Gilbert Inglefield Academy

English Curriculum Overview 2018-2019

Head of Department: Mrs. R. Lewin
HOD Email Address: rlewin@gilbertinglefield.org 

 The English curriculum has been designed to ensure all students have the opportunity to develop the key skills needed for the new National Curriculum through a wide range of engaging and challenging texts.

In all years, students are taught in predominantly mixed ability groups with additional groups for students identified as having Higher Learning Potential as well as those who benefit from a smaller nurture group.

In Year 5, English lessons form part of our Creative Curriculum, covering topics such as Ancient Greece, Crime and Punishment and the Victorians. In Year 6, English lessons are based around a variety of texts such as The Chronicles of Harris Burdick and the story of Zhang Qian. All Key Stage 2 students also experience dedicated Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling lessons as well as reading skill sessions.

Working closely with our upper school colleagues, we ensure that our Key Stage 3 curriculum prepares our students for the skills needed for their GCSE courses. In Year 7, this is through novels such as ‘Holes’ as well as poetry and a range of dystopian fiction. Our Year 8 students continue to develop these skills whilst studying extracts from nineteenth century gothic horror fiction and ‘An Inspector Calls’.

We ensure students are offered stretch and challenge through a Mastery curriculum. As part of this, students in Years 6 to 8 all study a Shakespeare play: ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’, ‘The Tempest’ and ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

We recognise that reading for pleasure plays an important role in developing students’ English skills, as well as across the curriculum. Students in Years 5 to 7 all have a Reading Challenge to complete and all students carry a book to read during the day. Additionally, Key Stage 2 students have access to the Reading Bug, either at home or in school using our Chromebooks.

We encourage students to be articulate and involved in their learning and offer an interesting and diverse programme of extra-curricular activities, such as Rotary Youth speaks competitions; we also take part in writing and poetry competitions as the opportunities present themselves. We aim to invite visiting authors or speakers in regularly and our pupils partake in a range of workshops with outside agencies and organisations. 

Year 5 Curriculum Overview

 Pupils study a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts throughout the year. 

 Autumn Term 

During the first three weeks of the Autumn term, students will remain in their form groups, taking part in a Holiday Island Project. They will describe their perfect holiday, write about an imaginary creature and write holiday brochures.

When students move into their English groups, they will study Michael Morpurgo’s ‘Kensuke’s Kingdom’ whilst also having discrete Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling lessons.

In the second part of the term, as part of our Creative Curriculum, the children will study Greek Myths and non-fiction texts about Ancient Greece.

Homework will be set weekly and will include handwriting, spelling and writing tasks. It is also beneficial for students to read for approximately two hours a week. This can be alone but also sharing a book with a parent/carer.

Spring Term 

The spring term begins with a narrative poetry unit based on ‘The Highwayman’ before moving to a story unit inspired by the short animation ‘The Piano’. We then finish the term looking at a range of autobiographies and biographies.

Summer Term 

During the summer term, pupils will study ‘Street Child’ as part of their Victorian topic, writing from a different perspective and creating non-fiction texts about Victorian life. At the end of the year, the pupils will look at persuasive writing, thinking about what a Perfect Playground would look like.

Year 6 Curriculum Overview  

 Pupils study a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts throughout the year. 

 Autumn Term 

 Year 6 English lessons begin based on the story of Zhang Qian before moving onto a survival unit, looking at a wide range of fiction and non-fiction texts.

After half-term, pupils’ writing will be based on the Titanic and Michael Morpurgo’s ‘Kaspar – King of Cats’.

Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling is taught discretely and then embedded throughout the week. There is also a dedicated reading comprehension lesson each week.

Homework will be set weekly and will include handwriting, spelling and writing tasks. It is also beneficial for students to read for approximately two hours a week. This can be alone but also sharing a book with a parent/carer.

Spring Term 

The focus of the Spring Term is short stories. Pupils will read ‘The Giant’s Necklace’ and ‘The Chronicles of Harris Burdick’ before writing their own mystery short stories.

Summer Term 

During the summer term, pupils will sit the Key Stage 2 tests (SATS). As well as preparing pupils for the tests, we will also look at a wide range of poetry. After the tests, we look at the transition to Key Stage 3 by studying ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.

Year 7 Curriculum Overview

 Pupils study a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts throughout the year. 

 Autumn Term 

Year 7 students begin Key Stage 3 studying Louis Sachar’s ‘Holes’. They will develop their analytical skills through studying language, themes and characterisation. Students will begin to write extended essays as well as a variety of creative texts.

After half-term, students study poetry based on the theme of the natural world.

Spring Term 

The focus of the Spring Term is Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’. They will build on the skills taught in Year 6, reading and analysing the play as well as having opportunities to act out different scenes.

Summer Term 

During the summer term, pupils will focus on a topic of dystopian fiction based on ‘Hunger Games’. As well as analysing the texts, they will also be able to write their own dystopian story.

The units of work will provide all pupils with opportunities to develop an appreciation and love of reading whilst reading increasingly challenging material independently.

Pupils will learn new vocabulary, relating it explicitly to known vocabulary and understanding it with the help of context and dictionaries.

Through library lessons, they will be encouraged to choose and read books independently for challenge, interest and enjoyment. Pupils will also be encouraged to re-read books encountered earlier to increase familiarity with them and provide a basis for making comparisons.

Year 8 Curriculum Overview

 Pupils study a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts throughout the year. 

 Autumn Term 

During Year 8, students will continue to develop the analytical and writing skills needed to prepare for their GCSE courses. At the beginning of the year, they will study a variety of nineteenth and twentieth century gothic horror fiction before writing their own short gothic horror story.

Towards the end of term, students will study ‘A Christmas Carol’, focusing on language, characterisation and themes.

Spring Term 

The focus of the Spring Term is Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’. They will develop their extended writing skills in preparation for an assessment based on a main character.

Summer Term 

During the summer term, pupils will begin with a short topic based on ‘Survival’, using a wide range of fiction and non-fiction texts. They will then finish the year studying J.B. Priestley’s ‘An Inspector Calls’.

The units of work will provide all pupils with opportunities to develop an appreciation and love of reading whilst reading increasingly challenging material independently.

Pupils will learn new vocabulary, relating it explicitly to known vocabulary and understanding it with the help of context and dictionaries.

Through library lessons, they will be encouraged to choose and read books independently for challenge, interest and enjoyment. Pupils will also be encouraged to re-read books encountered earlier to increase familiarity with them and provide a basis for making comparisons.