Welcome to the English department.
We think curiosity, compassion, imagination, precision and humour are invaluable and we prioritise modelling intelligent effort, adaptability and appetite for excellence.
It is with conviction, verve and spirit that we endeavour to encourage responsibility, collaborative approach, open-mindedness, confidence and empathy.
Our conduct pivots on the enshrining of the well-being of all members of the school community and fostering healthy personal development of all learners and staff.
The intention is to listen, consult, diagnose, ask, encourage and hold ourselves and the students accountable to the principles of transparency, fairness and kindness
We are firm advocates of searching and respectful debates that challenge pre-conceptions and invite re-evaluations and re-assessments of received viewpoints. Personal response, creative self-expression combined with a critical and forensic analysis are key.
Interdisciplinary approach defines us- we encourage wide reading far beyond the confines of the curriculum and encourage holistic intellectual approaches not only across humanities but all other subjects. There is a rich provision of enrichment and extra- curricular opportunities to promote our key values.
English is a compulsory subject at KS3 and KS4, with students taking two GCSEs at the end of Year 11: English Literature and English Language. At KS5 we offer A Levels in English Literature, English Language and Literature, and Film Studies.
The teaching of English at all key stages aims to develop proficient and confident communicators in written and spoken English. The aim is to generate interest in literature and encourage the practice of wide reading and active listening.
We study a range of novels, plays and poetry across all genre, period and topic of interest.
There is room for canon as well as hidden and recent gems; we travel far back and way ahead.
The reading diet also consists of plenty of non-fiction and students deliver speeches and presentations on a regular basis.
There is a weekly reading homework where we explore texts beyond the set curriculum and discuss these in class- students are invited to engage with a magnificent variety of writings that span all continents, epochs and areas of interest – it builds an ethos of true intellectual pursuit and invites everyone to make specific, individual connections and discoveries.
The set texts are studied thoroughly but we are careful not to fall into the trap of a single narrative and ensure we balance teaching with a rich array of inter-textual connections that include film, music, art and philosophy, amongst others, to appreciate the bigger picture and become more sensitive to nuance and paradox over an easy stereotypeThank you for taking the time to read about what we do.
If you would like to get in touch, please e-mail: TokarzL@watfordboys.org
Key Stage 3
We explore magic and myths and write creatively about travel, adventure and wonderment.
Our interests span Dickens, "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland", and Shakespeare.
Non- fiction is read regularly and we prepare speeches and presentations.
Contemporary writing is always welcome and we search for the best novels and plays of recent days to enjoy and discuss.
Key Stage 4
AQA is the exam board and we prepare for English Language and English GSCE Literature GSCEs.
"Macbeth", "Frankenstein", "Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde", "An Inspector Calls", "Never Let me Go", "A taste of Honey" are some of the popular choices that feature on our reading lists.
Reading around and beyond the set texts is vital and we engage with film, music, psychology, philosophy, politics, sociology and science to galvanise conversations and expand a wide-reaching network of connections.
Key Stage 5
OCR is the exam board for all subjects.
The lessons are seminars - we debate, disagree constructively and seek new lines of argument.
Dystopia, Shakespeare, canon and avant-garde are the on the map that is also populated with a selection of poetry, modern drama and anthologies of non-fiction.
Coursework allows students to pursue areas of individual interest and refine research skills.
Exams & Assessment
Specification for AQA English Language GCSE - http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-language-4705
Specification for AQA English Literature GCSE - http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-literature-9710
A-Level – OCR
Specification for OCR English Literature - https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/171200-specification-accredited-a-level-gce-english-literature-h472.pdf
Specification for OCR English Language and Literature - https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/171202-specification-accredited-a-level-gce-english-language-and-literature-h474.pdf
Enrichment & Extra-curricular
The department is involved in a number of clubs and societies, including creative writing, drama clubs, book discussion and language-related clubs; we organise a range of trips to subject-related student conferences, the theatre and other cultural events; we invite students to get involved in the editing of The Fullerian; and we always seek to stimulate intellectual, cultural and aesthetic interests.
We offer a range of trips and enrichment activities to maximise engagement: writing competitions; attending theatre productions; performances from The Globe players; BBC News report.
We can also have subscriptions to GCSEPOD, Kerboodle, Massolit, Emag and Jstor to help our nurture our students’ love of learning
Resources & Reading List
Useful Links and Resources Key Stage 4:
- GCSE Bitesize – excellent source of resources for many English topics and skills - http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/english/; http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/english_literature/
- English Biz – Generalised and specific skills-based help for Language and Literature - http://www.englishbiz.co.uk/
- Geoff Barton resources – high quality resources developed by a world-renowned English teacher - http://www.geoffbarton.co.uk/student-resources.php
- Stephen Fry’s podgram – an interesting collection of reflections on English language use and cultural studies - http://www.stephenfry.uk/media/
- S-Cool English – registration is free and revision resources are often excellent - http://www.s-cool.co.uk/gcse/english
- Hannah Tyreman’s GCSE English – great for technical skills and grammar - http://hannahtyremangcse.wordpress.com/spelling-punctuation-grammar/
- Grammar Monster – For all things grammar - http://www.grammar-monster.com/
- School of Life- https://www.youtube.com/c/theschooloflifetv
Useful Links and Resources Key Stage 5
A great selection of short lectures delivered by university specialists: https://www.massolit.io/
Andrew Moore’s Universal Teacher – large range of resources relevant particularly to English Language - http://www.universalteacher.org.uk/
Geoff Barton A Level – resources for Language students - http://geoffbarton.co.uk/student-resources.php
The Student Room – some great resources for Literature students - http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/content.php?r=3478-a-level-english-literature
The Student Room – Language student resources - http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/content.php?r=3470-A-level-English
EnglishBiz – resources for all A Level English students - http://www.englishbiz.co.uk/#A_LEVEL
Harvard Referencing Guidelines – for style guides when referencing in coursework tasks - http://www.staffs.ac.uk/assets/harvard_quick_guide_tcm44-47797.pdf