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Year 8 English

Autumn Term
During the Autumn Term pupils will be exploring their theatrical side with the module: An Introduction to Drama. To begin they will create their own short scripts inspired by the notorious criminal trial of Derek Bentley and Christopher Craig. Pupils will then move on to look at how the novel 'Noughts and Crosses' was adapted for the stage by the RSC before critically comparing it to Shakespeare’s famous love story 'Romeo and Juliet'.

In the second half of the term, children will study the novel ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’ by John Boyne. The story presents the harrowing events of World War Two and the Holocaust through the eyes of a young boy called Bruno. Pupils will explore how Boyne creates such an emotionally engaging story through his use of language and structure, as well as writing their own non-fiction pieces on the Holocaust.

Spring Term

To begin the New Year pupils will begin a poetry module looking at poems around the theme of love and relationships. Pupils will study poems by authors such as Kipling, Armitage and Hughes, as well as having free choice to pick an author that interests them. Pupils will analyse the techniques the poets use, respond to the poems creatively and write their own poetic reactions to the poems studied.

In the second half of the term, pupils will be gearing up for BBC School News Report by learning all about how the news is made and focussing on non-fiction writing about issues that they are passionate about. They will analyse newspaper reports and examine the various styles of writing that different journalists adopt, exploring grammar and structure. Finally, pupils will be given the chance to produce and make their own BBC School News Report. 

Summer Term
In Year 8 our pupils will develop their study of Shakespeare in a way that excites, engages and inspires them. Pupils actively explore the play 'Macbeth' focusing on characters and motivation, themes and ideas, author’s craft and performance.

In addition, pupils improve their skills in writing accurately, fluently, effectively and at length for pleasure and information. They are provided with opportunities to cultivate creativity in writing imaginative and thoughtful texts. Furthermore, they will expand their knowledge of how language, including figurative language, vocabulary choice, grammar, text structure and organisational features present meaning. Grammar is embedded throughout the lessons.

Pupils are encouraged to read widely at home for pleasure and a weekly reading session allows the pupils to access our school library, complete Accelerated Reading activities and further develop specific reading skills.

In Reading lessons, pupils will continue to use the Accelerated Reader reading program in order to develop their enthusiasm and love of reading. They will continue to read books of increasing complexity and challenge, developing their comprehension, understanding and vocabulary in the process.

The whole curriculum is under-pinned with the ethos that all teachers are teachers of literacy, and that literacy is central to success within every subject. As a result, pupils continue to develop their love of reading and they are supported by staff to ensure that they read a wide breadth of literature, for a mixture of both reading for information and reading for pleasure. In addition to this, we aim to develop confident and adept writers, who are able to write at greater depth for a range of audiences and purpose. Pupils at Parkside have great pride in their writing ability, which is promoted in every lesson.