English is a skill for life, and we aim to ensure that all students learn to communicate effectively in speech and writing. The English department strives to help each student to understand and respond imaginatively and critically to what they hear, read and experience in a variety of media. Students are encouraged to enjoy both modern and classical literature in all its forms, and we are lucky to have the Learning Resource Centre to support our schemes of learning and help cultivate a love of reading. We equip students for the varying demands of modern society, whilst also supporting them in becoming independent learners.
At KS4, students successfully take both GCSE English Language and Literature, and many go on to study English at A Level and beyond. Students leave with a thorough grounding in English and, we hope, love of literature.
There are English “master-classes” and “clinics” available on Monday lunchtimes at KS4, designed to support and extend students in completing their coursework and prepare for exams. We also hope to have a school newspaper in production early in September, run by the students, for the students!
Key Stage 3
In response to national changes implemented by the Department for Education, the English Department have created a new, dynamic and challenging curriculum for our Key Stage 3 students. Our aim is to prepare students with the skills necessary for success at GCSE. A key aspect of our teaching is to embed examination technique at an early stage. The four main areas for English are; Reading, Writing, Grammar and Vocabulary and Spoken English.
We have introduced an innovative assessment system, in line with changes to GCSE assessment – with use of 1-9 levels (9 being the highest). All Key Stage 3 students will be levelled in this form, covering 6 Assessment Objectives throughout the year.
As part of our new curriculum, students will study seminal world Literature, including ‘A Christmas Carol’. To support this, students will be visiting a theatre to see the novel performed as a play. Students will also read two Shakespeare plays, study Gothic Literature as well as a range of contemporary and non-fiction texts. Students will develop their understanding of our use of language and continue their development of writing skills.
We are also lucky to have the Learning Resource Centre to support our schemes of learning for reading: and students in years seven and eight have a fortnightly reading lesson in the library which is managed by our LRC manager, Mrs. Edwards. Students also participate in special induction sessions at the start of their school career, in order to learn about the procedures for borrowing books and using the facilities (such as the computers) to support their private study.
The BBC Skillswise website has an extensive literacy section with games, tests and certificates
BBC Bitesize: For tips on reading fiction and non-fiction texts, developing communication skills and writing
We take part in the Carnegie Shadowing Scheme and further details about some of the books that are recommended can be found at
Key Stage 4
English Language and Literature; English
The English department follow the AQA Specifications for English, English Language and English Literature. Typically the top four sets will do the combined English Language and Literature course in four timetabled hours a week, with an expected 1-2 hours of homework a week to support their study. For some the English only course is deemed to be more suitable as it allows them to focus more clearly on the GCSE that the government, employers and further education providers deem to be the most important to progression.
A detailed breakdown of the specifications can be found at: http://web.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english.php
A good grade in GCSE English is an essential passport to all levels of higher education and most jobs. English at Christ the King provides an interesting and stimulating course that allows students to develop their communication skills and enhance their understanding of the way written and spoken language works. There are opportunities for creative and personal writing as well as in depth exploration of media and other types of text.
- Written examination 40%
- Section A: Reading tasks based on three reading sources 20%
- Section B: One longer and one shorter writing task 20%
- Written controlled assessment 40%
- Speaking and listening controlled assessment 20% (Presenting – Discussing and Listening – Role Play)
The English Language written controlled assessment assignments are based on:
- An Inspector Calls (Extended Reading)
- Two Creative Writing Tasks
- Spoken Language study
English Literature (4710)
The English literature course explores a wide variety of texts and genres. All students study at least one play by Shakespeare (Macbeth), a pre-20th century prose text (Frankenstein), a modern text from another culture (Of Mice and Men), a modern drama text (An Inspector Calls) and a wide variety of poetry based on the theme of “Conflict”.
- Two written examinations 75%
- Written controlled assessment 25%
The written examinations are as follows:
- Unit 1: Exploring modern text:
- Section A: Modern drama (An Inspector Calls)
- Section B: Exploring Cultures (Of Mice and Men)
- Unit 2: Poetry Across Time “Conflict”
The English Literature controlled assessment assignments compare:
Shakespeare’s Macbeth and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
The English only course allows students to focus on demonstrating their proficiency with functional English, as well as the opportunity to investigate and analyse language and to use it creatively.
English is also assessed through a combination of external examination and controlled assessment.
- Examination 40%
- Controlled Assessment 60%
The examination comprises of:
- Reading tasks based on three reading sources 20%
- One longer and one shorter writing task 20%
The controlled assessment consists of:
- Speaking and Listening 20% (Presenting – Discussing and Listening – Role Play)
- Understanding Creative texts – literary reading 20% (Three tasks based on a play by Shakespeare, a text from the English Literary Heritage and a text from a different culture.)
- Producing creative texts 20% (Two creative writing tasks)
As previously mentioned a good grade in any of the above GCSE English qualifications is an essential passport to all levels of higher education and most jobs. The combined English Language and Literature course is an excellent grounding for the A level combined course at Christ the King Sixth Form; a B grade allows for smooth transition to A-level, although a C grade does not preclude a hard working and determined student.
BBC Bitesize English:
BBC Bitesize English Literature:
Key Stage 5
ENGLISH LANGUAGE & LITERATURE COMBINED COURSE
The English department are proud to offer this well established and highly successful combined English Language and Literature course. The department feels it allows students the chance to enhance their career options in regards to further study at University, whilst also equipping them with the necessary skills to study either Literature or Language as part of their further education. Typically 95% of students will meet their target grade and up to 40% may exceed their target (based on results in 2011 & 2012).
Awarding Body: WJEC
Students will study poems, exploring comparisons and connections between set texts and an unseen text; they will be encouraged to find points of comparison independently. Students also study in depth a modern novel: “The Time Traveller’s Wife” by Audrey Niffenegger and will also be required to find interesting points of comparison with H. G. Wells’ “The Time Machine”, which acts as a partner text. Candidates submit a folder of coursework that will be approximately 3000 words long, and will allow them to demonstrate creative writing skills after studying a wide range of both literary and non-literary texts. Students will produce one literary piece of creative writing, one piece of non-literary writing (journalism, information texts, travel writing etc) and an accompanying commentary on both pieces.
The second year of study again offers a combination of texts and approaches which are designed to challenge and inspire, with students expected to articulate responses which are both creative and informed. They are required to study two plays and produce texts for performance. They are assessed on their overall understanding of texts in the synoptic unit.
In order to be successful at this level, students must demonstrate a commitment to, and enthusiasm for the subject, as well as being keen readers.
Minimum entry requirements:
We would expect successful candidates to have gained a minimum grade C at English and English Literature, although a B in at least one is preferable.
Further information: see Mr. J. Fry Miss J. Collins Mrs. P. Bingham, or visit:
What careers and university courses does it lead to?
English at A-level is a very versatile course as you learn key analytical skills required on many university courses. Students who study this A Level go on to read a wide variety of subjects such as English Language, English Literature, Journalism, Law, History, Media Studies or Modern Foreign Languages at university. The department are keen to advise students of the suitability of courses in terms of their interests and future career plans. Future career options might include: Multi-media Journalism, Publishing, Translator, Lawyer, Public Relations, Librarian, Business Communications and…of course…Teaching!
A summary of sentences
Some useful terminology, but like all Wikipedia sites take what is useful and don’t assume it’s right, cross reference it!
What will I be studying?
AS level modules
LL1: Examination May/June
- Section A: Poetry pre 1900 and unseen text
- Section B: Prose
“The Time Traveller’s Wife” Audrey Niffenegger and “The Time Machine” H. G. Wells
LL2: Coursework 3000 word folder
- Fiction 1000 words
- Non-Fiction 1000 words
- Commentary 1000 words
A2 level modules
LL3: Coursework 3000 word folder
- Section A: Dramatic texts in context
- Compare Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet with F.G. Lorca’s Blood Wedding
- Section B: Producing texts for performance
- Creative writing: 2 pieces “written to be spoken” and a 500 word commentary
LL4: Examination June/July
- Section A: Comparative analysis of texts Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
- Section B: Reviewing approaches