Key Stage 3
The English Key Stage 3 curriculum is student-driven and embraces the idea that very little in life is so binary that it has a right or wrong answer. Our curriculum embraces a broad range of topics at both local and hidden levels, engendering an appreciation of human creativity and achievement. We offer challenge and support to enable all learners to make progress and do not subscribe to ‘intervention-led’ approaches which remove the joy from our subject.
We encourage students to undertake the same behaviours as professional writers. Our curriculum teaches the entire writing process from generating ideas to planning, writing, re-drafting, proof-reading thus removing the climate of fear around writing and encouraging a sense of volition in terms of our students’ motivation to write.
We also teach grammatical concepts and rules in a logical sequence, allowing students to deliberately practise concepts to the point of mastery. Because to enjoy phrases, sentences and paragraphs, it helps to know how they’re put together; how language works. Yes, grammar is important!
Reading for pleasure
We introduce students to the shared reading of a range of engaging texts and use this as an opportunity to explicitly teach vocabulary, enabling students’ integration of this vocabulary as opposed to their words being ‘divorced’ from the fluency of responses and meaning.
We continually expose our students to challenging stories which have changed the world, broadening their idea of what ‘English’ is, involving them proactively in their own learning and providing opportunities for spiritual, moral and cultural debate.
To assist students in developing their own literacy skills as independent learners, we have timetabled lessons dedicated to literacy with a view to developing the role of speaking and listening within the curriculum in the form of a fortnightly ‘pens down’ lesson. Such lessons cumulate in visible, high profile events such as debating and public speaking competitions.
Our Key Stage 3 curriculum includes a fully integrated assessment model. A new assessment framework for years 7, 8 and 9 has been developed in line with the new, whole-school KASH approach to assessment.
Student wellbeing is as important as academic outcomes and will be treated as such and we strive to maintain a culture of support for our students.
Key Stage 4
At Key Stage 4, students follow the AQA syllabus, leading to a GCSE in both English Language and English Literature.
In a manner similar to Key Stage 3, we integrate the teaching of sophisticated, subject-specific vocabulary and grammar and writing skills into our lessons, balancing the technical elements of the course with the more holistic aspects of the study of Language and Literature.
For English Literature, students study a rich variety of texts including a Shakespeare play, a nineteenth century novel, a modern text and a range of poetry. For English Language, students study towards two exams: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing and Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives. The papers require students to respond to both fiction and non-fiction texts as well as demonstrating their ability to write in different styles and for different audiences. Finally, students undertake a non-exam assessment in Spoken Language.
Assessments consist of ‘mock’ versions of the different GCSE exam components alongside formal mock exams. Students receive formal feedback after each assessment point. This cumulates in four GCSE exams taken at the end of the course.
Enrichment activities include theatre trips, writing workshops, Rotary public speaking competitions, book clubs, visiting authors, and access to an audiobook platform.
|English KS3 Assessment Grid||Download|
|Key Stage 3 Curriculum Map||Download|
|Key Stage 4 Curriculum Map||Download|