Key Stage 3

The English Department at Falconer School prides itself on a really strong team and strong results. Ensuring every child develops a love of English is at the heart of our objectives and our teaching complements the individual learning styles of every one of our pupils.

Many of the pupils who come to Falconer School have had several years of difficulty in the subject of English and we believe that it is our duty to ensure that they are given every opportunity to be as successful as possible in the future. In order to do this, and due to our small class sizes, we are far more flexible in our approach to each class than a mainstream setting. This allows for greater differentiation to appropriately meet the needs of the group.

We passionately believe that the very best English lessons provide engagement, motivation and progress in the crucial skills of communication. English at KS3 is both skill and knowledge based and the pupils develop their Reading, Writing and Speaking & Listening skills as they develop their understanding and knowledge of both fiction and non-fiction.

Each year is divided into half termly modules in which they will be assessed across all skills, but which will have a focus on the development of one particular skill. We work with a variety of texts ranging from classic literature to contemporary media and drama and popular fiction for young adults. We strive to perfect hard edged skills of analysis whilst simultaneously encouraging creativity!

Each half term, students complete two formal assessments based on the KS3 assessment foci. Students are aware of their levels and are encouraged to take responsibility of their own learning by evaluating their own progress, setting their own targets and completing improvement tasks.

Key Stage 4

At KS4 all pupils have access to a range of Level 1 & 2 qualifications from differing exam boards. We use our knowledge of the different assessment focuses in order to match the individual pupil to the most suitable qualification.

We currently offer the following qualifications:

Edexcel English Language and Literature –

This comprises of two GCSEs in which the pupils study a range of modern and classical texts as well as non-fiction writing from a variety of sources, including spoken word and electronic texts.

Literature comprises of two pieces of controlled assessment and a two final exams. One piece of coursework is on An Inspector Calls and the other is on Macbeth. The final exams will comprise of one poetry exam, in which the pupils will write about both studied poems and one unseen poem; and also a prose exam in which they will have questions on Of Mice and Men and Animal Farm.
Language comprises of four pieces of controlled assessment and a final exam. The coursework comprises of: one section on non-fiction analysis and writing and one section on spoken word analysis and writing. The final exam will have an extended writing component and questions on Of Mice and Men.

Cambridge IGCSE English First Language

This is an International GCSE that has full accreditation in the UK and counts as a full GCSE. Assessment comprises of the following breakdown:

Coursework: 40%

Speaking and Listening Examination: 20%

Final Exam: 40%

For coursework, the pupils will write three pieces: one creative writing piece, one analysis of a text and one discursive essay.

The Speaking and Listening Exam requires an oral presentation to an audience and a following question and answer session.

AQA IGCSE Literature

This is an International GCSE that has full accreditation in the UK and counts as a full GCSE.

There are two assessment routes:

  1. Terminal examination only – no coursework is required but there will be two final exams.
    1. Paper 1 (60%) will comprise of one unseen poem and questions on one of our set texts – The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time.
    2. Paper 2 (40%) will comprise of questions on Lord of the Flies and To Kill a Mockingbird.
  2. Coursework Option – candidates will sit a final exam (Paper 1) and will complete one piece of coursework, which will be a comparative essay on 1984 and Animal Farm.

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