Justice in time? – Rhinegold Publishing

Justice in time?


To maximise student engagement over an extended period, the stimulus – a recent murder in Bath – is chosen for particular contemporary relevance. Some may find the material sensitive. It is a teachers’ responsibility to check its suitability for their own students. Those working around Bath will need to be particularly careful when
using this scheme.

A challenge for many drama departments is bridging the gap between some students’ perception of key stage 3 drama, and the expectations placed on them at GCSE. One area that needs to be addressed is the provision of KS3 opportunities for extended group work, and the pathway from imaginative improvisation to polished devised pieces. 

This module takes a whole class towards a devised performance at KS3, using a challenging KS4 format. It could crossover for GCSE level if needed. Creating a whole class performance for an external audience means that the scheme may be longer than many KS3 modules. Looking at drama from a citizenship perspective can feel reductive, but schools should value curriculum links with citizenship, which are flagged up here, and liaison with your citizenship co-ordinator may gain you curriculum time or resources.

The lessons last one hour, and would be best in a space that accommodates practical as well as written work. Teachers develop the devised ideas into a rehearsal script for students, so a record, including digital images or recordings, would be helpful.

Scheme overview:

  • Lesson 1: establish aims and group work. Whole class and small group role-play, creating short monologues
  • Lesson 2: identify how to show a characters’ age from a television extract, and put this characterisation to work in group-devised work
  • Lesson 3: reading, discussion and creation of freeze-frames in small groups showing empathy and imagination
  • Lesson 4: group-devised work using keywords as stimuli, to explore narrative background details
  • Lesson 5: group-devised work, focusing on choral voice and tension, drawing on an example from Coram Boy
  • Lesson 6: whole class exploration of situation and character through tableaux and forum work
  • Lesson 7: explore and draw on the portrayal of guilt using a film extract and develop this into a pair-devised scene 
  • Lesson 8: work in threes using a poem as stimulus for further plot and character development
  • Lesson 9: use drama games and exercises to prompt ideas for conscience corridor scenes
  • Lessons 10–16: rehearsal

Number of lessons: 16

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