Much of our work originates in and leads to oral activities so that students develop their listening skills and their ability to communicate confidently and clearly in a range of individual and collaborative tasks; students are taught to use Standard English from Year 7.
We aim to nurture students’ personal development and linguistic competence through writing in a variety of forms for a range of purposes and audiences, and to increase their awareness of the writing process itself – from planning to proofreading and correction. A strong emphasis is placed upon linguistic and structural text conventions and upon the accuracy and presentation of written work. The rigour and diversity of the work in these early years provides a solid foundation for examination in English Language and English Literature in Key Stage 4. Students can be helped to develop emotionally and intellectually through reading, and we encourage them to establish, from Year 7, a habit of regular and independent reading for pleasure. All students in Year 7 and Year 8 follow the Accelerated Reader Programme. We teach our students how to understand and evaluate the author’s craft and how to make an informed personal response to what they read. We aim to develop students’ ability to read, enjoy and analyse a wide range of texts: contemporary and classic literary texts from a variety of cultures and traditions, non-literary texts and moving image texts. Students are taught how to read for different purposes and to understand the way meanings are made. Equal Opportunities issues are addressed through reading, and we aim to encourage empathy so that each student approaches issues of race, culture, gender, ability and disability with tolerance and insight.
What does this course involve at Key Stage 3?
Students will develop a range of reading, writing and speaking skills as they study each of the topics. Studying English at KS3 will help students to read and appreciate a variety of fiction and nonfiction texts. Students will also develop writing skills
What do you need to be successful in this course?
To be successful in this course, students will: have an understanding of the need to write with correct spelling, punctuation and grammar; be able to infer and deduce meanings across a range of texts; write according to type, audience and purpose across a range of contexts; have belief in their own imagination.
Module 1: Novelist’s Voice: What does narrative voice look like across a text? What does studying a novel look like at secondary school? What is expected of me in English that wasn’t expected in literacy last year? What is characterisation? What is setting? How can language help to convey an author’s message? What are language features? What is comparison? How can we compare themes across texts. What is writer’s craft? Why is this important in fiction texts?
Module 2 – Novel study including Poet’s voice: (Other cultures poetry including identity/ family) What is theme? How is it created/established in the text?Can different ideas be distinguished? Can we support a point of view by referring to evidence in the text? Can this be developed/sustained? Can we recognise the possibility of and understand different responses to a text? How does the social, historical and cultural context inform our understanding? Can we demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the text and the context in which it was written?Are we able to identify and discuss similarities and differences between two texts or versions of the same text, with explanation?
Module 3- Film Study: How do films tell stories differently than text? What different elements make up film storytelling?How do time and setting impact on how a story is told? How does knowledge of film techniques enable us to better comprehend a film and its purpose? What do we understand about other cultures through this film? How is the film effective in its storytelling? Why are foreign films not widely watched in our culture? How are other cultures portrayed in UK/American films? What knowledge do we have of other cultures based on films? Are they accurate? Are they positive/negative? Do they promote or deter stereotypes?
Module 4- Voices from History / Voices from Past and Present: What is a narrative viewpoint? How does narrative viewpoint contribute to a text? What are language features? How can language features associated with one text type be used creatively in another? What is inference and how can it be used to recognise deeper meanings in a text? What is the difference between poet and narrator? What is the difference between poet and narrator? How might this affect our writing? What is language? How has it changed over time? How does spoken language differ from written language? Who are the great literary figures of the past? How do they impact our lives today?
Module 5- Dramatic Voice: What is dramatic voice? How does it differ to novelist’s voice? What are the conventions of a play? How does the writer of a play engage the audience? What is social/historical context? What impact does this have on the writer’s ideas/attitudes and craft?
Module 6 -Global Voices (Travel writing, other cultures, poetry and folk tales):What is first person? How is first person used in travel writing? What is audience and purpose? How can language be modified to suit audience and purpose in a non-fiction text? What is writer’s craft? How does this differ between fiction and nonfiction writing?
Module 1 Novel Study- Words of War: What is context? How does context impact on a writer’s thoughts and attitudes? What language features are common in novels about war? How do these features impact on the audience? What vocabulary is associated with and reflective of war? How is this vocabulary used in a fictional context? How can we use this vocabulary to describe what we have read?
Module 2- Words of War- (Poetry and Descriptive Writing): What is structure? How does structure impact on the way a poem is read? What is comparison? How are texts linked by theme? What is tone, mood and atmosphere? What is imagery? How these be created visually and through words?
Module 3 – Words of Mystery/the Gothic(Gothic Film Study): How is the context of Victorian London important to understand the setting of Sherlock Holmes? What is the effect on the audience? What is mise-en-scene and how is it used in Sherlock Holmes? Why it is important for novels/films to have contrasting characters and discuss the effect on the audience? What is an archetype? What are the different examples of archetypes used in movies? What is the impact these archetypes have on an audience? What are the main elements of a mystery story? How is tension and suspense created in a mystery film? What is magic and mysticism? Does it influence our interest in particular novels and films?
Module 4- Words of the Bard (Play Study) :How does Shakespeare present and develop character in the play you have chosen? How does Shakespeare use imagery and language to create meaning? How does Shakespeare use setting in the play you have chosen?
Module 5- Words to Persuade (Non-Fiction Unit – Reading and Transactional Writing): What are the differences between fiction and nonfiction? How is meaning and information conveyed in the text? What is the relationship between the writer’s purpose and the structure of the text? What is persuasion? What devices are used to persuade? How is presentation used in persuasive texts? How do we construct argument writing?
Module 6- Words to Justify (Point of View and Writing to Argue): What is the relationship between texts and the contexts in which they were written? How can implicit and explicit information and ideas be identified and interpreted? How do writers use language to achieve effects and influence readers? How can a point of view be created and sustained? How do we justify our views? (Relate to studied texts)
Years 9, 10 and 11
The “new” GCSE came into place in September 2015. Below is an outline of the requirements for both language and literature.
GCSE Language: You will read and respond to a range of articles and other texts, looking at both modern day and historically significant writers. You will also have the opportunity to write in a variety of styles. There will also be an assessment of your speaking and listening, which will appear as a grade (pass, merit or distinction) separate to that of your overall language result.
GCSE English Language
- Critical reading and comprehension: identifying and interpreting themes, ideas and information in a range of literature and other high-quality writing; reading in different ways for different purposes, and comparing and evaluating the usefulness, relevance and presentation of content for these purposes; drawing inferences and justifying these with evidence; supporting a point of view by referring to evidence within the text; identifying bias and misuse of evidence including distinguishing between statements that are supported by evidence and those that are not; reflecting critically and evaluatively on text, using the context of the text and drawing on knowledge and skills gained from wider reading; recognising the possibility of different responses to a text
- Summary and synthesis: identifying the main theme or themes; summarising ideas and information from a single text; synthesising from more than one text
- Evaluation of a writer’s choice of vocabulary, form, grammatical and structural features: explaining and illustrating how vocabulary and grammar contribute to effectiveness and impact, using linguistic and literary terminology accurately to do so and paying attention to detail; analysing and evaluating how form and structure contribute to the effectiveness and impact of a text
- Comparing texts: comparing two or more texts critically with respect to the above.
- Producing clear and coherent text: writing effectively for different purposes and audiences: to describe, narrate, explain, instruct, give and respond to information, and argue; selecting vocabulary, grammar, form, and structural and organisational features judiciously to reflect audience, purpose and context; using language imaginatively and creatively; using information provided by others to write (in different forms); maintaining a consistent point of view; maintaining coherence and consistency across a text
- Writing for impact: selecting, organising and emphasising facts, ideas and key points; citing evidence and quotation effectively and pertinently to support views; creating emotional impact; using language creatively, imaginatively and persuasively, including rhetorical devices (such as rhetorical questions, antithesis, parenthesis).
- Present information and ideas: selecting and organising information and ideas effectively and persuasively for prepared spoken presentations; planning effectively for different purposes and audiences; making presentations and speeches
- Respond to spoken language: listening to and responding appropriately to any questions and feedback
- Spoken Standard English: expressing ideas using Standard English whenever and wherever appropriate.
Years 9, 10 and 11
GCSE English Literature
Reading comprehension and reading critically
- literal and inferential comprehension: understanding a word, phrase or sentence in context; exploring aspects of plot, characterisation, events and settings; distinguishing between what is stated explicitly and what is implied; explaining motivation, sequence of events, and the relationship between actions or events
- critical reading: identifying the theme and distinguishing between themes; supporting a point of view by referring to evidence in the text; recognising the possibility of and evaluating different responses to a text; using understanding of writers’ social, historical and cultural contexts to inform evaluation; making an informed personal response that derives from analysis and evaluation of the text
- evaluation of a writer’s choice of vocabulary, grammatical and structural features: analysing and evaluating how language (including figurative language), structure, form and presentation contribute to quality and impact; using linguistic and literary terminology for such evaluation (such as, but not restricted to, phrase, metaphor, meter, irony and persona, synecdoche, pathetic fallacy)
- comparing texts: comparing and contrasting texts studied, referring where relevant to theme, characterisation, context (where known), style and literary quality; comparing two texts critically with respect to the above.
- producing clear and coherent text: writing effectively about literature for a range of purposes such as: to describe, explain, summarise, argue, analyse and evaluate; discussing and maintaining a point of view; selecting and emphasising key points; using relevant quotation and using detailed textual references
- accurate Standard English: accurate spelling, punctuation and grammar. In addition, learners are required to study the following content:
- at least one play by Shakespeare
- at least one 19th century novel
- a selection of poetry since 1789, including representative Romantic poetry
- fiction or drama from the British Isles from 1914 onwards.
How you will be assessed?
- GCSE Language: 100% Examination
- Speaking and Listening Assessment: Teacher Assessed (awarded Pass, Merit or Distinction)
- GCSE Literature: 100% Examination
Year 12 English Literature
Year 12: Eduqas English Literature AS
This specification requires you to show knowledge and understanding of the significance of:
- the ways in which writers use and adapt language, form and structure in texts
- the interpretation of texts by different readers, including over time
- how texts relate to one another and to literary traditions, movements and genres
- the cultural and contextual influences on readers and writers.
This course requires you to complete two exams, studying four texts. Each text will account for one exam question. The first exam covers the two novels, and the second covers poetry and drama. 2 exams, 50% each:
Paper 1 – Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre and Jean Rhys’ Wide Sargasso Sea
Paper 2 –The Poetry of Ted Hughes and Oscar Wilde’s Lady Windermere’s
Year 13 English Literature
Year 13: Eduqas English Literature A- Level
A continuation of AS Level, developing the skills acquired in the first year.
This course will encourage you to develop your interest in and enjoyment of literature and literary studies as you:
- read widely and independently both set texts and others that you have selected for yourself
- engage critically and creatively with a substantial body of texts and ways of responding to them
- develop and effectively apply your knowledge of literary analysis and evaluation
- explore the contexts of the texts you are reading and others’ interpretations of them
- undertake independent and sustained studies to deepen your appreciation and understanding of English literature, including its changing traditions.
This course is based on a conviction that the study of literature should encourage enjoyment of literary studies based on an informed personal response to a range of texts. It will provide you with an introduction to the discipline of advanced literary studies and presents opportunities for reading widely and for making creative and informed responses to each of the major literary genres of poetry, prose and drama.
This course offers three components in discrete genres of study: poetry, drama and prose to allow you to focus on the conventions and traditions of each genre in turn. A further component offers unseen prose and poetry to allow you to focus separately on applying the skills of literary analysis acquired during the course as a whole.
This course requires you to complete 3 exams and one extended essay as coursework.
Examination 1: Poetry (2 hours, 30% of qualification)
- Christina Rossetti: Selected Poems (Penguin Classics)
- Ted Hughes: Poems selected by Simon Armitage (Faber) (Prescribed section: all poems up to and including ‘Rain’ on page 68)
- & Sylvia Plath: Poems selected by Ted Hughes (Faber)
Examination 2: Drama (2 hours, 30% of qualification)
- Hamlet, by William Shakespeare
- Lady Windermere’s Fan, by Oscar Wilde (New Mermaids)
- & Betrayal, by Harold Pinter (Faber)
Examination 3: Unseen Texts (2 hours, 20% of qualification)
This section requires you to respond to one question from a choice of two. Each question will offer an unseen prose passage for analysis.
- Question 1 will take a prose passage from the period 1880-1910.
- Question 2 will take a prose passage from the period 1918-1939.
Component 4: Coursework
Non-exam assessment: 2500-3500 word assignment, 20% of qualification
This component requires you to submit a 2500-3500 word assignment based on the reading of two prose texts by different authors, one published pre-2000 and one published post-2000. Both texts must be submitted for approval by the end of September.
Year 12: WJEC Film Studies AS
The aims of AS are:
- To develop your interest, appreciation, and knowledge of film
- To show how film constructs meaning, provokes response, and raises issues of social, cultural, political, and ethical significance
- To show the relationship between a film’s producers and its audiences, with particular reference to Hollywood and British film
- To provide you with a foundation in the analysis of film, together with subject specialist language
- To introduce you to creative and production skills.
Students are assessed on a combination of coursework and an exam.
Exam: (60% of AS, 30% of A-Level)
Section A: Producers and Audiences (40 marks)
Section B: British Film Topics (40 marks) – Horror Genre
Section C: US Cinema Comparative Study (40 marks)
Coursework: (40% of AS, 20% of A-Level)
(a) An analysis of a film extract: 500 words (30 marks)
(b) Creative Project: aims & context, film sequence or short film and reflective analysis (50 marks)
The aims of A Level are to take forward the approaches introduced at AS level, specifically through providing students with more sophisticated analytical and critical approaches for understanding how films construct meaning and provoke diverse responses; and through enabling students to study a wider range of films, thereby developing an appreciation of aspects of the history of film and its cultural diversity. We also aim to develop students’ research skills as well as their creative and production skills through more advanced film projects and allow them to synthesise learning gained throughout the course.
Year 13: WJEC Film Studies A-Level
Students are assessed on a combination of coursework and exam, building on their grades from AS.
Exam: 30% of total A-Level
Section A: World Cinema- Special Study on Empowering Women (35 marks)
Section B: Popular Film and the Emotional Response (35 marks)
Section C: Fight Club (30 marks)
Coursework: 20% of total A-Level
- a) A small-scale research project, consisting of annotated bibliography and a presentation script (40 marks)
- b) A creative project, consisting of a screenplay and a reflective piece (60 marks)