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The English department consists of a close knit team who all teach across the age and ability range. In order to provide support to our students we have a dedicated member of staff for intervention and reading support. We are committed to providing a stimulating and creative curriculum that meets the needs of all students.

We encourage students to take an interest in all aspects of English, and run regular theatre trips. Our department has a number of members of staff who mark papers for GCSE examinations, giving us excellent insight into the requirements of the examinations sat by our students Our students are encouraged to develop and broaden their skills in English and English Literature. Students are given the opportunity to enter national competitions for poetry and speaking and listening; we are delighted that our students have won accolade in both of these areas. Key Stage 3 The English curriculum aims to ensure that students can read fluently and critically; write coherently and accurately for a range of purposes and audiences, using a wide vocabulary; and use Spoken Standard English to convey their ideas effectively.

The analysis of writers’ language techniques develops students’ own ability to use language effectively, and studying a varied and challenging set of literary texts, including novels, poetry and plays from different time periods and contexts, allows students to develop their own cultural and social awareness. The skills covered through English are lifelong communication skills, which students will use in a range of situations, from studying their GCSE courses, to writing applications for further education or training courses, to using Spoken Standard English in interviews, to communicating with colleagues in their chosen career.

Table of topics

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 
Prose: Stone Cold, Robert SwindellsProse: To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper LeeProse: Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck
Shakespeare play: The TempestModern play: Kindertransport, Diane SamuelsGreek mythology
Narrative writingDescriptive writingWriting to convey a viewpoint
Poetry unitPoetry unitPoetry unit
Key reading skills: fiction and non-fictionShakespeare play: Twelfth NightProse: The Woman in Black, Susan Hill

Key Stage 4

The fundamental aim of the curriculum is to teach students the knowledge and skills required to gain GCSEs in English Language and English Literature. Some students will be offered an Entry Level Certificate in English. The GCSE English Language course aims to develop students’ critical reading skills; their ability to write coherently and accurately, using an extensive vocabulary; and their ability to use Spoken Standard English effectively. Students read a range of fiction and non-fiction texts, analysing how writers use language to create effects, then apply this knowledge when producing their own writing. Through GCSE English Literature, students explore prose, poetry and drama, allowing them to appreciate the power of the English literary heritage, and develop their own social and cultural awareness. The skills covered are lifelong communication skills, which students will use in a range of situations, from writing applications for further education or training courses, to using Spoken Standard English in interviews, to communicating with colleagues in their chosen career.

Table of Topics

Year 10Year 11
Modern prose: An Inspector Calls, J. B. Priestley or Blood Brothers, Willy Russell     
19th century novel: A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
Poetry: Power and Conflict cluster
Spoken Language Endorsement
Shakespeare play: Romeo and Juliet
Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing 
Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives     
Unseen Poetry 
Revision and exam technique: GCSE English Language
Revision and exam technique: GCSE English Literature texts 
GCSE English Language (AQA 8700)GCSE English Literature (AQA 8702)
Nature of examination: 2 x written exams
Section A – reading
Section B – writing
Paper 1 Explorations in Creative Reading
1 hour 45 minutes
50% of final grade
Paper 2 Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives
1 hour 45 minutes
50% of final grade
*AQA also offer a Spoken Language Endorsement assessed separately.
Nature of examination: 2 x written exams
Paper 1 –  Shakespeare and the 19th century novel
1 hour 45 minutes
40% of final grade
Section A – Shakespeare
Section B – 19th century novel
Paper 2 – Modern texts and poetry
2 hours 15 minutes
60% of final grade
Section A – An Inspector Calls or Blood Brothers
Section B – Power and Conflict poetry
Section C – Unseen poetry

Entry Level Certificate:

Step Up to English (AQA 5970)

This qualification may be offered to some students to support them in building basic and relevant literacy skills that meet the requirements of a wide range of post 16 courses and workplace settings. Students will study a wide variety of thematic units, undertaking a range of reading, writing and spoken language tasks before completing an externally set exam paper.

This qualification compliments the GCSE English Language and Literature course by helping to embed many of the key concepts taught in compulsory GCSE English lessons. Both courses share a number of key assessment objectives, thus giving the candidates many opportunities to develop their English and Literacy skills.

The assessment for this qualification is broken down into two components:

Component One – Literacy Topics

The Next Step

Component Two – Creative Reading and Writing
Gothic Horror
Myths and Legends

All students are required to submit two exam papers from component one and one exam paper from component two. The assessment skills for both components focus on reading, writing and spoken language. The papers for this qualification are tiered and students will be entered for either the gold or silver step paper. The gold step paper awards a level 3 pass. The silver step awards either a level 1 or 2 pass.

Find out more about GCSE English Language

Find out more about GCSE English Literature

Find out more about the Step Up To English Certificate

Department Staff:

Miss G Davies | Subject Leader – English | daviesg@prentonhighschool.co.uk
Miss A Roberts | Head of Student Services | Teacher of English
Mrs C Allison | Teacher of English
Mr T Devling | Teacher of English & Media Studies
Miss C Goode | Teacher of English | Careers & Enterprise Lead
Mrs K Bowen | Teacher of English
Mrs K Kenyon | Teacher of English
Mrs E Major | Assistant SENCo | Teacher of English | Studio Manager
Mrs J Davies | Teacher of English & Media Studies
Mrs E Grundy | Teacher of English & History