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Course Overview

Autumn 1: Modern Novel (10 weeks) - Students will read one of three texts that focus on the theme of power and conflict: Stone Cold, Private Peaceful and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas. They will be asked to consider context surrounding their text. They will further develop their analytical skills. Reading (A01, 2, 3 and 4)

Autumn 2: Descriptive writing (4 weeks) – Students will develop their descriptive writing skills. They will read a range of descriptive pieces from 19thc, 20th c and 21st c fiction texts and apply these skills to their writing. Writing (A05/ 6)

Spring 1: Introduction to Shakespeare’s Comedies: A Midsummer Night’s Dream– Students will be introduced to Shakespeare and the conventions of comedy. They will focus on how Shakespeare establishes relationships between the characters and his use of comedy within the play. Reading (A01, 2, 3 and 4)

Spring 2: Paper 1 Fiction- Students will develop key reading skills. They will read a range of extracts from fiction texts and look analytically at the use of language and structure. They will also engage critically with statements about the text and evaluate whether they agree or disagree with them. Reading (A01, 2, 3 and 4 Language paper 1).

Summer 1: Non-fiction Writing– Students will recap the key non-fiction forms from year 7 and will develop their ability to write in a non-fiction style. Students will develop their use of non-fiction devices and vocabulary to create successful and convincing pieces of non-fiction writing. Writing (A05/ 6)

Summer 2: Poetry: Poems from other cultures- Students will read a range of poems that focus on the themes of belonging, acceptance and diversity. They will compare two poems and look at the effect of language, structure and form. Reading (A01, 2 and 3)

All English Assessment Objectives and criteria (AOs) can be found on the AQA website: www.aqa.org.uk

Useful Links

Non Fiction:


Read articles from:


Creative Writing:

New GCSE English Writing Skills Study Guide - For the Grade 9-1 Courses CGP Book


Recommended Reading

Power and Conflict Novels:
Robert Swindells: Stone Cold

Michaela Morpurgo: War Horse

Robert Westall: The Machine Gunners
Michelle Margorian: Goodnight Mister Tom

Anne Cassidy: Looking for JJ
Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl

More Able reading

Nina Bawden: Carrie’s War

A Midsummer Night’s Dream:
John Scicluna: A Midsummer Night's Dream: York Notes 

Year 8 English Scheme of Learning
"Safe, Supportive, Diverse"
- Local Authority Representative
"Strong leadership and motivation with an emphasis on progress"
- Parent
"I am so pleased with the School Gateway app. Every day I can see any achievement and behaviour points my daughter gets and she knows that I’ll discuss it with her; it encourages her to do well."
- Year 8 Parent
"A great learning environment; light, bright and spacious classrooms, clean and well organised."
- Prospective Parent
"I applaud the focus on rewarding good behaviour. My son feels appreciated and recognised at Allerton Grange; we're all so proud."
- Year 8 Parent
"An open and welcoming atmosphere - very useful being allowed to look at teaching and learning"
- Prospective Parent
"The reward and behaviour system is clear, well enforced and has positive results!"
- Parent
"Staff are passionate and committed to developing and improving"
- Parent
"An inclusive school that is focused on providing the best education for its students"
- Prospective Parent
"Fantastic student ambassadors who are a credit to the school."
- Prospective Parent
"Pupils look smart and are well engaged in their lessons"
- Prospective Parent