As English teachers, our core aim is to instil a love of literature and a passion for the English Language into our students. We endeavour to achieve this through the study of a range of fiction and non-fiction texts at a whole class level. We also embed independent reading into our lessons, encouraging students to make use of Crispin’s well-stocked library.

As a core subject, and one which impacts students’ learning across the curriculum, we also strive to equip our pupils with the skills in reading, writing, and oral communication which will allow them to express their ideas and opinions across the school and out into the wider world.

We offer a number of enrichment opportunities within the subject including; theatre trips, a visit to the London Dungeons and The Globe Theatre to support the KS4 curriculum, Public Speaking competitions, World Book Day activities, visits from poets and authors, and writing competitions.

Key Stage 3

During KS3, your child will study a variety of texts and modules within the fiction and non-fiction genres. This will include novels, plays, poetry and non-fiction, and will cover Shakespeare, 19th Century literature, and contemporary writing, allowing your child to experience a  wide range of genres and styles which will prepare them for their GCSE curriculum.

At the start of their time in English in Year 7, students will be working on a Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 reading and writing project. This module will have been set up at Primary school to allow us to pick up the learning in September, ensuring a smooth transition between Years 6 and 7. This Primary link project has been shown to improve progress and avoid a dip in students’ learning.

Within the two week timetable, one lesson is assigned to literacy. Pupils are given time to read for pleasure in our library and are then directed to complete tasks from their CGP Literacy book, focusing on key skills in grammar, punctuation, and spelling.  It is essential that pupils have a copy of this book for their literacy lessons.  For your convenience, it is available in the school shop and is the only purchase students are required to make in English at Key Stage 3.

English Intervention is also implemented at Key Stage 3 for those students who may need some specialist one-to-one support with their learning to enable them to continue making progress.

During the academic year, we may get opportunities to invite visiting authors and poets to work with students or to offer workshops designed to assist specific year groups with their learning. Students respond extraordinarily well to these fun and exciting opportunities and, as a department, we like to introduce into the classroom a variety of different ways to learn. Previous events have included; visiting theatre groups, writers in residence, and trips to watch live performances of particular texts being studied.

Extended Learning will generally take the form of tasks from our ‘Homework Grids’, which involves students choosing the task they wish to complete as a homework activity. This allows pupils to be creative, exploratory, and independent. We would also expect students to be reading regularly at home as an integral part of their extended learning.

Topics Covered this Academic Year

Texts are chosen by individual class teachers to suit the needs of the class and range of students within.

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9
Transition task, poetry, ‘Animal Rights’ (non-fiction module), fantasy fiction writing module, fiction texts (‘Tuck Everlasting’, ‘Room 13’, ‘War Horse’, ‘War Boy’), travel and autobiographical writing. Benjamin Zephaniah poetry and poetry writing, Gothic Literature, a Shakespeare play, fiction texts: ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’, ‘Holes’, ‘Frankenstein’ the play version and a reading and writing non-fiction module. Poetry from Other Cultures, fiction texts: ‘Stone Cold’, ‘Face’, ‘The Woman In Black’, ‘Of Mice and Men’, ‘An Inspector Calls’ (play). The final term and a half are devoted to starting GCSE study, including:  Don’t Get Me Started (a point of view writing module); introduction to English Language Paper 1 and the study of ‘Blood Brothers’. 

Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4, all students follow the AQA English Language and Literature courses with assessment taking the form of two terminal examinations for each subject. There is no tiered entry - all students sit the same papers.

Pupils leave school with two GCSE qualifications in English as well as a Spoken Language endorsement (Pass, Merit, or Distinction) which reflects their ability to speak and discuss in a formal situation. They are required to deliver a presentation to the group and then to respond to questions from their peers and class teacher.

We take an integrated approach to the delivery of the Key Stage 4 curriculum, moving fluidly between Language and Literature throughout the course which we begin in the final term of Year 9. Students will be set specific extended learning tasks to complete at home which could involve quote learning, exam practices, re-reading of set texts, and creation of revision resources. These are ongoing priorities across the two-year course and we do expect pupils to take responsibility for their own extended learning.

Topics Covered this Academic Year

Year 10 Year 11
Autumn Term

Introduction to Literature Conflict Poetry and the Unseen Poetry element: ‘Exposure’ - Wilfred Owen, ‘Bayonet Charge’ - Ted Hughes, ‘Poppies’ - Jane Weir, ‘Remains’ - Simon Armitage.


English Language Paper 1 Section B - Writing to describe/narrate.


19th Century novel – ‘The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’ - Robert Louis Stevenson. 10M4 will be studying ‘A Christmas Carol’ - Charles Dickens.

Study of Shakespeare text – either ‘Macbeth’, ‘Romeo and Juliet’ or ‘The Merchant of Venice’.


Conflict Poetry – ‘My Last Duchess’ – Robert Browning, ‘London’ – William Blake, extract from ‘The Prelude’ – William Wordsworth, ‘Ozymandias’ – Percy Bysshe Shelley and ‘Tissue’ – Imtiaz Dharker.

Spring Term

Introduction to English Language Paper 2 Section A - response to 19th + 20th/21st Century non-fiction.


Conflict Poetry – ‘Charge of the Light Brigade’ – Alfred Lord Tennyson, ‘War Photographer’ – Carol Ann Duffy, ‘Kamikaze’ – Beatrice Garland, ‘The Emigree’ – Carol Rumens and ‘Checkin’ out me History’ – John Agard.

English Language Paper 1 Section B – writing to narrate.


English Language Paper 2 Section A – response to 19th + 20th/21st Century non-fiction – comparison questions.


English Language Paper 2 Section B – point of view writing.


Revision of ‘Blood Brothers’ – Willy Russell.


Unseen Poetry revision – to include comparison element for certain classes.

Summer Term

English Language Paper 1 Section A – response to 20th/21st Century fiction.


English Language Paper 1 Section B – writing to describe with picture stimulus.


Spoken Language endorsement – presentation and discussion.


Unseen Poetry.

English Language Paper 1 Section A revision and exam practice.


‘Jekyll and Hyde’ revision and exam practice.


Shakespeare revision and exam practice.


Conflict Poetry revision and exam practice. Unseen Poetry exam practice.

Exam dates

  • Tuesday 22nd May – English Literature Paper 1 exam – 1hour 45 minutes – am
  • Friday 25th May – English Literature Paper 2 exam – 2 hours 15 minutes – am
  • Tuesday 5th June – English Language Paper 1 exam – 1 hour 45 minutes – am
  • Friday 8th June – English Language Paper 2 exam – 1 hour 45 minutes – am

Last Updated: July 2017