At Biddenham, we take a long-term holistic approach to the new curriculum for English, working ultimately towards the English Language and English Literature exams with the AQA board. Beginning in year 7 and carrying through the rest of key stage 3 in years 8 and 9, the modules studied are designed to equip the students with the skills required to meet the rigours of the new GCSE which are now assessed solely through exams.
Students will study a range of texts: from modern novels, to plays, poems, literature from other cultures, 19th century literature and, of course, Shakespeare, all presented in accessible and lively ways in order to foster a genuine appreciation for the subject. Literacy skills are an integral part of the GCSE skills and students will develop their understanding and application of spelling, punctuation and grammar, adopting the school literacy policy to help them become reflective writers.
Within each module studied the students will be assessed at regular intervals for their skills in reading and writing; this will inform the progression data presented on reports to parents each term. At the end of year 7 and year 8, students will sit a GCSE style paper, which will be differentiated for their ability and for which they will have practised beforehand. This enables them to become familiar with the skills and process of sitting the exam later in their school career.
Modern novels: Goodnight Mr Tom, Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and Refugee Boy. A range of non-fiction texts on various subjects and themes; at least one Shakespeare text (currently A Midsummer Night’s Dream); a range of extracts and poems, both modern and pre-1914; The Hunger Games.
Schemes of work are designed in conjunction with other subjects to maximise the opportunity for cross-curricular learning. Chromebooks, issued to all students, are used regularly via Google Classroom to ensure that they are kept up to date with work and to enable them to have an interface with their English teacher(s) enabling more immediate feedback.
As a core subject, all students will be entered for both English Language and English Literature, offering them the opportunity of obtaining two GCSEs.
Wherever possible we will always look for opportunities to enhance the learning experience outside the classroom, such as through visits to the theatre. Students are encouraged to take on independent reading whenever possible through the supply of suggested reading lists and introduction to the school library.
Course contact: Mrs C. Burton firstname.lastname@example.org