Students have the ability to widen and explore their understanding of English as a subject beyond KS2. We work with partner primaries to ensure this is as seamless as possible. Students get the opportunity to study an eclectic mix of different text types from fictional novels to biographies, always taking into account the individual needs of our students. They will develop their analytical and evaluative skills, as well as their writing skills across the English curriculum. For our lower ability classes we have a separate curriculum: the Ruth Miskin Fresh Start programme, to enable students to catch up to their peers as quickly as possible. For the more gifted in the subject area we set independent learning projects, and give the opportunity to study more difficult and demanding texts. The main aim of the KS3 English curriculum is to ensure that all students not only develop skills and enjoy learning these, but to get students as ready as possible for the demands of the KS4 curriculum.
Across KS3 we run a reading programme called Accelerated Reader. Students are expected to read a book targeted at their reading level for the first 15 minutes of each English lesson. Students take quizzes on these books, which allows teachers to monitor student progress even more closely. We have found this programme to be very successful not only in improving students ability in English, but it has created a culture and love of reading across the key stage.
In March, 330 students attended a performance of the musical ‘Blood Brothers’ to help them prepare for their English Literature exam.
English Awards: ‘Mad Hatter’s Tea Party’ “Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” ― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
From summer 2017, GCSE English Language and English Literature will be assessed entirely by examination. The content and level of challenge has been considerably increased from the demands of previous GCSEs. The qualification is untiered, which means that all students will sit the same papers, regardless of ability.
For this qualification students will study a collection of poems from the anthology as well as a further selection of poetry in preparation for an unseen paper, Shakespeare’s ‘The Merchant of Venice’, ‘A Christmas Carol’ and ‘Blood Brothers’. Revision materials will be shared with students and available electronically. The York Notes and CPG guides are available on Amazon or can be ordered at WHSmiths.
For Component 1 students must demonstrate the ability to read and understand one prose extract and complete one creative writing task. For Component 2, students will respond to a series of questions on two non-fiction texts one from the 19th century and one from the 21st century for and complete two transactional writing tasks writing in a range of styles including letters, articles, speeches and reviews.