Welcome to the curriculum page for English.  The curriculum is delivered in 6 specialist rooms, 5 in the new Hewitt Building and 1 in the Science block; supported by fully equipped classrooms that include: interactive whiteboards and visualisers.

Departmental staff

  • Mr M. Hazzelby - Head of Department
  • Mrs T. McDougall - Second in Department
  • Mrs A. Robunshaw - Key Stage  Co-ordinator
  • Mrs G. Parkes – Senco
  • Mr D. Moon – Teacher
  • Miss C. Ridgway - Teacher
  • Mr C. White - Teacher
  • Mrs S. Appleby  - Technician


We follow an interleaved curriculum. This means that we take a whole term to study one topic, but we mix it up with regular lessons on extended writing, poetry and non-fiction. By doing this, we challenge our students and help them to retain their learning more effectively.

Year 7

Lesson contact time is 4 hours per week. 

The topics followed are:

  • Autumn - Greek Myths
    • poetry linked to mythical characters
    • non-fiction: biography and autobiography
    • writing: “alter egos”
  • Spring - Shakespeare – “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
    • poetry about nature
    • non-fiction: travel writing
    • weekly writing challenge
  • Summer - The Art of Rhetoric
    • poetry about power
    • fiction – class novel
    • weekly writing challenge
  • All year - Language Change

Year 8

Lesson contact time is 3 hours per week.

The topics followed are:

  • Autumn – Shakespeare – “Romeo and Juliet”
    • poetry about love, sonnets
    • non-fiction: letters and speeches
    • regular writing challenges
  • Spring – The Gothic – “Dracula”/”Frankenstein”
    • poetry: monologues
    • non-fiction: newspaper writing
    • regular writing challenges
  • Summer – Victorian Literature – “Jane Eyre”/”Hound of the Baskervilles”
    • Victorian poetry from Blake to Tennyson
    • non-fiction – articles on the theme of school
    • regular writing challenges

Year 9

Lesson contact time is 3 hours per week.

The topics followed are:

  • Autumn – Divided Worlds – dystopian literature
    • war poetry
    • non-fiction: WW1 letters, modern articles on society
    • regular writing challenges
  • Spring – Civil Rights – “Of Mice and Men”/”To Kill a Mockingbird”
    • poetry from other cultures
    • non-fiction: civil rights speeches
    • regular writing challenges
  • Summer – Shakespeare – “Macbeth”
    • AQA Anthology poetry
    • non-fiction – Macbeth context and criticism
    • regular writing challenges.

Year 10

Lesson contact time is 4 hours per week. We focus more on the texts for GCSE English Literature.

The topics followed are:

  • Autumn – Charles Dickens – “A Christmas Carol”
    • AQA Anthology and unseen poetry
    • non-fiction: 19th century letters and articles
    • weekly writing challenges
  • Spring – Modern Texts – “An Inspector Calls”/”Lord of the Flies”
    • AQA Anthology and unseen poetry
    • non-fiction: 20th and 21st century opinion pieces
    • weekly writing challenges
  • Summer – Power and Conflict Poetry
    • prose: 20th century fiction extracts
    • non-fiction – comparing texts
    • regular writing challenges.

Year 11

Lesson contact time is 4 hours per week.

We focus more on GCSE English Language but still regularly revisit all GCSE Literature texts..

The topics followed include:

  • For the English Language Exam:
    • 20th century fiction extracts
    • 19th and 20th century non-fiction texts
    • Transactional writing
    • Creative writing
  • For the Literature Exam:
    • Power and Conflict poetry
    • Unseen poetry
    • “Macbeth”
    • “A Christmas Carol”
    • “Lord of the Flies” or “An Inspector Calls”


To support your son’s learning and engagement in this subject he needs to have: more than one black or blue pen, a green pen, a ruler, and some highlighters. It will also help him if he has a mini dictionary and a mini thesaurus. In year 10 and 11 your son will be given a poetry anthology and will also be given the option to purchase a range of revision guides to support the GCSE syllabuses.


To support your son, resources are available on the school’s VLE, vle.westhillschool.co.uk.  IThese include PiXL revision and testing packs for all GCSE Language and Literature units. We currently subscribe to Doddle and Literacy Planet, which we use to set challenges and quizzes for Key Stage 3 homework.


In years 10 and 11, pupils follow the AQA course for English Language and the AQA course for English Literature.  This course is assessed by examinations only at the end of Year 11. Some pupils may be entered for examinations in Literature at the end of Year 10 if we think it will benefit them. The English Language exam is based on two papers and the English Literature exam is also based on two papers – totalling four exam paper across the two courses.  Further details are available from the examination boards, as shown below.

English Language: www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-language-8700


English Literature: http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse/english-literature-8702 


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