A warm welcome to the English Department!

Our aim is to inspire reflective readers, skilled writers, confident speakers and creative thinkers. We work as a team to plan schemes of learning that are stimulating and enjoyable, giving our pupils a wide range of writing challenges and a broad literary diet (ranging from Chaucer to Contemporary Poetry). Our lessons frequently incorporate thoughtful discussions of socio-historical, cultural and moral issues at stake at the heart of each literary text we study, with the aim of understanding how texts have shaped society and how society has shaped texts. Pupils can enhance their learning through the use of our ICT facilities, our purpose- built Drama studio and our school library. We have a clear focus on the development of students’ literacy skills as well as their higher order thinking skills, which will enable them to create insightful and well-crafted pieces of writing.

At Key Stage Four, students follow AQA GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature (two GCSEs). Please see the course specifications here:

English Language  https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-language-8700/specification-at-a-glance

English Literature  https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-literature-8702/specification-at-a-glance

NOTE: For the 2021 cohort only, the English Literature GCSE has been amended to reflect the impact of Coronavirus. Please see the exam specifications here:   https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-literature-8702/changes-for-2021

We follow the statutory guidance for the National Curriculum in England.

7Autobiography for different purposesPre-19th C NovelLanguage over TimeShakespearean monologuesMedia MediumsTwisted Tales
Exploring our identity19th – 20th Century
OverviewExploring concepts of the self: real, imagined, biased or desired.‘A Christmas Carol’. Exploring concepts of who we are and our capacity to change.Investigating how our language has evolved over time, with a thematic focus on changing concepts of heroes and villains.Introduction to Shakespearean society with a focus on philosophy, politics, rhetoric and patriarchy.Investigating different media texts for different audiences and purposes.Evaluating the effectiveness of unexpected endings and unforeseen changes across a range of texts.
8Finding my voiceDystopian fiction: Warnings for societyPoetryShakespeareGothic fiction20C Novel:
Fantasy/Comedy19th-21st CenturyJustice in Society
OverviewReading critically the views and opinions of leading figures and formulating own opinions to voice on the issues they raise.Understanding how writers convey the need for society to change through a range of seminal dystopian texts.Exploring the rich diversity of poetic forms to investigate how ideas and concepts are articulated through this genre of writing.Investigating the socio-historical and cultural influences behind Shakespeare’s plays, with a choice of ‘The Tempest’ or ‘Much Ado About Nothing’.Probing into the dark side of the mind and writers’ treatment of dealing with human kind’s deepest fears and anxieties.Close study of a text which deals with contentious issues of social change or justice, with a choice of ‘Animal Farm’ or ‘And Then There Were None’.
9Memoirs, diaries and lettersPre-19th C NovelStrong voicesShakespeareSeminal world literatureFire, Blood and Anguish
Outsiders of societyComedy/Tragedy19th – 20th Century
OverviewEnquiry into the lives of those who faced adversity in their lifetime, including issues such as homophobia, sexism and political pressure.Exploring the concept of those who are in conflict with society and/or those who are rejected from it as the ‘Other’. Choice of ‘The Time Machine’ or ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’.Studying a range of iconoclasts as inspiration for developing the use of rhetoric to become a voice for change in changing times.Consideration of the generic expectations of an Elizabethan play when dealing with themes of social disorder and chaos being restored to order. Choice of ‘Othello’, ‘As you Like it’, ‘Macbeth’ or ‘Twelfth Night’.Exploration and discussion of social and cultural issues and discriminations in 1930s America through a close reading of ‘Of Mice and Men’.Exploring the real-life writings of those who lived and suffered through war, including memoirs, diaries and poetry.

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