Studying English opens the door to success across the whole curriculum, helping students to gain confidence in both their oral and written communication.
The department consists of a dynamic and highly knowledgeable group of teachers who are passionate about their subject. Teaching is rigorous, challenging as well as supportive of those whose find English difficult.
Our aim is to promote a real enthusiasm for English study and to develop skills and expertise in the three subject areas of Speaking and Listening, Reading and Writing.
Creativity is at the heart of the curriculum and students will learn to speak and write in a range of forms and registers, developing increasing levels of sophistication and independence as they progress through the school.
At Key Stage 3, students study a range of topics including novels, short stories, drama, non-fiction and media texts as well as undertaking some independent reading in designated library lessons. Discussion, debate and student presentations will form a regular part of lessons. Students are encouraged to enter creative writing competitions, both in-school and national competitions.
There are opportunities to take part in a range of lively activities: for example, the Year 7 Spelling Challenge, the National Poetry Day competition, the Carnegie Book shadowing scheme, BBC News Report Day and the Year 9 Public Speaking competition.
At Key Stage 4, we follow the OCR English, English Language and English Literature specifications. Almost all students take GCSE English Language and English Literature; a small group take the English specification, which includes the study of Language and Literature in one integrated course.
The GCSE course covers Speaking and Listening, Reading, Writing and a Spoken Language unit. Students will study a range of literary texts, both contemporary and from the literary heritage.
At Key Stage 5, A-Level English Literature is an extremely popular subject with thirteen classes studying the OCR specification. This is a stimulating and demanding course which is highly valued by universities and involves engaging with challenging texts and ideas. Students study a range of texts from all three genres (prose, poetry and drama) from 1300 to the present day.
They are examined through a combination of coursework and examinations. We aim to enable students to develop incisive thinking skills, sophisticated critical acumen as well as the ability to make independent judgements. There are opportunities to join theatre trips and to attend lectures by experts in the field of literary study.
Overall, the English Department is committed to teaching challenging and stimulating lessons to students of all abilities. We value creativity and students will be encouraged to develop the skills to become creative thinkers, speakers and writers. Through lessons that combine the best of traditional and innovative teaching methods, we hope to develop students’ curiosity and instil a real zest for learning.
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