English

English

English

Key Stage 3
Yr7 Assessment
Yr8 Assessment
Key Stage 4
Yr11 Assessment
Key Stage 5

Key Stage 3

Year 7
During the course of Year Seven, all pupils follow a curriculum which promotes development in the key subject strands of reading, writing, speaking and listening. Lessons incorporate a range of individual, paired and group activities to support independent and collaborative learning.

The year is divided into the following units:

  • Baseline testing.
  • London – pupils study a range of fiction and non-fiction texts which are all linked in some way to London. They also complete some creative writing tasks based on the same theme.
  • Class novel – this is currently Neil Gaiman’s excellent novel The Graveyard Book.
  • Introduction to Shakespeare.
  • Year Seven exam preparation.

In addition to these core units, all pupils attend lessons in the Learning Resource Centre once every three weeks.  Learning Resource Centre lessons focus on active research skills and use of a range of research materials.

All pupils in Year Seven participate in the Accelerated Reader scheme.  This is an excellent programme, which enables pupils to raise their reading age and promotes enjoyment of reading.

Year 8
All pupils continue to follow a curriculum which promotes development in the key subject strands of reading, writing, speaking and listening.  Lessons still incorporate a range of individual, paired and group activities to support independent and collaborative learning.

All pupils in Year Eight continue to participate in the Accelerated Reader scheme.

The year is divided into the following units:

  • Narrative writing.
  • The Gothic Genre.
  • Class novel – this is currently a beautifully illustrated unabridged version of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.
  • Shakespeare Themes – a study of key extracts from a range of plays.
  • Travel writing.
  • Year Eight exam preparation.

In addition all pupils attend lessons in the LRC once every four weeks.  LRC lessons focus on active research skills and use of a range of research materials.

A small number of pupils also follow an additional programme of study, which focuses closely on the development of core literacy skills.

Yr8 Assessment

English – Yr8 – Learner Descriptors:

English – Yr8 – Learner Descriptors

Key Stage 4

GCSE (Exam Board: AQA)

Year 9

Year Nine marks the start of our GCSE standard work, using the GCSE English Language and Literature assessment objectives and styles of assessment.  The pupils study a range of texts and develop the skills they learned in Key Stage Three.

The year is divided into the following units:

  • Class novel – John Steinbeck’s world-class novel Of Mice and Men.
  • ‘The Big Write’, which prepares pupils for the rigours of the GCSE English Language writing components.
  • ‘The Big Read’, which focuses on the types of extracts from the 19th-21st centuries the pupils will use for GCSE.
  • Shakespeare – all pupils study Romeo and Juliet.
  • Sherlock Holmes study – pupils explore three key short stories and then complete an exciting cross-curricular activity that enables them to experiment with modern methods of detection in order to solve the ‘attempted murder’ of a member of staff.
  • Year Nine exam preparation.

 

Years 10 and 11

English Language (AQA exam board)

Unit 1: explorations in creative reading and writing (50%)

Examination, 1hr 45 mins

Students read one literary fiction text from either the 20th or 21st century and respond to questions testing:

  • Q1 – the ability to retrieve specific information from the text.
  • Q2 – the ability to analyse the writer’s use of language features.
  • Q3 – the ability to analyse the writer’s use of structural features.
  • Q4 – the ability to respond at length to an opinion-based statement about the text, creating an argument which leads to a conclusion about how fat the student agrees with the given statement.

Students are tested on their writing skills:

  • One descriptive or narrative writing task is completed from a choice of two.

 

Unit 2: writers’ viewpoints and perspectives (50%)

Examination, 1 hr 45 mins

Students read two non-fiction texts (one literary); one will be from the 19th century and the other from the 20th or 21st century (whichever century is NOT assessed in Unit 1 that year).  Students will then respond to questions testing:

  • Q1 – the ability to select correct statements from a list, demonstrating understanding of the text‘s key points.
  • Q2 – the ability to summarise information.
  • Q3 – The ability to analyse the writer’s use of language.
  • Q4 – the ability to compare the viewpoints and perspectives presented by the writers of both texts.

Students are tested on their writing skills:

  • One task (no choice), in which the students are asked to write using a viewpoint or perspective. This will often be a response to a statement which requires students to write to argue, persuade, advise, instruct, inform or explain.

Spoken Language Endorsement: students will prepare and deliver one formal presentation which is internally assessed and subject to external moderation.

 

English Literature (AQA exam board)

Unit 1: Shakespeare and the 19th-century novel (40%)

Examination, 1hr 45mins.

Closed book exam.

Section A

  • Students study either The Merchant of Venice or Macbeth.
  • Students respond to an extract on a given character or theme, then extend their response to comment on how this theme/character is developed throughout the play.

Section B

  • Students study either Great Expectations or The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
  • Students respond to an extract on a given character or theme, then extend their response to comment on how this theme/character is developed throughout the novel.

 

Unit 2: modern texts and poetry (60%)

Examination, 2hrs 15mins.

Closed book exam.

Section A

  • Students study An Inspector Calls.
  • In the exam, students respond to one of two questions, usually based on a character or theme.

Section B

  • Students study 15 poems. In the exam, students respond to one task from a choice of two, comparing a named poem from the selection studied with a second poem that they choose themselves.
  • The named poem is printed on the exam paper.

Section C

  • Students read and respond to one ‘unseen’ poem.
  • Students then compare this poem with a second ‘unseen’ poem.

**We would strongly advise that students have their own copies of texts to write in and revise from**

 

Yr11 Assessment

Please click the link below to access the English Language Personal Learner Checklist:

Personal Learner Checklist – English Lang

 

Please click the link below to access the English Literature Personal Learner Checklist:

Personal Learner Checklist – English Literature

 

 

Key Stage 5

AS and A2 (Exam Board: AQA – English Language / Edexcel – English Literature)

All students complete the AS qualification at the end of Year Twelve, then the full A Level at the end of Year Thirteen.

English Language

AS Level

Unit 1: Language and the Individual

Students study how language choices reflect the identity of the user and how language use varies in context.

 

Unit 2: Language Varieties

Students explore language in its wider social and geographical contexts, including varieties of English within the British Isles.

This unit also encompasses social attitudes towards language, which are assessed through a directed writing task.

 

A Level

Unit 1: Language, the Individual and Society

Students build on the key skills developed on the AS course by looking at historical texts alongside contemporary use of language.  In addition students study the development of children’s spoken and written language skills.

 

Unit 2: Language Diversity and Change

Students focus on the development of the English language and how it has changed over time.

This unit encompasses texts from 1600 onwards, as well as global, national and regional varieties.

It also includes the study of changing attitudes to language over time, which is again assessed through a directed writing task.

 

Unit 3: Language in Action

This unit consists of an independent language investigation into an area of students’ own interest alongside a piece of original writing and accompanying commentary.

The course begins with an introductory sequence of lessons exploring and researching how texts convey meanings and representations. Students are asked to make presentations in pairs to develop their understanding so that they can begin to ask a wide range of questions about texts and the techniques used within them. From this point, teachers and students begin to discuss and analyse texts and techniques together. Each class is taught by two teachers to ensure a variety of approaches and interpretations.

Students need to be prepared to do a lot of reading. As well as the set texts students need to be prepared to read other texts and to explore linguistic theories that have been put forward. Students are also expected to develop their ideas through discussions in class and presentations. In turn, students are asked to prepare, plan and hand in assessed pieces regularly. Learning styles are varied and include group discussion and use of computers, alongside use of DVDs and seminar style lessons.

A range of writing skills will be used and students are guided as to how to interrogate a question and how to develop a well-constructed and textually supported response. Students are also encouraged to increase their understanding through their own creative writing.

Students receive a lot of individual tuition in relation to coursework but also in terms of other problems which may arise. Teachers are friendly and approachable. The course is interesting and varied, allowing students and staff alike to develop their ideas.

 

Units for AS Level:

Unit 1: Language and the Individual:

Examination: (50% of AS)

 

Unit 2: Language Varieties

Examination: (50% of AS)

 

Units for A Level:

Unit 1: Language, the Individual and Society

Examination: (40% of A level)

 

Unit 2: Language Diversity and Change

Examination: (40% of A level)

 

Unit 3: Language in Action

Non-exam assessment: (20% of A level)

 

English Literature

AS Level

Contemporary poetry – students study a range of diverse poems written in the year 2000 and beyond.

Students also study one drama text (A Streetcar Named Desire) and two prose texts (Frankenstein and Never Let Me Go).

 

A Level

Students study one Shakespeare play, Twelfth Night, and one collection from the Shakespeare Critical Anthology.  In addition, students develop their understanding of poetry by studying a collection of metaphysical poems.  These texts stretch the students and encourage them to develop their critical thinking skills.

Two texts are studied for the coursework component, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit and a core second text, which could be either Jane Eyre or Wise Children.  Students are encouraged to select a more challenging option, which involves studying a different second text from a short list.

Lessons are seminar style, meaning that all students are encouraged to participate in discussion and analysis of the set texts. Students may give short presentations in some lessons, while others will be based entirely around whole-class discussion. In addition to this, students will complete research on context and will read relevant critical texts.

Students need to be prepared to do a lot of reading. They should aim to read other texts by the set authors, and critical works on the set texts. Students are expected to prepare, plan and hand in essays regularly, so the ability to write in timed conditions is essential for this course. As the majority of the course is assessed by examination, the development of essay writing skills is a very important component of this A level.

Whenever possible, study of the texts is supported by trips to see relevant plays. In recent years, students have also been involved in book clubs in school, which have allowed them to read widely for pleasure, beyond the requirements of their A level course.

Students receive a lot of individual tuition in relation to coursework but can also arrange for extra help at any time, as appropriate. Staff encourage students to discuss any aspects of the course that they find challenging. Subject mentors are always available to offer extra help and have created student support booklets for their subjects.

Components  for AS Level:

Component 1 (60% of total AS)

Poetry.

One drama text.

Assessed by open book exam.

 

Component 2 (40% of AS)

Two prose texts on a chosen theme.

Assessed by open book exam.

 

Components for A level:

Component 1 (30% of total A level)

Two drama texts, including one Shakespeare.

A collection of critical essays.

Assessed by open book exam.

 

Component 2 (20% of total A level)

Two prose texts on a chosen theme.

Assessed by open book exam.

 

Component 3 (30% of total A level)

A collection of poetry.

Assessed by open book exam; includes an unseen poem.

 

Component 4 (20% of total A level)

Two linked texts.

Assessed by an extended coursework essay.