The English Department seeks to equip all girls with a wide range of stimulating learning activities which will facilitate their ability to communicate effectively in writing and in talking and listening, for a variety of purposes and audiences. Teaching up to Key Stage 4 (Years 8 – 12) is in accordance with the National Curriculum Programmes of Study.
At Key Stage 3 an integrated approach to the teaching of English and English Literature is adopted. The programme is based on discrete units of work which provide assessment opportunities in reading, writing, talking and listening. Pupils are introduced to the wide range of skills involved in the English Programme. Classes will study novels, poetry and plays as a basis for discussion, role plays, close reading and written tasks in a variety of forms. Research into Shakespeare’s life and theatre in year 8 progresses to the study of two plays in the following years.
The study of Functional Language is developed through varied means, for example, advertising and information leaflets. Pupils are prepared for their Key Stage 3 Standard Assessment Test and their coursework is ascribed a level in Talking and Listening, Reading and Writing.
At Key Stage 4 girls are prepared for two GCSE examinations: English with English Literature or English with Drama.
In Year 13 girls may choose to follow a GCE AS level course in English Literature. Upon successful completion of Year 13 the girls go on to study to Advanced Level in Year 14.
English Literature is a popular choice in Years 13 and 14. There can be an opportunity for girls to resit the GCSE examinations in Year 13 if necessary as procedure to Higher Education on leaving school demands a qualification in English at GCSE level. ICT is incorporated into the teaching of English at all levels where appropriate.
In every year, emphasis is placed on Secretarial Skills. Pupils’ writing is corrected regularly and every encouragement is given to those who experience difficulties.
The Department is particularly keen to try to ensure, by its extended influence, a high standard of literacy across the full range of subjects studied by the girls.