English in Key Stage 3

As early as Key Stage 3 we divide our teaching of English language and English literature. In this way we ensure that students have adequate time to hone their language skills whilst also being exposed to a wide range of literature at an early age.

English Language in Key Stage 3

At this level, our students focus on developing their skills in the following areas:

  • Speaking and Listening: Throughout Key Stage 3, students learn to speak articulately and in a structured way, using varying degrees of formality depending upon audience and purpose. They are encouraged to participate effectively as members of a group; listening, understanding and responding critically to others.
  • Speaking and listening skills are reinforced in every other subject in the School as well as through enrichment activities such as debating, public speaking and Model United Nations.
  • Writing: Students develop their ability to write for a range of purposes and audiences; drawing on their own reading experience and knowledge of linguistic and literary forms.

High standards of written expression are expected throughout the secondary school, and teachers of other subjects take this into account when they assess students’ work.

Our enrichment activities also give students the opportunity to develop their written skills. The Media Club, which produces an on-line newsletter, is but one example.

Throughout the Key Stage 3 years, we work intensively on the tools of good writing: grammar, vocabulary, spelling and handwriting. These are reinforced in every English lesson across the School and also during form periods. All subjects issue vocabulary books. All form teachers set weekly vocabulary and spelling tests, a weekly crossword and use word games as part of the form period.

English Literature in Key Stage 3

Through their reading, students learn to appreciate the scope and richness of a range of fiction and non-fiction texts. They examine the implicit and explicit meanings of texts, and explore the ways in which writers use language in original, imaginative and diverse ways. Texts from a range of cultures and traditions are studied and students examine familiar themes from different cultural perspectives.

In addition to studying texts in class, Key Stage 3 students follow a structured reading programme. This is designed to ensure that students continue to build on their reading skills, extend their vocabulary and develop their love of books.

Students also have the opportunity to develop their interest in drama and poetry through the various events that are held every year. These include the Arts Week concert and the annual drama production.