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Legacy AQA GCSE Media Studies Serial Drama Teaching Guide

Barry Rainsford | Monday November 27, 2017

Categories: GCSE, AQA GCSE, Television, Serial Drama

Copyright © 2017 Edusites. All rights reserved. Permission granted to reproduce for educational use within the subscribing school only. Copying or lending of any part of this document in any form or by any means to external bodies and / or individuals is prohibited.

Guide Navigation

  • AQA GCSE Media Studies Serial Drama Slides (opens in new tab)
  • AQA GCSE Media Studies Serial Drama Student Workbook
  • AQA GCSE Media Studies Serial Drama Images Appendix

Purpose

This guide is intended to supplement the Slides, Student Workbook and Images Appendix (see above) as part of Edusites Media’s support for the teaching of this AQA Media Studies Unit 1 examination unit. The resource pack and this guide cover 21 sessions. If time is short, some of the sessions in each section can be covered more quickly by omitting some of the practical tasks and setting these for homework/revision or study leave as they are detailed in the student workbooks.

Teaching This Unit

The three elements - Slides, Student Workbook (including the Images) and this Teaching Guide – are designed to work together, with the teacher leading the sessions and presenting the learning resources and the students using the workbooks to supplement the lessons. If time is short then some of the practical tasks can be trimmed and set as homework or revision to be completed during study leave as the necessary proforma (and student guidance) are in the workbook. The workbook also contains self-study tasks for the students to help with their preparation for the Unit 1 examination.

We are assuming that students have covered the basic ideas in their work over the course – the Key Media Concepts and the meta-concepts of giving a basic understanding of the notion of genre, narrative, etc. We also assume that students have experience of constructing their own media products, analysing those of professional institutions and writing on media topics.

This unit is not an answer to all of the issues, rather it is designed as a revision tool, a device to bring a different voice to the tasks and to support teaching of what is a wonderfully complex and detailed subject.

The sessions are constructed using a variant of TEEP lesson planning (Teacher Effectiveness Enhancement Programme) but can be adapted to suit whatever model is the preference of the teacher or of the institution.

All work refers to the Edusites Resource Pack Slides or Student Workbook

Lesson One Introduction

Slides 1-14

Objectives

  • All : Develop the notion of format/genre and understanding of how audiences/institutions use it
  • Most : Begin to develop ideas applying knowledge to the TV Serial Drama
  • Some : Students able to link to prior learning of media language

Starter/Loop Activity (10 minutes)

Resource Pack Slide 2 Task 1A Explore/analyze the images taken from a series of different TV Serial Drama (Lost; Walking Dead; Breaking Bad; Game of Thrones; - all good examples of some of the variations of the format this year) Pupils asked to consider the question from the PowerPoint: what genre do these programs belong to?

Students (3 minutes) to write response. Q&A on the task as feedback to the group – sharing reasons for their choices (look for common threads/ideas you can pick up on; are there clear understandings in the class or common mis-conceptions).

Prepare the Learning (10 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning. Remind students of the AOs we are working towards meeting, and that this unit is designed to help them to start their own thinking for the pre-release material where they will be researching and developing their own ideas independently. Use Slides 3-5 to explain the objectives and what needs to be done if they are to be successful.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Read through the definition/explanation of Genre. Slide 6 Use the ideas they found in the discussion of the loop activity to clarify this if necessary Present the context of TV Serial Drama, Slides 7-9 and talk through the issues found in both slides defining the products and their sustained popularity. Use the slide as a prompt (add ideas/images of your own) to open it out to student ideas and their own viewing preferences.

Application of Learning (20 Minutes work /feedback)

Task 1A Part 2 Present the list of TV Serial Drama and the table (Pupil Workbook) on Slide 10 and set the task which they may work as a pair to complete. You may (dependent on group/ability etc.) split the time differently but the recommendation is 10-15 minutes for the task and 10 minutes for feedback. There is an extension task for the more able to do and this may be set as a compulsory differentiation task if preferred.

Plenary/Closing the Loop (10 Minutes)

Set the task for Lesson 10 researching into TV Serial Drama Show. Which is detailed on Slide 13 of the Resource Pack.

Lesson Two

What is Serial TV Drama?

Slides 1-9

Objectives

  • All : Develop our ideas of what is a Serial Drama by creating a working definition
  • Most : Begin to develop our definition by looking at the idea of format
  • Some : Be able to link this to prior learning of media products

Starter/Loop Activity (10 minutes)

Writing a definition of Game Shows for a new article/entry on the topic in Wikipedia. Task 2A Slide 2 Q&A as feedback on responses to draw out key elements and ideas. How are they seeing this?

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning. How their Wiki definition links into this.  Remind students of the AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Present the idea of how opening credits construct and shape the mood of a viewing audience at the start of a programme, how we as the viewer will be asked to watch a programme and to understand it – in the case of Serial Drama this will vary according to the format. You might wish to use a couple of examples here of another genre and refer to work you completed elsewhere during the course. An example using the opening of Friends is provided on Slide 4. Friends and The Simpsons are good examples simply because students are usually very familiar with these, their music is well known and clearly mirrors the content, and they both offer clear indications as to how credits work in setting mood and audience understanding - but any such product will suffice, even a more contemporary one. As ever, you now your students best.

Application of Learning (20 Minutes work /feedback)

Task 2B Watch the clips of two opening sequences/credits for the two shows – Sherlock and House. Students spend 15-20 minutes working as a pair on providing a reading of the two products which despite being radically different formats both fit the AQA guidance for the genre (be sure to make this point to the students when you present them).

You ought to show each at least twice with students given an opportunity to make notes between the showings. You might wish (dependent on ability and experience of the students) to provide one or two prompts to direct their focus – the use of ‘names’ on the credits, the graphics, the music, the colour palette being used as appropriate to detective/medical formats.

Plenary (10 Minutes)

Feedback as Two groups present their work. Rest collected in and assessed.

Lesson Three

What is a Serial TV Drama?

Slides 1-14

Objectives

  • All : Develop our ideas of what is a Serial Drama by exploring formats
  • Most : Develop our understanding of the appeal of narrative for audiences
  • Some : Be able to link this to prior learning of media products by applying Todorov model

Starter/Loop Activity (5 minutes)

Analyse the promotional image from Luther.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning. How their responses links into this.  Remind students of the AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Review the previous lessons work and the current focus on narrative. Present the idea of how narrative is used to construct and shape the mood of a viewing audience and how it is a key element in the pleasures viewers take from this format of programme and how we as the viewer will be asked to watch a programme.

View the clip from Luther – this is the opening of Series 2 Episode 1. Respond to the question on narrative positioning.

Develop this idea by using the prompt materials on Slides 5-6 to re-focus on the narrative structures they will have encountered already. Slide 4 offers a context for the learning, Slide 5 offers an opportunity to review the learning on narrative. Slide 7 reviews Levi-Strauss.

Remind them of Todorov and narrative plotting frames.

Application of Learning (25 Minutes work – 5 Mins individuals; 20 Mins group work)

Slides 8-10 Offer the outline structure of the key formats of serial drama and their appeal.

Slide 11 Task 3C Complete the narrative plotting table (Slide 12) as individuals.

Slide 13 Task 3D Work as a group to complete the task and prepare the report back to the class. The report back can be at the end of the lesson or could be used as material in a series of lessons as a plenary or feature.

Plenary (10 Minutes)

Feedback as Two groups present their work. Rest collected in and assessed.

Lesson Four

What is a TV Serial Drama?

Slides 1-9

Objectives

  • All : Develop the understanding of genre and how audience and institution use it
  • Most : Be able to apply this to serial drama
  • Some : Be able to link this to prior learning of media products and media language

Starter/Loop Activity (10 minutes)

Analyse the still from the credits for Taboo. Answer the task.

Q&A on the feedback. The nature of the Q&A and responses to the task will depend on the prior work you have explored with the students earlier in the course.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning. How their responses linked into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Present the idea that in the examination a favourite task is the construction of storyboards for trailers and openings of shows. Today we are going to explore trailers for serial drama. We will be looking at a number of areas that they will have covered previously such as the audience pleasures and of how the concept of narrative discussed last lesson is relevant to this work.

View the trailer for Taboo (Slide 2 Task 4B).

Use Slide 4 Task 4B to go over the idea of What is the purpose of a trailer? Get them to think through the objectives of such institutional products – you might think/pair/share or simply go for Q&A feedback dependent on the group, previous learning, and their ability/response rate. Use the checklist on Slide 6 to consider their ideas then get them to focus this down onto serial drama.

Application of Learning (25 Minutes work)

Task 4C Slide 6 Introduce the idea of a channel seeking a new TV serial drama. They have been tasked with viewing the trailer and making recommendations as to the potential suitability of the product by commenting on its audience, character, setting, premise/format and its match for a mainstream satellite channel.

Slide 7 Task 4D Watch the trailer for APB from Fox. Discuss the potential audience. Use the publicity notes and early review on Slide 8 to help them in their decision to recommend or not. Students then write up an analysis of this trailer. Write a 300-500 word report on the trailer for a TV station considering buying in new formats.

After they have completed this task, tell them that APB only lasted one season. This ought to lead into discussion of how well trailers represent their product or mislead channels/audiences.

Plenary (10 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present their work. Rest collected in and assessed.

Lesson Five

Where’s the Audience?

Slides 1-9

Timings here are approximate and will vary dependant on prior learning.

Objectives

  • All : Review knowledge of audience theories and demographics
  • Most : Develop our awareness of how institutions use these ideas in marketing products
  • Some : Be able to link this to serial drama appeals by analysing an audience profile

Starter/Loop Activity (10 minutes)

Slide 2 Task 5A Provide a reading for the posters promoting new TV serial drama The Family. Ask students to consider issues in these products - How do they represent the format of the show? What do they tell us of the intended appeal? Who might watch it? Why do you think this?  Q/A on the feedback. Develop the thinking by asking students to consider: The content; use of colour; images; the tag lines; the graphics. All of these will have been explored in your wider scheme for the year.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and how their responses link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (10 - 15 Minutes dependent on prior learning)

Present the idea that in the examination an understanding of the audience for Serial Drama is vital especially the idea that each show’s audience will be distinctively different in make-up, and that shows construct their format with a clear idea as to what the appeal of their show will be and which sections of the population they believe it will appeal to. Last session, in exploring trailers, we focused on the issues of audience pleasures for such shows and discussed that these can vary wildly according to the format e.g. the differences between the Taboo or Holby audiences. Use Slide 47 to go over/ revise the idea of demographics. You will undoubtedly have already covered this in the earlier learning in this course. To do this you might decide to think/pair/share or simply go for Q&A feedback – this will be very much dependent on the group, but most of all on previous learning, and their ability/response rate. Allow time to develop/confirm their understanding of these demographic groups and how media producers use such information.

Application of Learning (20 - 25 Minutes dependent on prior learning)

Task 5B Slide 6 Complete the table for three of the key demographic groups that might be targeted by Serial Drama or be seen to find an appeal/pleasure in certain formats. Encourage students to develop their ideas of the nature of the appeal to such audiences. Then move on to using this information to complete the Task 5C on Slide 8 writing an audience profile of a show – suggest the one(s) they are researching for Lesson 10.

Plenary (10 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present their work. Rest collected in and assessed.

Lesson Six

Where’s the Audience?

Slides 1-10

This can be extended to 2 lessons or more if required.

Objectives

  • All : What makes a successful Serial Drama?
  • Most : Apply relevant knowledge and understanding to the analysis by constructing criteria
  • Some : Be able to link this to serial drama by constructing an audience profile

Starter/Loop Activity (10 minutes)

Slide 2 Task 6A Provide a reading for the poster promoting a new TV Serial Drama – The Queen. Focus on the element of which segment of the population demographic this might be aimed at and the reasons for their choices.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

On Slide 4 ask students to work as a pair and to come up with their own list of ideas. Task 6B After 5 minutes go through the actual ideas from the ‘experts’ on Slide 5 (The BBC College of Production) and compare these with their own. What similarities are there? Do the students understand and agree with the expert list – what differences are there? How can these be explained?

Application of Learning (20 Minutes)

Task 6C Slide 5 Go through the advice from the BBC Academy, discuss the points made (the one sentence pitch idea is really useful here in prompting their thinking). Use Slide 6-7 to push their thinking on Serial Drama and the Task 6D Slide 8 on titles and how vital they can be in creating the audience or communicating the narrative/format.

Task 6E Slide 9 Students to create a pitch for a new Serial Drama to be presented to a panel of industry experts. Students take into consideration the views of the BBC College experts and use prompts from the Resource Pack to scaffold their work. This is to be completed for Home learning.

If you chooose to do this: The pitch can be made in a lesson to the rest of the group who act as the panel being pitched to or I sometimes invite in a guest to play the role of the commissioning producer – the drama department are usually good in supporting this or even a colleague or yourself in role. This will extend this task into a second lesson for you.

Plenary (10 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial idea (titles would be a good plenary to get all involved – what does it suggest to us?). Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Seven

Where’s the Audience?

Slides 1-11

Objectives

  • All : Consider audience in greater detail by applying 2-Step Flow model
  • Most : Apply relevant knowledge and understanding to audience theories
  • Some : Apply knowledge and understanding creating a media product pitch to a specific audience

Starter/Loop Activity (5 minutes)

Slide 2 Task 7A Provide a reading for the magazine cover featuring Stranger Things. Focus on the element of which demographic this might be aimed at and the reasons for their choices.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Use Slide 4 Task 7B as a starting point for considering the BBC serial drama web page. Focus on audience appeal – use of celebrities as ‘the face of’ a show. Look at colour, content, graphics.

Slide 5-6 Looks at the theories we need to have at the forefront of our thinking and analysis of audience and of institutions. Blumler and Katz is an element in understanding values and representations (the how and why of media product construction), how audiences are not passive and why they consume such products and how media institutions try to identify, isolate and then satisfy theses needs in order to gain popularity and profit. Young and Rubicam is key to examining expectations and thus the look and feel of such shows. We now need to consider 2-Step flow as a useful theory to apply here and discussion of this can lead into interesting areas of how your students consume media products. If this happens, then follow it as it can lead to valuable insights. Ask them to consider the points on Slide 7 to prompt their discussion. You might use this as Think/Pair/Share task.

Application of Learning (35 Minutes)

Then move to Slide 8 and complete the task Task 7C Positioning Audiences (again use shows they are researching for Lesson 10). Slides 9-10 Use the email from Blue Sky Productions. Students to write a response in character to the email requesting an audience profile for New Serial Drama. Students to complete for Home Learning with a name and genre for their show – let them know we will be using this throughout the rest of the exam preparation.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial idea.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

*There’s a great deal to get through in this session so you might think about pace and condensing those elements you feel your students are already confident with.

Lesson Eight

Which Audience/Insitution?

Slides 1-10

Objectives

  • All : Consider audience in greater detail by exploring branding of media products
  • Most : Apply relevant knowledge and understanding of audience needs
  • Some : Apply knowledge and understanding in creating product logo

Starter/Loop Activity (5 minutes)

Slide 2 Task 8A Provide a reading for the promotional poster used on billboards, buses, underground and magazines for Sherlock. Focus on purpose (by analyzing how audiences use such products) and use of celebrity – both are well-known in their own right and might make up a ‘dream-team’. Media institutions exploit celebrity to attach their public profile to the show (we will later come back to this in looking at inter-textuality and ‘borrowed identity’).

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. Check completion of the Home Learning task on audience profiling.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Slides 4-5 Looks at the manner in which media programmes use a logo to brand their product. The aim is to create an identity that is easily recognizable and one that captures the ‘idea’ or the ’spirit’ of the show. Be clear that one of their tasks – storyboard, web site page, magazine cover, poster – will benefit from the construction of a logo. Slides 7-8 as basis for Think/Pair/Share activity.

Application of Learning (35 Minutes)

Slide 9 Task 8C Students to construct a logo and brand identity for their New Serial Drama pitch. The slide suggests elements to be considered and here it is worth mentioning the objective of this work which is not just this lesson or this New Serial Drama unit but the examination task. Encourage them to play around with ideas – if you have access to laptops/computers this can be motivational but at the end of it all in the examination they will have to draw it! Get them to create different versions – have a gallery at the end of the lesson where students rotate round desks looking at each other’s work.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Nine

Which Institution?

Slides 1-13

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of media institutions
  • Most : Apply these in analyzing a marketing campaign
  • Some : Develop understanding of how to apply these to the pre-release materials

Starter/Loop Activity (10 minutes)

Slide 2 Task 9A Provide a reading for the Promotional Poster of Flash.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. Check completion of the Home Learning task on constructing a logo for New Serial Drama. This is a packed session, so you may adjust this according to the needs/capabilities of your group. Either omit one of the tasks – the web site analysis if any – or spread this into two lessons, the first focusing on the analysis, the second devoted to creating web site designs, though this may impact on the pace and challenge of this work which is designed to be high.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Task 9B Slide 4 Analyse the webpage with focus on the scaffolded learning prompts. Consider how such sites feed off TV shows and how the shows in turn use such sites for promotion of their products.

Slide 5 Prompts the students to look at who makes the shows. It is rare for it to be in-house productions and that the plethora of multi-platform TV channels means that there is huge demand for external production houses to create new product ideas and formats. A useful extension task for here or for later is to research a list of production houses and who they make programmes for. You need to make the point that a successful franchise can be sold around the world and made in many languages with the not just the format but the design all being leased to TV stations around the world. Remind them that Top Gear is sold to 87 countries, The Weakest Link was re-made in 37 different languages with 37 different hosts all using the same set design. Use Slide 6 to examine how shows are marketed via promotion on social media websites and that many of our shows originate in other countries.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slides 7 Task 9C Students to analyse the two sites for Hat Trick productions – one if for audience (the general public) whilst the other is for the buyers and commissioning editors of TV stations. How do the sites reflect the different audiences and objectives of the production house/channel and needs of these widely differing audiences?

Comparing the websites for Sherlock and the Freemantle site for American Gods.

This provides an ideal split point for a second practical lesson. Slide 9 Task 9E Creating ideas for the web site for their own New Serial Drama which can be completed for home learning.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections. Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Ten

Where’s the Audience?

Slides 1-5

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of Serial Drama
  • Most : Apply these in analyzing contexts of such shows
  • Some : Develop understanding of how to apply these to the pre-release materials

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 10A Provide a reading for the Promotional Material Grey’s Anatomy

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. Check completion of the Home Learning task on constructing web pages for New Serial Drama.

Construct the Learning (5 Minutes)

Remind students of the brief they were given in Session 2, to find historical and format research on a Serial Drama of their choice. Remind them Slide 4 of the need for this material in order to answer Q1 in the examination and to support their answers to the other questions.

Application of Learning (35 Minutes)

Student presentations.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Discuss any finding for the presentations. Are there any key elements that we have found? How might we use these in the coming weeks once the pre-release is available?

Lesson Eleven

Branding

Slides 1-8

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of values and ideology
  • Most : Apply these in analyzing set design
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by designing a set

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 11A Provide a reading for the poster for Guerrilla. How does it help shape the identity of the show? Feedback Q&A on how sets establish a spectacle for the audience that shapes how we might view the show?

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Use Slide 4 and also that of Slide 5 to focus attention on the key idea of set design. Consider the rows of seats in panel games, the chair in Mastermind, the lab in CSI or in Bones. Focus the discussion and the examples on how the set/location can shape the nature of the narrative and create the mood of the show. Consider especially the contrast between those shows - Game of Thrones; Walking Dead - where the element of spectacle is a key element in the show and the way that the audience is aligned and involved, as opposed to the intimacy of others.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Students construct ideas for the set of their own New Serial Drama. Students asked to focus on how the set will construct the elements we have considered this far. They might be prompted to consider the points on the Slide 7 Task 11B as starting points.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Twelve

Institutions

Slides 1-13

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of media institutions
  • Most : Apply these in analyzing programme scheduling
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by a report on channel identity

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 12A* Answer the three questions on the differing funding options for 3 broadcasting institutions. Feedback by selecting three students to read out a definition/understanding and then pick up on any gaps or mis-understandings (this will of course be dependent on previous work that you may/may not have done and the depth of that work). *This may extend dependent on responses and previous knowledge of students.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. Explore the logos on Slide 4.  Discuss the reasons for development of the logos of each organisation and what they might represent about the organization today (and then). I find that the BBC examples provoke the most discussion, though ITV font choice is also one they usually have a deal of things to comment on.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Slides 5-10 Prompts the students to look at the three institutions and to consider the remit, the objectives of each of these major broadcasting institutions. Discussion of funding leads into the beginning of students thinking about how this might shape the kind of programmes that each produces, and this in turn might lead onto the idea of how audiences ‘think’ about each channel and how the institutions use this to construct their appeal to each section of the potential viewing audience. The focus in this is always brought back to the nature of the Serial Drama that each broadcasts.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slide 11 Task 12B Asks students to now think very clearly about their New Drama Serial and the best fit for it in terms of audience and its objectives. The report writing tasks first asks that the student considers each channel in turn (to demonstrate learning and understanding) before identifying why one (or all!!) would be a better fit for their New Serial Drama. The table on Slide 12 offers the chance to note-make and to create a useful revision table for the examination.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Thirteen

Institutions and Marketing

Slides 1-7

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of marketing of TV products
  • Most : Apply these in considering Serial Drama
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by constructing TV listings cover

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 13A Provide a reading for the TV listings magazine cover. The feedback should develop the ideas looked at in previous session regarding the BBC as an institution and begin student thinking of celebrity which we will focus onto game shows in upcoming sessions.

Prepare the Learning (10 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Slides 4-5 prompts the students to consider the current (and previous) role of TV listings magazines in marketing and representing TV institutions. You might focus on asking how many of their homes buy such print products – if not how do they get to know what is on TV or hear about new shows. You need to ask them to think about how some such listings magazines (Radio Times is most obvious) are products of broadcasting institutions whilst others are non-aligned (TV Choice). How might this effect the covers or the representation of shows or celebrities?

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Use the de-constructions of Slide 6 to remind students of the layout/analysis of print products such as magazine covers. The amount of time/depth will obviously depend on how much practice they have already had at such work with you. Students provided with the template (Student Workbook) and task of creating a TV listings cover that features their New Serial Drama – they ought to consider the idea of the location and casting. They will be working on detailed ideas of casting next session so they can be asked to start thinking about this now as it will lead them naturally to the idea of how celebrities are quite literally the ‘face’ of such products as Serial Drama.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session

Lesson Fourteen

Institutions and Representations

Slides 1-7

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of the role of Casting/Central Character
  • Most : Apply these in considering Serial Drama
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by deciding on a Cast

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 14A Provide a reading for the promotional shot for NETFLIX. The feedback should develop the ideas looked at in previous session regarding institutions and now really start to develop student thinking of casting, and much more importantly, the representation of celebrities which we will focus on in this session.

Prepare the Learning (10 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q&A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Slide 4 Takes focus to the ‘star’ or central figure of a serial drama. The discussion here should focus on the way that the star represents the ‘idea’ of the show and offers a few examples to start such a discussion for you. Slide 5 Task 14B then develops this by asking each student to complete the table of ‘Qualities of a Central figure’ and for them to provide examples. Feed these back to the group and see if there are any consistent elements to their ideas.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slide 6 Task 14C Students to write the report for Blue Sky that asks for criteria, the role of the casting of the central figure in New Serial Drama and then their recommendations. Students could be provided with a template but they really need to be encouraged to think as widely as possible about this. They can use the criteria from 14B as starting points or a checklist, but the focus must now increasingly be on them thinking for themselves about their own ideas as this is what the examination will be interested in. They will be working on detailed ideas of their cast so they should be thinking about the idea of how the cast are quite literally the ‘face’ of such products as serial drama.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Fifteen

Institutions and Representations

Slides 1-6

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of media institutions
  • Most : Apply these in considering casting in serial drama
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by deciding on a cast

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 15A Provide a reading for the TV Guide cover. The feedback should develop the ideas looked at in previous session regarding representations of institutions and celebrity, and much more importantly, how the representation of celebrities is a key element in marketing, especially of serial drama.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q & A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Slide 4 Takes focus to the ideas we began to explore and analyze in the previous session. Review that work here. Discuss the idea of how institutions match up casting to audience expectations of those actors – if famous – and the genre of the drama.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slide 4 Task 15B Read the email from Blue Sky and explore what it asks of the students. Use Slide 5 to start off some ideas – you may need to explain who some of the actors are and the programmes they currently work on or are famous for having been part of. The task for the students is to match three of the celebrity profile/representation to their own New Serial Drama. This task is designed to get them thinking about a number of issues - representation, modern media ideology (gender/ethnicity), audience expectations and construction [the demographic appeal of celebrity/casting], thinking deeply about their serial drama idea. This task is also very much targeted at the kind of task/written response beloved of this examination, so really stress this as a key part of their preparation and for revision. Not just ‘learning’ but understanding the qualities of representation and their importance to establishing so much of our understanding of media products and institutions. Referencing Blumler and Katz is useful theory here as is Dyer and star theory.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Sixteen

Ideologies

Slides 1-7

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of values and ideology
  • Most : Apply these in considering Serial Drama
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by writing a magazine article

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 16A Provide a reading for the TV listings supplement with focus on Broadchurch.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q&A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Remind students of the work last session in matching casting to their show. They now have to decide on their central cast and commit to this over the next few sessions.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slide 6 Task 16B They now have to use their research on casting from last session (and any access they may have in this lesson to the internet etc.) to create a magazine article in which the selected actor in their cast discusses New Serial Drama and why they were attracted to the role. As part of this, we should now see prior learning and decisions being used in a manner that suggests a growing depth of understanding of Seril and the pre-release material to be tackled. This task is designed to get them thinking in greater depth about a number of issues we have been exploring - representation, modern media ideology (gender/ethnicity), audience expectations and the demographic appeal of casting. This task is now, as with future tasks, targeted at adding understanding to their already held knowledge. Knowledge and understanding are vital Assessment Objectives that are found embodied in the kind of task/written response of this examination. You really must now be stressing this as a key part of their preparation and for their later revision. Not just ‘learning’ but understanding representation by the way that they use the cast and refer to the show in their work. Referencing Blumler and Katz is again useful theory here regarding audience needs and how such an article might go about presenting these in its content and style. If you have not already covered this previously, then some reference to the writings of Dyer and star theory is also useful here.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Seventeen

Ideologies

Slides 1-9

    Objectives
  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of values and ideology
  • Most : Apply these in considering serial drama by analyzing casting
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by creating product

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 17A Provide a reading for the promotional posters Peaky Blinders.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q & A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. Point students in direction of Blumler and Katz and how theory can be applied to tasks such as the starter/loop activity just completed. The tasks set in the loop activities are designed to be ‘typical’ of the ideas explored by GCSE Media Studies examination questions.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Slide 5 The product is from the initial trailer for Season 1 of Peaky Blinders. Ask students to consider what might be the appeal of such a show.

View the second trailer – this time from the trail for Season 4 November 2017

Slide 7 Task 17B Analyse/discuss the differences in the trailers and why this is. Draw out the idea of franchise familiarity and the divided audience – the established fan base and the new audience.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slide 8 Task 17C Students now devise the storyboard for a trailer for their New Serial Drama show. The slide features links to the AQA templates.

Remind them that this is the type of task they might be asked to complete using the pre-release material when it is available.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their selections.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Eighteen

Ideologies

Slides 1-7

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of the concept of values and ideology
  • Most : Apply these in considering stereotyping in serial drama by analyzing roles
  • Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by writing email response to task

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 18A Provide a reading for the promotional material for Victoria with focus on gender representations.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q & A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. The tasks set in the loop activities are designed to be ‘typical’ of the ideas explored by GCSE Media Studies examination questions so students need to develop their responses with ideas and examples.

Construct the Learning (10 Minutes)

Slide 4 Review of stereotyping. Again, the detail and time will be dependent on the work already undertaken on this topic in your previous teaching. The slide assumes a certain level of familiarity but is sufficient for the purpose of preparing students for today’s session. The images can be discussed suitable to the level of understanding of your own group. The key issues are the use of stereotypes by media institutions/producers and the acceptance of these by audiences as ‘natural’.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slide 5 Discussion and exploration is shaped by the questions on this slide and the extent to which you take this into wider areas will depend on (a) the previous learning and understanding of the group and (b) the level of ability.

Extension tasks for the more able could be based around the idea of how other media products reinforce and sustain stereotypes and pushing students to add to the examples. Get them to complete the table – you might use the shows we have listed several times already to help with ideas.

Slide 6 Task 18B Write the response to the email regarding the use of casting in New Serial Drama and the thoughts of the production team. The request is to develop conventional roles and consider alternative representations. The task is intended to support students in understanding how conventions currently reinforce the traditional roles and genderise these.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their response.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Nineteen

Ideology

Slides 1-9

Objectives

All : Develop knowledge and understanding of the demands of the examination
Most : Apply these in considering Serial Drama
Some : Develop how to apply these to the pre-release materials by constructing a storyboard

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 18A Provide a reading for the promotional material for The Americans with focus on what they have learned about logo, channels, audiences, stereotypes etc.

Prepare the Learning (5 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q & A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. The tasks set in the loop activities are designed to be ‘typical’ of the ideas explored by GCSE Media Studies examination questions so students need to develop their responses with ideas and examples. By this stage the responses ought to show knowledge and understanding in level of ideas and use of evidence.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes)

Slides 4-6 Complete the Task 19B on the opening credits of the three shows. By this stage the feedback and level of detail ought to be high and there is much to discuss in the examples. They are all dominated by narrative elements – why is this? How is the ‘idea’ of the game show communicated/represented? What about the music element – for the examination we might consider ‘fast-paced; orchestral; atmospheric (which?), classical; synthesized etc. Students feedback to the class/you. Tease out the relevant issues and ensure gaps in understanding or missing details are filled. Review understanding by bringing in other examples of similar (or different) openings.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Slides 7-8 Task 19C Students bring all of their knowledge and understanding to bear on this task. You need to ensure that they are aware that this is precisely the nature of task they will be asked for in the examination. With Serial Drama there are few options for such practical/creative tasks. Storyboarding the opening credits is high in the list of probable tasks, so this is worth taking time and effort with.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present initial ideas and discuss reasons for their decisions.

Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Twenty

Putting it all together

Slides 1-18

Objectives

  • All : Develop knowledge and understanding of the concept of Serial Drama formats
  • Most: Apply theoretical models to media products
  • Some: Develop understanding of how to apply these to the pre-release materials

Starter/Loop Activity (5 Minutes)

Slide 2 Task 20A Provide a reading for the Facebook logo image.

Prepare the Learning (10 Minutes)

Share the objectives. Revisit terms/issues/ideas from previous learning and the manner in which their Q & A responses to the loop activity link into this. Remind students of the AQA AOs we are working towards. The tasks set in the loop activities are designed to be ‘typical’ of the ideas explored by GCSE Media Studies examination questions so students need to develop their responses with ideas and examples. By this stage the responses ought to show knowledge and understanding in level of ideas and use of evidence. Here we are looking to consider some of the bigger, wider ideas - why media images are re-cycled and with what intention – that lead us to greater understanding of how students might apply these to their own work and to analyzing existing media products.

Construct the Learning (15 Minutes*)

Use the ideas and prompts from Slide 5 to push students to consider current and future impacts of social media on the relationship with audiences. How might media theory be applied here? What implications for profitability? For organization of programmes and how they are broadcast? For developing brands? *The depth and level of the discussions here will depend on prior learning from the rest of the course.

Use the Slides 5-8 as basis for discussion of the impact of social media on Serial Drama.

Application of Learning (30 Minutes)

Task 20B Slide 10 Construct ideas for a social page for New Serial Drama – students to design the home page and then annotate it with ideas of the controls/functions and how it might work. They need to add notes linking to the media theories.

Plenary (5 Minutes)

Feedback from one or two students who present ideas and discuss their page and how it relates to what we have explored.Students take away books/folders to complete the task as Home Learning for next session.

Lesson Twenty One

And Finally….

The remaining slides in the Resource Pack – Slides 11-18 are included as supplementary resources:

  1. extend learning for all,
  2. deepen learning for the more able,
  3. provide alternatives for students during the research period of the pre-release materials.

Slides 12-13 Some background on development of Serial Drama.

Slide 14 Tasks suggested by AQA in Teacher Guidance July 2016.

Slides 16-18 Are examples of AQA GCSE Media Tasks.


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