The curriculum in English is based on the study of a variety of literary texts, both fiction and non-fiction, across a range of genres. Our schemes of work are planned to include a range of teaching and learning approaches to help students develop their skills in reading, writing and speaking and listening. We believe strongly in developing skills for life, as well as fostering an enjoyment of all forms of language and literature. Another key feature of KS3 English is our commitment to mixed ability teaching in the majority of our classes. Teachers personalise learning within lessons to suit every students’ ability level through the use of different tasks, group work and verbal assessment.
Following transition work at the start of Year 7 to enable students to make links between their primary and secondary studies, students will be introduced to the way they will learn in KS3. Each class will work on units including creative writing, introduction to Shakespeare, non-fiction texts, informative writing, study of a novel and poetry.
In Year 8 students will further develop essay writing skills and will study an entire Shakespeare play, as well as working on modern fiction and poetry. At the end of the year we conduct an assessment that mirrors the new GCSE model, developing students’ exam skills and resilience in a low stakes situation.
Year 9 students study a broader variety of fiction and non-fiction texts. They will study another Shakespeare play and continue to develop their skills in a range of writing styles. Modern American literature and a cluster of Love & Relationship poetry prepares students for the more rigorous GCSE course that will follow.
Throughout Year 9, students will experience GCSE standards of work and assessment in preparation for the commencement of KS4 study.
English is one of the most important subjects and it is compulsory for all students to follow a course which will lead to a formal qualification in English. To be able to communicate well both in speech and writing is an essential part of life outside school; you will need good English skills in almost every job, and most Further and higher education courses require a standard pass Grade 4 in English.
English is not so much about learning facts as it is about developing skills in speaking and listening, reading and writing. The course will enable you to read and understand both fiction and non-fiction texts. You will practise writing in different styles and for different purposes, and you will speak in discussions and drama activities as well as making presentations. In English Literature you will read and analyse four set texts, including a modern play, a 19th Century novel, a Shakespeare play and a selection of poetry from an anthology.
There is an opportunity for all students to succeed in attaining a formal qualification in English through the following: GCSE English Language, GCSE English Literature. We also support some students with Functional English qualifications if deemed appropriate.
Students will be assessed through linear exams at the end of a two year GCSE course. There will be two terminal exams for GCSE English Language and two terminal exams for GCSE English Literature. The Examination Board for all qualifications is AQA.
GCSE English Language:
Paper 1: Explorations in creative reading and writing – 50% of qualification
Paper 2: Writer’s viewpoints and perspectives – 50% of qualification
GCSE English Literature:
Paper 1: Shakespeare & 19th C novel – 40% of qualification
Paper 2: Modern prose/drama & poetry – 60% of qualification
AQA website: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse
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