Key Stage 4 Exam Revision

A parent's guide to the new GCSE English and English Literature exam

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  1. Key stage 2 into Key stage 3: Current performance

When students in Year 7 are given their first current performance level for English, it would appear on raw data that some students have performed below their Key Stage 2 level, the level that they ‘came in’ on. However, this is not actually the case as there are several differences between the way that Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 Levels are awarded.

At Key Stage 3, students are marked against 8 separate assessment foci for written work, 7 separate assessment foci for reading work and 4 separate assessment foci for Speaking and Listening work. This means that their skills are assessed against a wider set of criteria and some of the assessment foci will have changed from Key Stage 2 to 3, for example quality of handwriting is no longer assessed. This means that students’ Key Stage 3 English Levels reflect a wider range of skills.

Example: Assessing Writing

 At Key Stage 2, in written work, students are marked on 5 areas:

  • Sentence structure & punctuation
  • Text Structure and organisation
  • Composition and effect
  • Spelling
  • Handwriting

At  Key Stage 3, for written work, students are marked against 8 assessment foci:

  • AF1 – write Interesting,  imaginative and thoughtful texts
  • AF2 – Suitable for task, reader and purpose
  • AF3 –Organisation of whole texts
  • AF4 –Paragraphing
  • AF5 – Sentence variety
  • AF6 – Punctuation
  • AF7 – Vocabulary
  • AF8 - Spelling

A student who has achieved a level 5 at Key stage 2 is working really well, but the criteria for that Level 5 has become more specific at the Key Stage 3.

Example: Spelling

KS2 Level 5 

KS3 Level 5 (AF8)

 Can use a range of strategies to spell words accurately.

Correct spelling of  grammatical function words, almost all inflected words, most derivational suffixes and prefixes, most content/lexical words

Likely errors: occasional phonetically plausible spelling of unstressed syllables in content words

Double consonants in prefixes

Useful Websites for KS3 English

http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/ks3bitesize/english/

http://www.bbc.co.uk/skillswise/

http://www.cgpbooks.co.uk/pages/interactive_ks3_english.asp

http://www.parentsintouch.co.uk/English-KS3/4-worksheets

http://u2learn.com/ks3-english-links.html

http://www.tameside.gov.uk/libraries/childrens/webzone/homework/english

http://www.shambles.net/pages/learning/EnglishP/eslgames/

Year 7 English Topics

A broad overview of the year.

Term 1

• Autobiography

• Exploring poetry

• Drama module: 'Shipwrecked' based on 'The Tempest' by Shakespeare.

Term 2

• Reading skills

• Gothic tour

• Examining Gothic writing

Term 3

• Reading a novel

• The Ballad of Charlotte Dymond

• End of Year 7 assessment

Year 8 English Topics

A broad overview of the year.

Term 1

Studying Biography

Poetry unit

Drama unit

Term 2

Travel Writing

Drama unit: Hamlet

Media unit: Advertising

Term 3

Studying argument

Exploring a novel

End of Year 8 assessment

Year 9 English Topics

• Students will begin to be assessed in GCSE grades to facilitate the transition into Key Stage 4. 

• Exploring a play

• Media unit: representation / genre conventions

• Drama unit: Pantomime

Film Review

• Exploration of a Shakespeare text, which includes controlled assessment preparation.

• Argue / Persuade: 'How to Improve the School' 

• Narrative writing

• Poetry exploration

End of Year 9 Assessment

Key Stage 3 Homework

Each student in Year 7 and 8 will be given a KS3 workbook. Their English teacher will be setting homework tasks for them via www.showmyhomework.co.uk. The student will be able to access this within/ after the school day at homework club or during the library opening hours.(ICT4)

 

Recommended Reading List (KS3)

All texts are avalaible in the School Library

Speedy Reads 

Quick Reads 

Gutsy Reads 

 ‘Dark Man’ * - Lancet

IHero * - Barlow & Skidmore

IHorror* - Barlow & Skidmore

Superhero*   - D.C Comics

Anything by Helen Orme

Graphic Revolve ... Series of Classic Novels in graphic form

 Skullduggery Pleasant * - Landy

Magyk* - Sage

Dead Man’s cove- St John

Broken Soup – Valentine

Life on the Refrigerator Door – Kuipers

Blade Series * - Bowler

Artemis Fowl – Colfer

Tales of Terror from the Black Ship – Priestley

A Dog for Life – Matthews

A Year without Autumn – Kessler

The London Eye Mystery – Siobhan Dowd

My Name is Mina – David Almond

Boom – Mark Haddon

 Any Book By Kevin Brooks

Knife – Anderson

Gone* – Grant

Ingo* – Dunmore

Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins

I am Number 4 –Lore

Power of 6 - Lore

The Secret Garden – Burnett

The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe – Lewis

Black Beauty – Sewell

Swallows & Amazons * - Ransome

Mr Creecher – Chris Priestley

 

Gifted & Talented Policy
Year 7

Year 7 is a fresh start for all students; those who may not have excelled previously will have new opportunities to succeed. We feel that Year 7 should begin with a level playing field and that each individual student should be judged on their performance within the context of their new English class.

Year 7 Gifted and Talented students will be identified in the January of Year 7, so that there is a body of assessment to display their skills in the three aspects of English: Reading, Writing and Drama/Speaking and Listening. This judgement will not take into account their KS2 data, only their current performance. The students who achieve Level 5A and above in any of the 3 assessed aspects will be identified as Gifted and Talented in that particular area of English.

Year 8

The criteria for Gifted and Talented students in Year 8 will be those who have achieved and are working at a Level 6B and above in any of the 3 assessed aspects of English, by January of Year 8. They will be identified as Gifted and Talented in that particular strand of English. This list will replace the list of those students who were previously identified in Year 7.

Year 9

The criteria for Gifted and Talented students in Year 9 will be those who have achieved and are working at a Level 7C and above in any of the 3 assessed aspects of English, by January of Year 9. They will be identified as Gifted and Talented in that particular strand of English. This list will replace the list of those students who were previously identified in Year 8.

Throughout the academic year there will be a series of enrichment opportunities available for our Gifted and Talented learners, as well as differentiated assessments to allow them to showcase their skills.


English Trips

As you are aware, this year we are running two trips to London. Letters have now been sent to all students who expressed an interest, detailing if they have gained a place or not. Unfortunately, not all students are able to go. Students were selected at random and they were not chosen based on any criteria.

We are really pleased with the response from students and parents and are sorry we cannot accommodate more!

GCSE

 

New GCSE Specification: first teaching from September 2015 ( Exam Entry 2017).

An outline for the New Specification is available here.

GCSE Revision Links

A Christmas Carol

Blood Brothers

A Taste of Honey

History Boys

Romeo and Juliet

 

 

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