Skip to content ↓

25-33 Bow Road, London, E3 2AE0208 981 1131

English

The English Department is committed to fostering a love of Literature and wider reading, encouraging students to think critically and creatively, to reason, to ask questions and to explore knowledge beyond the classroom. We strive to inspire our students with a stimulating and broad approach, celebrating their locality – Tower Hamlets, and incorporating World Literature and texts across the Literary canon.   While meeting the requirements of the National Curriculum, and ensuring students are rigorously prepared for their examinations, we ensure our curriculum is not limited by assessment criteria instead teaching Literature because of its inherent worth, and the body of socio historical and cultural interests beyond. We are passionate about empowering our students so they see themselves as writers and protagonists of Literature. Originality, independence and creative writing are highly valued and celebrated within the classroom.  Literature is frequently used as a means of discussing current affairs and issues of gender, religion and identity in distinct historical and geographical contexts. We believe in encouraging high levels of literacy, as well as preparing students through a focus on the spoken word, both within the classroom and through range of extracurricular opportunities including literary workshops and debating opportunities. We strive to empower our students through a love of literature and language. After all, ‘‘a word after a word after a word is power’ (Margaret Atwood).

KEYSTAGE 3 

KS3 Summary of knowledge and content covered across KS3, showing how learning is linked to KS2 (where applicable), and how knowledge is deepened over time to prepare students for KS4. You can also include the skills developed.

TERM 

YEAR 7
DESCRIPTION OF UNIT AND TYPE OF ASSESSMENT

Autumn Term 1

 

 

Theme: Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry

Details

  • Opportunities to explore the context of the novel
  • Reading of a challenging 20th Century novel
  • Exploration of key characters and themes
  • Detailed analysis of language

Assessment

Timed essay on the novel, assessing students’ ability to make inferences and analyse language.

Autumn Term 2

 

 

Theme: Shakespeare – Midsummer Night’s Dream

Details

  • Exploration of key Shakespearean themes of love, betrayal, revenge and tragedy
  • Detailed analysis of Shakespeare’s portrayal of characters through language
  • Developed explorations of a range of unseen extracts to develop understanding of Shakespearean English

Assessment

Timed thematic essay based on an extract then related out to further examples from the across the text

Spring  Term 1

 

Theme: Creative Writing – Dystopian Fiction

Details

  • Opportunities to explore different examples of Dystopian fiction
  • Development of vocabulary choices
  • Exploration of using grammar for effect
  • Exploration of using of a range of literary devices for effect

Assessment

Writing a narrative/descriptive Dystopian piece based on an image to show understanding of writing skills and knowledge of the conventions of the genre

Spring  Term 2

 

 

Theme: WWI Poetry

Details

  • Research tasks about context of WW1 and life in the trenches
  • Creative writing about life in trenches
  • Discussion of propaganda
  • Exploration of a range of poetry
  • Exploring unseen poetry enables skills embedded throughout

Assessment

Timed essay on a studied poem.

Summer  Term 1

 

 

Theme: The relevance of Media and News

Details

  • Exploration of concept of news and issues of bias surrounding
  • Discussion of differences between broadsheets and tabloids
  • Newsworthiness
  • Explorations of presentations of women in the media

Assessment

Write a article in the style of a broadsheet newspaper on a relevant news topic

Summer Term 2

 

 

Theme: British drama – Dracula (play)

Details

  • Opportunities to explore the gothic genre and traditions
  • Opportunities for role-play
  • Exploration of stage craft and dramatic devices

 

Assessment

Speaking and listening presentation

 

TERM YEAR 8
DESCRIPTION OF UNIT AND TYPE OF ASSESSMENT
Autumn Term 1

Theme: Wuthering Heights Abridged

Details

  • Opportunities to explore the complexities of an abridged novel as a class
  • Reading of novel as a class
  • Exploration of key characters and themes
  • Exploration of how contexts influence meaning
  • Exploration of key influences of writer’s experiences on the text

Assessment

Timed essay on the novel, assessing students’ ability to make inferences and analyse language across the text

Autumn Term 2

Theme: Shakespeare – Twelfth Night

Details

  • Exploration of key Shakespearean themes of love, family, revenge and comedy
  • Detailed analysis of Shakespeare’s portrayal of characters through language
  • Developed explorations of a range of unseen extracts to develop understanding of Shakespearean English

Assessment

Timed essay assessing ability to analyse an extract and then relate out thematically with examples from across the text

Spring  Term 1

Theme: Creative Writing –  (short stories)

Details

  • Opportunities to explore different examples within genres of text to inspire creative ideas
  • Development of vocabulary choices
  • Exploration of using sentence lengths and structures for effect
  • Exploration of using of a range of literary devices for effect

Assessment

To write the opening of a short story to show understanding of conventions of structure and writing skills.

Spring Term 2

Theme: Poetry from different cultures

Details

Exploration of a range of poetry from different cultures

Assessment

Timed comparison essay on two poems, one named.

Summer Term 1

Theme: Media 

Details

  • Exploration of a range of media genres
  • Opportunities to discuss real world issues
  • Opportunities to write for different purpose and audiences

Assessment

A debate and a writing to argue piece

Summer Term 2

Theme: War with Troy 

  • Explore an ancient Greek myths
  • Develop active listening skills
  • Develop oral story telling skills

Assessment

In the style of an individual or group storytelling without notes.

 

TERM YEAR 9
DESCRIPTION OF UNIT AND TYPE OF ASSESSMENT
Autumn Term 1

Theme: Class reader – Of Mice & Men

Details 

  • Exploration of contexts and how these influence writer’s ideas
  • Opportunities for debate around issues of racism and gender inequality
  • Exploration of key characters and themes throughout the text
  • Deep analysis of language & structure and how these shape meaning

Assessment

Timed essay on the novel, assessing students’ ability to make inferences and analyse language across the text

Autumn Term 2

Theme: Shakespeare – Romeo & Juliet

Details

  • Exploration of key Shakespearean themes of love, betrayal, revenge and tragedy
  • Detailed analysis of Shakespeare’s portrayal of characters through language
  • Developed explorations of a range of unseen extracts to develop understanding of Shakespearean English

Assessment

Timed essay on whole play assessing students’ ability to make inferences, explore language and make links across the whole text in response to an

Spring Term 1

Theme:  Writing Skills

Details

  • Exploration of a range of non-fiction extracts from 19th, 20th & 21st Centuries
  • S&L tasks to debate key issues arising from non-fiction texts
  • Writing to argue /persuade/describe as required at KS4

Assessment

Writing to describe and writing to persuade/argue timed essays.

Spring Term 2

Theme: Poetry – Comparison 

Details

  • Exploration of a number of poetry from the Relationships cluster of the
  • Embedding of skills to analyse poetry at KS4

Assessment

Comparative essay on two poems, 1 named.

Summer Term 1

Theme: Reading skills fiction and non-fiction 

Details

  • Exploration of a range of short stories and writing from 19th, 20th & 21st Centuries
  • Teaching and embedding of  skills required for questions in Section A GCSE Language papers

Assessment

Timed response to GCSE style questions on unseen fiction and non fiction texts

Summer Term 2

Theme: Unseen poetry

Details

  • Exploration of a range of poetry from 19th, 20th, 21st centuries to embed KS4 skills
  • Embed skills of analysing and responding to unseen poetry

Assessment

Timed response to unseen poem and comparison of 2 unseen poems. 

USEFUL WEBSITES, RESOURCES, REVISION MATERIALS AND EXEMPLAR WORK

Yr9 GCSE English BBC bitesize

KEYSTAGE 4

Welcome to Key Stage 4 English!

During Years 10 and 11 we cover all the content needed for your GCSE English Literature and GCSE English Language exams. Just like in Key Stage 3, we believe Reading is absolutely key to your success and we do everything we can to help you find books that you personally enjoy. Also as in Key Stage 3, we want our students to learn about literature texts from ‘the canon’ as well as to see themselves as protagonists and writers, and to read texts written by people living in Tower Hamlets.

We continue to focus on both creativity and grammatical knowledge in the teaching of writing skills. When you write about texts, we use the same academic writing format that we used in Key Stage 3, but we now have a stronger focus on the writer’s purpose and the social contexts in which the texts are written and read. By the end of Year 9, you were writing essays; in Key Stage 4, those essays will need to start from you as the critic expressing your personal viewpoint. We therefore use debates and ‘big questions’ to help students develop their evaluative skills in an enjoyable way.

 Your post-16 pathways will require you to use your English GCSE skills in different ways. Some of you will go on to study English Literature, where you will use your critical, evaluative and analytical skills – but these skills can also be applied when studying other subjects like Law and Politics. Most of you will use the writing skills you develop with us in any job you do. However, even more than a fulfilling career, we want you to take with you a love of reading and writing. If you’re still writing the odd poem when you’re in your sixties, we’ll have done something right!

KS4 OVERVIEW AND ASSESSMENTS 

KS4 Autumn Term 1 Autumn Term 2

Spring

Term 2

Spring Term 2 Summer Term 1 Summer Term 2
Year 10  Macbeth Language Paper 1 AQA Love and Relationships Poem Language Paper 2 An Inspector Calls Spoken Language 
Year 11 A Christmas Carol Language Paper 1 Literature Paper 2 Language Paper 2 revision  GCSE exams GCSE exams

EXAM BOARD AND WEIGHTINGS

AQA English Literature GCSE, AQA English Language GCSE (includes Spoken Language NEA which is assessed separately).

ENRICHMENT OPPORTUNITIES AT KEYSTAGE 4

In the past, we've had theatre companies visit, attended workshops at the Globe, and watched a livestream national production of Shakespeare.

KEYSTAGE 5 

Welcome to Key Stage 5 English!

During Years 12 and 13 we cover all the content needed for your English Literature A Level exam.  At KS5 you will build on the analytical and writing skills developed in KS3 and KS4 and extend them beyond our primary texts to engage in literary critical debates.

At KS5 English Literature A Level we intend that our students:

  • develop analytical, reflective, creative, and independent writing skills.
  • nurture an intellectual curiosity for all things literary.
  • advance their passion for reading and theatre through exposure to wide ranging literature including plays, novels, poems and short stories across time, culture, genre and beyond the examination criteria.
  • are supported, challenged and equipped for the future through a strong focus on context and how literature relates to their worlds.

At KS5 GCSE resit we intend to:

  •   re-equip and reinvigorate students with the mastery and love of language and communication, (both critiquing and creating it), that they will need for their futures.

Most importantly, we want you to develop and sustain your love of reading and writing. As George R.R. Martin wrote: ‘A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies . . . The man who never reads lives only one.’  We have a KS5 book club, which introduces you to a diverse range of challenging texts which reach beyond your exam’s criteria, and plans for a poetry-writing group next year.  Our English literature students go on to many different careers in journalism, law, research, education, politics, philosophy, human rights activism, writing, publishing and theatre to name a few, but we hope that all of them will be voracious readers for the rest of their (thousand) lives.

KS5 OVERVIEW AND ASSESSMENTS 

KS4 Autumn Term 1 Autumn Term 2

Spring

Term 1

Spring

Term 2

Summer

Term 1

Summer Term 2
Year 12  Othello/The Great Gatsby Feminine Gospels/Love Poetry/ The Handmaid's Tale Unseen Poetry/Unseen Prose The Bloody Chamber/The Picture of Dorian Gray Othello/The Great Gatesby/Love Poetry

Feminine Gospels/The Handmaid's Tale

NEA workshops

Year 13 Feminine Gospels/A Streetcar Named Desire  Othello/The Handmaid's Tale and A Streetcar Named Desire  NEA academic writing.  Exam preparation 

Revision 

Exam preparation

Revision 

Exam preparation 

Revision

Exam Preparation

 

EXAM BOARD AND WEIGHTINGS

AQA A 

  • Paper 1 Love through the Ages 
  • Paper 2b Texts in Shared Contexts 
  • NEA

ENRICHMENT OPPORTUNITIES AT KEYSTAGE 5 

In the past we have had theatre workshops, trips to see speakers on Feminism in the workplace, Trips to the British Library and the national Theatre Studios. We also have a KS5 book club and English Ambassadors scheme.

USEFUL WEBSITES, RESOURCES, REVISION MATERIALS AND EXEMPLAR WORK

AQA AS and A Level English Literature Subject Content 

British Library Online English Resources 

The English and Media Centre 

 

WHO'S IN THE TEAM?


Ms. N.  Dhinsa, Head of English Faculty

Ms. H. Owen, Teacher of English / LP for Assessment for Learning

Ms. F. Conway, Teacher of English 

Ms. D. Kleovoulou, Teacher of English

Ms. G. Miller, Teacher of English/ KS3 Co-ordinator 

Ms. S.  Brennan, Teacher of English/Head of Year

Ms. S. Yasmin, Teacher of English/ Acting Head of Year 11

Ms. S. Patel, Teacher of English

Ms. A. Rashid, Teacher of English

Ms. R. Garvin, Teacher of English/KS5 Co-ordinator

Ms. S. Branch, Teacher of English

Ms. S. Benson, Teacher of English

Ms. E. Steel Emily, Teacher of English

Ms. C. Prince, Teacher of English/Deputy Headteacher

Ms. E. Lamb Eleanor, Second in Charge of English and KS4 Co-ordinator (maternity leave)