Curriculum Intent and Implementation
Review our English Curriculum Map for a detailed overview of the core knowledge and skills covered in English.
Key Stage 3
In KS3, there are four key areas of study: Reading; Writing; Language; and Speaking and Listening.
During Year 7, we aim to build upon the skills students have acquired throughout KS2. The course begins with the study of creative writing before progressing to the study of a novel. Students also study poetic form, Shakespearean context, and twenty-first century non-fiction.
We place considerable emphasis on reading: regular reading homework is set; with library lessons embedded into the English curriculum. Teachers of English work closely with our knowledgeable school librarian to ensure every student explore diverse texts and classics of the future.
In Year 8, the course builds on prior fiction work and students study narrative perspective and experiment with writing for different genres. The Year 8 course progresses to more intensive study of a Shakespeare play; novels in their times and contexts; media representations; and rhetoric.
During Year 9, we aim to broaden students' knowledge and experiences of challenging texts and genres, to build their confidence ready for GCSE study of both English Language and Literature. For example, students interpret and evaluate thought-provoking novels, which require them to engage with significant periods of history or political events. They also analyse and compare the representations of individuals, organisations, and topics in non-fiction.
Key Stage 4
English Language and English Literature are core subjects in Years 10 and 11, leading to two Edexcel GCSE subject awards. To support students in progressing to the higher grades and achieve their best in both, we integrate the Language and Literature elements into each term. This enables learners to understand how linguistics, artistic form, and literary heritage are synthesised in academia and in the real world.
To this end, students learn how to analyse both modern poems and those from the literary heritage closely. They deconstruct persuasive discourses, such as speeches, exploring language and structure. Critical evaluations of a nineteenth century novel enables students to appreciate its demanding context. In addition, students develop their creative writing skills, practising writing for adult audiences and their peers. A requirement of entry to GCSE Language is the delivery of a speech they have written for themselves, which provides them with a useful opportunity to speak powerfully for an audience.
Key Stage 5
We follow the AQA Syllabus for English Language at Advanced Level. English Language is an A Level that appeals to a wide range of students, including those who are interested in the media, marketing, child psychology, politics, or those hoping to hone their reading and writing skills to support their progress in other subjects, such as Science. A good number of students take both English Language and English Literature at A Level as they complement one another well.
You will study topics that are likely to be new to you, which are very relevant to the twenty-first century - such as Child Language, Language & Technology, Language & Power, and Rhetoric - exploring political systems, values, and ways of thinking prevalent in the world today. You will also complete an undergraduate style language investigation on a topic of your choice for the non-examined assessment.
If you enjoyed exploring texts closely at GCSE, enjoy creative or journalistic writing, or enjoy a good debate about Language and Gender, you are likely to enjoy English Language.
For more information on English and all A-Level courses beginning next
For more information on English and all A-Level courses beginning next academic year, please see the Sixth Form Admissions page.