Key Stage 4 Courses Key Stage 5 Courses
AQA GCSE English Language (8702) OCR A Level English Literature (H472)
AQA GCSE English Literature (8700)  

Why do we study English?

English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others, and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually.  Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; pupils who do not learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently are effectively disenfranchised.

The English Department Team 

Click here to see the staff members in our English department.

The English Programme of Study

The English Programme of Study

KEY STAGE 3: Years 7, 8 & 9

Year 7

  • Autumn Term 1: ‘Language Across Time’ (Fiction Unit)
  • Autumn Term 2: 'Suspense & Fear' - Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black (Fiction Unit)
  • Spring Term 1: ‘Exploring Writing’ (Technical Accuracy Unit)
  • Spring Term 2: ‘Power of Representation’ (Non-fiction writing Unit)
  • Summer Term 1: ‘Culture and Identity’ Poetry
  • Summer Term 2: 'Literature through Social Commentary' - William Shakespeare’s The Tempest (Play)

Year 8

  • Autumn Term 1: ‘Characterisation of Villains’ (Fiction Unit)
  • Autumn Term 2: 'Hope in Chaos' - Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games (Fiction Unit: Novel)
  • Spring Term 1: ‘Comparison Through the Ages’ (Non-fiction Unit)
  • Spring Term 2: 'Division & Struggle' – Benjamin Zephaniah’s Refugee Boy (Stage Play)
  • Summer Term 1: 'Words of Love' - Relationships Poetry
  • Summer Term 2: 'The Quality of Mercy' - William Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice (Play)

Year 9

  • Autumn Term 1 : 'Uncovering Uncomfortable Truths' - Mildread Taylor's Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry & George Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men (Fiction Unit: Novel)
  • Autumn Term 2: 'Gender and Characterisation' - Women in Shakespeare (extracts from Shakespearean Plays)
  • Spring Term 1: 'New Horizons, New Voices' (Reading Non-fiction Unit - STEM themed)
  • Spring Term 2: ‘Victorian Stories’ (C19th Fiction and creative writing)
  • Summer Term 1: ‘Literary Shorts’ (Fiction Unit)
  • Summer Term 2: ‘Explorations of Human Emotions’ (Poetry Unit)

KEY STAGE 4: Years 10 &11

Year 10

  • Autumn 1: Modern Fiction (Play): J.B. Priestley’s An Inspector Calls
  • Autumn 2: 19th Century Novel: Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol
  • Spring Term 1 William Shakespeare’s Macbeth
  • Spring Term 2: GCSE English Language Paper 2
  • Summer Term 1: Power and Conflict Poetry
  • Summer Term 2: Power and Conflict Poetry: Comparative Analysis and Unseen Poetry Unit

Year 11

  • Autumn 1: GCSE English Language Paper 1
  • Autumn 2: Revision on A Christmas Carol and An Inspector Calls
  • Spring 1: Revision on Macbeth
  • Spring 2: Revision on Poetry Anthology/Unseen Poetry and English Language Paper 2
  • Summer Term 1: Revision (topics to be decided and covered by individual classroom teachers to suit the needs of their students)

KEY STAGE 5: Years 12 & 13

Year 12

  • Autumn Term 1: Shakespeare and the Renaissance Tragedy
  • Autumn Term 1: Investigating the Gothic
  • Autumn Term 2: William Shakespeare’s Hamlet
  • Autumn Term 2: Bram Stoker’s Dracula
  • Spring Term 1: William Shakespeare’s Hamlet
  • Spring Term 1: Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber
  • Spring Term 2: ‘Medieval Studies’ (extracts)
  • Spring Term 2: Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber
  • Summer 1: Pre-1900 Poetry: Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Merchant’s Prologue and Tale
  • Summer Term 1: (Coursework): Intertextual Studies
  • Summer Term 2: Drama and Poetry: Pre-1900 – A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen
  • Summer Term 2: Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire

Year 13

  • Autumn 1: Sarah Moss’ Ghost Wall
  • Autumn 1: Carol-Ann Duffy’s poetry
  • Autumn 2: Revision: Hamlet
  • Autumn 2: Comparison coursework
  • Spring 1: Exam preparation – A comparative essay (Dracula and A Bloody Chamber)
  • Spring 1: Exam preparation – A comparative essay (A Doll’s House and Merchant’s Tale)
  • Spring 2: Exam preparation – Genre Study: The Gothic
  • Spring 2: Exam preparation – Shakespeare’s Hamlet
  • Summer Term: Tailored revision (content to be decided by individual teachers)


Important textbooks, resources and websites we use at each Key Stage

Key Stage 3

  • Year 7 - Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black, William Shakespeare’s The Tempest
  • Year 8 - Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games, Malorie Blackman’s Noughts and Crosses (the stage play) and William Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice 
  • Year 9 - Literary Shorts Anthology and Poetry Anthology (resources provided by the school)

Wider reading lists are provided to all students.

Key Stage 4

  • Year 10 - Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, William Shakespeare's Macbeth and J.B. Priestley’s An Inspector Calls; York Notes Revision Guides and CGP Study Guides (Available for purchase in school)
  • Year 11 - As above

KS4 Revision Resources:

  • York Notes Revision Guides and CGP Guides (sold at school).
  • Set texts listed above (sold at school)
  • Knowledge Organisers and Progress Packs (provided for free by the English Department)
  • BBC Bitesize
  • Shmoop.com (revision website)
  • Youtube.com (providing moving images of the text when relevant)

KS5 Revision Resources:

  • William Shakespeare's Hamlet
  • Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House
  • Geoffrey Chaucer's A Merchant's Prologue and Tale
  • Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber
  • Bram Stoker's Dracula.
  • Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire
  • Carol-Ann Duffy Poetry Anthology
  • Sarah Moss’ Ghost Wall

Enrichment Opportunities in English

The English Department run various trips across year groups and throughout the year, from theatre trips to research workshops at the British Library (6th Form/KS5). These are organised as opportunities arise. Examples of these include:

  • Theatre Trips (The Globe Theatre)
  • Jack Petchey ‘Speak Out’ Challenge
  • Visiting Authors
  • Poetry Slam Competition
  • World Book Day Activities
  • Creative Writing Workshops
  • Strawberry Hill House Visit (KS5)

P4C (Philosophy for Children)

Every student in KS3 (Year 7-9) partake in an hour of P4C every fortnight. These lessons are discussion-focused, lead by the teacher, and allows students to engage with complex and critical wider issues within society. The aim of P4C is to develop critical thinking and widen the cultural capital of all of our students, that they may carry into the wider world the ability to communicate, listen to, interpret and respect a range of opinions outside their own.