Schemes of Work and Syllabus Information
Lower Grammar (Year 9)
The aim in the Lower Grammar year is to:
· consolidate, reinforce and refine the core skills taught at SMH and elsewhere
· develop the key skills necessary for IGCSE, building on the links between Common Entrance & IGCSE
· leave some space for original and interesting work before the IGCSE years
· nurture an enjoyment of reading
In Lower Grammar English classes, tasks will be focused on Reading, Analytical Writing, Creative Writing and Speaking and Listening. Pupils will analyse a wide range of genres, including non-fiction, fiction, drama and poetry texts. Pupils are encouraged to improve their comprehension skills and to write appropriately. Basic skills in spelling and punctuation are also practised and developed.
All classes study a Shakespeare play at some time during the year and pupils enter the Lower Grammar Elocution Competition in order that they may undergo the experience of addressing an audience. Our aim is to introduce to the pupils the skills necessary for the successful completion of the IGCSE courses.
Grammar and Syntax (Years 10 & 11)
This year sees the start of the two-year International GCSE courses in Language and Literature. One teacher will take the students through both IGCSEs over two years.
The Literature course will begin with study of a set novel and drama text, which comprises 60% of the course and is examined. The Poetry element of the Literature course is dealt with in a coursework essay, responding to six poems.
The Language course comprises two course work pieces and a substantial exam (2hr 15 minutes) which is taken at the end of Syntax. The exam focuses on: (a) an unprepared non-fiction reading passage – this will test factual comprehension, inference & an understanding of how writers use language, as well as evaluation of how writers use linguistic & structural devices to achieve effects; (b) a set text – this will test the student’s ability to develop interpretations of the text, supported by reference to the text; and (c) a writing task, based on the topic of the reading passage in the first part of the exam and a wider writing task, testing the students’ ability to write to inform, explain and describe.
The coursework involves two essay: one piece responding to a set text (poetry/prose fiction) and one piece of personal and imaginative writing to explore, imagine, entertain OR to argue, persuade, advise. The pupils will also be examined internally (with moderation) on Speaking and Listening assignments (an individual talk, group work and pair work).
Poetry English Language (Year 12)
Students of AS English Language are preparing for their ENB1 AQA exam which they will sit in the summer. The exam is worth 60% of their total AS and consists of two sections: Grouping Texts and Language and Society – this involves linguistic analysis of media and other texts, as well as the study of Gender and Power issues in language. The remaining 40% of the AS is made up of two coursework essays on Creating Texts – the students create their own pieces based on style models from professional writers.
Rhetoric English Language (Year 13)
The students are preparing for their AQA ENB3 Exam which focuses on Child Language Development (the acquisition of language by children up to the age of 11 years). Language development is a controversial topic; the students will look at the many different theories of how and why children acquire language and the differences in language development depending on context and/or innate abilities.
The second part of the exam focuses on Language Change (the historical and contemporary changes that have taken place in the English language from 1700 to the present day. The students will look at the main linguistic changes occurring since 1700 and the contextual influences on these; and the standardisation of English and the reason for and attitudes towards this.
The final Unit (ENB4) involves the production of a written Investigation into any topic, as long as it is focused on English language. It is important that the students choose something in which they have a personal interest. Examples of previous investigations include: language use in instant messaging and texting; language change in women’s magazines over time; language change in popular music lyrics over time; language used in advertising; language used in conversation.