English

Ethos

Clearly, English is one of the most important subjects in the school. We wish our students to be effective communicators in all areas of their lives and we seek to empower them to deal with the many and diverse uses of language in modern society. To this end, active and independent learning is encouraged in the skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing. Furthermore, we believe that by responding imaginatively and critically to the plays, poetry, novels and short stories of great writers as well as various media, students will appreciate their skilful use of language; be enriched by their social, moral and spiritual dimensions and develop an awareness of their cultural heritage.


The Team/Facilities

The English Team’s main bases are in thirteen classrooms on the upper level of the school. One classroom is a computer suite, all have projector facilities and most have interactive whiteboards. The classrooms are bright, sunny and well-appointed. The English team currently has the leadership roles of the Director, KS3, KS4, KS5 and film/media Lead Teachers. The team is supported by a full-time Curriculum Team Support Assistant (CTSA) who carries out cover and provides administrative support. Close links are maintained with the Library and Sixth Form Resource Centre.


Key Stage 3

Students coming to us in year 7 work on literacy and a transitional unit which maintains continuity with year 6. They are taught in mixed ability groups with an average class size of 25. The syllabus covers the areas of speaking, listening, reading and writing. Throughout Key Stage 3, students are introduced to Shakespeare, a range of novels, dramatic texts and poetry. A love of reading is encouraged as much as possible since it has a beneficial impact on a child’s English skills and wide-ranging effects throughout the curriculum. In Year 8 students are set in ability groups; the lessons build on and develop skills acquired in year 7 and continue the emphasis on reading.  While we focus on fostering an enjoyment of reading and writing, we also understand the need for students to be prepared for their GCSE examinations.  Throughout Key Stage 3, students complete end of unit assessments designed to introduce and build the skills required to meet the assessment objectives of GCSE English. In both Year 7 and 8 students sit an end of year Key Stage 3 exam written by AQA and modelled on the AQA GCSE exam papers. 

For more information contact Miss K McDermott.


Key Stage 4

Year 9 is considered a bridging year when the skills necessary for GCSE are embedded. The students are prepared for the AQA GCSE English and English Literature examinations. During Year 9, there is an emphasis on challenge, depth and breadth. Students study a Shakespeare text, a novel, a play, a range of poetry and discursive topics.  They are regularly assessed with GCSE style tasks.  All students will study GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature.  Both courses are linear and assessed by examination only at the end of Year 11. Students will study a range of fiction and literary non-fiction; the skills of creative and discursive writing; one Shakespeare text; a combination of novels and drama texts; and a range of poetry.  Students will also complete a Spoken Language assessment; this will not contribute to their GCSE grade but will be reported as a separate endorsement on the GCSE English Language certificate. 

We also offer GCSE media studies as an option subject from Year 9 onwards. In years 9, 10 and 11, students follow the WJEC Media Studies syllabus, learning how to analyse and interpret a range of media including television, video games, radio, film, newspapers and magazines. Whilst studying these topics students have the opportunity to create media products, study media issues such as ethics, representation, the history and future of the media and audience engagement. Students are assessed through a combination of controlled assessment and end of course examinations.

For more information about GCSE  please visit www.aqa.org.uk.

For more information contact Mr G Seddon.


SIXTH Form

Three courses are on offer at AS and A2: AQA English Literature, AQA English Language and Literature and WJEC Film Studies. We try to create the ambience of a university tutorial by encouraging students to engage in discussion as much as possible and to become independent learners. Students are usually taught by two different teachers for various parts of their course, which allows them to experience the high level of quality that exists in the team.

For more information about GCSE or A Level English courses, please visit www.aqa.org.uk.

For more information about GCSE media studies or A Level Film Studies, please visit www.wjec.co.uk.

For more information contact Mrs Hazell.