English Year 8
The aim of the Key Stage 3 course is to consolidate the learning of students from Key Stage 2 and develop the skills required for Key Stage 4. The English Faculty uses a variety of teaching styles and methods to motivate our students in the study of English and foster an enthusiasm for the subject.
Self and peer assessment is greatly encouraged amongst students. Using the school's 3 phase marking policy allows students to become better reflective learners. The green pens used are an added bonus.
The units of work covered in Year 8 English are:
- A novel (e.g. Holes, Chinese Cinderella)
- A play (e.g. Dracula, Frankenstein)
- Aspects of the media (e.g. soap operas)
- A Christmas Carol
- A variety of writing purposes (e.g argue, persuade, advise)
The skills learnt in English are linked to the new (from 2015) GCSE criteria. For reading they will develop skills to do with information retrieval, inference and deduction, analysis of language, structural and presentational features of texts. For writing they will develop skills to do with writing a range of different text types, organising texts effectively, varying sentence structures for effect, technical accuracy, spelling and vocabulary.
Students are taught in mixed ability groups
Homework is advised to be set once weekly and varies greatly depending on the work set. It could be some research, a final draft of a piece of writing, preparation of a speech, a play scene, silent reading and so on. Homework is vital to the progress of the student and must be done to the best of the student’s ability and done on time. It enables the teacher to check and monitor the understanding of each student.
Assessment and reporting
Students are monitored and assessed through the work they do in class and the homework handed in. Work will be given a level at least once a half-term and the completed, marked work stored in a folder in school as evidence for the end of year KS3 teacher assessment. The work in folders also informs reports to parents. At the end of the year, the students sit English exams, one for writing and one for reading. The marks are combined to give a level which is reported to parents..
What is progress in English about?
At all levels, learning English is about learning to use language to express, explore and communicate our thoughts, ideas and feelings with others. We do this through speaking, listening, reading and writing and getting better at English means making progress in each of these areas.
What is teacher assessment?
Teacher assessment is an important part of everyday teaching and learning in the classroom. Your child’s teacher will be able to explain the range of formal and informal ways they use assessment to support your child’s progress. At the end of Key Stage 3, performance is judged by teacher assessment.
How parents/carers can help
Read with your daughter on a regular basis and encourage them to experience a range of genres and authors. Allow them to make use of library facilities in their area and to use the internet to develop research and reading skills. Encourage them to read a range of non-fiction material, including a newspaper. Help your daughter with spellings by keeping a log of difficult words and then test them at the end of the week. Encourage them to use a thesaurus when doing written work in order to expand their vocabulary. Above all else we ask that you continue to encourage and motivate your daughter in her study of English.