Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

Dare to be wise

The best of a book is not the thought which it contains, but the thought which it suggests; just as the charm of music dwells not in the tones but in the echoes of our hearts.

Oliver Wendall Holmes (1809-1894) American author and poet

 

As well as encouraging a love of reading, English at Durham Johnston aims to create analytical and perceptive young people. There is a strong emphasis on basic skills, but also a drive towards creativity and independence of thought.  We strive to balance: reading, writing and speaking and listening skills, to provide a rich and enjoyable experience for the pupils.


KS3

Key Stage 3

 

Year

TOPIC

 

   7

In Year 7 pupils study units of work focussed on reading and writing skills, as follows:

Term 1

Writing:  pupils will begin with a short descriptive writing unit, where they will revise writing skills, in order to produce a piece of writing to describe a picture of a setting.  This piece of work will be assessed. 

Reading:  pupils will analyse and discuss extracts from fiction texts, looking at how language, techniques and structure are used by the writer to achieve particular effects.   Pupils will complete a reading assessment at the end of this unit. 

Term 2: 

Pupils will study a modern text (novel or play) with a focus on characters and themes.  Pupils will complete an assessment on this. 

The last week of this term is our annual Readathon for Year 7 and Year 8.  All pupils will be invited to bring in their own novels and will have a week of reading lessons, as well as discussing and sharing a love of literature. 

Term 3:

This half term is dedicated to our Public Speaking Unit.  Pupils will be taught persuasive techniques and look at a range of persuasive speeches, before writing their own persuasive speech (this will be assessed) on a topic of their choice and also delivering it to the class.  After this, 10 pupils go into a Public Speaking Competition to be held in James Hall after school. 

Term 4:  pupils will analyse and discuss non-fiction texts, looking at how language is used and comparing texts from different time periods.  Pupils will complete a non-fiction reading assessment at the end of this unit. 

Term 5:  pupils will recap writing skills and look at techniques to argue and persuade.   Pupils will complete a piece of assessed writing on this. 

Term 6:  pupils will study a range of poetry and look at how poetic devices are used for effect, as well as comparing poetry.  Pupils will write about an unseen poem for an assessment.   

 

 

   8

In Year 8 pupils study units of work focussed on reading and writing skills, as follows:

Term 1

Writing:  pupils will begin with a short descriptive writing unit, where they will revise writing skills, in order to produce a piece of writing to describe a picture of a setting.  This piece of work will be assessed. 

Reading:  pupils will analyse and discuss extracts from fiction texts, looking at how language, techniques and structure are used by the writer to achieve particular effects.   Pupils will complete a reading assessment at the end of this unit. 

Term 2: 

Pupils will study a modern text (novel or play) with a focus on characters and themes.  Pupils will complete an assessment on this. 

The last week of this term is our annual Readathon for Year 7 and Year 8.  All pupils will be invited to bring in their own novels and will have a week of reading lessons, as well as discussing and sharing a love of literature. 

Term 3:

This half term is dedicated to our Public Speaking Unit.  Pupils will be taught persuasive techniques and look at a range of persuasive speeches, before writing their own persuasive speech (this will be assessed) on a topic of their choice and also delivering it to the class.  After this, 10 pupils go into a Public Speaking Competition to be held in James Hall after school. 

Term 4:  pupils will study a Shakespeare play with a focus on characters and themes.  Pupils will complete a reading assessment on this. 

Term 5:  pupils will recap writing skills and look at techniques to argue and persuade.   Pupils will complete a piece of assessed writing on this.  Pupils will also begin a reading unit.  See next term. 

Term 6:  pupils will analyse and discuss non-fiction texts, looking at how language is used and comparing texts from different time periods.  Pupils will complete a non-fiction reading assessment at the end of this unit. 

Pupils will also study a range of poetry and look at how poetic devices are used for effect, as well as comparing poetry. 

 

 

9

Term 1:

Writing:  pupils will begin with a short narrative writing unit, where they will revise writing skills, in order to produce a piece of writing linked to either a title or an image.  This piece of work will be assessed. 

Reading:  pupils will analyse and discuss non-fiction texts, looking at how language is used and comparing texts from different time periods.  Pupils will complete a non-fiction reading assessment at the end of this unit. 

Term 2:

Pupils will recap writing skills and look at techniques to argue and persuade.   Pupils will complete a piece of assessed writing on this, as well as an individual speech to the class. 

Term 3:

pupils will study a Shakespeare play (Macbeth) with a focus on characters and themes.  Pupils will complete a reading assessment on this. 

Terms 4-5:

Pupils will study a short 19thcentury story with a focus on character/themes and then a short writing to describe unit, where pupils will be asked to describe a setting linked to the short story.  Both short units will be assessed.

 

Terms 5 and 6:

pupils will study a range of poetry and look at how poetic devices are used for effect, as well as comparing poetry.  Pupils will write about an unseen poem for an assessment.