Key stage 3 – English

What will I learn in this subject?

The purpose of teaching English is to increase students’ understanding of the language and to develop their ability to use it as effectively as possible in all its forms.  The integration of English into Project Based Learning is designed to enable students to apply well-developed basic skills for a broad range of purposes.

What skills and themes are covered?

The following areas are covered during the Key Stage in Literacy lessons, GLAS and across the curriculum:

  • Literature
  • Writing to explore, imagine and entertain
  • Language Change, Past, Present and Future
  • Poetry: Writing to analyse, review and comment
  • Writing to argue, persuade and advise
  • Writing to explore, imagine and entertain
  • Writing to inform, explain and describe
  • Writing to argue, persuade and advise
  • Autobiography and Identity

How is it assessed?

English in GLAS is assessed in line with NTC Standards guidelines.  Each students’ work is assessed at the end of each project and their progress is monitored throughout the year.

Where does this take me?

The skills learnt in both Literacy lesson and in GLAS ensure that all KS3 students have improved their understanding and application of the skills required at KS4 for the study of English Language and English Literature.  For example, the students will study prose, poetry and drama; the English ‘triplets’ for reading, writing, speaking and listening are taught in projects throughout the year.

Key Stage 3 -Literacy

What will I learn in this subject?

Literacy is taught at Key Stage 3 in order to improve the students’ understanding of Literacy, what it is, how it works, and how we can use it every day to improve their life chances.  We teach the strands of reading, writing, speaking and listening across the curriculum and in Literacy lessons in order to ensure our students become life learners who can function successfully in society as they will have an improved understanding of the world and the way in which it works

What skills and themes are covered?

The following areas are covered during the Key Stage through GLAS and other subjects:

  • Literacy Skills — reading, writing, researching, planning and presenting
  • Speaking and Listening Skills — news and journalism, personal health and well-being
  • Reading Skills — poetry analysis, texts from other cultures, analysis of novels
  • Writing Skills — language skills, Gothic tales

How is it assessed?

Literacy is formally assessed at least once or twice per term.  Within the four core Literacy skills (reading, writing, speaking and listening) there are seven to eight specific assessment foci in which students need to achieve in order to be levelled effectively.

Where does this take me?

By the time the students reach Key Stage 4, they should have the secure Literacy skills that they will need in order to be able to access the demands of all the subjects that they will be learning.  This will enable them to access different pathways to learning and further education.  They will be equipped to be able to find knowledge, to pursue understanding, and out of knowledge and understanding, to make judgments, which in turn will enable them to become life long learners in the world of education and work.

Key Stage 4 – GCSE English Language and Literature

What will I learn on this course?

You will study towards to separate qualifications, a GCSE in English Language and a GCSE in English Literature

GCSE English Language

Students will draw upon a range of texts as reading stimulus and engage with creative as well as real and relevant contexts. Students will have opportunities to develop higher-order reading and critical thinking skills that encourage genuine enquiry into different topics and themes. It will ensure that students can read fluently and write effectively and are able to demonstrate a confident control of Standard English and write grammatically correct sentences, deploying figurative language and analysing texts.

For GCSE English Language students will learn to:

  • read fluently, and with good understanding, a wide range of texts from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries, including literature and literary non-fiction as well as other writing such as reviews and journalism
  • read and evaluate texts critically and make comparisons between texts
  • summarise and synthesise information or ideas from texts
  • use knowledge gained from wide reading to inform and improve their own writing
  • write effectively and coherently using Standard English appropriately
  • use grammar correctly and punctuate and spell accurately
  • acquire and apply a wide vocabulary, alongside a knowledge and understanding of grammatical terminology, and linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
  • listen to and understand spoken language and use spoken Standard English effectively.

GCSE English Language is designed on the basis that students should read and be assessed on high quality, challenging texts from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Each text studied must represent a substantial piece of writing, making significant demands on students in terms of content, structure and the quality of language. The texts, across a range of genres and types, should support students in developing their own writing by providing effective models. The texts must include literature and extended literary non-fiction, and other writing such as essays, reviews and journalism (both printed and online). Texts that are essentially transient, such as instant news feeds, must not be included. The number and types of texts, and their length, are not prescribed.

How is this qualification assessed?

You will sit two exams alongside other non-examination assessments:

  • Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing – Written exam of 1 hour 45 minutes which makes up 50% of the GCSE
  • Paper 2: Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives – Written exam of 1 hour 45 minutes which makes up 50% of the GCSE
  • Non-examination Assessment: Spoken Language
    • Set and marked by the teacher throughout course
    • Separate endorsement (0% weighting of the GCSE)

GCSE English Literature

This course will encourage students to develop knowledge and skills in reading, writing and critical thinking. Through literature, students have a chance to develop culturally and acquire knowledge of the best that has been thought and written. Studying GCSE English Literature should encourage students to read widely for pleasure, and as a preparation for studying literature at a higher level.

For GCSE English Literature students will learn to:

  • read a wide range of classic literature fluently and with good understanding, and make connections across their reading
  • read in depth, critically and evaluatively, so that they are able to discuss and explain their understanding and ideas
  • develop the habit of reading widely and often
  • appreciate the depth and power of the English literary heritage
  • write accurately, effectively and analytically about their reading, using Standard English
  • acquire and use a wide vocabulary, including the grammatical terminology and other literary and linguistic terms they need to criticise and analyse what they read.

How is this qualification assessed?

You will sit two exams:

  • Paper 1: Shakespeare and the 19th Century Novel – Written exam of 1 hour 45 minutes which makes up 40% of the GCSE
  • Paper 2: Modern Texts and Poetry – Written exam of 2 hour 15 minutes which makes up 60% of the GCSE

What qualification will I achieve?

A GCSE from AQA in English Language and a separate GCSE from AQA in English Literature

How can I find out more?

Speak to Mr Heerlall (heerlallf@ntc.kent.sch.uk) or any of the English team.