Curriculum Intent

English at The Nottingham Emmanuel School

Through studying English at NES, our pledge is to engage, inspire and enrich our students on their journey to becoming well-rounded and confident advocates in society and valued members of a community. Our curriculum breaks barriers, develops tolerance and removes ignorance, without representations being tokenistic. It builds wisdom through being an academically challenging and culturally rich experience which empowers students to showcase their voices, enable dignity in their beliefs and developing their emotional intelligence in the process. Knowledge is the heart of the golden thread that runs through our curriculum building firm foundations and hope for the future.


Overview of English at KS4

Students study both AQA English Language and AQA English Literature throughout Year 10 and 11 and receive two separate grades at the end of Year 11.

English Language GCSE

What will I learn?

You will read and explore a range of fiction and non-fiction texts, written by a range of different authors and writers for a variety of purposes. We will explore how writers use language and structure to create moods and atmospheres and create interesting characters and to present their differing viewpoints and perspectives. We will look at the world and issues important to our lives through engaging with a range of texts and hearing a range of voices and evaluate how these writers convey their messages.  You will use your understanding of how professional writers use language and structure and try to emulate this in your own writing; creating a range of engaging creative texts for different audiences and purposes and learn how to harness the power of words and language to create effects.

What skills are needed?

  • The ability to read and understand texts; presenting and justifying my own ideas using evidence
  • Be able to select and craft vocabulary to create engaging narratives and present powerful opinions
  • The ability to listen, understand and empathise with different perspectives
  • The ability to evaluate a writer’s use of language and structure and develop my own opinions on texts
  • The ability to speak clearly and eloquently, articulating and developing my opinion with detailed reasons

How will I be examined?

Two exams at the end of year 11.

Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing– 1 hour 45 minutes (50% of overall grade)

Section A – reading, ONE fiction extract

Section B – writing, creating a piece of narrative or descriptive writing

Paper 2: Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives  – 1 hour 45 minutes (50% overall grade)

Section A – reading, TWO non-fiction extracts

Section B – writing, creating a piece of non-fiction style viewpoint writing

Anything else I need to be aware of?

You will also undertake a Spoken Language Endorsement as part of your English Language studies (does not contribute to final GCSE grade), for which you will achieve a certification and be awarded a pass, merit or distinction. For this you will need to write and perform a speech on an important topic of your choice.


English Literature GCSE

What will I learn?

Through studying a range of well-written and iconic prose, plays and poetry, you will learn how to analyse how established and celebrated writers create meaning and engage readers and audiences through their choices of language and structure. You will learn about the social, historical, cultural and political contexts in which these texts were written and be able to apply your understanding of this to be able to write critically about the texts we study. You will learn how to write developed essays, presenting your own ideas and opinions about the messages in the texts.

For GCSE English Literature, we study the AQA syllabus and study Shakespeare’s Macbeth, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, An Inspector Calls by J B Priestley and the Power and Conflict cluster from the AQA Poetry anthology.

What skills are needed?

  • The ability to read and understand texts; presenting and justifying my own ideas using evidence
  • The ability to explore the writers’ messages and big ideas and how these are presented
  • The ability to explain how literary texts are a product of where and when they are written
  • The ability to engage with different ideas and perspectives and explain my own ideas clearly

How will I be examined?

Two exams at the end of year 11:

Paper 1: Shakespeare and the C19th Novel – 1 hour 45 minutes (50% overall grade)

Section A – Macbeth

Section B – A Christmas Carol

Paper 2: Modern Prose and Poetry – 2 hours 15 minutes (50% overall grade)

Section A – An Inspector Calls

Section B –  Anthology Poetry comparison; Unseen Poetry analysis and comparison

Anything else I need to be aware of?

Throughout the course of year 10 and 11, we try to offer enrichment opportunities, either theatre trips or visits by theatre companies, to develop and complement our study of the text within the classroom.

Careers in English:

English is an excellent source of transferable skills that can be applied to a vast range of different career paths. Click here for examples of some of the employability skills English can provide.

How Can In revise for English? Check out these useful revision links: – Macbeth revision – ACC revision – Anthology revision – Unseen poetry revision – Language revision – Revision website (opportunity to join ‘classes’) (Language revision booklet)

Contact Us

The Nottingham Emmanuel School
Gresham Park Road
West Bridgford
Tel: 0115 977 5380

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The Nottingham Emmanuel School