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English

Vision Statement

At Melbourn Village College we would like all students to gain an appreciation of literature, language, drama and media in all its forms. We want all students, through reading, speech and writing, to gain in their cultural capital and be able to take their place in society as well rounded, engaged, critical citizens.

To do this we will ensure that students have an exposure to texts that are from the English canon of classical texts, as well as texts from other cultures and texts that showcase a diversity of writers, styles and topics. Through this we aim to engage students in their learning and allow them to express their views clearly in speech, actions and writing. By giving students the opportunities to develop fluency in speech, writing and reading we will give them the greatest life chances possible.

English has a major role in the development of all young people; it enhances students’ transferable skills and links to all other curriculum subjects. At Melbourn Village College, English lessons are challenging and fun and stimulate curiosity and discussion. We aim to equip the students with the skills they need to be effective and enthusiastic communicators, whilst fostering their creativity and imagination.

English lessons provide students with the opportunity to express themselves in both speech and writing. They will be taught the importance of careful crafting and editing in all aspects of their English work, as we aim to develop independent and successful writers. We are committed to nurturing a love of reading for pleasure and provide the students with access to a very wide range of diverse texts. English lessons also allow students to explore spiritual, moral, social and personal issues that impact on the lives of young people. 

What will teachers do?

  • Plan lessons that include a variety of pedagogical techniques that allow all students to learn
  • Plan lessons that cover a variety of topics in stimulating and engaging ways
  • Allow students to express themselves through speech, writing and reading

What will students do?

  • Be actively engaged and interested in the learning
  • Be willing to express their opinions in speech, writing and reading

What do we want our students to learn to enhance their skills and enjoyment of English?

In Year 11 students take GCSE examinations in English Language and Literature. In order to provide students with the greatest chance of the best possible attainment it is important for them to develop the skills necessary to be successful from Year 7 – 11. However, we aim for students to enhance their love for the subject too, and therefore do not focus on the GCSE examinations until it is necessary at Key Stage 4. In each scheme of work there is a close focus on building the basic skills that students need to succeed, with teachers focusing on spelling, punctuation and grammar. These are taught through close study of texts and thorough discussions regarding authorial tone, voice and context. Each unit also develops abilities in reading for meaning and being able to comment on and discuss inference, analyse language use, show understanding of texts and write at length for a variety of audiences.

We believe in the necessity for a clear thread of learning from Year 7 to Year 11 – with sequential knowledge being built throughout in terms of challenge being increased throughout the years, complexity of texts and concepts studied and responses offered. Each unit of work explicitly links to knowledge and skills needed to tackle parts of the GCSE examinations in Language and Literature. There is an even coverage throughout KS3 to lead into KS4.

The English department uses a blend of ‘faster reading’ strategies to enable an increase in reading ages and understanding of the text. This allows for increased explicit vocabulary teaching’

Through teaching engaging and challenging texts giving students access to the English literary canon and more modern approaches while allowing students the chance to engage with these texts in a variety of ways; thereby showing them that reading is an enjoyable experience when improving knowledge, learning power and understanding of the world around them. Students are also given the chance to read and discuss their own books in lessons.

We ensure that all students reach the same end point in terms of being able to access the assessments by putting scaffolded work in place that allows all students to develop the skills necessary to complete assessments to the best of their abilities.

KS3 English

In Key Stage Three English, students will be immersed in fiction, non-fiction and other media which will allow them to explore the human experience and the world around them - both past and present. Students will develop literacy skills through reading, writing and speaking and listening, whilst also fostering empathetic skills, world knowledge and cultural capital. Literacy skills are taught and revised organically within each scheme of learning as we prepare students not only for academic success but also to meet the demands of employment and adulthood.

Course Content

Year 7

Theme of the Year: The Power of Story Telling

Autumn term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Improving narrative and descriptive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • Narrative structures and how they enhance story telling.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Louis Sachar: Sideways Stories from Wayside School.
  • Louis Sachar: There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom.
  • Zilpha Keatley Snyder: The Runaways.

Holes – a novel by Louis Sachar. The first few lessons on this text are a transition unit which builds knowledge, skills and resilience for bridging the gap between Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3. Through studying this text students will gain an understanding of story telling, how to analyse a text, how to write to show understanding of a text and how to discuss and vocalise their learning. They will be introduced to challenging themes such as racism, segregation, crime and punishment and poverty. They will also understand the importance of compassion and understanding and being accepting of difference through reading this text. Students will write not only about the text but also using the text as a stimulus to write for various purposes and audiences.

Texts Used: Holes – Louis Sachar

Autumn1- Assessment:

Creative writing focusing on character development.

Autumn term 2

Skills Developed

Continuing development of skills from Autumn 1.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Louis Sachar: Sideways Stories from Wayside School.
  • Louis Sachar: There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom.
  • Zilpha Keatley Snyder: The Runaways.

Students will continue to work on the text ‘Holes’. Teachers may decide to read another text with pupils if there is time left.

Texts Used: Holes – Louis Sachar

Autumn 2 - Assessment:

Extract based language analysis questions. 

Spring term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing extracts from texts and being able to place these in the context of the whole text.
  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Analysing stagecraft and plays.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • The structure of a Shakespeare play and how this enhances story telling.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Any other Shakespeare History Play including Richard 3rd.
  • Charles and Mary Lamb: Tales from Shakespeare
  • Susan Cooper: King of Shadows
  • Students can watch Shakespeare plays too

Shakespeare’s History Plays. Students will study Henry V through the use of film interpretations and textual analysis of key extracts. This will enable students to develop knowledge of Shakespeare’s language and plays as well as socio – historical context. Students will write pieces in character and develop an understanding for Shakespeare as a story teller.

Texts Used: Henry V - Shakespeare

Spring  1 - Assessment:

Henry V knowledge test. 

Spring term 2

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing and commenting on the effectiveness of characterisation and plot in different mediums.
  • Improving narrative and descriptive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • Using authorial voice and context in own writing.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Roald Dahl: Heroes and Villains
  • Ben Brooks: Not All Heroes Wear Capes
  • Sophia Thakur: Superheroes – Inspiring Stories of Secret Strength

Heroes and Villains – story telling through film

Students will develop an appreciation of how film makers are authors of stories. The focus of this unit will be on heroes and villains in films and how they are presented as an integral part of the story. Students will consider the choices of directors and write about how these choices have impacted the stories being told and the character development within them. They will compare the presentations of characters In films and in writing and have the opportunity to create their own using various stimuli.

Texts Used: Harry Potter

Spring 2 - Assessment:

Comparative analysis A

A Villian

Summer term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing the content of poems and commenting on the story they are telling.
  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Analysing the structure and techniques used by poets and using this knowledge to assist in writing own poems

William Blake:

Songs of Innocence and Experience

Paintings - A William Blake

 

Story telling through poetry. Students will study a variety of poetry from other cultures which will give them an understanding of and appreciation for stories from writers with differing perspectives and with different stories to tell. Students will consider how stories are being told through poetry and will write analysis of poems considering message, language and structure.

Texts Used: 

Blake

  • The Tyger
  • A poison Tree
  • The Chimney Sweeper

Wordsworth

  • The Skating Episode
  • We Are Seven
  • Daffodils

Keats:

  • Isabella; or the Pot of Basil

Summer 1 - Assessment:

Analytical poetry essay 

Summer term 2

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Enhancing presentation skills and analysing how great speakers present to an audience.
  • Structuring and rehearsing a speech.
  • Using language to persuade and promote a point of view.

Suggested wider reading: Non fiction reading – magazines and newspaper articles

Story telling through speeches – telling your own story. Students will consider great speeches through history and the way in which the speaker has told their personal story. Students will then undertake their own public speaking project where they will tell something of their own personal story in front of the year group. Support will be given to students in order to prepare them for this.

Texts Used: Newspaper and Magazine articles. Transcripts of speeches from Barack Obama, Martin Luther King and others.

Summer 2

Speaking and Listening

Year 8

Theme of the Year: Love, Loss, Opression and Hope

In Year 8 students will be developing skills in language analysis, improving writing skills and will gain an appreciation of the importance of context and authorial intent. They will also develop skills in presenting in front of an audience.

Autumn Term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Improving narrative and descriptive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • Narrative structures and how they enhance story telling.

Suggested wider reading:

  • S. Lewis: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe
  • William Golding: Lord of the Flies
  • Rudyard Kipling: The Jungle Book
  • Rudyard Kipling: Kim

Animal Farm – a novel by George Orwell and ‘My Boy Jack’ by Rudyard Kipling

Through studying this text students will gain an insight into oppression and change. They will develop the skills of analytical writing and of discussing and writing about how language, structure and characterisation is used to promote themes and messages.  Students will also study the context of the novel and understand the links between this and the world in which they live. Students will not only write about the text but also write for different forms, purposes and audiences.

Texts Used:

  • My Boy Jack and other poetry from World War One
  • Animal Farm - George Orwell

Autumn 1- Assessment: 

Film based analytical essay

Autumn Term 2

Skills Developed

Continuing development of skills from Autumn 1.

Suggested wider reading:

  • S. Lewis: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe
  • William Golding: Lord of the Flies
  • Rudyard Kipling: The Jungle Book
  • Rudyard Kipling: Kim

Students will have the opportunity to continue studying ‘Animal Farm’ if their teacher deems this to be appropriate to ensure all the skills and knowledge that this unit aims to develop needs more time to be embedded.

As part of this unit students will also study the story of Rudyard Kipling’s son who died in the First World War. This will be through looking at the television programme ‘My Boy Jack’. Students will compare the themes of loss, control and change across this and ‘Animal Farm’ and will also study some war poetry (including other poetry by Kipling).

Texts Used:

  • My Boy Jack and other poetry from World War One
  • Animal Farm – George Orwell

Autumn 2 - Assessment:

Novel based analytical essay

Spring Term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing the content of poems and commenting on the story they are telling.
  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Analysing the structure and techniques used by poets and using this knowledge.
  • Being able to write essays that compare texts, meanings, subject, structure, style and context.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Flag (John Agard)
  • Sari (Moniza Alivi)
  • Still I Rise (Maya Angelou)
  • Caged Bird (Maya Angelou)
  • Dear Hearing World (Raymond Antrobus)
  • I come from (Dean Atta)
  • Directions (Inua Ellams)
  • I, Too(Langston Hughes)
  • Old Tongue (Jackie Kay)
  • Brian(Grace Nichols)
  • Sleeping out(Grace Nichols)
  • Like a beacon(Grace Nichols)
  • Hurricane Hits England (Grace Nichols)
  • Praise song for my mother (Grace Nichols)
  • The Law Concerning Mermaids (Kei Miller)
  • This Dog (Rabindranath Tagore)
  • The Fist (Derek Walcott)

Poetry about loss and love.

Students will experience poems that discuss ideas about love and loss. Students will develop the skills of writing about poetry and analysing language and structure.

Texts Used: Poetry anthology selected by English department and individual teachers

Spring 1 - Assessment:

Poetry SMILE analysis

Spring Term 2

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing and commenting on the effectiveness of characterisation and plot in different mediums.
  • Improving narrative and descriptive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • Improving use of tone, description and own authorial voice in own writing.

Suggested wider reading:

  • David Almond: Skellig
  • Carol Ann Duffy: The Lost Happy Endings
  • Chris van Allsburg: The Mysteries of Harris Burdick

The Arrival – A Graphic Novel by Shaun Tan.

Students will again an appreciation of how to ‘read’ a novel without words. They will gain an insight into modern oppression and change and how this affects people’s lives. They will develop their skills of empathy and discussing and writing analytically.

Texts Used: The Arrival – Shaun Tan

Spring 2 - Assessment:

The Animal Knowledge Test

Summer Term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing extracts from texts and placing these in the context of the whole text.
  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Analysing stagecraft and plays.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • The role of female characters in Shakespearean plays.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Marcia Williams: Mr. William Shakespeare’s Plays
  • Leon Garfield: Shakespeare Stories
  • Lois Burdett: Shakespeare Can be Fun

Shakespeare – Romeo and Juliet.

Students will study the play of Romeo and Juliet with a particular focus on the themes of love, loss and opression and hope and how these are presented in the play. 

Romeo and Juliet – Shakespeare

Summer 1 - Assessment:

Extract based language analysis questions

Summer Term 2

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Enhancing presentation skills and learning poetry to present by heart.
  • Analysing language choices made by poets.
  • Understanding how poetry is written to be spoken.

Suggested wider reading: Newspaper and magazine articles and fiction and poetry extracts to learn and recite

Poetry by Heart. Students will study a selection of poems of which they will learn one to present through speech. This unit of work will be supported by Drama.

Texts Used:

  • Magazine and newspaper articles
  • Fiction extracts and poetry to learn to recite

Summer 2: Speaking and Listening

Year 9 

Theme of the Year: Prejudice,Challenge and Courage

In Year 9 students will continue to develop and enhance their knowledge and skills in language analysis, creative and persuasive writing, poetry analysis and giving presentations in front of an audience. They will look at authorial intent and context in increasing detail and complexity.

Autumn Term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Improving narrative and descriptive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • Narrative structures and how they enhance story telling.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: Sherlock Holmes – Collected Short Stories
  • Charles Dickens: The Signalman
  • Chris Priestley: Mister Creecher

A study of Sherlock Holmes -

Pupils will study several of the Sherlock Holmes short stories.

This will allow pupils to develop the skills of analysing short stories and understanding the concision of expression necessary to be successful in this. They will particularly look at theme of courage here. Pupils will also get the opportunity to write their own short stories in the style of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and record their own interpretations of them.

Texts Used:

  • Range of Sherlock Holmes Short Stories
  • Range of non-fiction extracts on law and order

Autumn 1 - Assessment:

Quotation Analysis - Sherlocl Holmes

Autumn Term 2

Skills Developed

Continuing development of skills from Autumn 1.

Suggested wider reading:

  • William Hussey: Jekyll’s Mirror
  • Daniel Keyes: Flowers for Algernon
  • Lisa Williamson: The Art of Being Normal

Continuing Sherlock Holmes

Texts Used:

  • Range of Sherlock Holmes Short Stories
  • Range of non-fiction extracts on law and order

Autumn 2 - Assessments: 

Comparative essay - A screen version of Sherlock Holmes

Spring Term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Improving persuasive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • Narrative structures and how they enhance story telling.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: We Should All Be Feminists
  • Bill Bryson: Notes from a Small Island
  • Jessica Ennis: Unbelievable

Where is the Love – This unit will explore prejudice and poverty in modern Britain. Pupils will be asked to consider their viewpoints, compare texts  and write persuasive pieces across a variety of formats and for different audiences.

Texts Used: Range of non fiction extracts

Spring 1 - Assessments: 

Spring Term 2

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Improving narrative and descriptive writing by focusing on word classes and spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • The importance of context and authorial intent.
  • Narrative structures and how they enhance story telling.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Carol Drinkwater: My Story: Suffragette
  • Patricia McCormick and Malala Yousafzai: Malala: The Girl who Stood Up for Education and Changed the World
  • Suzanne Collins: The Hunger Games Trilogy

Women in and of Literature

Pupils will discover female voices and characters in literature, with a particular focus on female authors; including those from other cultures. This will enable pupils to further consider the themes of prejudice, challenge and courage. Pupils will analyse texts and explore structure and meaning.

Texts Used: Range of extracts from fiction focusing on female characters and authors

End of Unit Assessment: Extract based set of questions

Summer Term 1

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Analysing the content of poems and commenting on the story they are telling.
  • Writing analytical paragraphs that use quotations to support opinions and analysing individual word and phrases from these quotations.
  • Analysing the structure and techniques used by poets and using this knowledge to assist in writing own poems.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Extract from The Iliad, by Homer
  • Extract from Beowulf, by unknown poet
  • ‘Drummer Hodge’, by Thomas Hardy
  • ‘Many Sisters to Many Brothers’, by Rose Macaulay
  • ‘Suicide in the Trenches’, by Siegfried Sassoon
  • ‘Strange Meeting’, by Wilfred Owen
  • ‘Last Post’, by Carol Ann Duffy
  • ‘MCMXIV’, by Philip Larkin
  • ‘Pluck’, by Eva Dobell
  • ‘Platform One’, by Ted Hughes
  • ‘The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner’, by Randall Jarrell

War and unseen poetry

Pupils will study a variety of war and conflict poetry from differing perspectives. The themes of challenge and courage will be paramount here. Pupils will write about how poets have presented particular themes and ideas through language and structure and will compare poems.

Texts Used: Range of war poetry from WW1 and WW2

Summer 1 - Assessments

Summer Term 2

Skills Developed

This unit will develop skills and knowledge in:

  • Enhancing presentation skills and analysing how great speakers present to an audience.
  • Structuring and rehearsing a speech.
  • Using language to persuade and promote a point of view.

Suggested wider reading: Newspaper and magazine articles, speeches and fiction to learn and recite

Speaking and Listening Unit

This unit will allow pupils to enhance their skills in presenting an idea through speech. There will be further chances to refine this in Years 10 and 11. This unit will also be a bridging unit between key stage 3 and key stage 4 (GCSE) that will help pupils to understand how the skills they have developed throughout key stage 3 will now allow them to be successful in their English GCSE courses.

Texts Used: Range of fiction and non fiction extracts and speeches

Summer 2 - Assessments:

Speaking and Listening

KS4 English

Students follow the AQA course for the GCSE qualifications in Language and Literature. For the Literature exam, they study the Power and Conflict cluster of poetry supplied by AQA, as well as 'A Christmas Carol', 'An Inspector Calls' and 'Macbeth'. For the Language exam, they study a breadth of fiction and non-fiction texts and will practise writing in different forms for different audiences and purposes. There is no coursework component for these qualifications. Students also need to take a separate Speaking exam as part of their English Language qualification. We recommend that students purchase their own copies of Literature examination texts so that they can annotate them.

AQA GCSE English Language (8700) & GCSE English Literature (8702)

Overview of content

Students embark on their GCSE English Language and English Literature courses at the beginning of Year 10. The majority of the GCSE modules are studied during Year 10, which leaves time for revision of all of the modules in Year 11. At KS3, students have been introduced to the skills and types of questions they will experience for their GCSE examinations and are therefore familiar with what is expected of them by the time they start in Year 10. This approach at KS3 enables us to focus on developing students’ competence of reading and writing.

GCSE English Language: students will learn how to read, understand and interpret meanings of both fiction and non-fiction texts; they will learn how to analyse a writer’s use of methods; critically evaluate texts they read; and compare writers’ views and perspectives. Students will be taught how to write creatively and how to write for a specific form, purpose and audience. Accuracy skills are regularly visited within the course, particularly when we are focusing on writing skills.

GCSE English Literature: students will study a Shakespeare play, ‘Macbeth’ and a 19th Century novel, ‘A Christmas Carol’. They will be taught how to approach the exam questions for these modules, which require them to analyse a given extract and refer to other areas within the play/novel. Poetry is a heavy focus of the Literature course; students will need to know and learn a set of 15 poems from the Power & Conflict anthology and they will also be taught how to analyse poems they have not seen before, which is the focus of the ‘Unseen Poetry’ section of the Literature exam. In Year 11, students will study a modern play, ‘An Inspector Calls’ and they will be taught how to approach the exam question, which consists of two questions to choose from. These are usually separated into a character or a theme question.

The literature and language exams will be taught alongside one another thus allowing students to enjoy the texts being studied and develop the skills of analysis through them.

Year 10

Term 1

Skills and knowledge developed

In Language lessons:

Students will broaden and deepen their skills of creative writing through the medium of short stories and narrative descriptions. They will be exposed to a wider range of literary techniques and figurative devices to enhance their understanding and to enrich their skills in creative writing. As a corollary, students will broaden and deepen their skills in using grammar, punctuation, vocabulary and sentence types to achieve specific effects.

In ‘A Christmas Carol’:

Through the study of the text they will develop their skills in analysing language and structure in writing and gain an understanding of the plot, characterisation, context and authorial voice in A Christmas Carol.

Students will also enhance their skills in answering GCSE Literature extract questions.

Suggested wider reading:

Literature: A Christmas Carol

‘The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were all my business.’ Jacob Marley, A Christmas Carol.

One of the most influential texts from the 19th century, A Christmas Carol is taught at the most appropriate time of year and introduces year 11 students to the social and historical problems and attitudes in 19th century Britain. Students will explore Dickens’s incredibly rich language and description, whilst developing an understanding of the author’s purpose: social change.

Texts Used: A Christmas Carol

Language: Paper 1 – Section B (Creative Writing)

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” Maya Angelou.

Texts Used: A variety of modern and classic literature and films that allow students to develop their descriptive and narrative writing skills

Assessment: Students will take a mock exam in A Christmas Carol (an extract question) and a creative writing task from Section B of GCSE Language Paper 1

Term 2

Skills and knowledge developed

In Language lessons: Students will broaden and deepen their knowledge of different forms, with a range of purposes and for a variety of audiences.

Students will build on their skills from key stage 3 in constructing pieces of writing that reveal their perspective. They will need to consider how they use language to create tone and meaning, as well as how to structure their text to achieve their purpose.

In ‘Macbeth’:

Through their study of Macbeth students will broaden and deepen their knowledge of different forms, with a range of purposes and for a variety of audiences.

Students will build on their skills from key stage 3 in constructing pieces of writing that reveal their perspective.

They will need to consider how they use language to create tone and meaning, as well as how to structure their text to achieve their purpose. This will be achieved through considering the big ideas in Macbeth and forming well structured and considered opinions on them.

Students will also enhance their skills in answering GCSE Literature extract questions.

Suggested wider reading:

  • William Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet
  • William Faulkner: The Sound and The Fury
  • Herman Melville: Moby Dick
  • Bill Bryson: Shakespeare

Literature: Macbeth

A vivid, exciting play with plenty of action and parallels to modern-day conflict, highlighting themes, including: power, ambition and equivocation, Macbeth is the first unit of work for GCSE.

Language: Paper 2 – Section B (Transactional Writing)

‘If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write’ Martin Luther King.

Assessment: Students will take a mock exam extract question in Macbeth and a transactional writing task from Section B of Paper 2.

Term 3

Skills and knowledge developed

In the cluster poetry:

Students will be reading and exploring an anthology of 15 poems around the themes of power and conflict, in terms of war, nature, and relationships. They will develop comparisons in their analytical reading, thinking and writing about the poetry, showing their capacity to understand and comment on the poet’s use of language, structure and form to convey themes and ideas.

In unseen poetry:

Students will broaden and deepen their ability to understand and respond to a range of themed poetry that they will not have encountered before. They will broaden and deepen their understanding of the poet’s choices of language, structure and form to convey ideas and meanings.

In Language lessons:

We refer to a broad range of extracts from different sources and centuries. Students will broaden and deepen their skills of interpreting implicit meanings, analysing a writer’s language and structural choices, and be encouraged to think critically when evaluating their views in response to the fiction they read.

Through their work on poetry analysis students will be able to better see how language is used to create meaning and use this knowledge in their work on the language paper.

Students will also enhance their skills in comparing poems, writing essays and answering the questions in language paper 1, section A.

Suggested wider reading

https://www.douglaswise.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/AQA-Power-and-Conflict-Wider-Reading-Booklet.pdf

Literature: Anthology poetry (Power and Conflict) and unseen poetry

Cluster poetry (Power & Conflict)

“Poetry is the lifeblood of rebellion, revolution, and the raising of consciousness.” —Alice Walker.

Unseen Poetry

“Poetry is like a bird; it ignores all frontiers.” —Yevgeny Yevtushenko

Students will get lost in a world of imagination and the condensed power of language to evoke emotion and thought.

 

Language: Paper 1 - Section A (Reading)

Students will explore a range of exciting fictional extracts, drawn from a range of writers across the 20th and 21st century. Some of the titles include: Jamaica Inn, City of Bones, Rebecca, 1984 and A Monster Calls

Assessment: Poetry comparison essay questions and a Section A of Language Paper 1.

Year 11

Term 1

Skills and knowledge developed

In language lessons

Students will broaden their analytical skills from key stage 3 when considering the impact of language techniques, comparing writers’ perspectives and skills in summarising texts, as well as making comparisons between texts from different periods and perspectives.

Students will also develop their persuasive writing techniques and their ability to argue a point of view.

In literature lessons

Following on from investigating issues within society in the 19th century through Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, students will be encouraged to consider and respond to Priestley’s challenge to the issues faced by British society in the early 20th century.

Students will read and analyse Priestley’s play, considering the social and historical context; messages relating to morality; and the political structures within British society.

Students will broaden and develop their skills in writing analytically about the writer’s intentions and how they are evident in the choices of language, structure, form and characterisation in the play.

Suggested wider reading:

  • Arthur Miller: Death of a Salesman
  • Arthur Miller: The Crucible
  • A range of broadsheet newspapers

Literature: An Inspector Calls

An Inspector Calls

"as if we were all mixed up together like bees in a hive - community and all that nonsense"- Mr Birling.

Language: Paper 2 – Section A (Reading)

‘Reading is an exercise in empathy; an exercise in walking in someone else’s shoes for a while.’ Malorie Blackman.

Students will be introduced to a range of non-fiction texts from the 19th to the 21st century, broadening the exposure of students to the work of writers on sport, children’s charities, war and healthcare.

Assessment: Essay question on the whole of ‘An Inspector Calls’ and a Section A of Language Paper 2 (mock exam)

Term 2

Skills and knowledge developed

In both language and literature students will be revisiting and sharpening the skills they have developed over the course of their time at Melbourn Village College. The knowledge and skills necessary to achieve the very best outcomes in the exams will be the focus especially including the specific techniques to successfully attempt each question in all examinations.

Suggested wider reading: Please see downloadable documents

Revision, practice papers and spoken language catch up

Students will get the chance to redo their spoken language exam from Year 9 if they would like to

Students will be assessed using mock exams in order to develop their abilities in key skills for the examinations.

Term 3

Skills and knowledge developed

Students will continue to develop and enhance the skills necessary to achieve excellent results in their examinations.

Suggested wider reading: Please see downloadable documents

Revision and GCSE Examinations

Homework

Homework will be set once a week and the time students are expected to spend on it is sixty minutes. The types of homework set can include: wider reading around a topic/subject we are studying, research in connection with a topic, literacy, or the class teacher may set something specific in connection with the tasks being completed in lessons. At GCSE level, we expect students to be revising key modules and areas of study straight away from the beginning of Year 10.

How it is assessed

English Language is assessed by means of two written exams sat at the end of the course.

  • Each paper is 1 hour and 45 minutes long.
  • Each paper is worth half of the total marks for the course.

English Literature is assessed by means of two written exams sat at the end of the course.

  • Paper 1 is 1 hour and 45 minutes long. This paper is worth 40% of the total marks for the course.
  • Paper 2 is 2 hours and 15 minutes long. This paper is worth 60% of the total marks for the course.

Spoken Language is assessed as part of the English Language course, but it does not contribute to the overall level. Students will deliver a talk, which is assessed by their teacher. The results will be recorded separately on the GCSE certificate as a Pass, Merit, Distinction or Not Classified.

Learning outside the classroom

Students are strongly encouraged to read around the subject in English Literature, investigating different ways of understanding character, plot and context for each of the set texts. Furthermore, using film and drama, students can find news ways to enjoy the presentation of these literary works in a more rounded manner. Teachers offer a range of links and opportunities to build students’ understanding of these texts as cultural artefacts and to broaden their experience of them in the context in which they are written as well as from the perspective of a modern reader or audience.

Parental support and extension

There are a range of films or theatre productions of the texts we study at GCSE. It will be very helpful for the students to see these prior to starting their GCSEs in Year 10. (A Christmas Carol, An Inspector Calls and Macbeth.)

More information

In terms of additional help that parents and carers can provide, please make sure that if you are able to, you ensure that your child uses a local public library to access as wide a range of reading material as possible. This is, of course, free. A dictionary and thesaurus are also excellent resources for students to have and to become accustomed to using when completing independent written tasks.

Everybody is somebody