Miss Harwood - Head of English
Curriculum Principles & Intent
The English curriculum at Adeyfield Academy aims to teach students to speak, read and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas to others and so that others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, students have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Language skills are essential to participating fully as a member of society.
The overarching aim of the English curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.
The purpose of education is usually described as being about the following:
- Transmission of culture
- Preparation for work
- Preparation for effective citizenship
- Preparation for life
Our English curriculum support this in that it aims to ensure that all students:
- Read easily, fluently and with good understanding - developing the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information.
- Acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
- Appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
- Write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting language use according to context, purpose and audience
- Use discussion in order to learn; being able to explain clearly their understanding and ideas
- Are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
Our KS3 curriculum is sequenced broadly in chronological order. This is based upon the premise that ‘if it’s widely accepted that history is best taught sequentially, then why not literature?’ If every text students study relates back to the texts they’ve studied previously then they will be able to make strong relational and independent links between texts and contexts and therefore become flexible learners and thinkers. Our aim is for students to be able to piece together the story of language and literature from its classical roots, through to the Victorian and modern periods. We aim to study both Literature and Language in tandem. It is our intention that this platform best prepares students for KS4 and KS5 study as students have the knowledge of history and context that they can apply to their study of 19th, 20th and 21st Century texts.
As a faculty we recognise however that cultural capital isn’t just about Shakespeare etc; it’s also about students’ ability to think and communicate. This means that knowledge of grammar, language and terminology is particularly powerful and why it plays an important role within our curriculum.
GCSE English Language
Exam Board: AQA
Specification Number: 8700
Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading & Writing (50% of qualification)
- Section A: This section requires students to focus on reading a short prose extract and respond to four questions that assess reading skills
- Section B: This section requires students to write either a piece of descriptive writing based upon a picture stimulus or a short story on a given topic
Paper 2: Writers’ Perspectives and Viewpoints. (50 % of qualification)
- Section A: This section requires students to read two short non-fiction extracts and then respond to four questions that assess reading skills
- Section B: This section requires students to respond to a given task that allows them to express and explore their perspectives and viewpoints on a range of subject matter through their writing
Spoken Language (non-exam assessment)
During the course of their study, students will be given opportunities to practise their speaking and presentation techniques. A particular focus will be placed on developing presentational techniques.
Mode of Assessment:
100% written examination.
GCSE English Literature
Exam Board: AQA
Specification Number: 8702
English Literature is all about developing an appreciation that writers have the ability through the written word to explore the society and the period of history in which they lived. When studying literature, students will have the opportunity to discuss a wide range of topics and develop opinions.
Paper 1: Shakespeare and 19th Century novel (40% of qualification).
- Section A: Macbeth by William Shakespeare – a play of ambition, greed and consequence.
- Section B: A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens – a novel that explores the themes of social inequality and responsibility.
Paper 2: Post-1914 Drama, Poetry Anthology and Unseen Poetry (60% of qualification).
- Section A: An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestley – A play which often prompts much debate. To what extent should we be held responsible for our actions? Should we see ourselves as individuals or as members of one body?
- Section B: A Poetry Anthology based upon the themes of Power & Conflict
- Section C: Unseen Poetry.
Mode of Assessment:
100% written examination.
A Level Specifications
A Level English Literature
Exam Board: Edexcel
Level of course: 3
Aim of course:
The aim of the course is to enable students to gain a solid understanding of how texts can be explored and interpreted in multiple ways so that students can arrive at their own interpretations and become confident, autonomous readers. Students are then not only equipped with the knowledge and skills needed for both exams and non-exam assessment, but also experience a rich, challenging and coherent approach to English Literature that provides an excellent basis for studying the subject at university.
Component 1: Drama (30% of qualification)
- One Shakespeare play and one other play from the genre of tragedy
- Written examination, lasting 2 hours and 15 minutes
Component 2: Prose (20% of Qualification)
- Two prose texts from linked by theme. At least one of the prose texts is pre-1900
- Written examination, lasting 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Component 3: Poetry (30% of Qualification)
- A selection of post-2000 poetry and a selection of poems from a literary period
- Written examination, lasting 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Component 4: Non-Examination Assessment (20% of Qualification)
- Students produce one assignment: an extended comparative essay referring to two texts. The advisory total word count is 2500–3000 words