“A word after a word after a word is power.”
― Margaret Atwood
English Department Curriculum at Newark Academy
Literature absorbs you, it possesses you and its demands are immediate, involving and powerful. Literature is important both educationally and socially. Through literature we encourage our students to be curious, to challenge expectations and break down barriers. We want our students to respond to English with passion and enthusiasm. This underpins the ethos of our school - to Work Hard and Be Kind - which reinforces our GREAT values as a school and our national British values of tolerance, self-regulation, awareness and respect.
The English Department at Newark Academy are passionate about literature as a tool for social change and for unlocking students’ emotional and intellectual potential. We impart this appreciation for reading with our students through an inspirational curriculum that places classic and contemporary fiction and non-fiction texts at the heart of everything we do.
We draw upon the rich diversity of British literature: from Shakespeare to Blackman; from Victorian to Gothic to Modern Day. Similarly, through a broad range of non-fiction texts, from Oprah Winfrey’s powerful Golden Globes speech to courageous autobiographical accounts, we teach students to harness the power of language and have an appreciation of how a writer uses language to present their point of view. We teach them to craft ‘how’ they use language to enable students to ‘write like an expert’. Here, our intention is to prepare them to be active and ethical citizens who contribute to society and demonstrate an awareness of biased views. This is so they can challenge and make informed choices when confronted with prejudice, now and in the future.
We build on this diversity through educational experiences outside of the classroom. Through planned enrichment activities, such as theatre trips and cross curricula learning experiences with History, Geography and Art, we develop students and help them make connections to the real world.
Our curriculum makes strong links with our feeder schools to ensure our curriculum is coherent and closes the learning gap between KS2 and KS3. Through our ‘On Boarding’ unit and close links with feeder primary schools, we ensure students are ‘Secondary Ready’ and prepared for their learning journey in English at Newark Academy.
The English department are ambitious, aspirational and inclusive and we create appropriate learning journeys for all students. We have high expectations for all students that do not confine or limit their knowledge and understanding. Our curriculum nurtures life changing ambitions and a mind-set that promotes resilience. It also develops core literacy and communication skills which are important for our students to be competitive in the world of work. Our students will be equipped with secure deep knowledge and resilience. We empower our students to find their voice and have the courage and conviction to express their views confidently as they take their place in society.