audience.

Character building – Students will build personal attributes and character through the exploration, performance and critique of relevant social issues and events. Students will delve into different perspectives and challenge them through acting skills and drama techniques. Students will build confidence through oracy and constructive feedback and develop resilience in a supportive environment. Students will understand the different roles within a professional theatre and the potential opportunities in the wider world.

 Love of learning – Is built through enthusiastic teaching, a clear passion for the subject and the promotion of a positive learning environment. Students study creative and engaging schemes of learning that challenge existing opinions and promote practical experimentation. Lessons include a range of activities designed to engage pupils and develop a love of drama and learning. 

The Drama Learning Journey

Drama Knowledge Organisers

Autumn Term

Spring Term

Summer Term

Reading in Drama is approached through exposing students to a variety of challenging texts. Students will explore the text through a variety of performance techniques and build knowledge on how to present them to an audience. Students will explore the writer’s decisions through practical and written tasks and analyse if their intentions are successful.

Learning Beyond the Classroom in Drama

Students will have the opportunity to experience live theatre through visits to local colleges and the professional theatre. Students will be encouraged to get involved in whole school drama productions and significant yearly events such as Remembrance Day. Students can also take part in workshops lead by practitioners giving them experiences of the theatre industry. Students who attend enrichment take pride in contributing positively to school events and exploring Drama beyond the classroom!


Intent: The Big Ideas in Music at AHS:

For pupils to creatively speak, perform and compose like a specialist with an understanding of the way music governs their emotions, choices, and character.

  • For pupils to study a comprehensive music curriculum designed to cover the breadth and depth of the National Curriculum.
  • For all pupils to discover an enthusiasm for performing, singing, composing, and appraising through exposure to a broad range of musical experiences, composers, and instruments and use of music technology.
  • To use music as a platform to develop core fundamental skills in communication, social and emotional wellbeing.
  • To encompass an approach that encourages reflection, stimulates creativity, and builds confidence.
  • For all pupils to be enriched in the cultural significance of music and to study and appreciate its history alongside understanding the parallels shared between different styles of music, the music industry and career opportunities linked to music in life beyond school.

How the Music curriculum contributes to the school’s curriculum intent:

  1. Knowledge through exposure to a broad range of musical experiences, composers and instruments as well as demonstrating an awareness of the foundations of music, by understanding the elements of music. Pupils will explore the work of historical and contemporary musicians, composers, and influential characters within the industry. Music will promote deeper learning and evoke creativity through a variety of experiences and through various cross-curricular activities to develop greater knowledge, understanding and to help pupils to make connections and embed further knowledge by linking to other subjects across the curriculum.
  2. Vocabulary rich through consistent coverage to subject specific language to self and peer assess performances, describe how musicians or composers have used the elements of music to elicit an emotion and to promote understanding and an ability to verbalise their intentions in composition and performance.
  3. Aspiration through challenging and emotionally charged subject matter. High expectations and mutual respect. Constructive feedback supporting a positive culture of improvement and tolerance. Challenging through deep analysis of scores, performances, musicians and composers and application of creative decisions.
  4. Character building through the study, performance, and evaluation of various musical experiences, styles, composers, and instruments exploring how they govern our emotions, choices, and character. Building confidence through public performances and resilience through experimentation, analysis, and composition. To encompass an approach that encourages reflection, stimulates creativity, and builds confidence.
  5. Love of learning is built through enthusiastic teaching, a clear passion for the subject, creative opportunities and the promotion of a positive learning environment. Opportunities to access extra- curricular experiences including concerts, theatre visits and public performances. Lessons include a range of activities designed to engage pupils and develop a love of music and learning as a whole.

Knowledge Organisers – Autumn Term

  • Year 7
  • Year 8
  • Year 9
  • Year 10
  • Year 11

Learning Journeys

  • Year 7
  • Year 8
  • Year 9
  • Year 10
  • Year 11

Instrumental and Vocal Tuition

Music tuition is an excellent way for students to develop their skills and understanding of music, to support our goal to create a lifelong passion and love of music.

Instruments available to learn:

  • Guitar
  • Piano
  • Bass
  • Drums
  • Vocals

Lessons are taught by Seb Caddick (private tutor) and instrumental teachers from Wigan Music Service. Pupils will receive one 15 – 20 minute lesson each week and will be expected to participate in extra-curricular musical activities and events within the department including concerts and assemblies. There are typically between 10-12 lesson slots available each term.

For information regarding prices a letter is available from Miss McCaffery or contact enquiries@athertonhigh.com.

Please read the Terms and Conditions: 

  • You will receive an invoice at the beginning of each half term which will need to be paid before the end of the half term online using Parentmail (please email the school if you do not have log-in details). If for any reason you may have a problem paying for lessons, please contact the school.
  • If your child wishes to stop their lessons, they must give a half term’s notice in writing to Miss McCaffery in the Music Department.
  • If students have an exam or appointment and cannot attend their lesson, they must see Miss McCaffery and let her know at least two days before the music lesson. We may be able to swap times with another student.

At Atherton High School, we have a strong musical culture and are pleased to offer additional instrumental and vocal tuition to support the student to progress in their musical understanding and performance.

“We must all do theatre, to find out who we are, and to discover who we could become.”

Augusto Boal.