KS3 Performing Arts Curriculum Intent



Performing Arts are a powerful and unique form of communication that can change the way pupils feel, think and act. It brings together intellect and feeling and enables personal expression, reflection and emotional development.

As an integral part of culture, past and present, it helps pupils understand themselves and relate to others, forging important links between the home, school and the wider world.

The teaching of performing arts develops pupils’ ability to listen and appreciate a wide variety of genres and to make judgements about musical and theatrical quality. It encourages active involvement in different forms of performances, both individual and communal, developing a sense of group identity and togetherness.

As a comprehensive school the arts are a valuable means of developing confidence and communication skills, and facilitating expression, ideas and feelings. In addition, through purposeful, imaginative and creative activities, pupils learn to take managed risks, trying out new ideas and new ways of working without fear of failure.


Drama Curriculum Intent Statement

 It is a common misconception that Drama is for those who want to be ‘actors’.  In fact it is a subject concerned with the development of transferrable skills that are relevant to all, in terms of personal and social awareness and future employability, whatever the ultimate career choice.


Like the other arts, drama involves imagination and feelings and helps us to make sense of the world. Drama is a creative and cultural activity. The language of theatre is international, understood by everyone. It provides an opportunity for pupils to explore the world of people from other places, times and cultures, and to examine differences and similarities with their own environment. Drama has its own history and body of work, much of which has a unique and important place in our cultural life.


Drama at BHS is exciting, interesting, practical and varied. Students have opportunities to devise their own work, use drama techniques to explore themes, issues and ideas, interpret the work of playwrights and theatre practitioners and realise text.  Practically they develop their physical and vocal skills in performing to an audience and explore how meaning is communicated to an audience through choices of form, style and convention. Students develop both a theoretical, as well as practical knowledge of drama. They respond to a wide and diverse variety of stimuli, exploring a range of social, cultural and historic contexts. They also learn how to evaluate and discuss their own work and the drama produced by others including the work of professional theatre makers.


Whilst our curriculum is designed to support students in the development of their skills in making, performing and responding, it is fundamentally about the growth of the individual. Our drama curriculum allows students to develop a number of essential skills for life and is highly regarded both in the world of higher education and of employment. Our expectations are that students consistently challenge themselves and take risks in the creation and performance of drama in their lessons.  As a department we wholeheartedly believe that drama can enable our students to grow into more rounded and self-aware young adults. Drama, in short, is essential.


Music Curriculum Intent Statement

 The Music department wishes to make Music accessible to all. In particular, we strive to promote independence, persistence and resilience during the rehearsal process, allowing students to take responsibility for their own performances and as a result, opening up performance opportunities.


The Music department aims to provide a comprehensive range of extra-curricular activities and performance opportunities for all. It also recognises the need to really stretch and challenge the most able students to allow them the opportunity to create and perform Music at the highest possible level and in the most inspiring performance spaces available in our community.


The Music department aims to commit to individualised learning at all levels where it provides a number of different levels of task involving Listening, Appraising, Performing and Composing at KS3 in a wide range of styles; individual performance and composing styles at GCSE; and a range of options of unit choices, including arts administration, at BTEC level.


The Music department works extremely closely with the Drama department to ensure students have a consistent learning experience within the Performing Arts. There are also plans in the curriculum to develop a unit to explore the role of the Actor-Musician and develop the required skills to allow students to consider this as a career choice, as well as other more traditional professions within the Arts such as Actors and Musicians. This also allows far more opportunity for sharing of good practice and an ability to widen the extra-curricular experience and community links.


The Music department wishes to educate gifted students in Music to such a level that they are widely respected in the Community and are asked to perform with different organisations in local community events.


The strongest vision that the Music department has, however, is to ensure that all students participate in music making for at least their KS3 years if not beyond, enjoying creating and performing their own work, learning the skills of teamwork, organisation, persistence and determination whilst striving for accuracy and precision in their work, thinking flexibly and taking responsible risks. As a result of this it is hoped that the students will enjoy the experience, build confidence in themselves and foster a sense of pride in their achievements which comes from performing their own work to the best of their ability to a variety of different audiences.


By the time a student leaves BHS they will have been able to:


  • take peripatetic lessons in an instrument of their choice
  • perform as part of a group including guitar ensemble, string group, keyboard club, choir, drama club or musical theatre group
  • perform music in solo, duet and larger group settings
  • perform in a variety of venues including church, outdoor, auditoriums and larger venues
  • learn how to use music technology software to record, edit, and develop their work
  • study how to compose music and create several pieces of their own work
  • study the work of famous composers from throughout music history and look at the development of music and musical instruments since the medieval period
  • study music theory throughout Key Stage 3, and in greater depth at KS4 should they choose music at GCSE level
  • develop an appreciation of music by learning how to critically listen to music, analyse and understand how music works
  • experience Performing Arts in both live and recorded form, with enrichment from visiting live performances where appropriate