The English department is a thriving, creative and dynamic environment.
We are committed to improving pupil literacy and oracy and lessons are vibrant, interactive and centred around students' learning in an atmosphere where pupils are comfortable taking risks and voicing ideas.
The department consists of seven teachers ranging from the innovation of newly qualified staff to the experience of senior managers and English lessons are taught along a suite of 5 classrooms, all fitted with Interactive boards and sound facilities, with 2 suites of computers for pupil learning.
Lessons are engaging and exciting and we strive to keep innovating - merging studies of canonical literature with more contemporary works so that the topics covered can range from the study of themes in plays by Shakespeare to an appreciation of our multi-cultural society in the works of Benjamin Zephaniah or Moniza Alvi.
We also embrace new technologies as an indispensable learning tool and have incorporated moving image, pod-casting, film-making into the curriculum at all levels in order to move students on in line with the world around them.
English through the Key Stages
As a department, we work collaboratively to keep our long term year plans fresh and to harness the creativity of our cohort. Throughout KS3 pupils can expect to experience the study of literature, moving image and topical issues and they will respond to these stimuli through a balance of reading, writing and oral presentations. We have an expectation that throughout KS3 pupils will make 2 NC levels of progress and the end of KS levelling is reached through an assessment of a range of pupil work using APP National Strategy materials.
Throughout KS4 pupils can expect to study for the WJEC exam board GCSEs in English and Literature; 2 separate GCSEs. The range of literature studied varies from much loved texts such as Of Mice and Men and Romeo and Juliet to poems from a variety of cultures and more contemporary plays. There is also lots of scope for creativity and creative response through units which teach pupils descriptive and narrative writing skills.
At all key stages, banding in English is fluid and takes into account student diversity, individual qualities and group dynamics as well as academic ability and there is mobility between groups.
English Literature is an extremely popular choice at KS5 and the AS and A2 courses have an impressive success rate, with passes at grade A-C not falling below 80% in the past 5 years! AT KS5 we encourage students to really take charge of their learning and that of their peers, encouraging them to make presentations and short films in response to questions on texts. At KS5 the programme of study remains creative, with students encouraged to make creative and critical responses to the texts studied.
Film Studies at KS4 and KS5
This new course is also now being offered and run by the English department.
These courses are centred around the study of universal ideas and issues through film.
The films which are studied range from popular disaster movies such as "28 days later" to more independent productions such as "Amelie" or anime' such as "Spirited Away".
The course is offered as an extra-curricular or fully timetabled course at AS. Once again, we encourage creativity through this course and some exemplary coursework has been produced.
The English department is committed to the cultural enrichment of its cohort.
Throughout the year, a number of poetry competitions are run and perhaps the most prestigious of these is the Inner London Poetry SLAM, a nationwide spoken poetry competition performed in a London theatre.
In addition to this, we are a member of the Cineclub and in 2008, won the prestigious BFI Cineclub Film challenge with our short film, Head Boy.
Cinema and theatre trips are also run throughout the year in order to bring to life the themes and ideas which are studied in this subject.