Year 7 Outline
The first unit of Year 7 is a transition unit called ‘Moving Up’, which ensures students are prepared for the challenges of Secondary School; they will be exploring Gothic Literature, enjoy and respond to a wide range of poetry, be introduced to the study of Media and Film and investigate how the English language has changed over time. Students also read shared texts (the class reader) to extend and develop their reading skills.
Further to this, students have a library lesson where they get the opportunity to have a one to one interview with their class teacher about their current reading. This motivates students to work on personal reading targets.
We aim to develop students’ confidence and ability to speak to a group of people, and to talk and discuss issues as part of a team. We follow the Philosophy for Children programme, which encourages the formulation and discussion of enquiry questions, as a tool to promote thinking skills.
Year 8 Outline
In Year 8, there is a focus on classic literature, as students will study a Shakespeare play in the form of A Midsummer Night’s Dream or Much Ado about Nothing, be introduced to Dickens with A Christmas Carol, while a unit on Greek Myths allows students explore stories from antiquity. Moreover, students have the opportunity to learn research and study skills in the active Media and Journalism unit, while students will also study Protest Poetry. Students will also have the opportunity to engage with external speakers including a novelist, a poet and a journalist.
Reading for pleasure continues to be an important focus, as students take part in the Reading Festival. They have the opportunity to share resources they have made inspired by their reading, these are displayed during an active festival experience and prizes are awarded for creative and inspired offerings.
Year 9 Outline
Students in Year 9 read at least one novel or other text in class during the year, and we continue to encourage students to read independently. They will study a variety of other topics, including: Romeo and Juliet; World War One Poetry; Victorian Ghost Stories and the Canterbury Tales.
There is a key focus on independence and learning outside the classroom, a book club is introduced this year which allows students to read a wide variety of 19th Century novels which is crucial for their GCSE studies. There are also theatre trips and a visit to Stratford Upon Avon to research Shakespeare. Students who really want to get ahead can join the GCSE Ready afterschool session to prepare for the English Literature and English Language GCSE Courses.
During each unit, students are assessed and given targets that clearly explain how they can improve their work and what skills they need to focus on. Throughout the year, students are assessed using criteria developed from National Curriculum Levels. This data is used to monitor student progress and intervention is provided on a case by case basis.
Grouping and Teaching/Learning Style
In Year 7, students are taught in tutor groups, while Year 8 and Year 9, students continue to be taught in mixed ability bands apart from the highest achievers who are taught in an A band; a variety of data is used to create the groups including Teacher Assessment, Spelling Age, Reading Age, Verbal CATs scores and Test Results.
Lessons are fast paced and engaging: teachers use a variety of techniques based on the latest educational thinking to ensure challenge and engagement. Pair and group work encourage students to develop their confidence and reflection on learning and understanding the criteria for success are regular features of lessons. Each student is supported and challenged in order to reach their individual potential.