Intent and Aims to Learning for English

A well-developed and all-round knowledge and understanding of English is key to being able to access the whole school curriculum. Students at Sexey’s thrive in English – not only due to the academic progress made in their reading and writing skills but also in the engagement they develop with the world around them.

Author Charlie Higson teaches English classBy studying a range of fiction from different eras as well as non-fiction texts covering a range of topics, each student develops an active interest in English and an understanding of our global society.

Students at Sexey’s enter KS4 with an enjoyment and enthusiasm for the subject as well as being fully prepared for entry to the GCSE curriculum and for further English study.

  • Students develop a deeper understanding of the key skills in both reading and writing ready for Key Stage 4 and beyond
  • Our varied curriculum in English will enable pupils to use their literacy skills to support their work across the whole school curriculum
  • We encourage students to engage with a wide range of literary fiction, non-fiction, poetry and plays to develop their engagement with the world around them, both past and present.

Key Stage 3 curriculum plan

Students in Key Stage 3 are introduced to a broad range of texts to inspire and engage them in a life-long reading journey.

In Year 7 we encourage exploration of texts covering a wide range of historical eras, from Early and Middle English to modern day:

  • Prose – a detailed study of the novel
  • Introduction to Shakespeare using extracts from a variety of his plays
  • Island Adventures – an exploration of 19th Century texts
  • Myths and Legends including Medusa, Hercules, Persephone and more
  • Language – exploring a range of fiction and non-fiction text extracts including Roald Dahl, Harry Potter and more
  • Poetry – Through the Ages from Early and Middle English to contemporary pieces

In Year 8 we introduce further texts and genres including:

  • The Woman in Black
  • Gothic fiction
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Shakespeare
  • War and conflict poetry
  • Exploration of a range of non-fiction disasters such as the Titanic, Chernobyl, Haiti earthquake for our language paper
  • Drama – Journey’s End

In Year 9 we explore texts from overseas authors as well as preparing for the demands of the GCSE course by reading a range of non-fiction texts:

  • Literature and poems from other cultures, including Of Mice and Men and To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Jekyll and Hyde – 19th Century prose
  • Romeo and Juliet – Shakespeare
  • Writing to express a viewpoint – speech writing
  • Dystopian fiction

Key Stage 4 curriculum plan

  • An Inspector Calls – Literature Paper 2 (Modern Texts)
  • Language Paper 2 – Analysing Writers’ Views and Perspectives (non-fiction texts from the 19th and 20th centuries)
  • Language Paper 2 – Writing to express an opinion
  • Literature Paper 2 – Power and Conflict Poetry
  • Literature Paper 1 – The Merchant of Venice/Macbeth
  • Spoken Language Assessment
  • 19th century text
  • Language Paper 1 – Analysing Literary Fiction
  • Language Paper 1 – Writing to imagine and describe
  • Unseen Poetry

Each scheme of work incorporates a range of learning activities designed to develop the key skills that students require for the next stage of their education.

When are students assessed?
Assessment is a continuous process within the classroom. With regards to formal assessments, at Key Stage 3, students undertake one formal assessment each half term. This is usually twice a half-term at Key Stage 4.

Examination Board


Spiritual, Moral, Social or Cultural Opportunities

Students are encouraged to extend themselves as individuals both in and out of the classroom. We encourage students to develop their independent reading, writing and speaking skills and explore the world – and different cultures – in an interesting way.

What are the opportunities for all? Reading tower of books

  • Trips to the theatre (including the Globe Theatre, the Sam Wannamaker Playhouse, Poole Lighthouse Theatre to name but a few)
  • Creative Writing Club runs each week – open to all year groups. In 2018 one of our students was shortlisted for the finals of the BBC 500 Words Competition. We have also had finalists in the Year 9 Annual Reading Around the World Passport
  • Year 7 Annual Reading Challenge – Read your height in books!
  • Rotary ‘Youth Speaks’ public speaking competition

Most Able Opportunities/Support

Students are stretched and challenged through the various extra-curricular opportunities, the yearly reading challenges, diverse reading material in classrooms as well as exciting homework projects.

Special Educational Needs and Disability Opportunities/Support

Each student is given the full support needed, whether in the form of differentiated worksheets or extensions tasks. Students are routinely challenged and inspired by the extra-curricular activities.

Staff List

  • Mrs Jane Bird
  • Mrs Sarah Carpenter
  • Mrs Samantha Grant (Head of Department)
  • Miss Alice Jackson
  • Miss Beth Vowles

Useful revision website links:



Updated September 2020