Faculty: English

Head of Faculty: Mrs L Orrell

Faculty Vision
To promote high expectations, aspirations, and personal success for every student and to foster a love of literature and language, enabling students to communicate effectively through all aspects of life.


At Hawkley Hall High School, we inspire leaners to have a passion for English that goes beyond the classroom.

We aim to foster a love of reading and writing.

During their study of English, we want our students to become enthusiastic readers, who have a love of reading and can express their own thoughts through effective language in writing and thoughtful discussion.

We want our students to have the key skills that are needed beyond Hawkley Hall High School, to succeed in whichever pathway they choose in education or beyond. We want our learners to be able to write fluently, with clarity and ambition.

We want our students to effectively contribute to discussions and listen and respond to others thoughtfully. We would like them to be confident in expressing their opinions and challenge the thinking of others.

In order to do this effectively, we follow the main principles of the Hawkley Way. This creates a learning environment that is built on mutual respect, aspirations, and resilience.

Learning Journey

English KS3

English KS4

Curriculum Description

Throughout their time at Hawkley Hall High School students focus on developing the key skills of reading, writing and speaking and listening in their English lessons.

In Years 7 and 9 students have 4 hours of English lessons per week. In Year 8 students have 3 hours of English lessons per week. Home learning tasks are set on a weekly basis and tasks include researching, redrafting, spelling and reading and writing tasks

Assessments are completed every half term to track and monitor the progress of students, alongside regular feedback in their exercise books. Feedback is provided to enable students to progress, ensuring that students understand what they have done well and what they need to do to progress further.

Students in Key Stage 4 (Years 10 and 11) are working towards two GCSE qualifications, one in English Language and the other in English Literature. They follow the WJEC/ Eduqas curriculum for both qualifications. They will be awarded separate grades for these following their exams in Year 11. Students have 4 hours a week in Year 10 and 5 hours a week in Year 11 and home learning tasks are set on a weekly basis. Assessments to track progress are set regularly throughout each half term and students receive regular feedback to aid progression.

Throughout their time at Hawkley Hall, students are taught the following key skills:


  • Identify and interpret explicit and implicit information and ideas. Select and synthesise evidence from different texts
  • Explain, comment on analyse how writers use language and structure to achieve effects and influence readers, using relevant subject terminology to support their views
  • Compare writers’ ideas and perspectives, as well as how these are conveyed, across two or more texts
  • Read and understand a range of texts to: Evaluate texts critically and support this with appropriate textual references


  • Communicate clearly, effectively, and imaginatively, selecting and adapting tone, style and register for different forms, purposes and audiences. Organise information and ideas, using structural and grammatical features to support coherence and cohesion of texts
  • Candidates must use a range of vocabulary and sentence structures for clarity, purpose and effect, with accurate spelling and punctuation. (This requirement must constitute 20% of the marks for each specification as a whole)

Spoken Language

  • Demonstrate presentation skills in a formal setting
  • Listen and respond appropriately to spoken language, including to questions and feedback to presentations
  • Use spoken Standard English effectively in speeches and presentations


Overview of the English Curriculum

The topics students cover throughout Key Stage 3 are outlined in the table below:

Year Autumn 1 Autumn 2 Spring 1 Spring 2 Summer 1 Summer 2
7 Novel Novel Oliver Twist: Play Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing: Key Scenes Fictional Extracts Poetry Anthology
8 Novel Novel Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet: Full Text Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet: Full Text Poetry anthology with comparison Descriptive Writing
9 An Inspector Calls Short Stories / Narratives Heroes Writing with personality: Reviews & Speeches Unseen Poetry & Comparison Shakespeare Play

At KS4 students study the following:

English Literature English Language
  • ‘Macbeth’ by William Shakespeare
  • ‘Blood Brothers’ by Willy Russell
  • ‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens
  • A Poetry Anthology (provided by the exam board)
  • Unseen Poetry
  • 20th Century Literature
  • Creative Writing
  • 19th Century and 21st Century Non-Fiction Texts
  • Transactional/Persuasive Writing

GCSE Exam Board Specifications

Click here to view the GCSE English Language specification

Click here to view the GCSE English Literature specification


Additional Information

The English Faculty provide many opportunities for revision and extra-curricular activities.

At KS4 we run weekly revision sessions for all students and intervention for targeted students. We like to arrange theatre trips to enhance student learning, particularly for set texts at GCSE.  At KS3 we participate in the Rotary Club’s Youth Speaks Competition and enter reading competitions against local secondary schools. We also like to enter our students’ outstanding work into competitions throughout the year in creative writing and poetry. To promote the importance and enjoyment of reading we have an early morning reading group and celebrate World Book Day and World Poetry Day every year.