Curriculum Statement - English

‘Once you learn to read you will be free forever.’ – Fredrick Douglass

Powerful Knowledge in English

Our curriculum will provide students with the powerful knowledge that can too often be hidden from view and in doing so help to make the implicit, explicit.

  • Students to understand that behind every text ever written there is writer intent.
  • Students to know that we can and should make predictions about any text both fiction and non-fiction by asking a set of initial questions both of fiction and non-fiction texts.
  • There are a set of fundamental universal and timeless themes/ideas that influence the intentions of writers and this spans the ‘entire’ chronology of literary canon including what will become the canon of the future as these ideas/themes transcend the boundaries of time. Eg Class divide, abuse of power, gender boundaries and inequality.
  • Students to know that they too are connected to these universal and timeless themes/ideas and this can inform their own personal responses to a text.
  • To understand and acquire a control over language both written and spoken so that students can discover the potential power it can have and can give.


Curriculum Features

KS3: A content rich curriculum, one that spans the ‘entire’ chronology of the literary canon. The story is chronological in structure to help students construct a sense-making narrative that connects our literary tradition. A structure that will allow them to see, understand and explore the underpinning ideas/themes and intentions of writers from across literary history and a range of cultures.

KS4: A curriculum that teaches beyond what is simply required by the exams. Both the Language and Literature curriculums are built around a process of interleaving topics and self-testing. To reflect the linear exam courses material is studied on an ongoing cycle with a focus placed on testing and re-testing to aid the development of long term memory and mastery of both the skills and knowledge required. This curriculum structure aims to; improve student retention of knowledge, build student confidence ahead of assessments and give a clear and consistent routine to lessons. The Language curriculum is built around a thematic approach that allows for purposeful and supportive links to be made between this and the content and context studied through Literature.


Co Curriculum Enrichment

Students will be offered a wide variety of opportunities and experiences that enrich students’ understanding of the world around them and how they are connected to it. These will include:  Theatre and lecture trips help to develop a broader understanding of texts beyond their pages and beyond what is required of the exam specifications across all Key Stages.

  • Manchester Actors internal productions of key curriculum texts.
  • ‘Poetry By Heart’ – Competition
  • ‘Shakespeare By Heart’ – Competition
  • Mock Trials
  • Year 10 TED Talks in line with the Spoken Language component of the English Language GCSE Specification.
  • Cross-curricular London Trip with History
  • Carnegie Book Awards.
  • Creative writing competitions across the Key Stages.
  • RSC Workshop opportunities
  • Shakespeare Live Screenings

Running alongside all our Key Stage curriculums is an ongoing focus on developing students’ spoken language skills through our Oracy Curriculum and our relentless focus on enabling all our students to be effective and articulate speakers and listeners who know when to lead and when to participate.