We believe that acquiring skills in English are essential in terms of enabling students to access all other areas of the curriculum. As such, we focus on developing and preparing students for not only their exams, but key skills that they will need in order to be successful in their future lives. As part of our literacy focus, each student reads during ‘Reading Wednesday’ and they are encouraged to develop extended writing skills in subjects across the curriculum.

The aims of the English programmes of study are to enable students to gain the necessary skills required for the Reading, Writing and Spoken Language components (of Language and Literature).

Key Stage 3
Different genres of Language and Literature are taught to the students. The range includes prose, poetry, scripted drama, Shakespeare, Pre-1914 Literature and media in year 7, 8 and 9. Students are taught the all-important skills of Speaking and Listening which will not only form a separate accreditation for their GCSE, but will also play an important role later on in their lives. Students are encouraged to work both independently as well as part of a group. KS3 culminates with the students applying all the skills learnt at KS3 in passing a GCSE in Functional Skills.

Students are assessed for a minimum of two reading / writing tasks based around the text and the content of the module that they are studying.

For Reading, students are expected to:

  • Understand, describe, select or retrieve information, events or ideas from texts and use quotation and reference to text
  • Deduce, infer or interpret information, events or ideas from the text
  • Identify and comment on the structure and organisation of texts, including grammatical and presentation features at text level
  • Comment on writers’ use of language including grammatical and literary features at word and sentence level
  • Identify and comment on writers’ purposes and viewpoints and the overall effect of the text on the reader
  • Relate texts to their social, cultural and historical traditions

For Writing, students are expected to:

  • Write interesting, imaginative and thoughtful texts
  • Produce texts appropriate to task, purpose, audience and text type
  • Organise ideas and whole texts effectively
  • Construct paragraphs and link paragraphs together effectively
  • Use a variety of sentence structures for clarity, purpose and effect
  • Write using a range of correct punctuation
  • Use appropriate and effective vocabulary
  • Use correct spelling

Key Stage 4
English is a compulsory subject at GCSE. Not only do the students learn about how to use language but they also learn to analyse how others use it. The development of skills in this subject will benefit all your other GCSEs. The English Faculty offers two qualifications. All students are entered for both English and English Literature.

GCSE English Language

Paper 1 : Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing
Time: 1hr 45 min (50% of the GCSE)
Section A: Reading (one Literature Fiction Text) (40 marks)
Section B: Writing (descriptive or narrative based on a visual stimulus)(40 marks)

Paper2: Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives
Time: 1hr 45 min (50% of the GCSE)
Section A: Reading (one non-fiction text and one literary non-fiction text (40 marks)
Section B: Writing (writing to argue/persuade/presenting a viewpoint) (40 marks)

GCSE English Literature
Students study for the AQA GCSE in English Literature.

Paper 1: Shakespeare and 19th Century Novel
Time: 1hr 45 min (40% of the GCSE)
Students will study a Shakespeare play and a 19th Century Novel. The course will enable students to understand the context of the texts, analyse extracts from the texts for the writers’ use of Language and structure. The students will then link the extracts to the rest of the texts.

Paper 2: Modern texts and poetry
Time: 2hr 15 min (60% of the GCSE)
Section A: Students will study either a Modern Drama or a Modern Novel and will learn the skills of evaluating and analysing the themes, characters, symbolism, writers’ use of language and structure.
Section B: Poetry (all 15 poems from either Love and Relationship OR Power and Conflict)
Students will belearn the skills to analyse, interpret and compare the named poem printed on the paper and 1 other poem from the same cluster.
Section C: Unseen poetry(2 unseen poems). Students will apply the skills learnt in analysing Poetry for meaning to interpret Unseen Poetry.

1 question (analysis of one unseen poem).Analysis of poet’s feelings in one poem.
1 comparative question comparing the 2 unseen poems (8 marks)

Key Stage 5

AS English Literature.
This is a successful subject at ‘A Level’ that takes students from GCSE studies and equips them for university study in this or other subjects. For students with an interest in reading and literature who want to improve their ability to analyse texts and think critically, our A level in English literature is a great choice. Using Pre-Twentieth Century literature as well as some more modern works, the course examines the cultural and social contexts in which different books were written and encourages the effective use of textual evidence to form cohesive and convincing answers to essay questions.

AS is a great course for those wishing to pursue careers in a wide range of professions, including journalism, business, media, teaching, the law and writing.

Course components:
AS English literature Exam:

  • Component 1: Shakespeare and Pre-1900 Poetry
  • Component 2: Post-1900 Prose and Post-1900 Drama

A2 English Literature
This second year is both exciting and demanding. Students develop their evaluative skills and improve their ability to compare different texts. Students are introduced to more challenging texts and are expected to research topics which are of interest to them on the course. A Level English Literature is a highly regarded subject and complements a range of other subjects, including History, Philosophy and Ethics, Media and Psychology as well as the sciences.

  • Component 1: Drama and pre-1900 Poetry+ Shakespeare
  • Component 2: Comparative and Contextual Study
  • Component 3: Coursework: 1 Close Reading assignment and 1 Linked Text assignment