Head of Department

Ms N Dean

Powerful Knowledge

Powerful Knowledge in English is understanding that all texts that you read or write have a message and these messages are universal and have been formed over many years.

Curriculum Intent

The English curriculum at The Kingsway School is designed with a thematic approach, providing students with a challenging, diverse curriculum that embeds and develops conceptual level thinking throughout. Our commitment is to inspire our students to use their study of writing and texts as a stimulus to question and explore big ideas and societal issues in the world around them, fostering a natural curiosity and love of the subject. Our curriculum provides students with a diverse knowledge base, accessed through a range of texts that mirror the diversity of our school community, and a rich source of cultural capital that goes beyond the texts that they study and equips them with powerful knowledge they can use in later life.

In each year group across Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4, students encounter: a play, a novel, a Shakespeare text, a literary genre, a style of writing, a poetry anthology, and a range of non-fiction texts, exposing them to a full breadth of literary forms. In addition, English throughout all stages builds on prior knowledge and skills, allowing for continuous revisiting and mastery of core content and skills in each year, with the aim of preparing our students with a multitude of transferable skills for their futures beyond The Kingsway School. Our dedication and passion is in using the study of English to develop our students into well-rounded individuals that are not only able to achieve their full potential but also are able to leave us with the ability to use English to understand, engage with, and challenge the world around them.

Key Stage 3

The curriculum experience at Key Stage 3 is underpinned by our thematic approach, where each year group has a ‘big question’ and all texts and writing styles are linked to exploring the ‘big question’, enabling our students to revise and revisit similar universal themes, deepen their understanding of them, and develop their inquiry minds.

Year 7 and 8 run as a ‘two year course’ that builds on the skills from Key Stage 2 and nurtures these to evolve into core English skills required for the eventual study of GCSE. Our assessment approach is designed in a cumulative format, so each skill is delivered progressively throughout Year 7 and then revisited in Year 8, enabling the mastery of these skills. Year 9 builds on Years 7 & 8 and combines the content and skills to create a transition for the GCSE course.



  • Comprehension
  • Critical thinking
  • Extracting information
  • Analysing the writer’s ideas
  • Identifying and evaluation methods
  • Linking texts to their contexts


  • Crafting language
  • Varied sentence forms
  • Structuring whole texts
  • Organisational devices
  • The full range of punctuation
  • Grammar for writing
  • Creating mood, tone and genre
  • Writing for the real world

Topics and Texts

Year 7: Myths and Magic

  • Harry Potter and The Cursed Child (Play)
  • Uncle Montague’s Tales of Terror (Novel) (Gothic Literature)
  • Greek Mythology (Creative Writing)
  • The Tempest (Shakespeare)
  • Revision and Intervention (Creative Writing & The Tempest)
  • Myths and Magic Anthology and Learning Review 

Year 8: Conflict and Identity

  • Noughts and Crosses (play)
  • The Hunger Games (Novel) (Dystopian Literature)
  • Conflict and Identity (Non-Fiction Writing)
  • Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare)
  • Revision and Intervention (Non-Fiction Writing & Romeo and Juliet)
  • Conflict and Identity Anthology and Learning Review

Year 9: Social Struggle

  • Blood Brothers (Play)
  • Martyn Pig (Novel)
  • Noir Literature (Noir Writing)
  • Macbeth (Shakespeare)
  • Revision and Intervention (Noir Writing & Macbeth)
  • Powerful Women Anthology and Learning Review

Key Stage 4

Similarly to Key Stage 3, the curriculum is underpinned by purposefully selecting set texts that link thematically, enabling students to make connections and use the set texts to explore bigger ideas in society. Students follow the AQA specification and sit both English Language and English Literature at the end of the course, which they are taught as two separate subjects. Our commitment to Key Stage 4 students is to not only prepare them for the requirements of their GCSE examinations but to also equip them with knowledge and skills to use in later life.

Set Texts

As part of the Study of English, the department uses common ‘set texts’ as a basis for learning; these are used across the department to provide consistency to students. These texts will also be used to inspire both fiction and non-fiction writing over the course of a students’ experience. In each year group, students will study a novel, a play, a poetry anthology and a Shakespeare text. The texts in each year group are chosen thematically so students can see how similar themes can appear in texts across the ages and make links between them. The set texts at GCSE are Macbeth, A Christmas Carol, An Inspector Calls and the AQA Power and conflict poetry cluster. We recommend that if students want to study these texts at home that they buy their own copies, where they can add their own notes as they see fit. 

Year 10 Curriculum: English Language and Literature

Half Term 1

  • English Language: Analysis of Language and Structure (Paper 1)
  • English Literature: A Christmas Carol (Paper 1)

Half Term 2

  • English Language: Critical Analysis (Paper 1)
  • English Literature: A Christmas Carol (Paper 1)

Half Term 3

  • English Language: Creative Writing (Paper 1)
  • English Literature: Macbeth (Paper 1)

Half Term 4

  • English Language: Revision and Intervention (Paper 1 Skills)
  • English Literature: Macbeth (Paper 1)

Half Term 5

  • English Language: Spoken Language
  • English Literature: A Christmas Carol & Macbeth revision
  • Year 10 Exam (Lang and Lit)

Half Term 6

  • English Language: Non-Fiction Writing (Paper 2)
  • English Literature: AQA Power and Conflict Poetry - Part 1 (Paper 2)

Year 11 Curriculum: English Language and Literature

Half Term 1

  • Non-Fiction Writing (English Language Paper 2)

Half Term 2

  • Reading analysis skills and intervention (English Language Paper 1 & 2)
  • A Christmas Carol Revision
  • PPEs: English Language 1 & 2

Half Term 3

  • AQA Power and Conflict Poetry An Inspector Calls
  • Revision
  • (English Literature Paper 2)

Half Term 4

  • Revision and Intervention
  • English Language & English Literature
  • PPEs: English Language 1 & 2
  • PPEs: English Literature 1 & 2

Half Term 5

  • Revision and Intervention
  • English Language
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