Spines 220x176Learning to both use and understand language and all its subtleties is an invaluable life skill. We want our students to be able to find their own voice so that they can express themselves confidently, clearly and appropriately. We aim to stimulate students’ creativity and curiosity as they develop ideas.  We encourage our students to read widely, experiencing a wealth of literary texts and forms from different eras. Our students develop secure comprehension skills, acquire a diverse vocabulary, and experience different cultures and worlds other than those which they inhabit. This enhances their ability to interpret and empathise. Through our curriculum, students will develop the skills and knowledge to improve technical accuracy in vocabulary, grammar, syntax and spelling.

We aim to develop assured, engaging speakers in both formal and informal settings and enhance students’ listening skills. We believe that by listening to others, students can have their own ideas challenged and their knowledge and understanding will increase. Students are also encouraged to take part in a range of experiences outside the classroom so that they can continue to enjoy the subject through different stages of their lives.  

Key Stage 3 Curriculum Overview

The Key Stage 3 curriculum offers our students a rich, diverse, engaging and challenging experience that develops reading, writing and speaking and listening skills. In each year group, students read a full novel and study a Shakespeare play. At least one scheme in each year group also focuses predominantly on a more modern fiction text. Each of our schemes of work aims to enhance students’ abilities with regards to: older, pre-1914 fiction, poetry (including pre-1914 poetry), creative writing, pre-1914 non-fiction texts, modern non-fiction texts and writing for a range of non-fiction purposes.


Year 7 and Year 8

In Years 7 and 8, pupils are taught in form groups. They have six English lessons per fortnight. Homework tasks are set on a weekly basis.

At Key Stage 3, it can be necessary to ‘split’ a class between two teachers.  Where this occurs, the two teachers will be in regular contact to ensure that all areas of the curriculum are covered.  Educational and administrative tasks including the setting of Homework task, report writing and attendance at Parents’ Evenings will be shared between staff.

Year 9

In Year 9, the form groups are reorganised for English lessons.  Three form groups are combined and re-divided.  The content of the groups will be determined by the Year 8 teachers and will as far as possible, be equal in terms of ability and gender. Homework is set on a weekly basis.

Eng KS3 Learning Journey A3 543x768

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Skill Focus Texts Learning Objectives
Introducing older texts Introduction to Gothic with extracts from older texts eg. ‘Dracula’ novel, although students also examine an extract from modern gothic novel ‘My Swordhand is Singing’ as well as using a playscript adaptation of ‘Dracula’ to explore the full plot -to introduce the conventions of the Gothic genre

- to understand presentation of character in the opening of Dracula

-To understand how to effectively support ideas with textual references

- To explore how tension is created

- To understand how language choices can be used to create a sense of character

-To develop skills of inference

To develop skills in retrieving information, with a focus on female characters

-To introduce the SQI model

-To develop ambitious vocabulary linked to atmosphere

- to start to consider the influence of context on the reading of a text

- To further develop skills of inference and use of SQI
- To develop language analysis and use of IEC method

Introducing 19th-century poetry

The Laboratory

- To develop confidence in exploring C19th Poetry

- To explore the presentation of character in poetry

-To explore imagery, mood and structure in a poem

Introducing creative writing

Diary & letter

To understand how to write from a character’s perspective

-To understand how to write for the purpose, audience and form (of a diary and letter)

Introducing 19th-century non-fiction

Introducing older texts – Robert Scott’s Diary

Darwin’s Diary

-To develop skills of summarising ideas of older texts

-To develop understanding of applying the SQI model

-To explore how language is used to present thoughts and feelings of the character

Introducing linked 21st-century non-fiction: exploring connections and themes

‘Renfield the Hidden Hero’ essay

Book review of ‘Dracula’

Book review of ‘My Swordhand is Singing’

-To develop comprehension skills to understand key ideas in an information text

- To examine how a review is structured and the effect the author’s choice of topic order has on the reader

Introducing non-fiction writing

Newspaper Report writing – The Shipwreck

- To understand the features of discursive writing

- To learn how to structure discursive writing

- To revise and develop knowledge of discourse markers for discussion

  • To understand the features of a newspaper report
  • To learn how to structure a newspaper report effectively
  • To learn how to adapt writing to suit audience, purpose and form


  • To review Dracula and to write your own review using relevant generic features.
  • To plan an informative piece ‘A Guide to Vampire Hunting’ focusing on purpose and audience.

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Year 8

Skill Focus Texts Learning Objectives
Reading between the lines in 19th-century fiction Hound of Baskervilles (Students to read the whole novel) -To develop confidence with comprehension of a whole 19th C fiction text

- To develop retrieval skills in extracting less obvious information from a 19th C text

-To use inference and deduction to explore characters and meanings

- To develop speculation skills

- To practise applying your inference and speculation skills

- To revise the SQI method

- To consider how language choices are used to create setting and atmosphere

- To revise the IEC method

- To consider how the writer uses structure to engage the reader

- To secure use of quotations to support points

- To explore the context of the Victorian era

- To explore the context of the detective novel

Introducing more skills with poetry: exploring inference

About his Person – Simon Armitage

-To further develop skills of inference when analysing a modern poem

Introducing more skills with creative writing

Descriptive tasks based upon creating setting in the style of ‘The Hound of Baskervilles’

Assessment to be based on writing a section of their own murder mystery creating setting, atmosphere and tension

They produce their own opening of a spy novel

-To plan and write a first person / third person narrative

-To develop skills in creative writing by considering atmosphere, imagery, thoughts and feelings appropriate to genre

-To develop confidence in selecting ambitious vocabulary

-To revise dashes and colons and explore how they can be used for impact in mystery writing

-To consolidate your understanding of how to create an effective narrative hook

Introducing more skills with understanding 19th-century non-fiction: considering point of view (&develop links between texts)

Jack the Ripper articles from Victorian newspapers

- To select, retrieve, and make inferences from a 19th century fiction text

- To further secure the SQI method in interpreting non-fiction texts

- To learn about the context of crime in Victorian London

- To explore and compare point of view between two 19th C non fiction sources

Introducing more skills with linked 21st-century non-fiction: considering point of view

-article about a house fit for a spy

-estate agent’s brochure for a spy house

- To secure comprehension skills about 21st non-fiction

- Develop an understanding of more sophisticated persuasive language techniques

Introducing more skills with discursive writing

Writing estate agent’s brochure for a house fit for a spy

- To develop more sophisticated persuasive writing through subtle manipulation of language

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Year 9

Skill Focus Text Learning Objectives 

Developing skills with 19th-century fiction: planning an essay task

Heart of Darkness

- To read and understand 19th-century fiction

- To explore and draw inferences about how a writer uses language to create atmosphere

- To develop analysis of language using the IEC model

Developing skills with 19th-century poetry: looking at the structure and imagery of two contrasting poems

Composed upon Westminster Bridge

-To explore the viewpoint of a poet in presenting London compared to other forms (prose and painting)

- To develop skills in reading and exploring the language and structure of a 19th-century poem - To secure use of IEC model, and further develop it

- To understand how context can inform different readings of texts

Developing skills in creative writing: structural special effects

Write their own travelogue

- To plan and write a creative piece using ambitious imagery, language and structural techniques

- To further secure how to craft sentences, and vary sentence openers

 - To secure an understanding of how contrasting images can be used in descriptive writing
Developing understanding 19th- century non-fiction ‘The Passage Out’, Charles Dickens

- To consider ways of working out meaning in older texts

- To synthesise key ideas in a non-fiction text

- To further develop skills of inference

- To further develop understanding of the SQI model - To explore writer’s viewpoint

- To develop skills of critical evaluation, using the SQI model

- To explore the effects of language and structural choices, using the IEC model

Developing skills with linked 21st-century non-fiction: exploring a writer’s point of view

-Storm at Sea, Clare Francis











Exmouth Market – Lonely Planet Travel Guide and Travelogue






Majestic Morocco – Travel Brochure

-To understand a writer’s viewpoint and methods in a modern piece of non-fiction

-To develop skills of synthesis

 -To present and support responses analysing viewpoint and method

- To develop skills of comparison between modern and older non-fiction texts

 - To develop a longer written response comparing viewpoints and integrating writer’s methods, using SQI and IEC

- To develop understanding of audience and purpose in non-fiction writing

- To analyse how purpose can influence language and structural features in non-fiction writing

 - To apply understanding of writing for different purposes in own writing

- To understand the features of writing to persuade and inform - --To secure language analysis skills using IEC method

- To develop understanding of MADFOREST

Developing discursive writing

Dark Tourism article Wildlife.

Not Entertainers Campaign Leaflet

-To further develop understanding of brochures

-To develop skills of planning and also editing own writing

-To apply persuasive writing techniques to own writing for a specific audience.

-To understand more key techniques of writing with a strong viewpoint

-To plan and present an effective speech presenting a point of view

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Additional Support

Students will receive targeted support through the intervention programme.

Extra-curricular Opportunities

  • Book Club
  • Creative Writing Club
  • Scrabble Club
  • Newsletter production (across all key stages)
  • Theatre productions, including online RSC streaming
  • Visiting authors when possible / relevant
  • Links with Elizabeth Gaskell House, John Rylands Library and the National Football Museum


Page Documents Date  
Y7 Recommended Reading List 12th Jan 2021 Download
Y8 Recommended Reading List 12th Jan 2021 Download
Y9 Recommended Reading List 12th Jan 2021 Download