English is a thriving department within the school.
Our teachers are passionate about literature and writing; we promote engaging and innovative teaching and learning where we constantly look for ways to bring texts to life and enthuse our students. The Lower School curriculum is broad covering fiction, non-fiction, poetry and an introduction to Shakespeare.
Results in recent public examinations have been very pleasing at both GCSE and A Level with many students choosing to study English at university.
We ensure that the practices of wider reading and independent study are established and maintained by students, especially those who go on to take English Literature in the Sixth Form. Each A Level English student is expected to attend one of our senior extra-curricular clubs and/or help with First Form English lessons or junior clubs. We also offer extension activities to those interested in taking English at degree level, such as shadowing literary prizes and entering poetry and essay competitions.
Regular theatre visits, deep learning days and author visits are organised by staff and we celebrate National Poetry Day and World Book Day in style, varying our programme of events each year. Creative writing is keenly promoted, with work published online and creative responses displayed in classrooms and on the English noticeboard. We offer students the opportunity to enter national competitions, lunchtime clubs that explore wider literary concepts and the chance to engage with a wealth of literature which goes way beyond the curriculum. We work very closely with the School Library, and all Lower School classes have regular library lessons to encourage wider reading and research skills. Students are encouraged to bring their wider reading into the classroom and use it to complement their study. Sixth Form students also work with cultural institutions like The British Library and The National Poetry Library along with visiting speakers to develop their wider appreciation of the literary canon.