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Head of department: Mrs. C Hopkins

If you wish to learn more about the curriculum, please contact the head of Department by email: ­­­­

Department Statement

English is a vibrant, profound, dynamic subject which inspires and underpins every significant aspect of life. Here at Oaklands, it is taught by a dedicated team of innovative individuals with a variety of expertise and complementary interests. It is our aim to convey our enthusiasm and love for our subject to the students in our care, inspiring them to aspire, to fulfil their potential and to develop a love of Literature and Language.

Aspirational and Innovative Teaching and Learning

Independent learning and articulate, confident self-expression are outcomes we would aim for all of our students achieve. To achieve this, we employ a variety of activities, both modern and traditional, and constantly monitor this with regular assessment and informative marking. Enrichment activities are an integral part of our curriculum, as well as a wide range of extra-curricular activities. Events such as poetry recitals and groups such as Reading Groups engender a love of these aspects of English, poetry and reading, which are integral to a full, informed experience of this central subject. In the discussion of poems and books, students are given ample opportunity to reflect on issues and themes which touch upon their spiritual experience and help them to develop emotional literacy. The depth of this response varies immensely and touches all years, from year 7 who may well respond creatively to the Carl Sandburg poem ‘There is a wolf in me’ to 6th form who reflect on the presentation of monotheocracies in fictitious dystopic societies. Whatever the experience, in each circumstance there is a sense of celebrating self and of valuing the individual.

For our students, we endeavour to:

  • Inspire a love of reading, language and the word.
  • Enable independent learning.
  • Encourage respect, tolerance and empathy towards others.
  • Cultivate Independent thinking.
  • Engender a desire to make a significant contribution towards their role as active citizens and involvement in the immediate and wider community.
  • Empower them to be articulate, confident speakers.
  • Reach for their ability to reach their full potential.

For our staff we endeavour to:

  • Act as a collegiate body, sharing and building upon good practice
  • Cascade expertise and aim for an equal experience for all students
  • Support and encourage professional and personal development
  • Demonstrate respect towards each other and our students
  • Contribute in a variety of ways to the life of the school
  • Engage in charitable activities which enriches our community
  • Develop links across the communities in which we live and work
  • Aspire to forge links with international communities.

Teaching Staff

The diversity and breadth of experience amongst the English staff enrich the department and the school in general. I am always amazed by the energy and innovation of the ideas which constantly emanate from this dedicated team of specialists. The passion felt for our subject by all members of the English department is evident in all areas of English teaching; it follows that dynamism and creativity enhance all that we do. Every Child Matters is a crucial aspect of school life and this empathy and equality is central to our approach in all areas of English teaching. All students are fortunate to have such attention and commitment, from KS3 to KS5. The key focus is progression and personal development and it is evident from our superb results that such progression is achieved and built upon.

Curriculum Content

  • Years 7-9 – including specific teaching on spelling, punctuation and grammar

Year 7 Topics

Year 8 Topics

Year 9 Topics

  • Autobiography
  • Beowulf; Narrative Poetry
  • A Christmas Carol
  • A Modern Novel
  • Language extracts
  • Shakespeare
  • Creative Writing
  • Holes – Louis Sachar
  • Frankenstein
  • Shakespeare – A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • Victorian and Modern Texts
  • Sherlock Holmes
  • Poetry
  • Great Expectations
  • English Language exams
  • War Poetry
  • Shakespeare
  • Volcano Assessment
  • Media work
  • World Seminal Literature


  • GCSE Y10-11

Exam Board: AQA for English Literature; AQA and Eduqas for English Language.

Exam board specification weblink:  

English Language

English Literature

  • Spoken Language
  • Paper 1 practice including writing to describe or narrate
  • Paper 2 practice including writing to argue or persuade
  • Poetry – Power and Conflict
  • 19th century novel e.g. A Christmas Carol
  • Modern text e.g. Lord of the Flies
  • Poetry – unseen
  • Shakespeare – Macbeth.


  • A level Y12-13

Exam Board: AQA: Eng Lit

Exam Board specification weblink:  

English Literature

English Language & Literature

English Language

  • 7716/7717 Paper 1 – Tragedy – Shakespeare – Othello; Richard II; The Great Gatsby – Fitzgerald
  • Paper 2 – Elements of Crime Writing. An unseen extract; The Rime of the Ancient Mariner; When Will There Be Good News? – Kate Atkinson; The Murder of Roger Ackroyd – Agatha Christie
  • 7706 7707
  • Paper 1 –
  • Remembered Places –Paris
  • Imagined Worlds
  • Poetic Voices
  • Paper 2 –
  • Writing About Society
  • Dramatic Encounters (Shakespeare)


  • Paper 1 – Language, the Individual and Society: (Section A) Textual Variations & Representations and (Section B) Children’s Language Development
  • Paper 2 – Language Diversity and Change: (Section A) Diversity & Change and (Section B) Language Discourses