English and Media Studies

English

Our values: Empathy, empowerment and engagement for all:

  • We believe in empowering all young people to explore their potential through the power of their written and spoken voices. 
  • We believe in fostering empathy, cultural sensitivity and curiosity. 
  • We believe all students have the right to feel successful and motivated by their study of English, and leave equipped to contribute to society.   

Our Intent

The vision for the English curriculum at DGS is:

  • A curriculum in which knowledge is delivered in an exciting way, is delineated carefully, taught explicitly, and placed judiciously;
  • Where activities and methods for teaching are developed creatively in order to inspire, and refined thoughtfully;
  • Where disciplinary knowledge is taught deliberately and practised repeatedly;
  • Where learning is assessed habitually, so as to be securely learned;
  • Where definitions, terminology and approaches are standardised systematically, in order to aid retention.

Curriculum sequences:

The National Curriculum is covered in its entirety, and we go beyond the National Curriculum and make links to other subjects at several points across the curriculum sequence.

Year 7:

Unit 1:

Unit 2:

Unit 3:

Unit 4:

Unit 5:

Unit 6:

Oracy

A mini unit focussing on oracy (the ability to express yourself well).

By the end of the unit all students will have spoken about a topic in front of the class.

 

Gothic Writing

A unit that focuses on imaginative writing in the Gothic genre, looking at extracts from a range of Gothic texts.

 

 

 

 

Natural World Poetry

A poetry reading unit that looks at natural world poems by writers including Heaney, Larkin and Keats. Students learn how to write extended literary analyses.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

A unit that introduces students to Shakespearean theatre, conventions of Shakespearean comedy and Shakespearean language.

 

 

 

 

Great Expectations

A 19th Century fiction reading unit that builds on the skills of extended literary analysis. Students study characterisation, plot development and explore the context of Victorian England.

 

Expressions of Self

A non-fiction unit that focuses on the art of persuasive writing and speaking. Students analyse a range of speeches and learn to analyse and use persuasive methods.

Year 8:

Unit 1: 

Unit 2: 

Unit 3: 

Unit 4: 

Unit 5: 

The Art of Storytelling  

A unit that focuses on different types of narratives and explores different ways of telling stories. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Media: Jaws 

A media unit that allows students to practise their skills of analysis and apply this to the film. Students also learn to use media terminology in their analyses. 

 

 

 

 

 

Voices and Perspectives Poetry

A unit that builds on the knowledge of poetic methods learned in the Natural World Poetry unit in Year 7. Students consolidate this knowledge and also learn how poets manipulate elements of structure to create meaning, through studying a range of poems from different identities and perspectives.

Much Ado About Nothing 

A unit that studies extracts from the play to consider dramatic conventions and methods, while introducing students to the study of Shakespeare. 

 

 

 

 

Animal Farm

A unit on the novel which introduces students to the concept of allegory and allows students to practise their critical writing skills, as well as how to integrate contextual factors into analyses. 

 

 

 

 

Year 9:

Unit 1:

Unit 2:

Unit 3:

Unit 4:

Unit 5:

Justices and Injustices:

A unit that explores issues of justice and injustice, including capital punishment, racism and climate change. The unit involves persuasive writing and speaking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Of Mice and Men:

A unit studying this novel by John Steinbeck, set in America in the 1930s in the wake of the Great Depression. Students will practise analytical writing and passage-based literary analysis.

 

 

 

 

 Romeo and Juliet

This unit builds on students’ previous study of Shakespeare’s works, this time introducing them to the dramatic genre of tragedy and Shakespearean tragic conventions. This unit focuses on dramatic methods and analysis of language and structure. Students will practise analytical writing and whole-text literary analysis.

 

An Introduction to War Poetry:

A unit studying 6 poems focused around war from the Power and Conflict cluster in the KS4 poetry anthology. Students will learn to analyse poetry in depth, looking at features of language, structure and form and compare two poems.

 

 

Persuasive Speaking and Oracy

A unit in which students consolidate and develop their understanding of persuasive speaking and writing. Students will learn how to write and deliver powerful and engaging speeches on a topic of their choice. This speech is used for the Spoken Language Endorsement as part of the English Language GCSE

Year 10:

Unit 1

Unit 2

Unit 3

Unit 4

Unit 5

Unit 6

An Inspector Calls (modern text)

Students spend term 3 studying An Inspector Calls by JB Priestley.

Students will be assessed through knowledge quizzes and in-class essays.

 

A Christmas Carol (19th century novel)

Students spend term 2 studying A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

Students will be assessed through knowledge quizzes and in-class essays.

Macbeth (Shakespeare)

Students spend term 4 studying Macbeth by William Shakespeare.

Students will be assessed through knowledge quizzes and in-class essays.

 

 

 

 

Power and Conflict Poetry

Students spend term 1 studying the remaining 9 of the 15 poems in the Power and Conflict anthology.

Students will be assessed through knowledge quizzes and in-class essays.

Revision and Poetry

Students spend term 5 on targeted revision of their English Literature texts.

Students will also learn how to answer the unseen poetry element of the examination.

 

Mock Examinations and feedback

Students will sit a full Literature GCSE mock examination in Term 6. Students will have plenty of time to prepare, in class and out.

 

 

 

 

Year 11:

Unit 1

Unit 2

Unit 3

Unit 4

Unit 5

Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing

This unit focuses on studying short fiction extracts and analysing them in terms of structure, language and author’s intent. It also focuses on imaginative writing and develops the skills for English Language Paper 1 which is worth 50% of students’ English Language GCSE.

 

 

 

 

Revision and consolidation

Students spend term 2 revising key concepts from Year 10 and Term 1 of Year 11.

Students complete assessments on:

Paper 1 English Language (1 hour 45 minutes)

Paper 1 English Literature  - Macbeth and A Christmas Carol  (1 hour 45 minutes

 

 

 

 

 

 

Writer’s Viewpoints and Perspective

This unit focuses on studying short non-fiction extracts and making comparisons between them. Students also learn to analyse non-fiction texts in terms of structure, language and author’s intent. It also focuses on persuasive writing and develops the skills for English Language Paper 2 which is worth 50% of students’ English Language GCSE.

 

Revision and consolidation

Students spend term 4 revisiting the Power and Conflict poetry, An Inspector Calls and Macbeth.

Students complete assessments on:

Paper 2 English Language (1 hour 45 minutes)

Paper 2 English Literature – Power and Conflict poetry and unseen poetry (1 hour 45 minutes)

 

 

 

 

Revision and consolidation

Students spend term 5 on targeted revision of English Language and English Literature.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Key Stage 5

Within the sixth form, the English Department run two A-Level courses: English Literature A-Level which follows the AQA Literature A specification, and the combined English Language and Literature A-Level. In both, students build on and extend the substantive and disciplinary knowledge learned at KS3 and 4, studying a range of literary texts which develop their ability to engage with writers’ ideas and the ways in which they convey them, using a number of different approaches. 

Assessment

At each key stage, students complete synoptic assessments at the mid-point of each unit which test students’ understanding of key substantive knowledge related to the topic and relevant concepts from previous topics, as well as a section in which students are required to apply their knowledge through some extended writing. This assessment is used formatively to enable teachers to respond to misconceptions and revisit any knowledge that is insecure at that point. Students also complete end-of-unit assessments which involve extended writing tasks in which students have to apply all of the knowledge they have learned during the unit. Any concepts which are identified as being insecure at this point are carefully planned into upcoming units through retrieval and repetition.

Supporting SEND students:

We believe in a scaffold-for-challenge model of differentiation, with all learners being supported to achieve ambitious outcomes. Scaffolding (help towards a particular task e.g. sentence starters) is tailored to different groups of learners based on their individual needs, and we support students so that we can gradually remove scaffolds over time. Knowledge of the individual pupils is also central to our inclusion strategy as a department, and we have a specialist Inclusion and Intervention Coordinator who works closely with teachers to help them support disadvantaged and SEND students, alongside our department HLTA. Strategies outlined in SEND student profiles are used without exception, alongside our department inclusion strategies, such as our dyslexia-friendly power point design, carefully-planned precise explanations, and targeted feedback that allows students to make progress by showing them how to improve, rather than just what.

GCSE Media

GCSE

GCSE Media Studies offers you an interactive and engaging course that aims to broaden your mind. You’ll cover all aspects of media including language, representations, industries and audiences, giving you both an overall and in-depth understanding of how media represents the world.

Course outline

Component 1 (40% of the GCSE)

Section A – Media Language and Media Representations.

Questions in this section can test any two of the following forms:

  • magazines
  • advertising and marketing
  • newspapers

Section B - Media Industries and Media Audiences.

Questions in this section can test any two of the following forms:

  • radio
  • newspapers
  • video games
  • film (industries only).

Component 2 (30% of the GCSE)

  • Section A will be based on a screening from an extract of one of the television In-depth Study Products and can test any area of the theoretical framework.
  • Section B will be based on music. This includes music video, online, social and participatory media and the questions can test any area of the framework.

Component 3 – Non-examination Assessment (30% of the GCSE)

This unit involves creating a media product based on one of the briefs set by Eduqas. It tests:

  • Application of knowledge and understanding of the theoretical framework.
  • Ability to respond to a brief.
  • Ability to create media products.

Assessment and Progression

How it’s assessed

2 final examinations
Non-exam assessment (NEA): creating a media product

  • Component 1 (40%) – Exploring the Media (1hr 30 minutes)
  • Component 2 (30%) – Understanding Media Forms and Products (1hr 30 minutes)
  • Component 3 NEA (30%) – choice of one of the annually changing briefs, set by Eduqas.  This is completed in class time over approximately twelve weeks.

Examination Board:   Eduqas

Grading system: 1-9 (9 is the highest)

Assessment:

2 final examinations
Non-exam assessment (NEA): creating a media product

  • Component 1 (40%) – Exploring the Media (1hr 30 minutes)
  • Component 2 (30%) – Understanding Media Forms and Products (1hr 30 minutes)
  • Component 3 NEA (30%) – choice of one of the annually changing briefs, set by Eduqas.  This is completed in class time over approximately twelve weeks.

Progression to Post-16:

A-Level Film or Media Studies.

Future career links:

TV or Film production
Journalism
Marketing

Contact:

Sian Hall: shall@didcotgirls.oxon.sch.uk

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