We want our curriculum to engage students’ curiosity about reading, writing and communicating with each other as well as the wider world. It is our belief that an empowering English curriculum furnishes all pupils with the chance to read and understand a variety of stories, poems and plays that enables learners to play a full part in society as active citizens. We choose our texts because they have an underlying theme of social responsibility which is key for our students to take away. Ultimately our aim is to develop student’s confidence with literacy and instil them with a love of reading and writing. As a result, students will expand their vocabulary and gain a better understanding of language and its evolution. We want to build their confidence as citizens to make informed decisions throughout their lives.
We teach English skills and knowledge required for students to achieve appropriate qualifications and those applicable to life beyond school. For example, by modelling academic writing and oracy. The texts are carefully chosen due to their thematic links, in which the teaching of the contexts is able to be fluent and comparable and allow for exploration, discussion and debate without cognitive overload. The texts themselves are mini-schemas.
We interleave Literature and Language so that students can apply the skills to the context they have learned. Our curriculum allows us to teach the AQA Poetry Anthology by closely linking it to our core texts.
In KS3, students are exposed to a broad, intellectual range of texts which allows them to experience language and literature and its effects and intentions. The texts on offer in KS3 allow for us to provide culture-rich schema, with clear vertical links and a series of content that allows the relevant knowledge for students to be fluent and confident speakers, readers and writers. We engage students in English by making content relevant and careers focused.
Learning approaches are inclusive and personalised to individual needs. We endeavour to teach context and background knowledge to texts first before exploring the skills. This includes completing daily recaps, cross text links, live modelling for students and ensuring the cognitive load is not overwhelming. We use a what/how/why approach to all Language and Literature analysis. These approaches underpin the development of concepts and skills that support students to remember what they have been taught and secondly apply it.