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Cromwell Community College


“There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book.

Books are well written or badly written!”

Oscar Wilde

Welcome to the English subject page. Below you will find a breakdown of each year group, including what is taught, how we assess, what enrichment opportunities there are and what can be expected in terms of homework. If you need any further information please contact the Head of Department, Mrs Cody, at mcody@cromwell.cambs.sch.uk.

English Curriculum Map - EYFS to Year 13  


Homework for the Secondary or Sixth Form phase, is set on a regular basis by the class teacher and can be accessed by logging into your Go4Schools account. 

Here are links to websites to enhance your learning: 




The enrichment opportunities will be updated early in the new academic year.

Ability Grouping

  • English is taught in mixed ability groups in the Primary Phase.
  • English is taught in groups based on ability from Year 7 to Year 9.
  • English Language and English Literature are taught in groups based on ability in Years 10 and 11.
  • English Literature is taught in a mixed ability group in Sixth Form. 

Teaching Staff 

Mrs M Cody (Head of English)

Miss A Joy

Miss I Airs

Mrs M Priest

Miss J Bennett

Mr D Ross

Mrs N Chapman

Mrs S Vidal

Mr R Gooderham

Mrs P Walls

Mrs L Johnson


Primary Phase

English has an important place in education and society. A high-quality education in English will teach children to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others, and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils have the chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils to both acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know.

Here at Cromwell, we firmly support the core national curriculum aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • Read easily, fluently and with good understanding
  • Develop the habit of reading widely and often, for pleasure and information
  • Acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
  • Appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
  • Write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
  • Use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
  • Are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.


Teaching and Learning

In all classes, children will have the opportunity to write for a range of real purposes and audiences. We firmly believe that this supports a love of writing, which is a central to our approach. Children will have the opportunity to write a range of genres - both fiction and non-fiction - such as narratives, explanations, and descriptions. 

Writing is taught using high quality texts and children in all year groups and pupils are given varied opportunities for writing. Skills are built up through repetition within units, and children apply skills in the writing activities.  Many opportunities for widening children’s vocabulary are given to support our children’s rich and varied vocabulary development.  

Reading and writing for pleasure are integral in our curriculum; writing opportunities are inspired by high quality literature and film. Through close links with Guided Reading, we develop the pupils’ ability to ‘read as a writer’. Children draw knowledge from the wide range of texts and stories that they have been exposed to.

Writing will be planned and taught in three distinct phases. These phases are then adapted across the school to suit both the ages and experiences of the children.

Phase One: Immersion

This is the exploration into a new genre or stimulus. Exciting and engaging opportunities are provided for the children, including real-life contexts/scenarios and role pay; the children engage in a variety of discussion, drama, and debate. They actively engage with a new genre of writing, exploring excellent examples; key features of each genre are identified, and a writer’s toolkit is often generated by the class.

Phase Two: Rehearsal

Children rehearse relevant text-type features which have been identified in the first phase of writing. This is through a range of application activities, where children explore both language and layout features, which are age-appropriate, within the context of the text type. This may include the rehearsal of expanded noun phrases if the children are writing a story in phase three.

Phase Three: Planning, Writing and Editing/Redrafting

Following the rehearsal of features, children now plan, write, and edit/redraft their own version of the text type. Editing/ redrafting is taught regularly throughout the writing process and in an age-appropriate way. For example, the teacher modelling aloud, guided editing, peer editing and self-editing.

Cross Curricular Writing

Writing opportunities are firmly fixed across all curriculum areas, not just in English. For example, children may apply their learnt skills in English by writing an explanation text in History. Cross curricular writing is planned in an age-appropriate way, with opportunities becoming more frequent and of a longer length across Key Stage Two.

Teachers are careful to create opportunities for pupils to write in styles that they have previously experienced in English. Therefore, this demonstrates a more independent application of learning and therefore, also supports the assessment of writing.

Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

Punctuation and grammar is taught explicitly through all three phases of writing. Grammatical elements are carefully selected by teachers and are taught in the context of the relevant genre of writing. (For example, using brackets and dashes in an instructional piece). Children have the opportunity to identify, practise and use a range of age-appropriate grammatical elements and punctuation.


In Early Years and Year 1, Little Wandle is used to teach phonics.


We teach spelling through an innovative and engaging programme to fascinate pupils about words. It is a research-based series of lessons following a Review, Explain, Practise, Apply and Reflect model. Through this programme, we aim to develop a school of spellers who use a series of strategies in lessons and in their independent writing. There is a cycle of reviewing objectives, covering the whole curriculum, to ensure gaps in learning are constantly revisited. This links directly with our writing and reading programmes.


In each year group, the children’s writing will be assessed with examples across the curriculum, not just in English. Teachers will assess pupils’ understanding against the criteria for their year group, using specific curriculum objectives.

Assessment will include the children’s written work and observations made by the class teacher.

For spelling, teachers will look for evidence of children applying spelling rules in their written work; this will form a large part of spelling assessment. However, teachers may also use observations and information from discrete spelling lessons alongside this.

Key Stage 3

What do we teach?

Please follow the link at the top of this page to view the English Curriculum Map.

How do we assess learning?

Follow the links below to determine if your child is working to secure level:

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9
Autumn Term Autumn Term Autumn Term

Key Stage 4

AQA GCSE English Language 8700

AQA GCSE English Literature 8702

What will I study?

You will study English language and English literature, gaining a GCSE in both.  The English language course involves writing in different ways for different audiences, giving information, expressing feelings and views, writing imaginatively and from experience and reading and responding to all types of writing and literary texts. 

English literature involves the study of plays, poetry and prose, including Shakespeare, exciting contemporary authors and a selection of poetry from 1789 to the current day.

How will I learn?

Before undertaking written work, you will usually spend time in discussion and making notes to help you to reinforce what you have learned.  You will have the opportunity to plan work and practise drafting ideas before the final exams.

How will I be assessed?

English Language:

You will be assessed by examination only.

Two written examinations:

Component 1 – 20th century literature reading, study and creative prose writing (1 hour 45 minutes).  This is worth 50% of your final grade.

Component 2 – 19th and 21st century non-fiction reading, study and transactional writing (1 hour 45 minutes hours).  This is worth 50% of your final grade.

Your achievement in spoken language will also be reported on as part of the qualification.  This will take the form of presentations, speeches and responses to questions.  This is a compulsory part of the qualification but does not form part of the final mark and grade.

English Literature:

You will complete two written exam papers:

Component 1 – Shakespeare (Macbeth) and 19th century prose (A Christmas Carol) (1 hour and 45 minutes).  This is worth 40% of your final grade.

Component 2 – 20th century prose / drama (An Inspector Calls), poetry anthology and unseen poetry (2 hours 15 minutes).  This is worth 60% of your final grade. 


Will there be any controlled assessment?

There will be no controlled assessment.  Both English language and English literature are linear and assessed by examination only at the end of Year 11.

Will there be any independent study?

For both courses you will certainly have to work independently, both in the classroom and at home, working conscientiously to prepare for your examinations in order to gain the best possible grades.  You will receive help and advice from your teacher, but independent study is a necessary extension of English lessons and you must take responsibility for your own progress.  Careful and thorough practice and revision is essential.

Where can this course take me?

A good qualification in English language and English literature shows that you can communicate ideas clearly, both orally and in writing.  These skills are essential in further and higher education as well as the world of work.

Key Stage 5

AQA A Level English Literature B 7717

To be successful in this course you will need a passion for reading widely and for analysing and interrogating texts to find meaning. You will read, discuss, and actively explore a range of set texts, as well as having the exciting opportunity to pursue your own literary passion by choosing your own texts to study for coursework.

What will I study?

You will study the following texts:

  • Brighton Rock - Graham Greene
  • Atonement - Ian McEwan
  • The Rime of the Ancient Mariner - Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  • Death of a Salesman -Arthur Miller
  • Tess of the D'Urbervilles -Thomas Hardy
  • King Lear - Shakespeare

You will also study two additional texts of your own choice.

The texts we study have been carefully chosen to give you an insight into how writers craft their work but also to inspire and entertain you. In exploring these texts, we think about writers’ methods, but also about the portrayal of some of the most universal human emotions and experiences. Your own independent reading will be crucial throughout the course but particularly in the coursework unit when you will have the opportunity to choose your own texts to research and write about. As such, you need to be self-motivated, conscientious and, above all, a committed reader with interesting interpretations and the confidence to express them

You could take this course with other advanced level courses to prepare for higher education in English studies or more general higher education courses. With further training, you could go into a job related to English Literature such as a teacher, journalist, author, or poet.

Examination Board: AQA

Click here to view the A Level English Literature exam specification