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Mrs C Reid MA BEd (Head of Department)

Mrs R Taylor MSc BA PGCE (Literacy Co-Ordinator)
Ms H McCaughan BA PGCE
Mrs J Hamilton BA PGCE
Miss E Stewart MSc BA PGCE
Mr A Macdonald BA PGCE


We believe that the study of English should develop the ability of pupils to achieve their full potential to, communicate effectively, appropriately / accurately in speech and in written form; should promote understanding and imaginative responses to what they hear, read and experience in a variety of media; and foster their appreciation and enjoyment of the subject in all forms.

This ability will not only equip pupils for adult life and employment; it will also enrich their personal lives and that of their community.

Department Aims

- To provide learning opportunities for pupils to develop as individuals, contributors to society, the economy and the environment.
- To provide a learning environment where pupils are encouraged to develop communication skills and provide opportunities for pupils to explore how the attitudes and actions of individuals can impact on other people's lives.
- To develop literacy to ensure every child leaves with the skills they need to achieve their best.
- To foster a love of literature across all genres. We want to see our pupils develop and apply their critical faculties to what they read in literature, both fiction and non-fiction, while ensuring reading for pleasure is of paramount importance.
- To provide pupils with opportunities to appreciate and use language for a range of functional and creative purposes.
- To train our pupils to use ICT, books and media texts in order to gain knowledge and skills relevant to their purposes and needs. To develop pupils' ability to shape and deconstruct messages in print and digital forms.

In Years 8-10 there is a common programme of learning and assessment where pupils develop skills in the three key areas: Speaking and Listening, Reading and Writing.

Our experienced members of staff have high expectations of all pupils and employ effective, high quality classroom teaching to facilitate learning.

We encourage pupils to develop their learning through Reading, using:
- Reading record books
- Scholastic Teen Book Club
- All English classrooms have a class library
- Designated reading time once a fortnight
- Author visits

Junior Reading Club meets once a cycle after school for Years 8-10. Senior Reading Club "The Next Chapter" meets once a cycle after school for Years 11-14.

Literacy support is available to selected individuals and after school support is available to all KS3 and some GCSE students at the English clinic once a week from 3:30pm to 4:30pm. Talk to your English teacher for more details....

Common assessment tasks are given to pupils throughout the key stage to encourage pupils to develop their mechanical and creative writing skill. Written work is displayed, constructively assessed and recorded in a variety of forms, to encourage pupils to recognise the rich diversity of types of writing.

Pupils written work is also used for school publications, such as the Young Writers Anthology, awarded an English Writing Award or entered for competitions.

Speaking and Listening
Pupils in all year groups are given the opportunity to discuss and listen to the opinions and ideas of other. We encourage pupils to be open to new ideas and challenge their own and other views, through sustained listening and sensitive contributions.

In addition to drama activities, pupils will also have formally assessed presentations.

The school has a growing Performing Arts Department, led by Ms McCaughan, who is also a member of the English Department.

GCSE English Language
Currently pupils sit the course specification awarded by CCEA. Full details of the course can be found at www.ccea.org.uk/english_language

In addition to high quality classroom teaching and learning, pupils are also given the opportunity to attend revision courses. Pupils are given targets and asked to work with staff and others to ensure they attain their goal. Staff expect pupils to give their best in all aspects of the course. Visits to theatres and screenings of examination texts are encouraged.

GCSE English Literature
Pupils take the CCEA GCSE English Literature course, where again agreed targets are set and pupils are expected to strive to consistently give their best, both in class and at home, in order to attain their potential.

There are a range of study texts available to supplement the independent study necessary at this stage. Opportunities are also offered to see plays in performance.

AS LEVEL and A2 LEVEL English Literature
We are delighted to see the continued enthusiasm for literature and seek to continually support pupils as they explore a wide range of literary texts, ranging from Heaney to Salinger. The full range of texts is available to view on the CCEA website.

At this level consistent, detailed, independent study is integral to success. Pupils are expected to critically explore the contexts, method and craft of every examined writer.

Again our staff continuously support and foster pupils learning through best classroom practice and affording opportunities to attend a range of revision conferences . A wealth of critical material is also available within the department for pupils to supplement learning.

Careers options
There are a myriad of careers available to those with qualifications in English. Make sure you read the detailed careers information in each of the English classrooms.

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