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English at Almondbury Community School is challenging and inspirational.

We are a driven and ambitious team of teachers, and pupil success is at the heart of our department. We have created a rigorous GCSE course that begins in Year 9 and ensures that pupils have every opportunity to improve their skills and to achieve their very best in their final exams.  

From early revision intervention to numerous in-class and bespoke sessions on revision and revision methodology, we feel we prepare our pupils effectively and competently.

Embedding the Literacy Ambassador programme across the phrase has enabled pupils to develop leadership skills, confidence and independence. Literacy Ambassadors lead revision clubs, Literacy development workshops and promote Learning Zones in the school. They are an effective and responsible team of pupils who aspire for success and promote these positive values to their peers.

As part of developing engagement and rigour, the English team are dedicated to supporting all pupils at all levels. We strive to enrich the lives of the pupils we teach through classroom and outdoor activities. Each year, we provide numerous enrichment opportunities to challenge and inspire our pupils; this may include theatre visits, competitions, literacy activities, leadership roles to promote literacy or projects linked to the wider community.

Our ambition is to ensure each pupil has the necessary skills to achieve success in their next venture.

Year 9:

During the course of Year 9, pupils will study a range of fiction, non-fiction, poetry and plays.

Pupils will study two authors in depth; the analysis of Dickens’ and Steinbeck’s literature will enable pupils to develop their skills for depth analyse of language, structure, critical thinking as well as hone their moral compass, thoughtfulness and compassion.

Pupils will work towards developing their independence through research and project based work. Pupils will further strengthen their reading and writing skills during half-termly exams and end of year exams. They will be given numerous opportunities to develop their speaking and listening skills through a range of activities designed to promote clarity, fluency and confidence.

All pupils will complete exams at the end of each half term in order to enhance pupils’ confidence in developing successful exam techniques. The course is designed to ensure every pupil is ready for GCSE in Year 10.

GCSE English:

All pupils will study both English Language and English Literature which will result in 2 GCSEs. The new GCSEs are assessed at the end of Year 11 by examination. These are ‘closed book’ exams.

Pupils will spend Year 10 studying exam texts, such as poetry (AQA Anthology – Power and Conflict) and An Inspector Calls. Concurrently, pupils will spend a significant amount of time practising their exam skills by being challenged with exam questions. They will be given a wide variety of non-fiction texts to read, analyse and comment upon to aid further improvements in their reading skills. Pupils will also be given support and guidance to improve their writing skills.

Pupils will also participate in Spoken Language activities, contributing to the non-exam assessment where they will be expected to present information and respond to questions using Standard English.

In Year 11, pupils will study Shakespeare and Dickens as part of the English Literature course. They will also complete various practice exams focusing on both reading and writing skills.  Pupils will prepare for their mock exams and a significant amount of time will be spent preparing for their final examinations.