The Arts Department at AGS is made up of Art, Performing Art, Media & Graphics and the CET Design Programme. All of these are broken down into more detail below.
The art department is housed in three specialist rooms that adjoin each other, allowing the free movement of staff between the rooms. Resulting in a greater opportunity for students to be exposed to a variety of different approaches to art.
We ensure in all years, from 7 to 13, that students can develop areas of strength as
well as building on areas that require improvement.
In Key Stage 4 and 5, we ensure that all students create a highly personal and independent fold
er of work and there are very few limitations in the ways students are allowed to work.
We have specialists in graphics, printmaking, textiles, photography and fine art. This allows - by consultation and individual tutorials - students to work in their favoured area with some specialising as early as Year 10.
The Department has a programme of gallery visits both in the UK and abroad, which exposes students to a wide range of artists both historical and contemporary.
We seek to develop highly individual independent learners who are self-motivated and passionate about what they study and produce in and out of the classroom. Every year we celebrate the success of our students with an end of year exhibition open to all parents and students, to share the possibilities of what our students are capable of.
We constantly change and update all that we teach to meet the needs of every cohort of students to ensure that our programme of study is progressive and pushes student’s year on year to achieve higher.
The department offers exam courses in the following:
KS4: GCSE Art and Design
Exam Board: Edexcel
KS5: A Level Art and Design and A Level Photography
Exam Board: AQA
These courses allow us to guide our students on effective pathways for positive futures in Art and Design.
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Drama & Theatre
Drama & Theatre
The Drama & Theatre department teaches in two specialist drama studios with portable and stackable staging blocks, black curtaining, portable lighting, props and costume storage; the other teaching space is the school hall that has raised staging, lighting and sound equipment, and raised seating.
We teach Drama as a discrete subject once a week to KS3 pupils, this allows them to build confidence, social skills as well as subject specific knowledge before opting to study the subject further at KS4 as a GCSE qualification. We also teach Drama & Theatre studies at A Level.
We have two specialists in the Drama & Theatre team who have skills in acting and musical theatre; this impacts on the extracurricular opportunities we offer as well as creating engaging lessons in the classroom. The Department has a programme of theatre visits in this country and allows pupils across the key stages the opportunity to watch a wide range of live theatre; we believe this is integral to their development as young pupils as well as drama students.
We want to build excellent social skills and allow our students to lead others and support their peers through creating drama as well as assessing performance work. We want our learners to be self-motivated and driven to succeed; they are encouraged to learn independently, shaping their drama work from the start of their studies. We see this develop throughout the years and give many opportunities to show off their skills to peers, parents and staff.
We are proud of our varied curriculum, which we review and reflect upon based on students’ feedback. We aim to engage and meet the needs, yet challenge each and every student.
GCSE Drama (Edexcel)
The GCSE Drama course is divided into three key areas of study, on which the students are assessed:
Devising – the students will have the opportunity to work collaboratively with their peers to create an original performance piece. The students will be assessed in the practical performance that they create with their peers. They will also self-assess this creative process and evaluate their performance with a written portfolio.
Performance from text – the students will bring to life two key scenes for their practical examination. The students will be assessed by a visiting examiner in these performances.
Theatre Makers in Practice – the students will explore a play in detail and write a live theatre review assessing a production’s choices for their written examination. The written paper will examine the student’s understanding of theatre; this will be based on the texts studied and a performance the students will watch.
The course is designed to develop the students understanding of Drama and Theatre with the aim of achieving this highly respected GCSE award. The students will creatively develop their ideas with their peers, then apply these theatrical skills throughout the performances. Throughout this process the students will also develop their ability to analyse and evaluate their own, and their peers, choices.
Students can use their GCSE Drama skills to enter into a variety of professions from teaching, to nursing, to law, to the more specialised fields of practical theatre. The GCSE Drama course will compliment any role where they require excellent communicative skills, a creative outlook, organisational skills, the ability to meet deadlines, and the ability to lead.
Working with the CET
The Drama Department has been involved in numerous projects with the CET. We have been part of the Shakespeare project and its Days of Performance. As part of this project, AGS has worked on vocal delivery and textual interpretation with RSC artist Michael Corbidge. Our productions of Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet were developed with intensive rehearsals. The Arts department worked collaboratively with these projects to create the design aspects. The students have been so excited to learn about Shakespeare and the dramatic arts.
A Level in Drama and Theatre (Edexcel)
The A Level in Drama & Theatre will give students the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of how theatre works. The students will have opportunities to be a performer, theatre maker and an active audience member. The students will be required to work practically with their peers, but will also need to spend time working independently researching material and putting their knowledge and understanding on paper. The students must be prepared to put in their own time; watching theatre productions, carrying out research, learning lines and rehearsing for performance.
The course provides opportunities to see professional work in the industry as well as develop creative, performance and technical skills. The specification is divided into three key components:
Component 1: Devising – the students will, using a starting stimulus, devise an original performance piece and write a detailed Portfolio that will evidence their collaborative development, their research and evaluate the devising process. This component is worth 40% of the qualification.
Component 2: Text in performance – the students will be assessed by a visiting examiner in two practical extracts. The first performance will be with a group, which is worth 36 marks, and the second performance will be a monologue or a duologue, which is worth 24 marks. This component is worth 20% of the qualification.
Component 3: Theatre Makers in Practice – this written paper will examine the student’s understanding of theatre; this will be based on the texts studied and a live performance the students need to review.
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Media & Graphics
Here at Ash Green we have fantastic Apple ICT equipment to feed creative minds. We offer both BTEC Creative Media Production and GCSE D&T Graphics. This allows pupils to create their very own website, digital publications, corporate branding and a variety of 3D products.
We teach industry standard software packages and equip learners for a future career in the design and media sectors. Our purpose built studios offer everything a fledgling designer could possibly need.
Creative Media Production
In Creative Media Production students explore the creative media industry. Students are taught the practical skills that will enable them to design and produce their own websites and digital publishing products.
Students are required to complete four units of work, which include:
2 Core Units
Unit 1 – Digital Media Sectors and Audiences (exam)
Unit 2 – Planning and Pitching a Digital Media Product
2 Specialist Units
Unit 5 – Digital Publishing Production
Unit 6 – Website Production
Within GCSE Graphics, candidates will have the opportunity to work with design concepts and materials in ways that recognise the need for wise choices for meeting the needs of people, society, and the environment.
Unit A531: Introduction to designing and making
This unit involves candidates researching, designing and subsequently modelling a functional prototype.
Candidates must select a theme from a theme set by OCR (see Appendix A). This theme can be contextualised in order to best suit centre- specific circumstances.
Unit A533: Making quality products
This unit focuses on the design and manufacture of a complete product from a theme set by OCR (see Appendix A). This should involve the candidate in the identification of a suitable design opportunity, generation of design ideas showing creativity, modelling and skilful manufacture of a quality product, recording the key stages/processes of making and critical evaluation.
The CET Design Programme
The Creative Education Trust believes that by putting design at the centre of the curriculum it can set young people on the path to economic independence as creative, practical and enterprising adults.
The Key Stage 3 Design Programme for CET academies combines a conceptual framework with practical skills. This booklet is an introduction to the six concepts that are the foundation for all the design projects in Key Stage 3 (11-14), and which will underpin curriculum development for the later key stages.
As well as underpinning the teaching and learning of design, the Key Concepts permit meaningful connections to be made with other subjects in the curriculum. Pattern, for example, is an essential concept in Maths, Music and Geography. Much of what is studied in English focuses on the concept of Meaning. In Science students learn about the Performance of matter and materials under conditions of heat, light, stress, humidity and so on. We speak of the structure of atoms in Physics, the structure of revolutions in History, the structure of grammar in languages and the structure of argument – what better way to understand Structure than by building something? The concept of Human interaction has grown in prominence with advances in electronic technology and with the evolving understanding of the ‘user’ as a central concern of many designers. But how people behave - and how they interact with the manufactured and natural worlds - also influences many aspects of Geography, History, Economics and Engineering. Finally, Fabrication links the activity of design with practical creativity in any subject, from an experiment in Chemistry to arranging the words in a passage of English prose. Beyond the classroom, the students and staff of Creative Education Trust academies benefit from an outstanding range of contacts and partners, from national museums and design companies to local manufacturers; the world-class professionals and businesses that give Britain its reputation for innovation and creative enterprise.
Director of Programmes