English opens up your child to the whole curriculum and develops both sides of their brain. Being literate and articulate will help your child be a success throughout their lives.
English teachers at Humphrey Perkins want our students to be: knowledgeable, resilient, articulate and empathic.
We are acutely aware that the local context has historically allowed students to have low, or unrealistic, aspirations which is why we unashamedly teach ambitiously challenging texts. All students, regardless of prior attainment, are exposed to the ambitious challenge and rigour of canonical texts in preparation for the prescribed GCSE content.
Our curriculum, is grounded in English Literature, because we believe that it is through secure foundational literary knowledge and experience that children develop the skills and the references to become instinctive readers and writers. Evidence demonstrates that treating thinking skills as abstract from content leads to students writing thin, superficial responses and that by grounding skill in relevant and enriching knowledge, students will become scholarly and confident. Our curriculum reflects this approach to education. Our curriculum is built on the understanding that skills are domain specific and are therefore limited without subject-specific, broad, secure knowledge foundations. Our curriculum ensures that by the time children begin Key Stage 4 (in Year 10), they have been taught two full novels, 3 full plays (including a Shakespearean tragedy and comedy), the canonical, and influential contemporary poets, classical Greek and Anglo- Saxon epic narratives, and 6 complete short stories/novellas by canonical 19th century writers. At Key Stage 4, we expect that students can build on the knowledge content of Key Stage 3 and develop their ability to produce original, precise and analytical writing. The 5-year curriculum is sequenced in order to enhance the retrieval and interleaving strategies advocated by the Learning Scientists.
Each year, students are exposed to high-quality texts that not only allows them to deepen their understanding of writers’ craft, but enhances their understanding of historical contexts and a variety of SMSC issues. Many students at Humphrey Perkins have a limited cultural capital and require the opportunity to experience more diversity in order to take their place in the wider world. The choice of texts allows students to develop their own viewpoints on the world and form evaluative and considered responses to issues that are just as prevalent in the modern day as they were in the respective contextual settings. Not only do we strive for students to achieve their potential in terms of academic performance measures, we aim for students to move on to Higher Education and employment as informed and articulate young people. We aim to encourage our students to be passionate and confident about their studies in English, and will retain the powerful knowledge they learn for the rest of their lives.