Grade 12 Dramatic Arts



Course Outline: ADA4M

Course Description
This course requires students to experiment with forms and conventions in dramatic literature, and to create/adapt and present dramatic works. Students will do research on dramatic forms, conventions, themes and theories of acting and directing from different historical periods, and apply their knowledge of these in analyzing and interpreting dramatic literature, including Canadian works and works from various cultures in the late twentieth century. Students will also examine the significance of dramatic arts in various cultures.
This course also engages students in active learning. They apply their theory and knowledge in genuine theatrical contexts by working as actors, playwrights, and discerning audience members. The intent of the course is to make leaning experimental to the greatest extent possible, while meeting the academic demands and expectations of the university/college destinations of students taking the course.
Grade 12



     Unit Description:
    1. Actor’s Workshop: Purpose of Scene, Character Revelation, Uta Hagen: Respect for Acting.
    2. Theatre History: Exploring 2000 years of tradition.
    3. Theatre Styles: Exploring Modern Conventions and Writing Styles: Tragedy, Comedy, Satire, and Romance.
    4. School Production: Exploring the One Act Play, Theatre Company.
    5. Advanced Scene Study ( CCT): Final Scene Study Based on Selected Play Script.
    6. ISU: Based on Character Monologue work from theatre history period, final essay on selected script, and headshot/ portfolio.
    7. Final Examination: Administered during final examination period.

    Unit overview
    Unit 1: Stretching yourself as an actor using text.
    Students use text to extend their personal skills in voice and movement. Through examination of various dramatic theories, students develop skills and an understanding of the acting process. Students will read various texts from different time frames and present a short dialogue or monologue from both classical and contemporary piece. Each student applies acting techniques to both their dramatic pieces. During the rehearsal stage, performance techniques and staging will be discussed that support interpretation and develop methods for creating transitions in between moments. Students will use these methods to refine their presentations. During presentations, students analyze their work ad that of their peers through written reflections that focus on a deeper understanding of how and actor prepares a role and how drama through the ages has related to social issues such as justice, racism, intolerance, sexism, and respect for individual beliefs. Their grade will be based on their class process, final presentation, and written reflections.
    Unit 2: Moving Beyond Realism
    Students work in mixed groupings to complete research. Each group will submit a report on a chosen style and present a short workshop demonstration of a piece that represents their style.
    From the following list of theatre styles, choose on style of research: Greek Tragedy(Sophocles, Aeschylus, Euripides), Greek Comedy (Aristophanes, Meanader), Roman Comedy (Seneca), Medieval Drama ( 9th to 15th century), Elizabethan Comedy or Tragedy (Shakespeare, Marlow), Italian Renaissance ( Commedia Dell’Arte), Neo-Classical Tragedy (Corneille Racine), Melodrama, Later Comedy of Manners ( Wilde, Noel Coward), Realistic Drama (Ibsenm Chekhov), Restoration Drama (Congreve, Sheridan), and Expressionism (Pirandello, Strindberg).



    Each group will select and sign up for one topic
    Consult at least 3 resources and make note examples of conventions of style
    Prepare an annotated bibliography for all sources using the accepted format
    Organized notes and submit a short paper
    Find play in that style
    Use your research findings to prepare a short introduction to the style (creative) and choose an excerpt from the play to prepare a demonstration scene.

    Unit 3: Beyond Realism Workshops
    The teacher presents workshops on three or four theatrical styles, and as a class, develop a chart as a visual aid to help students understand the connections between styles, conventions, and theatrical devices and how they connect with our lives. The workshop focus topics will be the following: Children’s Theatre, Commedia Dell’Arte, Epic (Brechtian) Theatre, and/or Theatre of the Absurd. Each workshop includes origins and conventions of the style, sample scenes, and opportunities for students to apply their knowledge by creatively using texts and improvisations techniques, A the end of the teacher’s workshop, small groups of students will perform in their particular style being used and get back feedback from their peers. Each group’s workshop will have the following components: a warm up activity, a focus activity, a final reflection on the style, and a short scene indicating the ways in which the play is indicative of its genre, period, and social and political milieu

    Unit 4: Characters in New Settings
    In this culminating unit, students focus on Canadian plays and then write and perform an original One-Act play in small groups for their final evaluation. They choose a monologue or two-person scene from a Canadian play to prepare, rehearse, and present. They are responsible for their own costume and properties as well as written production plans (TBA). In addition, students help each other to review, drill, and rehearse in pairs or small groups to consolidate their understanding and enhance skills. Students present rehearsed scenes, applying acting skills developed throughout the course, for peer feedback. Upon completion of the monologue/dialogue presentations, students form small groups of four. In these groups, each student maintains his/her Canadian character and lines of dialogue from the original Canadian script but works with group members to write a new, original script using a single, common setting in which the four characters interact. These scripts are rehearsed and presented to a live audience. In finding methods to develop an original production, students may also choose to use a theatrical style studied in Units 2 and 3.

    Portfolio Questions
    1. What are some of the key characteristics of the Theatrical Forms we have studied? How many forms would you use in a variety show?
    2. What elements in play scripts have stayed the same for centuries? How have plays changed in form and content? What is the value in traditional/ historic plays?
    3. Which approach to acting is most psychological? Why do you perfer one of these approaches over the others?
    4. How do the steps of the writing process relate to the rehearsal process? How will you use research and rehearsal techniques to inform your choices?
    5. What lessons have you learned as a writer that will make you a better director?
    6. How can we achieve unity of design in our work?
    7. How are you engaging your audience to affect the constructed meaning of the theatrical event?
    8. How important is consistent acting in the genre? What is the relationship between acting style of the period and approaches to character development?
    9. What measures will we agree to use in assessing theatrical success? Where might our process be improved when we do this kind of work again?
    10. What evidence supports your aesthetic judgment? How could you convince someone from another era of value of technology in this work?
    11. How can theatre have political impact? How can theatre affect a change in social values or behavior within a community?
    12. How can we stage the same scene in several theatrical traditions? What will be different?
    13. What are the aspects of this work that appeal to this audience? What elements of this work are particular to its period or culture?
    14, What are some innovative ways to use theatre in their school?
    15. Explore themes such as hunger, loneliness, motherhood, oppression, disease within a cultural context.
    16. How might Laban’s theory improve your performance?
    17. Explain how setting and performance space along with stagecraft, staging, blocking, audience formations and theatrical venue can enhance or limit the success of their work.
    18. How did major world events influence philosophies, and therefore, theatrical expression?
    19. Describe realism as a response to melodrama, theatre of the oppressed, existentialism.
    20. How might the elements of various theatre traditions be influences by immigration?
    21. How is a motif transferred from one medium to another? Was your motif consistently depicted in both media?
    22. How do we ensure that everyone supporting our production sustains its thematic messages?
    23. How would you rate the audience etiquette demonstrated in theatre today? What are the characteristics professionals in the theatre must exhibit?
    The Learning Log
    During and following each unit of study, each student makes a learning log entry. Entries are made up of the following headings: a significant achievement, application of acting technique, interpretive insight gained today, dilemmas or problematic situations, any situation or attitude that has held up process, any suggested solutions and projection of the next day’s work. The teacher will randomly collect learning logs at different times throughout the course of the semester for evaluation.
    Evaluation and Student Achievement
    Assessment and Evaluation in the dramatic arts is ongoing. Assessment is the process of gathering information from a variety of sources (including assignments, demonstrations, projects, performances, and tests) that accurately reflect how well the student is achieving the curriculum expectations.
    Evaluation refers to the process of judging the quality of student work on the basis of established criteria, and assigning a value to represent that quality. In Ontario schools, the value assigned will be in the form of an achievement level and an associated percentage grade.
    Assessment and evaluation of student achievement is based their ability to Respond, Reflect, and Analyse given expectations. The FOUR overall strands are listed below:
    Crictical Analysis, Function of Art in Society, Identity/Community, Artistic Connections  


    Percent Grade Range  Achievement Level   Summary Description
     80 – 100%  Level 4  Very high to outstanding level of achievement
    Above the provincial standard
     70 – 79%  Level 3  High level of achievement
    Achievement at the provincial standard
     60 – 69%  Level 2  Moderation level of achievement
    Below the provincial standard
     50 – 59%  Level 1  Passable level of achievement
    Below the provincial standard
     Below 50%  Level 0  Insufficient achievement of curriculum experience
    A credit will not be granted

       During each term, ongoing assessment and evaluation is worth 70% of the final mark. The final 30% of the grade will be based on a final Course Culminating Task to be administered towards the end of the course and a final written exam.
      Instructional Strategies and Assessments


        Dramatic Technique (presentation/performance
        Formal Written overviews/Article Talk
        Reflection/Journal sharing/Learning Log
        Group Dynamics/Class rehearsal protocol
        Personal Communication (peer conferencing, roving conferences)
        Teacher observations
        Cell phones/iPods: STS has an acceptable use policy for all electronic devices. Cell phones are not to be brought to class at anytime – no exceptions.  If parents need to contact a student in an emergency, please communicate with the school through the main office. Also, music devices must be removed during class time unless special permission is granted by your teacher.
        Class Assessment tools include:
        Daily checklists
        Marking schemes
        Anecdotal comments with suggestions for improvements
        In the final Four weeks of the semester, each student will complete their CCT (Course Culminating Task). The Course Culminating Task will provide students with the opportunity to perform at all levels and demonstrate key knowledge and skills in all four categories of the curriculum expectations. A non-submission of the CCT does not automatically mean the student will not attain the credit. It does, however, have an impact on the student’s final grade, unless there is extenuating circumstances.