Suitable plays for GCSE Drama

Solving the problem of finding suitable plays that meet GCSE Drama exam board criteria

One of the most frustrating and time consuming problems associated with GCSE drama classes is the seeking out of suitable plays for the students to perform.

There are, of course, many plays around, but not so many that have the right amount of engagement per candidate and the right number of pupils involved within the cast.

What’s more, given the restriction that some exam boards now impose on the taking of scenes from published plays and the need for the play to have a unified sense, finding suitable plays is getting more difficult – especially if one wishes to avoid using the same plays as last year.

This is the problem that “Here comes Godot now!” by Lindsay Jones solves. It contains 12 plays each containing multi-roling and the variety of theatrical techniques that exam boards now seem to love.

The plays particularly engage with themes not often found in other sources, such as dark comedy, fantasy, horror, humour and urban myths. Thus the themes in this volume avoid the social topics such as drug taking which other volumes (and indeed assemblies and PSHE lessons) will already have covered extensively.

As for performances, the plays are written for a variety of combinations of participants from two boys or two girls up to four boys and four girls. Because the volume is photocopiable (or printable from a CD rom) only one copy of the book need be bought, and it can be used among the class without further cost.

ISBN: 978 1 86083 856 9 Order code: T1820emn – please quote with order.

Sample pages incorporating one complete play can be viewed at

  • Photocopiable book, £29.95 plus £3.95 delivery
  • CD with school-wide rights: £24.95 plus £3.95 delivery
  • Both the book and the CD £36.94 plus £3.95 delivery
  • Prices include VAT.

You can purchase the report…

Reading activities for 16 to 18 year olds who are struggling with comprehension

Some students reach the age of 16 but still find it hard to undertake a comprehension activity. They might try to work through some past papers with comprehension tests in them, but then don’t transfer the activity of doing those papers into knowledge that can be used when they have to undertake an exam.

One particular problem that we see is that students focus just on the passage – which appears to them to be the natural thing to do. What they don’t focus on is the correct way of answering the question in front of them.

The solution presented in this volume is straightforward focussing on understanding the main concerns of the text, analysing the techniques the writer uses, and evaluating the effectiveness of the writing.

Two passages are presented at the start, and all the questions within the volume are based around these. In this way students can work through the question types without having to read lots of different passages or work through a number of past papers.

In short, they become familiar with the passage and therefore are able to focus on what the examiners require.

Throughout the book there are explanations of how to answer each question type, followed by sample questions and answers, practice questions and an answer booklet with worked examples.

The volume deals with such topics as word choice, imagery, tone and structure. There are also sections exploring (always in relation to the two texts which are provided at the start of the volume) different types of language. Here the book deals with such issues as figurative language, formal language and informal language.

It also looks at the effectiveness of the ideas, the effectiveness of the conclusion and a comparison of the two passages provided.

Higher Close Reading Examples and Activities is available in copiable form (as a printed volume or on CD) so that it can be distributed to all interested members of staff.

ISBN: 978 1 86083 841 5 Order code: T1818emn – please quote with order.

Sample pages can be viewed at

  • Photocopiable report in a ring binder, £24.95 plus £3.95 delivery
  • CD with school-wide rights: £24.95 plus £3.95 delivery
  • Both the Ring Binder and the CD £31.94 plus £3.95 delivery
  • Prices include VAT.

You can purchase the report…