English – ethos and teaching


At Kilgarth we aim to enable all pupils to become confident readers, writers, speakers and listeners by encouraging individuals to communicate effectively and with expression whilst making sense of an ever-changing world.  Our teaching methods incorporate spoken work, written/performance poetry, public speaking, classroom debates, classic and contemporary literature, and research topics guided by a pupil’s personal interests. 

Here at Kilgarth we use intervention strategies to target specific areas for development for individual pupils. We regularly review this in order to ensure accurate assessment. Intervention sessions take place in one to one or small group sessions, which are then contextualised in English lessons and the wider curriculum.


All pupils are provided with differentiated opportunities and activities to develop competence in three key areas:



Speaking and Listening

We emphasise maximising a pupil’s existing strengths, promoting new skills, fostering indepentance as well as assisting pupils to share and expand their knowledge alongside that of their peers.

A range of fiction and non-fiction texts – as well as audio-visual and ICT based resources – are used to stimulate progress and foster lifelong interest in understanding and expressing the English language with confidence.


Assessment and Qualification

Key Stage 3

KS3 English is taught in Years 7 – 9 following the programmes of study of English in the National Curriculum.  Pupils also study a wide range of authors including (but not limited to) Roald Dahl, Malorie Blackman, Anne Frank and  William Shakespeare, alongside a variety of  alternative media texts and sources (internet, television, film).

Additionally pupils engage in weekly core skills lessons which are designed to engage pupils with transactional reading activities and to help pupils refine the underlying skills needed to access and succeed in English (such as spelling, grammar, punctuation, vocabulary and sentence variations) with focus to preparation for Key stage 4 and GCSE level curricula. 

In year 9, pupils start AQA Step up to English Gold, which is an entry level qualification. We use this as a way to facilitate the transition from KS3 to KS4, focussing on preparing pupils for GCSEs whilst attaining accreditation in the process.   

Key Stage 4

In Years 10 and 11 authors studied include (but are not limited to) Shakespeare, Wilfred Owen, JB Priestley, Maya Angelou and Benjamin Zephaniah.  This is also alongside a variety of alternative media texts and sources. 

At KS4 it is our aim to enter all pupils for examinations in AQA GCSE English Language which includes 2 examination papers (Paper 1 – Explorations in creative reading and writing and Paper 2 – Writers’ viewpoints and perspectives), as well as a speaking and listening component.

Pupils continue to engage with core skills lessons (designed to engage pupils with transactional reading activities and to help pupils refine the underlying skills needed to access and succeed in English) with an additional focus to developing exam technique and ensuring understanding of how they are assessed in order to develop and refine their skills.


English Department Ethos

The English Department at Kilgarth believes every pupil will benefit from a greater understanding of literature and the wider culture around them. The tools of effective communication are the keys for young people to express themselves with the confidence and imagination to unlock many doors to further learning experiences and their desired career paths.