The English Department’s vision:
Joy of learning is at the heart of our English curriculum. We wish to empower students to be confident, creative and curious. They should welcome challenges and be able to solve these through collaboration with others and by using their own independent initiative. Students will appreciate and understand the importance of studying English and how it is crucial to your growth in all areas of life.
The English Department aims to offer an enjoyable, creative and innovative curriculum, which will challenge, stretch and broaden the horizons of every student.
We aim to prepare every student, so that all are ready when they start GCSE in Year 9.
KEY STAGE 3
In every year at KS3, students will be taught:
Reading: quality fiction, drama and poetry texts, short stories and factual-informative writing;
Writing: stories and descriptive writing, poetry, essays, speeches and articles;
Media: narrative and expressive units in film and other media;
Speaking and Listening: the ability to research and present topics of interest;
Shakespeare: an introduction to the plays of our greatest playwright.
Students at KS3 have three one hour lessons a week, plus one hour of literacy or Latin per fortnight for our weakest or strongest groups respectively.
Because of the importance of literacy in the world, every lesson starts with silent reading.
KEY STAGE 4
English Language and Literature
This course is a very demanding three-year course leading to linear exams in Year 11. There will be four examinations in total (two for English and two for English Literature) and students will leave with two GCSEs.
What will I learn?
You will learn how to read a wide range of texts for understanding and respond to them critically. You will also develop your writing skills in order to write accurately, fluently and at length as well as plan, draft, edit and proof-read confidently and effectively. You will be expected to be familiar with English grammar and terminology as well as understand how language is adapted for different purposes and audiences. Finally, you will learn how to communicate and express ideas clearly; take part in discussion; organise your ideas into sentences and paragraphs; use accurate spelling and punctuation, and write using a variety of styles to achieve different effects. You will participate in specific speaking and listening tasks and practice examination questions.
What sort of homework will I be set?
You will be asked to research, complete wider reading, write drafts and essays and prepare for exam practice questions.
What coursework will I need to do?
It is a 100% exam-based course. No coursework will be completed.
Pupils will sit two examinations for English Language, both of which will be 1 hour and 45 minutes long and will make up 50% of the marks each. For English Literature, pupils will also sit two examinations with a split weighting of 60%/40%, one of 2 hours and 15 minutes, the other of 1 hour, 45 minutes.
What qualification will I gain?
GCSE: AQA English Language and AQA English Literature.
KEY STAGE 5
English Language and Literature have long been acknowledged as a highly valuable and prestigious A Level. They still rank today as two of the top subjects to study in preparation for University, and English Literature is formally listed as a Facilitating Subject for Russell Group Universities.
Are you passionate about reading high-quality Literature? Do you love to look closely at texts, analysing exactly what ideas are being explored and how the language works? Do you enjoy debating ideas and then organising your thoughts into strong, clear arguments? Are you curious about how and why we communicate the ways that we do?
If the answer is 'yes', then welcome to one of your most challenging and interesting educational pursuits so far!