The English Department aims to instil a love of language and literature, offering students the opportunity to engage with a variety of challenging texts and their wider contexts, and encouraging them to develop and articulate their own perspectives.
Key Stage 3
At Key Stage 3, teachers aim to inspire a love of language and literature by introducing students to a range of fiction and non-fiction styles, encouraging them to develop independence and precision in their reading and writing skills. Our chosen novels are ‘Lord of the Flies’ and ‘Animal Farm’, studied alongside Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘The Tempest’. Students also study poetry from various time periods and cultures, and they take part in the Accelerated Reader programme in Years 7 and 8.
Key Stage 4
In English language lessons, students consolidate their knowledge of writing styles, using a wide range of linguistic and organisational features to meet the needs of different audiences and purposes, refining their use of vocabulary, punctuation and sentence structures. They are encouraged to express their own point of view in a range of written and spoken activities. In English literature lessons, students begin their study of ‘An Inspector Calls’ and ‘A Christmas Carol’ and they further explore Shakespeare and poetry in terms of set and unseen texts.
Key Stage 5
A Level English Language and Literature enables students to develop effective communication and analytical skills to complement their studies in other subjects and prepare them for the world of employment. English students regularly progress onto careers in journalism, research, teaching, law, archiving, public relations, advertising, the arts and management.
Students learn about the ways in which views and perspectives are shaped in a variety of narratives. They explore representation in literary fiction and in an anthology of texts linked by the theme of Paris. Students also produce re-creative work that seeks to find an absent or underplayed perspective in the original text and write a critical reflection on the processes and outcomes involved. Furthermore, students explore the role of the individual in society, and of conflict in drama, via analytical and creative study of texts including ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’, ‘The Great Gatsby’ and ‘Othello’.
Students are also required to make active connections between a literary text and some non-literary material in an independent investigation (NEA).