English

“The best moments in reading are when you come across something – a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things – which you had thought special and particular to you. Now here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out and taken yours.”

Alan Bennett, The History Boys

Our aim is to instil a passion for English Literature in our students which will stay with them for life. In English Language we aim to empower students so that literacy is never a barrier in their lives.

We are committed to delivering active learning where students take ownership of their own progress and are supported by a team of enthusiastic and skilled English teachers. We wish to instil a love of both the English language and great works of literature in our students through our enthusiasm, enjoyment and example.

As part of the learning journey for our students, we ensure we combine curriculum, cultural and enrichment opportunities to support the development of the individual. We understand the importance of English to our students and incorporate influences from Key Stage 2 to Key stage 5 in order to support progression at Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4.

The English Department’s primary purpose is to ensure students develop high order speaking, listening, reading and writing skills so that students can aspire to be the best they can be; this means they will be successful both in the school setting and the wider world.

We are committed to delivering active learning where students take ownership of their own progress and are supported by a team of enthusiastic and skilled English teachers. We wish to instil a love of both the English language and great works of literature in our students through our enthusiasm, enjoyment and example.

As part of the learning journey for our students, we ensure we combine curriculum, cultural and enrichment opportunities to support the development of the individual. We understand the importance of English to our students and incorporate influences from Key Stage 2 to Key stage 5 in order to support progression at Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4.

Students across Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 study four hours of English per week with Year 7s and selected Year 8s and 9s also studying additional lessons focussed on reading across the curriculum (Excel). We ensure that we are equipping students with the skills needed for Key Stage 4 from the very start of Key Stage 3. In Year 9, students start to explicitly focus on Key Stage 4 content.

Extra-curricular opportunities allow a love of English to continue outside of the classroom. Our students are involved in reading initiatives such as ‘The Big Book Quiz’ and ‘Bolton Literature Award’; speaking and listening competitions including the ‘Rotary Youth Speaks’, and in house writing competitions.

Key Stage 3 – What we do:

Our Key Stage 3 Schemes of Learning offer a broad and balanced range of stimulus whilst being mapped to Key Stage 4. We have also worked with local primary schools to ensure we have a clear path of progression for students joining us in Year 7. Each Key Stage 3 group have a topic text as a focus and reading, writing, and speaking and listening skills, are often developed and mastered through the stimulus of these texts. In writing lessons, students master writing skills in terms of content and organisation as well as the technical construction of writing.

In year 7 and 8 we use a range of texts to inspire our learners and ensure they have the grounding for success in our subject. Both fiction and non-fiction texts are covered in the curriculum.

Oracy is at the heart of developing our students’ confidence and communication skills. We embrace the opportunities the subject allows to discuss and debate topical issues. As such, this ensures the social, moral and spiritual development of students is embedded with English to encourage students to grow into well-rounded citizens.

Key Stage 4 – What we do:

Students in Year 9, 10 and Year 11 study the Eduqas specifications for GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature.

Year 9 and 10 are studying A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Other texts studied in Year 10 include An Inspector Calls by J.B Priestley, Lord of the Flies by William Golding, Woman in Black by Susan Hill and a range of Anthology poems. Students study Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet or Macbeth for their English Literature examination. We also incorporate English Language skills in our Year 9 and 10 studies.

Year 11 are studying a key text in order to transfer and develop relevant comprehension skills for English Language. These include some of the class teacher’s personal favourites, such as To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald and Animal Farm by George Orwell to name but a few. Writing skills are explicitly taught in order to master specific text types when writing for particular purposes and audiences as required.

We ensure students are working at a proactive pace and the challenge of learning stretches students beyond their own perceptions.
The daily learning diet of our Key Stage 4 students ensures they build on prior learning, acquire the knowledge necessary to succeed and are capable of being robust learners ready for the world beyond Westhoughton High School.

Key Stage 3:

What will I learn?
What will I do?
Year 7

Term 1Play: A Christmas Carol
A study of the writer’s craft; learning how to craft non-fiction/transactional texts; have a working understanding of parts of speech; subject/verb agreement and tenses.
Reading lessons:
Explore plot; characterisation and themes, locating and retrieving evidence; inferring and making judgements about the text. Students will be taught how to skim and scan and effectively track texts.
Writing lessons:
1. One writing challenge per half term
2. Language and layout features of formal and informal letters.
Term 2Novel: The Boy in The Striped Pyjamas/ Private Peaceful
A study of the writers’ craft; learning how to craft narratives, speeches and articles; have a working understanding of apostrophe usage, adverbs, comparative and superlative adjectives, nouns, plural nouns and the genitive case.
Reading Lessons:
Understand the importance of social and historical context; develop ability to locate, retrieve and infer about characters and themes; be able to use technical vocabulary to discuss mood and atmosphere. Skimming and scanning and tracking techniques will be revisited and the importance of charting whole texts, embedded.
Writing lessons:
1. One writing challenge per half term.
2. Language and layout features of narratives, speeches and newspaper articles.
Term 3Play: Dracula
A study of the writer’s craft; consolidating understanding of articles; learning how to craft reviews and leaflets; have a working understanding of conjunctions and sentence construction.
Reading lessons:
Continue to strengthen location and retrieval skills; build on ability to infer about characters, themes, moods and atmospheres; begin to analyse words, phrases and devices for impact, using technical vocabulary to give responses greater authority; move towards critical evaluations. Skimming and scanning and charting whole texts will remain a focus.
Writing lessons:
1. One writing challenge per half term.
2. Focus on technical accuracy; revise language and layout features of Newspaper articles; learn language and layout features of reviews and leaflets.
Year 8

Term 1 Play: The Tempest
A study of the writer’s craft; learning how to craft effective descriptions; developing skills in narrative and speech writing; have a working understanding of compound and complex sentence structures; noun appositive phrases; conjunctive adverbs and semi-colons.
Reading lessons:
Securing an appreciation of the significance of context; exploration of plot, characterisation and themes, locating and retrieving evidence to support responses; ensuring quotations are apt, inferring, analysing and evaluating. Further opportunities given to students to chart texts.
Writing lessons:
1. Weekly writing challenges.
2. The language of effective description; narrative structure and perspective; rhetorical devices.
Term 2Novel: The Prince of Mist
A study of the writer’s craft; development work on narrative structures; the language and layout of travel blogs, travel articles, reviews and leaflets; have a working understanding of the function of sentences and of using sentence structures impactfully - anaphora; hypophora; anadiplosis; analepsis; prolepsis.
Further development of retrieval, analytical and tracking skills with an understanding of how writers make use of language and structure to create tension. The presentation of characters’ relationships will also be explored. The use of technical vocabularly will be embedded and development work done on the tone of academic essays .
Writing lessons:
1. One writing challenge per half term
2. Language and layout features of blogs, travel articles, reviews and leaflets
Term 3Poetry: an anthology of different forms of poetry.
A transference of the writer’s craft skills to the poetic form; links between texts to the contexts in which they were written. How writer’s craft pieces ensuring correct terminology has been employed; revisiting formal /informal letters and articles; using the full range of punctuation impactfully; further work on effective sentence structuring.
Reading lessons:
There will be a greater focus on analysis and the evaluation of poetic and structural devices; the language of comparison will be introduced and students will need to consider the subject matters being dealt with by the poets; their messages and the moods they create, being clear about the impact on the reader.
Writing lessons:
1. One writing challenge per half term
2. Focus on technical accuracy; revision of language and layout features of formal/informal letters and articles.

Key Stage 4: Eduqas GCSE English Literature and GCSE English Language

What will I do?
What will I learn?
Year 9

Term 1A Christmas Carol
Analytical work on character, theme and setting.
Exploration of Victorian London to link context to text.
Weekly Writing Challenge.
Language analysis
Thematic tracking
Contextual overview
Understanding of form and structure.
How to evaluate Dickens’ purpose and the impact on the reader at the time and the reader now.
Term 2The Woman in Black/An Inspector Calls/Lord of the Flies
Analytical work on character, theme and setting.
Examination of plot and structure.
Understanding the conventions of form.
Weekly Writing Challenge.
Language analysis
Thematic tracking
Plot overview
Understanding of form and structure.
How to evaluate the writer’s purpose and the impact on the reader.
Term 3Macbeth/Romeo and Juliet
Introduction to studying Shakespeare at GCSE.
Analytical work on character and theme.
Examination of plot and structure.
Understanding Shakespearean play structures and the conventions of tragedy.
Weekly Writing Challenge.
Language analysis
Thematic tracking
Plot overview
Understanding of form and structure.
How to evaluate Shakespeare’s purpose and the impact on the audience.
Year 10

Term 1 Eduqas Anthology Poetry
Read a selection of poetry from the Anthology linked by theme and context.
Explore central thematic links in poetry, such as; place, time, conflict, love and nature.
About the individual poets and the times in which they were writing.
Analysis of language devices.
Form and structure of poetry.
How to compare two poems.
Weekly Writing Challenge
Term 2Revision of all components for Literature.
Preparation for the Unseen Poetry Exam.
Revision Skills
Recall Skills
Essay Writing Prep
Exam Skills
Weekly Writing Challenge
Term 3Revision of all components for Literature.
Preparation for the Unseen Poetry Exam.
Revision Skills
Recall Skills
Essay Writing Prep
Exam Skills
Weekly Writing Challenge

The English Literature GCSE will be taken at the end of year 10.
(2 exam papers)
Year 11

Term 1Eduqas English Language Component 1: Prose reading.
Read a class novel, form the following selection:
To Kill a Mockingbird
Of Mice and men
Heroes
Lord of the Flies.
Use the prose reading to practise exam skills such as; retrieval, inference, analysis, synthesis and evaluation.
Eduqas English Language Component 2: Transactional Writing.
Using the class reading text as stimulus to write a range of transactional pieces in preparation for the exam.
How to answer the 5 question types for the Eduqas English Language Component 1: Prose reading.
Resilience in dealing with an unseen text, based on the skills acquired during the class reader.

How to approach each writing text type on the Eduqas English Language Component 2: Transactional Writing paper. Skills practised will including:
- Writing for Purpose and Audience.
- Using persuasive devices
- Using rhetorical devices
- Accuracy with spelling, punctuation and grammar.
- Sentence types used to create meaning and effect.
Term 2Eduqas English Language Component 2: 21st Century and 19th Century Non-Fiction Reading.
Read and study a range of non-fiction text from the modern day and from the Victorian period. Looking at the range of devices a text uses to engage, inform and persude the reader.
Eduqas English Language Component 1: Prose, Creative Writing.
Using the class reading text as stimulus to write a range of transactional texts in preparation for the exam.
How to answer the 6 question types for the Eduqas English Language Component 2: 21st Century and 19th Century Non-Fiction Reading.
Resilience in dealing with two unseen texts, how to compare two texts.

Eduqas English Language Component 1: Prose, Creative Writing.
How to approach each creative writing task type on the Eduqas English Language Component 1: Prose, Creative Writing. Skills practised will include:
- Using varied sentence openers
- Paragraphing for plot development.
- Ambitious vocabulary.
- Sentencing for effect.
Term 3Revision of key skills.
Revision of techniques.
Practice questions.
All skills covered in preparation for the GCSE English Language Exam.