Curriculum

English

The English Faculty consists of English, Media Studies, Drama and Theatre Studies

English

Aims

The English Faculty believes in the concept of excellence for all and provides an English curriculum which offers all learners with the opportunity to develop their own unique talents and realise their full potential.

  • To develop their speaking and listening skills through the use of language in a wide variety of situations and contexts.
  • To develop their reading skills and encourage an awareness of the value of text (both literary and non-literary) and its influence on the individual, giving them enjoyment of a wide range of texts and other stimulus materials and therefore access to the whole curriculum.
  • To develop their writing skills and give them the opportunity to write for real purposes so that they understand that there are different forms of writing for different purposes and audiences, and that they can only communicate effectively through the accuracy, structure and clarity of the written word.
  • To prepare our students for the challenges of external examinations: GCSE English, GCSE English and English Literature, A Level English Literature and A Level English Language.
Accommodation and Resources

The majority of the English Faculty is accommodated in suited rooms on one corridor in the Austen Block. There are display boards in every classroom and along the corridor that connects them. All rooms have interactive whiteboards and we make great use of these facilities. These offer teaching via specialist IWB software, PowerPoint presentations, use of the internet and more besides.

The English Faculty enjoys excellent links with the school library and regularly participates in activities such as the annual Litfest, Book Idol, visiting authors and the Accelerated Reading Programme.

  • See our Annual Book Idol event here

Our Book of the Month can be viewed on our blog pages of the website under Latest News.

The English Faculty has a wide range of texts and resources for use at both Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5.

Key Stage 3

Through their Key Stage 3 studies, students become immersed within a variety of different contexts and cultures.  In Year 7 and 8, our learners follow a Mastery curriculum that provides a challenging, exciting progression from their Key Stage 2 studies.  This ranges from Crime to Myths and Legends and there is particular emphasis on grammar for writing skills and 19th century literature.  Students are exposed to a breadth of fascinating literature from poetry to plays, non-fiction and fiction.  Within Year 9, students follow a ‘bridging curriculum’ in order to fully prepare them for GCSEs.  Students follow a pathway parallel to the curriculum at Key Stage 4.  This is an important year in consolidating key skills needed for success.

Key Stage 4

From September 2016 students will follow the AQA specification in English Language and Literature which will offer our students the opportunity to consolidate a range of key skills. Through English Literature students will be studying a Shakespearian play such as Macbeth or Romeo and Juliet, a Victorian novel such as Frankenstein or Jekyll and Hyde, a modern play such as An Inspector Calls or Blood Brothers and a range of poems.

In their English Language studies, students will develop key skills in reading and writing such as learning how to analyse language effectively and writing for different purposes and genres. They will also undertake a Spoken Language qualification which will enhance their communication skills.

Students are taught in ability groupings to allow staff to provide appropriate challenge and support and we have a 100% entry policy to ensure that all learners are given every opportunity to succeed.

Key Stage 5

A-Level students will follow the two year AQA syllabus for English Language or English Literature, or both. The English Literature course focuses on Love through the Ages and WW1 literature, looking at texts across time from a range of talented authors such as Pat Barker, William Shakespeare and E.M. Forster. The English Language course looks at language diversity and language change over time, as well as the ways in which language is used in society for different purposes and audiences. The final exams take place at the end of Year 13, with 20% of the final grade coming from a non-examined assessment. Entry requirement is a GCSE grade 6 in the required subject.

Additional Information

The English Faculty welcomes new staff and offers the following opportunities:

  • A visit to the faculty before taking up a post.
  • Observations and team teaching with other members of the Department.
  • Full involvement in collaborative planning and reviewing of materials, courses, and all aspects of the faculty’s work.
  • An English Faculty based mentor.
Extra-curricular Activities

As a faculty we try to offer a wide range of theatre trips and visiting companies, either as part of the Drama curriculum or to complement the English curriculum.

Most recently Year 11 students were offered the opportunity to see “Frankenstein” whilst year 12 and 13 students have been to see a variety of performances which have enriched their study of Theatre Studies and English Literature as well as popular University lecture days to enhance their subject knowledge for English Language.
Within school, students can attend our popular creative writing or book groups or become a member of our growing and competitive debating society.

Our most recent extra-curricular project has involved Key Stage 3 students participating in Birmingham’s ‘The Big Sleuth’ project.  Students within English have produced transformative stories based on Goldilocks and the Three Bears.  Across the school, students designed the artwork for a bear sculpture based on these creative writing pieces.

The faculty also offers a popular film making course and Harry Potter week during Activities Week.

Updated 22/9/17