English at KS3
At Babington we have developed a KS3 curriculum in English that we feel prepares our students very well for the examinations they will face at the end of year 11, but which also means students will get to read plenty of literature.
The curriculum we have developed includes opportunities for students to read a range of modern and classic fiction, three sets of themed poetry and several plays. In addition, we have identified several half terms where students concentrate on reading non-fiction texts critically.
We have mapped out the curriculum so that students cover all of the essential skills they need in order to succeed at GCSE.
Students will be formally assessed in English each half term. They will carry out tasks that have been developed using the same wording or format as the tasks used at GCSE. In addition, students will be regularly given feedback on their written accuracy, to ensure that their spelling, punctuation and grammar improves.
Students will be set regular homework in English through an online medium which is an assessment, homework and revision resource that will support them with all aspects of their English learning.
English at KS4
GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature
At Babington, we aim for all students to study English Language and English Literature at GCSE.
We offer the AQA syllabuses for both English Language and English Literature.
In summary, in English Language, students will develop an ability to read critically and to respond to unseen literary extracts and non-fiction texts. They will learn to write for an audience and purpose and will develop their creative writing skills, too. In Literature, students will study one pre-twentieth century text, one modern text, a whole Shakespeare play, a collection of themed poetry. Students will also develop the ability to respond to poems that they have never seen before.
Typically, the texts studied at Babington are:
An Inspector Calls by J B Priestley
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
Romeo and Juliet or Macbeth by William Shakespeare
A collection of poetry from the AQA poetry anthology
Step Up to English
If we feel that a student is ill-suited to studying English at GCSE level, we will offer them the chance to take an alternative qualification. Step Up to English is a course designed by AQA and offers an Entry Level qualification and helps students to develop basic literacy skills and to improve their confidence using the English language.
Trips, visits and residential opportunities
The English faculty has offered many opportunities to students to take part in curriculum related visits.
In recent academic years we have offered the following visit opportunities:
Whole year group trips to the theatre for years 10 and 11 to watch An Inspector Calls
Theatre visits to Curve theatre to watch Shakespeare performances
Theatre visits for year 9 students to view performances related to the texts they are studying
We currently run a successful writing group for interested students in conjunction with First Story. The group works with a professional poet to develop their writing and eventually produce a published poetry anthology.