Head of Department
Mrs R Patel
- BA Arts (Honours) English Language/Literature
- PGCE in Secondary Education
“Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing.”
Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
The English Department aims for all Pleckgate pupils to leave with a passion for language and literature and excellent communication skills. We want our pupils to become confident and articulate young adults who are knowledgeable about the world around them, inquisitive and critical about the texts they read.
Transition from primary school is well managed with staff trained on the demands of the KS2 curriculum paired with an excellent understanding of the ability of entering pupils. Transition from primary to secondary is purposefully planned to allow pupils to make continued progress. Pupils together with partner primary schools, complete a transition unit by working on a project in the summer term which is then continued at Pleckgate in September. Pupils that are below the expected standard on entry have a personalised “Catch Up” programme, which enables them to make rapid progress in reading and other aspects of literacy.
Reading is central to our curriculum and pupils are encouraged to read regularly and widely – both fiction and nonfiction. Through the study of a range of quality literature, underpinned at KS3, we build core reading and writing skills as a foundation for study at KS4. The KS3 curriculum is broad and balanced, with pupils studying full texts such as classics like “Oliver Twist” by Charles Dickens and “To Kill a Mocking Bird” by Harper Lee. The study of more modern texts is also woven into the curriculum to keep literature current and relevant for our pupils. The transition from KS3 to KS4 is seamless, with pupils continuing to develop core skills in reading and writing with increasingly demanding texts for GCSE. We currently offer Eduqas English Language and AQA English Literature, as well as a foundation pathway of Eduqas Entry level English for pupils who are not ready for the demands of GCSE.
Alongside our core curriculum, strong links are maintained with the school library with pupils using this invaluable resource during English lessons and in their own free time. We create opportunities for pupils to regularly use and develop spoken language through discussions, debates and performances. We also participate in events throughout the year, including National Poetry Day and World Book Day. Pupils are encouraged to compete in creative writing competitions, with many having had their work published. Visits to the theatre and live performances in school also help bring texts to life and enriches the English curriculum.
Please note, detailed, ‘live’ curriculum maps are held in school by teachers and continually reviewed. Every subject exercise book your child has contains a subject ‘Pleckgate Learning Journey’ that outlines the content covered, timelines and assessment points for the current year.