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English

In the most recent exam season, 77% of students achieved a pass in English Language – this is a fantastic set of results and above the national average!

 

The Department Overview

In the English Faculty, we aim to inspire all students to be successful; to flourish in a safe and secure learning environment; become confident and creative users of the English Language and enthusiastic appreciators of English Literature.

The English Faculty builds on the skills students have learnt at KS2 by meeting their changing literacy needs through a curriculum that is diverse, relevant and challenging, using ICT, and linking with other subject areas to support their studies across the school.

Students should leave KS3 and progress to KS4 as competent users of a range of different writing styles, and with a broad knowledge of various authors and genres of writing. These skills will provide a strong base to promote success at GCSE.

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3, the English Faculty strive to foster a keen enthusiasm for Language and Literature through the provision of a culturally enriching, highly stimulating curriculum that prompts our students to form a personal and original response to both the diverse literary heritage and modern texts that they are exposed to during their time with us. We endeavour to nurture insightful students, who are able to speak, read and write fluently, confidently and accurately, adapting their language and style to suit a range of contexts, purposes and audiences when appropriate. Through reading in particular, students develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually and socially, and so the cultivation of a love of literature and sincere appreciation of the writer’s craft and authorial intention is a priority for the Faculty. We envisage that the delivery of a rich and challenging curriculum will encourage our students to maturely interact with diverse text types, question the concepts presented to them and communicate their observations effectively.

The curriculum comprises reading material ranging from extracts to whole fiction and non-fiction texts; these are selected to inspire and engage through a variety of genres and text types to provoke thoughtful and discerning responses from students. Wider, independent reading is facilitated through weekly library lessons and supported by the Accelerated Reader Programme.  Literature from other cultures and eras are covered to illuminate the world we live in and broaden students’ grasp of the extensive literary canon. To consolidate this, our annual visit to the Globe Theatre provides Year Sevens with the opportunity to experience Shakespeare’s work live within an inspirational, authentic setting as originally intended. Skills in writing are taught to enable students to purposefully structure and craft their language and speaking and listening skills are developed through regular discussion, debate, presentations and the reading of drama texts.

• Poetry - pre and post 1914 and poetry from other cultures

• Fiction

• Drama

• Creative writing

• Shakespeare

• Media - printed and moving image

Key Stage 4

Key Stage 4 is divided into two courses, involving the study of Language and Literature. Students will receive two separate GCSE grades. English Language allows students to explore and develop their reading and writing skills. There is also a significant focus on the development of spelling, punctuation and grammar. English Literature fosters our students’ love of reading and encourages independent enquiry and study. There is a focus on building analytical skills that support students across the curriculum and provide an excellent basis for development in further and higher education.

English Language

By the time students reach Year 10 and 11, it is expected that they have the skills to read, write, speak and listen effectively.  Students have been taught these skills throughout the last three key stages and students now work to master these skills before completing their English Language GCSE.

The Faculty follows the AQA exam board curriculum (8700) and students will sit two exams at the end of this course in Year 11 and their GCSE is graded on the outcome of these papers. Paper 1 ‘Explorations into Creative Reading and Writing’ (fiction paper) and Paper 2 ‘Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives’ (non-fiction paper). Both papers are 1 hour and 45 minutes long and are worth 80 marks each. These marks are divided equally between reading and writing skills. In the reading sections students are expected to be able to select relevant information from the previously unseen texts; write about the effects of language and structure; evaluate a text using your opinions and compare the methods used by authors (paper 2 only). In the writing section students are expected to be able to select the correct style and form to write in; engage the reader through different writing techniques; structure your writing effectively from sentence to whole text level and use an extensive range of vocabulary and punctuation.

Summer Term of Year 10 students will complete a Spoken Language Endorsement assessment where they will be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction (which will feature on your English Language GCSE certificate). Here students will be tested on their ability to structure their speech effectively; use a wide vocabulary and how they listen and respond appropriately.

Other ways to support learning outside school:

  • Read a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts frequently - this is vital to engage with the style, form, structure and vocabulary used in these texts.  Read articles with parents/carers/friends and discuss/debate the points within it.
  • Practise writing creatively - create a list of specific vocabulary and generic imagery.
  • Write letters to friends, family, organisations, newspapers.
  • Use your revision guides and resources on the department website to practise exam style questions and time yourself carefully.
  • Use Youtube and Pixl videos to learn different approaches to answering the exam questions.

English Literature

The Faculty follows the AQA exam board curriculum (8702) and students will sit two exams at the end of this course; the GCSE is graded on the outcome of these papers. Paper 1: ‘Macbeth and A Christmas Carol’ and Paper 2: ‘An Inspector Calls, Conflict Poetry and Unseen Poetry’. Paper 1 is 1 hour and 45 minutes and is worth 64 marks. Paper 2 is 2 hours and 15 minutes and is worth 96 marks. All texts are assessed for the students’ ability to select evidence; identify techniques and methods used by the author and analyse the effects of these on the reader. All texts are also assessed for students’ knowledge of the contexts surrounding them, apart from the Unseen Poetry section. Responses to ‘An Inspector Calls’ and ‘Macbeth’ are awarded 4 marks on each for Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPAG), so it is extremely important to read through these essays carefully.

Other ways to support learning outside school:

  • Read and revise all the texts you’ve studied frequently - this is vital to ensure you maintain your knowledge of the narratives, characters, themes, key quotations and contexts.
  • Prepare revision cards and materials to help you remember key information about the texts.  Ask friends and family to test you on your knowledge of key quotations.
  • Practise writing about different characters and themes in the texts.
  • Research the contexts for different texts in detail and try to make links between this and your understanding of the narratives, characters and themes.
  • Attend performances or events featuring the key texts or their contexts.
  • Watch a variety of adaptations of the texts on film.  (Although keep in mind that these may differ from the original text.)
  • Use your revision guides and resources on the department website to practise exam style questions and time yourself carefully.
  • Use Youtube and Pixl videos to learn different approaches to answering the exam questions and to revise set texts.
  • Use the Pixl Lit app to check your memory recall.
  • Make use of SENECA learning

English Teaching Staff

Ms E Shoffren            eshoffren@royalliberty.co.uk            Head of Department

Ms L Jordan                ljordan@royalliberty.co.uk                Head of KS3 English

Ms K Fox                     kfox@royalliberty.co.uk                     Whole school literacy

Mr C Townsend         ctownsend@royalliberty.co.uk         English Teacher

Ms A Hill                     ahill@royalliberty.co.uk                     English Teacher

Follow our English department Twitter account @royallibertyte1 for revision tips, competitions, information about clubs and what’s going on in the department!