Our three-year Key Stage Three journey begins at Sirius Academy North with the initial unit of work, entitled ‘The Island’. This module allows students to showcase both their reading and writing skills in the opening weeks whilst also building upon and developing the skills they have acquired at primary school. The students then embark upon an exploration of a range of texts, from plays to novels and then to poetry, which suit both their interest and ability. An encounter with Shakespeare later on in the academic year helps to develop students’ understanding of how language has changed over time, as well as allowing our students the chance to develop their speaking and listening skills through drama.
As our pupils move through KS3, there continues to be a heavy focus on developing reading skills whilst also using the writers’ techniques they have encountered to refine and improve their own creative writing flair. Students are invited to explore a range of media and discover how writing for a purpose can enable them to inform, persuade, argue or entertain at their will. Throughout Key Stage 3 students are encouraged to become independent learners, creative thinkers and self-managers through extended homework projects and tasks, the end result of which is greatly celebrated with their peers. Preparation for Key Stage Four is developed through the skills being taught at KS3 and the taster module which is embedded into the end of the Year 9 curriculum.
Key Stage 4 begins in Year 10 where the students explore a modern text before utilising the skills gained in Year 7, 8 and 9 to explore poetry and Shakespeare. The students’ appreciation of the canon is expanded with a study of a 19th Century Novel before vital reading and writing skills are honed and prepared, ready for the rigours of GCSE assessments and examinations. In Years 10 and 11 we allow our students to reach their maximum potential through frequent and relevant exam preparation. Students work towards attaining two qualifications: English Language and English Literature. In gaining two GCSEs, students are better prepared to embark upon the world after Sirius Academy North - safe in the knowledge that their hard work has paid off.
Enjoyment and achievement is at the forefront of the ethos of the English department and enrichment opportunities are rife. Key Stage 3 students are offered the chance to become a Young Reporter through a programme run at the KC Stadium - one of many trips organised throughout both Key Stages. The Key Stage 3 lunchtime creative writing club and the First Story project offers students the chance to express themselves and develop the flair required for Key Stage 4.