In Year 7 the English Curriculum seeks to promote the fun and enjoyment of English. We look to engage students with interesting and exciting activities and learning environments that will stimulate their imaginations and foster a love of literature that will hopefully last a lifetime.
We teach students the skills for reading, writing and speaking and listening. Students are placed in an appropriate group based on KS2 levels and our own rigorous testing along with reading and spelling age assessment which takes place termly. Year 7s begin by exploring a modern novel. This encourages them to raise their confidence in reading aloud, and to explore the way that writers use language. We then move on to Poetry; a non-fiction unit based on “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” , a modern play, Fiction writing, and we conclude with Shakespeare and our Summer Shakespeare project.
Other reading initiatives this term include a fortnightly trip to the library, which we consider the heart of the school, to explore new texts and take out loans as well as engage with our fantastic Librarian, Alex. We also run the “Bookopoly” competition, where students compete to read from a variety of genres and are entered into a competition to win our star prize.
Students continue to work in two broad ability bands and are set within these bands. During the year students will be assessed and challenged with a wide range of tasks and schemes of work that cover the main assessment objectives for Reading and Writing. Work units focus on a range of topics and issues; such as Identity Poetry; A Modern Novel, Pre 1914 Short Stories, Modern Drama, Shakespeare and a Media unit based on breaking down barriers and discrimination. Students build on their Y7 literacy work to develop their analytical skills in response to literary or non-fiction and media texts. Speaking and listening skills will be developed through group presentations and class discussions.
Y8 students are encouraged to keep up their independent reading with regular visits to the library and the “Bookopoly” Competition.
This is a transition year in English when students develop the skills and experience to prepare them for GCSE courses in Language and Literature. Students in Y9 study a key modern novel which is of GCSE standard. This is followed by an anthology of seminal poetry across different cultures and time periods. Students will then study one of the more complex Shakespeare plays from Othello to Titus Andronicus, the texts prepare them for the Shakespeare they experience at GCSE. Students then work on Narrative writing and reading for meaning before moving onto a modern drama text.
The end of the Summer Term will focus on the GCSE Spoken Language endorsement, where pupils present to the group on a topic of their choice, and tick off the first component of their English Language GCSE.