The English Faculty at Queensbury is a dynamic department dedicated to raising standards through the vital tool of engagement. We believe that once students are engaged, the magic of learning can happen.  Students build on and develop their creativity, curiosity and empathy through the exploration of captivating texts tailored to their interests. As teachers of English, we are acutely aware that literacy skills and self-esteem often go hand in hand. Therefore, we work hard to create a positive learning environment in which an atmosphere of mutual respect, enjoyment and encouragement are nurtured to ensure each student achieves if not exceeds their potential.

Our students have a variety of learning needs, working at varying stages of their learning journey. We have our ‘Discovery’ groups that work on essential skills such as embedding phonics, right through to our ‘Navigation’ groups, where our more academic students work at GCSE level. Our aim is for all our young people to be as confident at communicating as they can be, so they are ready to make a valued contribution to their local and wider communities.

KS3Intent
(Why are we doing it)
Implement
(How we are going to do it)
Impact
(What we want to see and develop)
DiscoveryIn English we aim to develop students’ basic communication skills in speaking and listening, reading and writing. We focus on Pre-Entry Level skills; helping to build students core and basic literacy.We follow a semi-formal curriculum including structured and unstructured play to help develop students’ creativity and social skills. We use Signing and Communicate In Print to ensure access to the curriculum. Students enjoy a rich and varied syllabus linked to real life contexts. Regular and stimulating trips also help develop the students’ confidence and communication skills.
Furthermore, we encourage reading for pleasure and engagement with books in general.
Our vision is for students to complete key stage 3 having gained a foundation of core literacy skills which enable them to engage with their environment effectively. Our aim is for students to be able to:
• Communicate their needs outside and inside school to their peers, staff and unfamiliar adults e.g. in a Café.
• Have a developing understanding of phonics.
• Form letters and words.
ExplorerIn English we aim to develop functional communicators; readers, writers and speakers. We design creative and engaging lessons using texts which match the academic abilities and interests of our students. The content we cover enables us to have a strong foundation of core literacy skills.We use inspiring texts with a high interest, low reading age to match the needs of our students and encourage them to have a passion for reading. We also cover a range of topics which are relevant and relatable. We support students to build on their core literacy skills so that they are ready to take on Entry Level accreditations at key stage 4.Our vision is for students to come to the end of Ks4 with:
• A strong set of core literacy skills.
• Enthusiasm to engage with reading materials.
• An interest in the world around them and what is happening in the news and media.
• A developing awareness of how they can engage with their environment and communicate meaning effectively.
• A strong foundation of core literacy skills in reading, writing and speaking and listening in readiness for key stage 4.
NavigatorIn English we aim to embed and extend our core literacy skills. We build on our functional English skills by learning new, more sophisticated reading and writing techniques and explore varied topics. We aim to start to look critically and analytically with the materials we encounter in readiness for undertaking our English Language and English Literature GCSEs.We explore and encounter challenging and varied vocabulary and begin to analyse writers’ choices in terms of the methods they employ. We also enjoy enrichment opportunities to develop our expertise and to inspire our imagination. These include a variety of trips and engagement opportunities within the community. Our vision is for students to come to the end of key stage 3 with:

• An appreciation of reading for pleasure.
• A developing interest in current affairs- issues that affect them and their community.
• An awareness of how to write and speak to communicate meaning; becoming clearer and more critical.
• Engagement with more challenging texts and a developing ability to receive them critically.
• A strong foundation of core literacy skills which have been effectively embedded in readiness for the GCSEs.
Venture
KS4Intent
(Why are we doing it)
Implement
(How we are going to do it)
Impact
(What we want to see and develop)
DiscoveryIn English we aim to develop students’ basic communication skills in speaking and listening, reading and writing. We focus on Pre-Entry Level skills; helping to build students basic literacy ability.We follow a semi-formal curriculum including structured and unstructured play to help develop students’ creativity and social skills. We use Signing and Communicate In Print to ensure access to the curriculum. Students enjoy a rich and varied syllabus linked to real life contexts. Regular and stimulating trips also help develop the students’ confidence and communication skills. Our vision is for students to complete Year 11 having grown in confidence as individuals. Our aim is for students to be able to:
• Communicate their needs outside and inside school to their peers, staff and unfamiliar adults e.g. in a Café.
• Have a basic grasp of phonics to build on in key stage 5.
• Form letters and simple sentences correctly.
ExplorerIn English we aim to develop functional communicators; readers, writers and speakers. We design engaging lessons using carefully chosen stimulus linked to real-life contexts. Our topics help create self-motivated readers, writers and speakers.Students follow the OCR Entry Level syllabus. We use inspiring texts, matching interest age with reading age; tailored to the needs of the students. We engage students’ natural curiosity through the power of empathy, storytelling and lively debates on current issues. Enrichment opportunities are central to bringing topics to life. Our vision is for students to complete Year 11 with:
• An appreciation of reading for pleasure.
• Having an interest in current affairs- issues that affect them and their community.
• An awareness of how to write and speak to communicate meaning.
• Key basic skills in reading, writing and speaking to build on at key stage 5.
NavigatorIn English we aim to develop fluent communicators; readers, writers and speakers. Most students study both the English Language (8700) and Literature AQA (8702) syllabus. We build on our functional English skills by learning new, more sophisticated reading and writing techniques. Students develop the ability to write accurately for different purposes, read critically and give their opinions confidently through presentations. Higher level concepts are broken down into manageable chunks. We enjoy visiting the theatre to help aid students’ understanding of pre and post 20th Century texts. Empathy for characters is developed in creative ways e.g. students are encouraged to become ‘detectives’ of texts; helping them to develop critical reading skills.Our vision is for students to complete Year 11 with:
• An appreciation of reading for pleasure.
• Having an interest in current affairs- issues that affect them and their community.
• A clear awareness of how to write and speak to communicate meaning.
• Critical reading and analytical skills to build during further study in college at key stage 5.
Venture