Curriculum Intent Statement
OVERVIEW & FOCUS
The English curriculum intends to equip students with knowledge and expertise which will allow students to thrive within the classroom and beyond. Every part of the curriculum is designed to not only develop expertise needed for the successful completion of the GCSE in both Language and Literature, but for the future contributions which Harper Green pupils will make to their families, communities and work environments.
Our aim is for students to develop a love for learning which will last into their adult years. Within English, students are encouraged to aim for academic excellence and staff promote high aspirations whilst having the highest expectations for the class groups and individuals in front of them.
Both English Language and Literature requires students to develop knowledge of their own self, experiences and world, whilst stretching their horizons and developing both empathy and understanding of others. We aim to provide pupils at Harper Green with access to wide ranging and rich experiences which will develop traits such as confidence and resilience.
THE JOURNEY & OUR AIMS
The English curriculum is broad and balanced. From the moment a student begins their secondary journey towards GCSE, they will encounter a range of texts, contexts and ideas aimed at developing their knowledge base and experience of the world. Each step along the way has been thoughtfully planned so as to build a toolkit of skills which will allow pupils to fulfil their true potential at the end of KS4, and in later life.
Students in year 7 are introduced to inspirational key concepts and ideas which they will revisit over the years, each time developing and gaining further knowledge intended to support their GCSE examinations. From the works of Marlowe to Shakespeare, from Conan Doyle to Stevenson, students journey through historical landscapes, learning about the social issues which affect key texts at GCSE. The threaded curriculum allows us to weave elements of subjects such as drama, history, RE and more, into a tapestry of learning intent on allowing pupils to unlock their full potential and to gain GCSE grades which will give them opportunities in their futures. Modern writers studied include poets such as Simon Armitage and Imtiaz Dharker, alongside playwrights such as Willy Russell. Non-fiction writing and articles feature heavily within our schemes in order to introduce pupils to a range of issues, both political and social. These articles and texts may improve their knowledge of the world in which they live, or the history of where we have come from.
Our aim is to develop deep and powerful knowledge across the five years spent within an English classroom. This knowledge will be tested and improved, through retrieval and practice; pupils will become readers and writers who are aware of the power of the written word and who understand authors’ intentions.
Students will be inspired, challenged and stretched in relevant and exciting ways. The English curriculum is characterised by teaching which recognises the importance of interleaving and spacing. The curriculum design across both key stages means that students are never merely introduced to concepts in isolation. Each unit builds on the previous terms and years, leading to a final year which is built on the cumulative practice of the previous four. Each year builds on the previous, and in Key Stage 4, pupils are stretched further by the introduction of critical theory within literature which links directly to GCSE criteria and mark schemes, but which will hopefully also ignite a passion for the subject which will carry some pupils through to Further and Higher Education.
Literacy and Language Mastery is at the foundation of all we do. Successful adults have a fundamental and powerful grasp of vocabulary. Reading and the love of reading is promoted both inside and outside the classroom environment. Key Stage 3 pupils are exposed to the benefits of independent reading within the Library and Reading Room, whilst Key Stage 4 curriculum promotes the benefits of continued reading for pleasure. Students are delivered a curriculum rich in literary content and quality, and aimed at kindling a love for the written word which will last a lifetime.
English is a subject which is far reaching in regards the world of work ensuring pupils become adults who are not only confident and resilient, but who communicate well, work successfully as a team, and who contribute to the world around them in a positive and meaningful way.
The intention of our English curriculum ultimately, is to equip the children and pupils who enter our doors to leave as well rounded, successful young adults, ready for the world outside of this environment.