Important News

Summer Work

A-level Bridging Work - Summer 2018 (Yr11 into 12)

You have been set A-level Bridging Work by your teachers so that:

1. You can see whether the difficulty of this subject is right for you.
2. You can show your teachers your strengths.

3. You can immerse yourself in the wonderful world of Literature and be ready to dive straight into the course content.


All work must be handed to your English teacher in your first lesson back after the summer break. Failure to do this may jeopardise your place on the course and will create a poor first impression. All the texts needed for this course will be available for purchase through the school, in September. You do not need them in order to complete this work.


English Literature

Coordinator of English A-Level:

Ms Patel

Estimated hours of work needed to complete this work successfully:

4 hours (Tasks 1 and 2)

This work is entirely relevant to the Course Specification. It will help prepare you for your A Level in this subject because:

Task 1 will prepare you for the study of an anthology of Love poems that you will be examined on in Paper 1 AS WELL AS the Unseen Poetry section of Paper 1. 

Task 2 will prepare you for the study of ONE of the THREE texts that you will be examined on in Paper 2.

Task 3 is non-compulsory, but highly recommended. We recommend you read Frankenstein which will be revisited in the Summer Term of yr12 and be the key text studied for your NEA (coursework)

The additional tasks are strongly recommended for you to be in the best position possible to start the course.

This work will be given an effort grade from 1-4 (4 being highest) that will be sent home and used to inform our intervention. In order to get a 4 you must ensure you:

To achieve an effort grade 3 you need to:

Produce detailed research notes that have not been copied and pasted from the internet. These should be presented in a reader-friendly way.


To achieve an effort grade 4, you need to also:

Start to read one of the set prose texts and make detailed links between the novels and their contexts in your research notes.


Research the following poets and make a profile / fact file for each one. Look at the time in which they were writing. Consider their religious or political beliefs, marriage/ relationships with others – these may have influenced their literary works. Also consider how they were viewed in the public. Use a wide range of websites and ensure that they are respectable. Put the information into your own words – all A Level work is checked for plagiarism

William Blake
Robert Burns
Lord Byron
John Donne
Christina Rossetti
Thomas Hardy
John Keats
Ernest Dowson
Sir Thomas Wyatt
William Shakespeare
Andrew Marvell
Richard Lovelace
John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester

TASK 2: Research the context of The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.

You must present your research in as a detailed, two-sided information sheet. You must not copy and paste from the internet; everything must be in your own words (unless it is a direct quotation and the source is referenced).

Include research of the following topics:

  1. The life of Margaret Atwood
  2. Feminism and the Women’s Rights Movement (Second wave feminism, Sexual revolution and developments in contraception)
  3. The dystopian genre
  4. The resurgence of Conservatism in the 1980s (Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan)

TASK 3: You should start reading Frankenstein straight away as it is widely available online and there are free, unabridged audio book versions on YouTube.

 Additional Tasks (RECOMMENDED):

Read at least ONE of the texts from the attached reading list.  Make yourself familiar with as many of the titles on there (even if this means some short time researching a text online OR watching a film version of it).

▪ Visit the Globe Theatre or watch a theatrical performance at Odeon cinema. You can go for a guided tour during the day or watch a performance (groundling tickets cost £5).

▪ Watch a performance at another theatre.

▪ Watch as many of the following films / series (buying a study guide for each would be useful):

Othello (any version),

The Great Gatsby (starring Leonardo De Caprio),

A Streetcar Named Desire (starring Marlon Brando),

Frankenstein (Starring Robert De Nero and Kenneth Branagh),

The Handmaid’s Tale (Season 1, available on All 4 and Netflix)

▪ Other Visits:

– Tate Britain – Look at the Pre-Raphaelite collection and explore images of Britain’s Victorian past

– Victoria and Albert Museum – explore Britain’s past: Empire and the Victorians

-The British Library – Visit the Treasure Room with its collection of first editions

 Recommendations For A-Level English Wider Reading

(This is a quick list but it is a good starting point for your wider reading)
The Handmaid’s Tale- Margaret Atwood
The Bell Jar- Sylvia Plath
A Clockwork Orange- Anthony Burgess
Animal Farm & 1984 - George Orwell
To Kill A Mockingbird- Harper Lee
High Rise- J.G.Ballard
The God of Small Things- Arundhati Roy
Orlando & To The Lighthouse & Mrs Dalloway - Virginia Woolf
The Yellow Wallpaper- Charlotte Gilmore Perkins (short story- can find free PDF online)
The Buddha of Suburbia- Hanif Qureshi
A Thousand Splendid Suns & The Kite Runner & The Mountains Echoed - Khaled Hosseinni
Men In The Sun- Ghassan Kanafani
Perfume – Ptrick Suskind 1985
Outcast – Sadie Jones
Life Of Pi – Yann Martel
Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
The Great Gatsby – Scott Fitzgerald
Spies – Michael Frayn
Sense And Sensibility & Northanger Abbey  & Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen 1813
The Reluctant Fundamentalist – Mohsin Hamid
White Teeth – Zadie Smith
The Bloody Chamber and other stories – Angela Carter 1979
Dracula – Bram Stoker 1897
We Need To Talk About Kevin - – Lionel Shrivel
The Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde – R L Stevenson
The Color Purple- Alice Walker
Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit- Jeanette Winterson
Picture of Dorian Grey -  Oscar Wilde
The Woman In Black – Susan Hill 1983
Brick Lane – Monica Ali
Small Island – Andrea Levy
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte 1847
Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte, 1847
Lady Chatterley’s Lover – D. H. Lawrence, 1928
Rebecca – Daphne Du Marier, 1938
Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov, 1955
Notes On A Scandal – Zoe Heller 2003
Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks, 1994
Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden, 1997
Enduring Love – Ian McEwan, 1997
Disgrace – J. M. Coetzee, 1999
The Grapes Of Wrath – John Steinbeck
Room – Emma Donoghue, 2010
Call It Sleep - Henry Roth
Beloved – Tony Morrison
Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
A Woman Of No Importance- Oscar Wilde
Top Girls- Caryl Churchill
The Glass Menagerie – Tennessee Willoams 1944
A Doll’s House & Ghosts – Henrik Ibsen
East Is East – Ayub Khan Din
Waiting for Godot- Sam Beckett
An Inspector Calls – J. B. Priestly
All My Sons (1947), Death of a Salesman & A View From A Bridge (1955) – Arthur Miller
Anthony and Cleopatra, Romeo and Juliet (1597), Othello (1601) – William Shakespeare
Uncle Vanya – Anton Chekov, 1898
A Streetcar Named Desire – Tennessee Williams, 1957
A Taste of Honey – Shelagh Delaney, 1959
Betrayal – Harold Pinter, 1978
Top Tips For Wider Reading:
Pick up a copy of The Norton Anthology of English Literature from ebay or Amazon.
Try to read material from the ‘prizes’ e.g. The Man Booker prize or the Orange prize
Try to get into reading a broadsheet newspaper weekly
Try to read a range of non-fiction writing such as travel writing (Bryson, Palin), autobiography (Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela), biography etc.
Reference Books:
 A Dictionary of Literary Terms by Martin Gray
 AQA English Literature A (AS and A2) by Nelson Thornes
Doing English by Robert Eaglestone
How to Write Better Essays by Bryan Greetham
Oxford Concise Companion To English Literature by Margaret Drabble and Jenny Stringer
Pastoral by Terry Gifford
The Ode Less Travelled by Stephen Fry
The Poet’s Craft by Sandy Brownjohn
Magazines/Journals, Podcasts and Festivals:
EMC Emagazine Philip Allan English Review
The Times Literary Supplement – a weekly literary review Literary Events
The BBC Proms festival
Libraries/Bookshops: Our library at CHSG is kept well stocked and up-to-date; however you may need to venture out of our library to find a particular title. Try these libraries:
The British Library (St Pancras London)
Croydon Library
Sutton Library
Cinemas: As well as your standard Cinemas, why not try these cinemas which usually show more independent films:
The David Lean Cinema (Croydon)
The Regent Street Cinema
Electric Cinema (Portobello / Shoreditch)
The Phoenix Cinema (East Finchley)
The BFI (Southbank)
Theatres: As well as the huge choice of theatres in London why not try a production in one of these more local theatres:
New Wimbledon Theatre (Wimbledon)
Epsom Playhouse (Epsom)
Ashcroft Theatre (Croydon)
The Warehouse Theatre (Croydon)
The Secomb Theatre (Sutton)
The Charles Cryer Theatre (Sutton)
 Useful Websites: