'When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.'

Maya Angelou

Curriculum Intent

The study of English is richly diverse, requiring students, over time, to develop a critical line of enquiry. At King’s, this ability to question imaginatively begins early, with students gaining a secure knowledge of literary concepts and an understanding of the historical and contextual factors that shape and influence canonical heritage literature giants like Shakespeare and Dickens, or more modern authors like Priestley and Golding.

Students will study four key topics in each year of Key Stage 3:

A seminal world Literature text
A thematic anthology of poetry
A canonical novel
A William Shakespeare play

As students progress through the Key Stages, they will continually revisit the very important points (VIPs) from the topics that they study, revising and consolidating key knowledge and continually developing their ability to apply this knowledge.

Students will have weekly knowledge tests and termly Key Piece assessments; additionally each year group will have two key exams per year. Through our cumulative, frequently revisited and interleaved reading curriculum, students rapidly build and acquire a deepening cultural capital and word richness through studying and analysing Shakespeare’s tragedies and timeless 19th Century literary classics, becoming fluent readers for pleasure.

Through deliberate practice of writing for a range of purposes and audiences and critiquing their own spoken language, students become articulate at communicating their own concepts and ideas in both personal and professional settings, thereby developing their own unique character and preparing them for any career as accomplished speakers, readers and writers in the modern world. Students will develop a love of reading and writing and become critical thinkers who question the world around them.

Curriculum Content

Each department has carefully developed curriculum plans in line with our curriculum intent. The curriculum overview for each year group in this subject can be found below.