English Language and Literature
Our aim in the English department is to support our students in becoming independent thinkers who can communicate fluently and accurately in both written and spoken language. We also value the importance of our students being confident readers who can not only analyse a range of texts, but are able to engage with the written world outside of school. Our curriculum provides students with opportunities to write for different purposes, read and enjoy shared class texts and to use oracy within different tasks and settings. Through our schemes of work, we aim to enrich our students’ cultural capital and expose them to different views, cultures and historical periods that take them beyond the boundaries of the classroom walls. Our students will be engaged young people with understanding, curiosity and empathy.
In Key Stage 3 our curriculum will develop students’ ability to read and analyse texts, shape and craft writing for purpose and effect, and develop their own opinions and views which they can justify in discussion. During KS3 our students will explore texts from Myths and Legends, Shakespeare, the nineteenth century, WW1 and modern times. These texts have been chosen to provide our students with the necessary knowledge to enable them to engage with the GCSE texts at a deeper level. Our students will also have one discrete lesson a week that boosts their written expression and understanding of grammar thereby facilitating them to become sophisticated writers. In Year 7 students will also follow the Accelerated Reader programme in order to develop an enjoyment of reading.
In Key Stage 4 our students take the AQA English Language and Literature GCSEs. They also complete their Spoken Language examination at the end of Year 10. In preparation for the Language exam, students will be exposed to challenging and thought provoking extracts that provide them with opportunities to hone analytical skills of language, structure, evaluation and comparison. The KS4 units will revisit and develop the grammatical practices learned in KS3. Students will become proficient at developing a line of argument in writing and discourse. The Literature texts our students will study are: Romeo and Juliet, A Christmas Carol, An Inspector Calls and one of the AQA poetry clusters. The texts have been chosen to consolidate and develop the knowledge and concepts learned in KS3.
In Key Stage 5 our students follow the AQA English Literature specification, a course which builds on the skills they developed in the AQA GCSEs in KS4. Throughout the course, students will develop their depth and breadth of understanding of how texts have been shaped and constructed by their social and historical contexts. Through class discussion and wider reading, our students will become skilled at evaluating how authorial intent is presented in texts. Students will be supported and guided to become independent thinkers who can formulate their own views and opinions in a clear line of argument. Students will also be taught to engage with literary criticism in order to enhance their interpretations of classic works and concepts.
Throughout the Key Stages we encourage students to read widely for enjoyment and education.
‘A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading.’