English2019-10-11T09:54:03+00:00

English

Curriculum Intent

The English Department is a passionate and talented team of teachers who are dedicated to ensuring that students enjoy and achieve to the best of their ability.

We aim to equip our students with the skills and attitudes that will enrich their understanding and experience of the subject, whilst preparing them for their final Year 11 examinations.

We offer a rich and varied curriculum, designed to result in curious and creative individuals who share our passion for the subject and perform effectively in their exams. Some of our teachers, as well as our dedicated librarian, also offer extra enrichment experiences, such as The Harry Potter Club and the Fully Booked reading club.

Quality First Teaching and Quality First Learning

We expect that in English this would include:-

  • clear learning aims and a clear route to achieving success
  • high demands of pupil involvement and engagement with their learning
  • an appropriate use of a range of pedagogies and learning strategies
  • learning through oracy with regular opportunities for pupils to talk both individually and in groups
  • an expectation that pupils will accept responsibility for their own learning and work independently
  • regular use of encouragement and rewards to engage and motivate pupils
  • topics, texts and activities that aim to engender a love of the subject
  • the opportunity to connections between English study and the real world

Key Stage 3 Overview

This curriculum is currently being redesigned and aims to give students mastery over the range of skills and knowledge required to be successful in both GCSE’s. New curriculums for years 7 and 9 will be launched in September 2019, with the other years following in September 2020.

Year 7

When What we are Studying?
Autumn 1  Non-fiction reading and writing.
Autumn 2 Fiction Reading – Novel.
Spring 1  Narrative writing.
Spring 2  Writing to persuade / Spoken Language.
Summer 1  19th century fiction and non-fiction.
Summer 2  Poetry from other cultures.

Year 8

When What we are Studying?
Autumn 1  Fiction reading – Short Stories.
Autumn 2  War poetry.
Spring 1  Shakespeare
Spring 2  Non-fiction reading and writing
Summer 1  Non-fiction reading and writing
Summer 2  Creative writing

Key Stage 4 Overview

Timetable hours are equally split between these subjects as each is a full GCSE. Each subject has 4 hours per fortnight. Curriculum timetabling allowing, each class will have different teachers for English language than for English Literature.

Year 9

When What we are Studying?   e.g. Topics/ Skills etc
Autumn 1 English Language: Paper 2 – comparing non-fiction texts and writing to argue.

English Literature: Paper 1 – ‘A Christmas Carol.’

Autumn 2 English Language: Paper 2 – comparing non-fiction texts and writing to argue.

English Literature: Paper 1 – ‘A Christmas Carol.’

Spring 1 English Language: Paper 1 – Critical evaluation of fiction texts and writing to describe.

English Literature: Paper 2 –  unseen poetry and ‘Power and Conflict’ poetry part 1.

Spring 2 English Language: Paper 1 – analysing structure and papers 1 and 2 – analysing language.

English Literature: Paper 2 – ‘Power and Conflict’ poetry parts 2 and 3.

Summer 1 English Language: Paper 1 – analysing structure; and papers 1 and 2 – analysing language.

English Literature: Paper 2 – ‘Power and Conflict’ poetry parts 2 and 3.

Summer 2 English Language: Paper 1 – analysing structure; and papers 1 and 2 – analysing language.

English Literature: Paper 2 – ‘Power and Conflict’ poetry parts 2 and 3.

Year 10

When What we are Studying?   e.g. Topics/ Skills etc
Autumn 1 English Language: Paper 1 – Fiction reading and writing

English Literature: Paper 1- Macbeth

Autumn 2 English Language: Paper 1 – Fiction reading and writing

English Literature: Paper 1- Macbeth

Spring 1 English Language: Paper 2 – Non-fiction reading and writing

English Literature: Paper 2 revision – Poetry and ‘An Inspector calls’

Spring 2 English Language: Paper 2 – Non-fiction reading and writing

English Literature: Paper 2 revision – Poetry and ‘An Inspector calls’

Summer 1 English Language: Debate and oracy (Spoken Language) / key areas identified from PPE.

English Literature: Paper 1 revision – ‘A Christmas Carol’

Summer 2 English Language: Debate and oracy (Spoken Language) / key areas identified from PPE.

English Literature: Paper 1 revision – ‘A Christmas Carol’

Year 11

When What we are Studying?   e.g. Topics/ Skills etc
Autumn 1 English Language: Revision for PPE 1 – Papers 1 and 2

English Literature: Revision ‘Macbeth’

Autumn 2 English Language: Revision for PPE 1 – Papers 1 and 2

English Literature: Revision ‘Macbeth’

Spring 1 English Language: Revision – Writing to argue, writing to describe and technical accuracy

English Literature: Revision –  based on text knowledge in PPE 1

Spring 2 English Language: Revision – Writing to argue, writing to describe and technical accuracy

English Literature: Revision –  based on text knowledge in PPE 1

Summer 1 English Language: Revision – differentiated and based on PPE2

English Literature: Revision – differentiated and based on PPE2

Key Stage 4 Examination Overview

AQA GCSE English Language 8700

Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing

What’s assessed:-

Section A: Reading

  • one literature fiction text

Section B: Writing

  • descriptive or narrative writing

How it’s assessed:-

  • written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 80 marks
  • 50% of GCSE

Questions:-

Reading (40 marks) (25%)– one single text

  • 1 short form question (1 x 4 marks)
  • 2 longer form questions (2 x 8 marks)
  • 1 extended question (1 x 20 marks)

Writing (40 marks) (25%)

  • 1 extended writing question (24 marks for content, 16 marks for technical accuracy)

Paper 2: Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives

What’s assessed:-

Section A: Reading

  • one non-fiction text and one literary non-fiction text

Section B: Writing

  • writing to present a viewpoint

How it’s assessed:-

  • written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 80 marks
  • 50% of GCSE

Questions:-

Reading (40 marks) (25%) – two linked texts

  • 1 short form question (1 x 4 marks)
  • 2 longer form questions (1 x 8, 1 x 12 marks)
  • 1 extended question (1 x 16 marks)

Writing (40 marks) (25%)

  • 1 extended writing question (24 marks for content, 16 marks for technical accuracy)

Non-examination Assessment: Spoken Language

What’s assessed:-

  • presenting
  • responding to questions and feedback
  • use of Standard English

How it’s assessed:-

  • teacher set throughout course
  • marked by teacher
  • separate endorsement (0% weighting of GCSE)

AQA GCSE English Literature 8702

Paper 1: Shakespeare and the 19th-century novel

What’s assessed:-

  • Shakespeare plays
  • The 19th-century novel (‘A Christmas Carol.’)

How it’s assessed:

  • written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 64 marks
  • 40% of GCSE

Questions:

Section A Shakespeare: students will answer one question on their play of choice. They will be required to write in detail about an extract from the play and then to write about the play as a whole.

Section B The 19th-century novel: students will answer one question on their novel of choice. They will be required to write in detail about an extract from the novel and then to write about the novel as a whole

Paper 2: Modern texts and poetry

What’s assessed:

  • Modern prose or drama texts (‘An Inspector Calls’)
  • The poetry anthology (Power and Conflict)
  • Unseen poetry

How it’s assessed:-

  • written exam: 2 hour 15 minutes
  • 96 marks
  • 60% of GCSE

Questions:-

Section A Modern texts: students will answer one essay question from a choice of two on their studied modern prose or drama text.

Section B Poetry: students will answer one comparative question on one named poem printed on the paper and one other poem from their chosen anthology cluster.

Section C Unseen poetry: Students will answer one question on one unseen poem and one question comparing this poem with a second unseen poem.

What resources could I buy or borrow that will help my child?

Reading

Our library has a wide range of books available for loan and a fully qualified librarian to help support your child in finding not only a book to interest them but one that will be appropriate for their needs.

Set texts for English Literature GCSE

We encourage all GCSE students to purchase their own copies of the set texts so that they can annotate these during study to aid later revision. The ISBN numbers for the editions we use in class are as follows:-

‘Macbeth’ – ISBN 978-0-19-832400-3

‘A Christmas Carol’ – ISBN 978-1-407143-64-4

‘An Inspector Calls’ – ISBN 978-0-435232-82-5

Alternatively, electronic copies of both ‘Macbeth’ and ‘A Christmas Carol’ are available to download for free; parents should please note however that mobile phones are not allowed in school and that any e-readers are brought in at the students own risk. Copies are, of course, provided for students to use in lessons and can be borrowed from the library for students to use for homework and revision.

Copies of the poems in the ‘Conflict and Power’ poetry collection are provided by the school for use in lessons but there are also annotated versions of each poem available to download from the school’s English revision site.

Revision guides for GCSE

The department does not recommend any particular style of revision guide as all students have different preferences. However, they must always be suitable for the AQA syllabus as question styles vary between exam boards. Occasionally, where a discounted offer has been obtained, the department will offer revision guides for sale. Parents will be contacted via email where this happens.

Dictionaries and thesauruses.

Having copies of these readily available at home helps to support students in not becoming over-reliant on spelling and grammar checking software, whilst also building their ability to recognise word patterns and root words which will support both vocabulary acquisition and reading ability.

What are the key websites or Apps that my child could use?

  • www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english
  • www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize
  • www.englishbiz.co.uk
  • PiXL Literature App
  • BBC GCSE Bitesize
  • YouTube Revision Videos (Mr Bruff / Mr Salles)

What can I do to encourage my child to take further interest in English?

  • Share reading with them – read the same book or just ask about theirs.
  • Watch the news together – many of the non-fiction texts we look at are focussed on national and international issues; writing tasks in exams ask students to respond to scenarios involving local council decisions.
  • Argue about the news – Oracy and debate are incredibly useful skills which can be practised at home. (Also, it’s fun to win a debate!)
  • Find online writing competitions for budding poets and storytellers.
  • Play word games – the better your vocabulary the better you achieve in all subjects.

What after school or other extracurricular activities are available in English and when are they?

Fully Booked

Our librarian, Mrs Corbet, runs the ‘Fully Booked’ reading club, an exciting way for pupils to discover, read, discuss and respond to a wide range of fiction. Students take part in both the ‘Staffordshire Young Teen Fiction Award’ and in the ‘Carnegie Award’ where young people review, and vote for their favourites, from a range of newly released fiction.

Theatre trips are organised at various points, as and when performances become available. Students are informed by class teachers and via the Daily Bulletin.