English

  • Head of subject: Miss G Whitehouse
  • Year groups taught: 7 to 13

Introduction

In studying English, students develop skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing. It enables them to express themselves creatively and imaginatively and to communicate with others effectively. They respond to texts by writing and talking about them, analytically and imaginatively. They are always making something new and original, even when answering questions in an exam.

Students learn to become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry and drama, as well as non-fiction and media texts. The study of English helps students understand how language works by looking at its patterns, structures and origins. Using this knowledge, students can choose and adapt what they say and write in different situations.

Our assessments have been designed to inspire and motivate students, providing appropriate stretch and challenge whilst ensuring, as far as possible, that the assessments and texts are accessible to the full range of students.

Resources to highlight

The faculty boasts an excellent range of resources. Alongside a dedicated laptop trolley and a state of the art media facility, we also have Apple IPads to facilitate the students’ studies. The faculty also prides itself on enrichment opportunities both within and outside lessons, regularly arranging various trips to theatres and cinemas and inviting the Young Shakespeare Company to perform to students.

Key stage 3

Introduction

The English department offers a knowledge based curriculum at key stage 3. We use a variety of texts from different genres, encouraging the students to have a broad and balanced view of the subject. The contextual information taught provides students with a rich cultural capital which will assist with their knowledge and understanding of the new rigour at GCSE.

Students will have the opportunity to explore and delve into topics from a variety of genres: Victorian, Human rights, Gothic and Dystopia just to name a few. We also place a great emphasis on enrichment: to this aim there is an activity as part of each unit of work at KS3. This includes performances from the National Theatre, students can expect to see several plays in performance, work with theatre groups, visit Shakespeare’s birthplace and take part in other personalised enrichment opportunities such as BBC School report and author visits.

Year 7

Structure of course
Students have four 60 minute lessons per week in English; in addition some students will be invited to attend our KS3 intervention or homework club. Students will cover the knowledge based curriculum plus one grammar and one reading lesson per week.

Topics covered

  • Greek Myths and Epic Poetry.  Students will gain knowledge of Greek Theatre, gods and goddesses, mythological creatures and examine what it is that makes a hero.  Students will be able to apply subject terminology such as ‘hubris’, ‘nemesis’ and ‘deception’.
  • Rhetoric and Julius Caesar.  Students will examine what life was like in Ancient Rome through the study of Julius Caesar.  They will develop their oratory skills alongside applying subject terminology such as ‘democracy’, ‘anaphora’ and soliloquy’.
  • Language change.  Students will examine the history of language change and non-verbal communication; they will learn our language roots inherited from the Celts onwards and how technology affects our language today.

Students are assessed by
An initial baseline assessment is undertaken to give their teacher a clear starting point then 2 key assessment pieces submitted per term will assess knowledge and skill application. All assessments will be interlinked to the new GCSE criteria in order to prepare students on a five year journey towards linear assessment. Students will sit two GCSE style examinations at the end of the academic year.

Year 8

Structure of lessons
Students have four 60 minute lessons per week in English; in addition some students will be invited to attend our KS3 intervention or homework club. Students will cover the knowledge based curriculum plus one grammar and one reading lesson per week.

Topics covered

  • Romance.  Students will begin a Shakespearean unit which uses Romeo and Juliet as a main text but also links in other Shakespearean tragedies.  In this unit, students revisit stagecraft from Year 7 plus apply new terminology such as ‘hierarchy’ and ‘patriarchy’.  Students are also taught love and relationships poetry as part of this unit.
  • Witchcraft and religion.  Students study Macbeth with the inclusion of historical information on James 1 and the Gunpowder Plot.  Students are also taught a range of other challenging texts which link to the theme of the supernatural whilst applying subject terminology such as ‘peripetia’, ‘anagnoresis’ and ‘asides’
  • Gothic.  Students study a range of literature which includes Frankenstein, Dr.Jekyll & Mr Hyde and works by Edgar Allan Poe.  These are further supported by extracts from challenging texts such as Paradise Lost and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

Students are assessed by
Two key assessment pieces will be submitted per term with either a reading, writing or speaking and listening focus. All assessment will be interlinked to the new GCSE criteria in order to prepare students on a five year journey towards linear assessment. Students will sit two GCSE style examinations at the end of the academic year.

Key stage 4

Introduction

Our key stage 4 curriculum is geared towards promoting the creativity and independence of our students alongside preparing them for formal GCSE examinations. We make use of cutting edge technology (such as our state of the art media suite and Apple IPads) to enhance the learning of our students, as well as continuing to provide enrichment opportunities to help further engage and enthuse students in their studies. Our belief is that resilient, independent and creative learners are successful learners. To this end, we encourage students to take a leading role in their own education and ultimate success. Group work/presentations, independent study and extended homework projects are therefore integral to our students’ experience of the subject.

Pathway

  • AQA GCSEs in Language and Literature (double weighted on highest grade)
  • W: AQA 1 GCSE-English and Step Up to English Entry Level qualification before beginning to work towards gaining Language and Literature GCSEs

Qualifications

  • AQA GCSE English Language
  • AQA GCSE English Literature

Examining body

  • AQA

The skills and qualities Students need to succeed in this course are

  • The ability to read, analyse and interpret a range of fiction and non-fiction
  • The ability to write accurately for a range of purposes
  • The ability to respond to a text through extended writing
  • The ability to work effectively within a group and present ideas with confidence

What you will study

Year 9
Year 9 will serve as an introduction to GCSE where several Literature texts will be presented. Students will have the opportunity to study Dystopia, Rhetoric and a modern play: An Inspector Calls or Blood Brothers. They will also develop their skills for the English Language examinations; ending the year sitting two full GCSE mock examinations.

Year 10
Students will begin their study of English Literature and English Language GCSEs. Students will have three English Language lessons where they will study the requirements for both Language papers. Three English Literature lessons where they will begin to study a Victorian text: A Christmas Carol. Students will sit two full mock examinations at key points throughout the year.

Year 11
Students will finalise their study of both English Language and English Literature courses during term 2. They will then revise all the key materials required for examination for the remaining term prior to their linear GCSE examinations.

Students are assessed by

 

Key assessment pieces submitted per term as well as full mocks for GCSE English Language and/or Literature. Year 11 will have several mock examinations throughout the year.

What might students study after this?

  • English Literature
  • English Language
  • Media Studies
  • Film Studies
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Creative Writing

Possible careers

  • Teaching
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Civil Service
  • Film and TV
  • Banking/Accountancy
  • Promotions and Media
  • Publishing
  • Further Study

For more information contact

Miss G Whitehouse.


“What does English look like at Ormiston NEW Academy?”

Positive, Challenging and makes you develop independence.”

– Olivia, Year 7

Teachers are kind and challenge you to be better.”

– Tyler, Year 7

Spectacular! Teachers will help and guide you telling you what you can do to improve.”

– Darrel, Year 8

English is astonishing! We’re able to communicate through debates and discussions.”

– Emmanuel, Year 9