Newtownhamilton High School 
Every Child An Important Child 
Newtownhamilton High School 
Every Child An Important Child 

English at Newtownhamilton High School  

‘By words the mind is winged.’ Aristophanes 
English is Enlightening! 
English is an essential subject. It enables pupils to develop personally and equips them with the practical skills they need in preparation for life. Within English there are three key elements: reading, writing and oral communication. 
The English Department strives to promote the development of all pupils and make them proficient in oral and written communication. The Department has established a varied, challenging and rich programme of study so that all pupils can fulfil their potential. 
Key Stage 3 
The scheme of work for Key Stage 3 pupils provides pupils with opportunities to become familiar with a range of genres, write in a variety of forms, consolidate and develop spelling and grammatical skills, debate, role-play and use ICT to develop their literacy levels. 
Key Stage 4 
In Years 11 and 12, pupils have the opportunity to study CCEA GCSE English Language or Essential Skills Communication, dependent on their individual abilities and interests. GCSE English Literature is also available as an option choice. 

 CCEA GCSE English Language 

Pupils develop their reading and writing skills through studying and creating a range of functional and imaginative texts. They study spoken language and develop their speaking and listening abilities. In studying this course all teachers of English will seek to develop pupils’ abilities to: 
Demonstrate skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing, necessary to communicate with others confidently, effectively, precisely and appropriately. Express themselves creatively and imaginatively. Become critical readers of a range of texts, including multi-modal texts. Use reading to develop their skills as writers. Understand the patterns, structures and conventions of written and spoken English. Understand the impact of variations in spoken and written language and how they relate to identity and cultural diversity. Select and adapt speech and writing to different situations and audiences. 

 Examination Entries 

This is a unitised specification with four assessed units. This examination is untiered. The possibility of entering modules is available to pupils in January and May of each academic year. The class teacher will decide when pupils are ready to sit each paper. Repeats are available to sit. 

Externally Assessed Components 

Unit 1: 1 hour 45 minutes examination [30%] 
Writing for Purpose and Audience and Reading to Access Non-Fiction and Media Texts. 
Unit 4: 1 hour 45 minutes examination [30%] 
Personal or Creative Writing and Reading Literary and Non-Fiction Texts. 

Controlled Assessment 

Unit 2: Speaking and Listening [20%] 3 tasks: 
Individual presentation / Group interaction / Role play 
Unit 3: Studying Spoken & Written Language [20%] 2 tasks:  
The Study of Spoken Language / The Study of a Written Language 

Essential Skills in Communication 

This is a linear qualification and to achieve a Certificate in Essential Skills in Communication, learners must meet the requirements for both the Speaking and Listening and Reading and Writing components. The teacher delivering this specification follows the Programme of Study for Essential Skills. Assessment is available in four series each year (January, April, August and October). 
Level 1: 1 hour 30 minutes - Speaking and Listening: Pass/fail - Reading Assessment: 50% - Writing Assessment: 50% 
Level 2: 1 hour 45 minutes - Speaking and Listening: Pass/fail - Reading Assessment: 50% - Writing Assessment: 50% 

CCEA GCSE English Literature 

This specification aims to encourage pupils to: 
connect ideas, themes and issues, drawing on a range of texts; 
become critical readers of fiction and non-fiction prose, poetry and drama; 
experience different times, cultures, viewpoints and situations as found in literary texts; 
understand that texts from the English, Welsh or Irish literary heritage have been influential and significant over time, and explore their meaning today; 
explore how texts from different cultures and traditions may reflect or influence values, assumptions and sense of identity. 

Examination Entries 

This is an untiered unitised specification with three assessed units. It is a modular examination and the Department will enter Yr 11 pupils for Unit 1 in May of each academic year and Unit 2 in the May of Year 12. 

Externally Assessed Components 

Unit 1: The Study of Prose: 30% 
1 hour 45 minutes examination 
Section A: Novel (closed book) 
Section B: Unseen 19th Century Prose extract. 
Unit 2: The Study of Drama and Poetry: 50% 
2 hour examination 
Section A: The Study of Drama (open book) 
Section B: The Study of Poetry – response to CCEA anthology (open book) 
Unit 3: Controlled Assessment: 20% 
The Study of Shakespeare 
2 hour controlled assessment task 
Pupils will complete one extended writing task based on a theme provided by CCEA. 

English Experiences 

The Department realises that having a purpose motivates pupils. Subsequently we foster creative skills and nourish them by giving pupils the opportunities to enter many writing and public speaking competitions. Our history is very impressive and not only have past pupils had their work published and performed, but they have won substantial sums of money! It brings great joy to the Department to see our pupils becoming such skilled individuals. 
The Department also organises a variety of theatre trips for all pupils. Often these are used to complement and to stimulate discussion on prescribed examination texts, but equally to allow pupils to experience the thrill of live performances. In recent years we have frequented the Grand Opera House in Belfast and watched show stoppers such as ‘Blood Brothers’, ‘Grease’ and ‘Romeo and Juliet’, to name but a few! 

Career Possibilities 

Events manager 
Sales Marketer/Advertiser 
Freelance writer 
TV/Radio Presenter 
Press Officer 
Web Writer 
Public Relations Officer 

Our Library 

As part of the English curriculum all Key Stage 3 classes are timetabled for Library one period each week. Pupils must always have a book in their bag so they can read when opportunities are presented during the school day. Wednesday mornings are Literacy mornings and all KS3 pupils read during Form-time.  
Pupils use a reading program called Accelerated Reader (AR). This is an effective diagnostic program and pupil progress is monitored and promoted. AR also uses a point and target system. Every book in the Library has a Reading Level and point value based on the complexity of the reading material. If pupils pass a book quiz they are awarded points and the top points holder in each Key Stage 3 class is awarded a Reading Shield. The pupil who has fully met the AR Reading Targets in Key Stage 3 receives the Accelerated Reader Cup. 
The minimum reading requirement is twenty minutes five days per week. This twenty minute reading homework is an integral part of the English curriculum and is designed to enable pupils to reach their individual targets each term. A reward system is in place to celebrate pupil success. 
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