In Autumn 1, pupils will explore the theme of ‘Do The Right Thing’. They will study the novel ‘Millions’, by Frank Cottrell-Boyce, and will focus on concepts of faith and spirituality, morality and money. They will begin the year by undertaking work that enables them to cover Assessment Objectives 1, 2 and 4, looking at finding evidence and making inferences, analysing language and structure and making comments about the text.

In Autumn 2, pupils will study the theme of ‘Festivals’, in particular, exploring the theme of poetry, enabling them to develop an understanding of form, structure and rhythm. It will also provide pupils with a taste of poetry that they will encounter at Key Stage 4, developing skills of listening, reading, annotating and analysing poetry in all its forms.


In Spring 1, pupils will study ‘Twelfth Night’ by William Shakespeare. Pupils will focus on this pre-1914 text to develop their appreciation of English heritage texts. They will consider the use of language for effect and the impact of context.


In Spring 2, pupils will explore the theme of ‘Mystery’. It is designed to make them enthusiastic about fiction, by exploring a variety of authors and texts from the gothic and detective genres through the last two centuries.


Over the course of Summer 1 and 2, pupils will consider and understand the differences between a novel and a play, which they will have initially undertaken during Spring 1. Pupils will look at the play ‘Our Day Out’ and explore the key questions of how the writer’s craft influences the audience and how stereotypes and prejudices are addressed. They will also identify the social, historical and cultural context of the text and focus on key themes and/or characters.

 How is the course assessed

All pupils conduct a baseline test, via BKSB, upon starting at James Brindley School and at the beginning of each half-term. This enables pupils to identify their own areas of development and make progress. This is linked closely to the Functional Skills qualification in English, which some pupils may be able to access before commencing Key Stage 4.

Then, progress is monitored through a range of reading and writing tasks, known as ‘cold writes’ and ‘hot writes’. These are marked in accordance with the new English 1-9 GCSE specification in order to prepare them for the course at Key Stage 4.


All teachers mark and assess following the James Brindley Marking Policy. Work is internally moderated.

 How can you support your child at home

Encourage your child to read a range of texts, including books, graphic novels and magazines, and discuss your likes and dislikes of different genres.

Boost your child’s reading and writing skills by helping them to access the BBC’s useful website: http://www.bbc.co.uk/skillswise/english

Identify grammar errors when you are in public.


Promote the viewing of appropriate current affairs programmes, such as Newsround.