"English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others, and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them.” (Curriculum 2013)

What to expect in Y7

Year 7, students enhance their understanding and appreciation of styles and techniques used by an array of writers; from a range of work by Charles Dickens, to identifying and understanding the classic role of the hero and anti-hero in Greek Mythology. Students expand their awareness of techniques used by authors to characterise protagonists and key themes in novels, visiting the works of Louisa M Alcott and Louis Sachar, as well as considering the stylistic changes of poetry through the ages. The year also focuses on writing for precise purpose and audience through a variety of different non-fiction text types.

What to expect in Y8

In Year 8, students gain a thorough understanding of a variety of relationship themed poetry and they develop their unseen analysis skills through identifying key methods used by poets. Students also study non-fiction texts, with particular focus on analysis of techniques used by a writer to present key topical issues; giving them confidence to create their own piece of Media. Throughout the year, there is opportunity to develop creative skills through writing an American Crime drama opening, as well as exploring the genre of Gothic Horror and further analysis of Shakespeare through study of Twelfth Night.

What to expect in Y9

In Year 9, students further their independence and develop closer links to GCSE style Language and Literature skills and Assessment. They demonstrate their comparative skills through studying poetry linked to World War I. A multi-media approach is established through the study of Romeo and Juliet, and development of creativity through the writing of screenplays based on Victorian Literature; from Arthur Conan Doyle to Jane Austen. The Year covers non-fiction text types in connection with significant ‘journeys,’ through an anthology of works. Students also study Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men’ and Arthur Miller’s ‘A View from the Bridge.’

What to expect in Y10 & Y11

In Year 10, students commence their preparation for the GCSE in English Language and the GCSE in English Literature, AQA Board. An integrated approach to the two GCSEs is taken in the first and second term, with the two Literature Paper 1 texts – Shakespeare’s Macbeth and the 19th century novel The Sign of Four – being used to develop key skills for Language Papers 1 (creative fiction) and 2 (non-fiction). In the final term, students move on to Literature Paper 2, focussing on the Poetry sections (Sections B and C) of the paper. They will study a collection of 15 poems from the AQA anthology on ‘Love and Relationships’, as well as develop their analysis of ‘unseen’ poetry. Throughout the year, students will sit assessments at the end of each half-term to monitor their development of key skills throughout the course.

In Year 11, students complete their coverage of Literature Paper 2 with the study of the modern play An Inspector Calls. This is then followed by a revision of poetry studied, as well as a thorough preparation for Literature Paper 2 and Language Paper 1. Both of these papers will constitute the mock examinations in November. Students will then undertake preparation and assessment for the Spoken Language Endorsement. The second term will involve preparation for Language Paper 2 in the first half of the term, and a revisiting of Literature Paper 1 in the second half of the term. At the end of each half-term, students will again sit a mini-mock to ensure progress is measured and intervention is in place for students as well. The summer term will follow a general revision programme which will be tailored to the needs of each class.

What to expect at KS5


Students prepare themselves for assessment in three exam units and one course work unit over the two years of this course. They begin with a Drama module, focussing on tragedy, which demands the study of Shakespeare’s Othello and Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire; students must be able to comment on the writers’ craft as well as show awareness of contextual matter and, with the Shakespeare, be able to incorporate critical readings. A Prose unit follows requiring students to study two novels under the theme of Science and Society to facilitate the writing of a comparative response. A Poetry unit, followed throughout the course and starting with the reading of nineteen poems from a modern anthology, moves to the study of a poetic movement – The Victorians. A comparative exploration between two independently read texts comprises the coursework element.


Students prepare themselves for assessment in two exam units and one course work unit over the two years of this course. To begin with, using an anthology of spoken and written texts, classes learn to analyse how ‘voices’ are created by writers for particular effects and audiences in relation to pertinent contextual factors; a further module within this Paper 1 Voices in Speech and Writing exam demands that students study a modern play – Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire. Preparation of Paper 2 Varieties in Language and Literature follows, requiring students to read two novels from the set theme Encounters and gain skills in comparing writers’ methods in presenting their ideas. The novels are: Bronte’s Wuthering Heights and Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Towards the end of year 12 a course work unit is begun. This calls for students to write two creative pieces and evaluate the writing process.

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