English Language and English Literature are two invaluable subjects. Not only do they prepare pupils for further education, they also give pupils many of the tools they need for adult life: the ability to read, write, explore numerous texts and explain how these are crafted to influence those that read it. Pupils are also exposed to a wide range of texts that help them understand our literary heritage: in poetry, prose and plays, and understand those of other cultures. We are working increasingly alongside other departments, such as History and RE, to ensure that our students are recognising that texts do not exist within a vacuum. This all contributes to them having a greater understanding of the world in which we live.
Key Stage 3
The Key Stage 3 curriculum in English has been crafted to maximise pupils’ progress and give them the skills they need for GCSE. The Curriculum Map is based on an alternate system, whereby every half term has either an English Language or English Literature focus.
In Year 7, pupils will study two novels, a collection of short play scripts, a non-fiction unit on advertising, an introduction to poetry and an introduction to the classics (including Shakespeare). The texts students study will be based on the teacher’s knowledge of the class and their strengths and interests.
In Year 8, pupils will study a contemporary novel and texts from the gothic era. They will also complete a non-fiction unit on newspapers, study poetry from other cultures, including war poetry, and they will study a Shakespearean Tragedy.
In Year 9, pupils will study a contemporary novel, a play from a selection including ‘All My Sons’ by Arthur Miller and ‘Journey’s End’ by R.C. Sherriff, a modern classic, such as Animal Farm, thematic poetry, similar to GCSE, and a Shakespearean Comedy. All of these are geared towards preparing them for GCSE.
Key Stage 4
During Key Stage 4, students will complete both the English Language and English Literature courses, both of which are now 100% terminal exam. The Curriculum Map is structured so that the students study both subjects simultaneously, so that their skills developed in each subject are refreshed regularly as they move towards their final exams.
In English Language, the students will be preparing for two papers, both of which have a reading element and a writing section. In terms of reading, we spend the course preparing students to analyse language, structure and compare unknown texts of two genres: fiction and non-fiction. Students will be familiarised with texts from across the ages belonging to both genres.
In English Literature, students will study a range of texts including Poetry (pre-taught and Unseen), Lord of the Flies by William Golding, Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle.