Every member of the English Department strives to create a learning environment which challenges and supports our pupils so that they achieve their full potential in the study of English and English Literature.

We believe that every pupil is entitled to have access to the full curriculum in English and that a partnership between staff, pupils and parents is the best way to achieve this.

Drama is taught through KS3 English and is an important part of our balanced and broad curriculum provision. Pupils discuss and use drama techniques to explore character and situations in the plays, poetry and novels studied throughout KS3. They devise and present improvised role plays and act out scenes from a range of dramatists exploring ideas and situations in order to develop greater depth of response and understanding.

​Pupils are assessed rigorously throughout the year and are encouraged to take responsibility for their learning and development through the use of clear different assessment focuses. These are used to help pupils in the transition between KS2 and KS3 and then KS3 & KS4.

Our KS3 English curriculum is fully compliant with the National Curriculum (2014) including the study of two Shakespeare plays, seminal world literature, pre-1914 and contemporary prose, poetry and dramatic fiction. The aims of the curriculum in English are to develop the ability of the pupil to:-

  • communicate accurately, appropriately and effectively in speech and writing,
  • understand and respond imaginatively to what they hear, read and experience in a variety of media,
  • enjoy and appreciate the reading of a wide variety of literature and develop a love of reading,
  • acquire wide vocabulary, taking enjoyment in the richness of the English language,
  • employ a sense of critical awareness,
  • to be able to work confidently in an atmosphere of mutual respect and tolerance,
  • have equal access to all aspects of English,
  • be able to use Standard English competently when the need arises,
  • be confident readers, writers and communicators, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences.

English at KS3

Pupils study a wide variety of texts. Each year, the KS3 curriculum ensures coverage of:

  • Reading skills – through literary study of a range of whole novels and poetry and response to non-fiction and media texts
  • Writing skills – through personal response to reading, and writing for a range of text types, audiences, and purposes.
  • Knowledge about language – through study of a Shakespeare play as a text for dramatic performance
  • Speaking and listening skills – developing their competence through making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate,
  • Drama skills – improvising, rehearsing and performing play scripts and poetry in order to generate language and discuss language use and meaning, using role, intonation, tone, volume, mood, silence, stillness and action to add impact.

English at KS4

All pupils in KS4 study towards GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature. These are both assessed at the end of Year 11 through external examination. (Exam board: AQA).

In Year 9, pupils begin by looking at seminal pieces of fiction such as ‘Of Mice and Men’, alongside gothic fiction and non-fiction texts. Pupils study a range of texts including: a pre-1914 novel, a Shakespeare text, a modern text, a selection of poetry both contemporary and pre-1914 as well as developing analytical and evaluative skills. Pupils develop their writing skills to enable them to write in a range of contexts using appropriate language and structure.

2-Year KS4

TermYr 10Yr 11
Autumn19th Century Novel study
Descriptive and narrative writing
​Shakespeare Study
Novel Study
SpringModern text
Non-fiction texts
Writing to Express a Viewpoint
​English Language examination skills
English Literature examination skills​
Reading and Writing skills
Revision and examination skills​

3-Year KS4

TermYr 9Yr 10Yr 11
AutumnSeminal World Literature
Gothic Fiction
​19th Century Novel
Reading and writing skills
Fiction and Non- Fiction Texts
Shakespeare Study
19th Century Novel
Writing Skills
​Modern text
Writing skills
Modern Text
SummerShakespeare Study
Novel study: reading and writing skills.
Fiction and Non- Fiction Texts
​Revision and examination skills

Further Education

It is vital for pupils to achieve a good grade in English in order for them to access level 3 courses. GCSE English Language and English Literature are necessary in order to study these subjects at A level as well as providing a foundation for many other subjects.

Employers say that one of the most valuable things they look for in the people who work for them is good communication skills and this means writing and presentation as well as talking. English provides pupils with these necessary skills.

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