“I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word.  Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine.” Emily Dickinson

English is vital for communicating with others in school and in the wider world, and is fundamental to learning in all curriculum subjects. In studying English, students develop skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing that they will need to participate in society and employment. Students learn to express themselves creatively and imaginatively and to communicate with others confidently and effectively.


The English Department at Brinsworth Academy is a large department, comprising fifteen subject specialists. The department offers English Language and English Literature at all Key Stages up to A Level. We are committed to sharing our passion for the subject, providing a stimulating, dynamic and academically rigorous experience of English for all our students.

The department has its own interactive whiteboards, and Year 7 participation in the accelerated reader programme. A love for literature is fostered through the enthusiasm and expertise of our specialist staff, and the department runs an after-school writing club open to all year groups.  KS3 students also participate in the Reading League which introduces a competitive element to reading for pleasure within their forms

Lessons are planned to be engaging and challenging, encouraging students to become increasingly confident and reflective learners. A focus on improving skills – across the disciplines of reading, writing, speaking and listening – ensures clear progression between units, building towards success at KS4 and beyond.  Students develop personal targets which are routinely used in lessons to support achievement.

Year Group Topics Covered:

Y7 focuses around ‘Discovering a sense of self’ 

Telling Stories

  • ‘A Monster Calls’
  • The Gothic
  • ‘Dracula’
  • Values, Views and Voices
  • Belonging

Y8 considers ‘Conformity and Rebellion’

  • Dystopian Fiction
  • ‘Maggot Moon’
  • Introduction to Film
  • Poetic Voices
  • ‘Rani and Sukh’
  • ‘Romeo and Juliet’

Y9 explores ‘Conflict and Pressure’

  • ‘Oliver Twist’
  • Victorian Distress
  • War Poetry
  • ‘Heroes’
  • ‘Merchant of Venice’
  • ‘Animal Farm’

In Y10 students begin their GCSE course.  We follow the AQA specification for both English Language and English Literature.  Our set texts for Literature are:

  • ‘Macbeth’
  • ‘A Christmas Carol’
  • ‘An Inspector Calls’
  • AQA Poetry Anthology: Power and Conflict


At Post 16 we offer both A Level English Literature and A Level English Language courses.  Students are encouraged to develop a sense of independence through carrying out their own research to support their classroom study, and as a requirement for coursework.  In both courses, students hone their analytical skills and ability to form cogent arguments.

For A Level English Literature, students follow the Pearson Edexcel course, studying on a wide range of texts including Shakespeare’s tragedy Hamlet, Margaret Atwood’s Dystopian novel Handmaid’s Tale, Mary Shelley’s Gothic novel FrankensteinTennessee Williams’ play ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’, and a range of romantic and contemporary poetry.  AQA’s A Level English Language allows students to explore a wide range of topics including: the use of language to represent figures, issues and views; the ways diverse social groups and individuals are considered to use language differently; the ways and reasons language has changed over time; and children’s language development.

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