Castle Manor Academy

Year 7 English

“Let us pick up our books and pens. They are our most powerful weapons.”  Malala Yousafzai, UN 2013

Welcome to Year 7 English lessons at Castle Manor Academy. We are committed in English to equipping students with enhanced literacy and communication skills so that they can confidently access a wide range of information beyond Castle Manor Academy including opportunities for higher education, employability and training. We know and understand the impact a person’s ability to communicate their ideas, needs and ambitions has on their life outcomes and their ability to have their voice heard and acted on in society as a fully equipped citizen. Language has the power to transform lives when we advocate for ourselves and others.

The team leader, Miss Eyre, and second in charge, Miss Haynes, work on the curriculum offer for Year 7 throughout the year, including visiting the primary schools in the summer term and seeing the learning done in KS2. With this in mind, we plan learning that builds on children’s successes in Year 6 and challenges their skills and imagination as they begin their Year 7 journey. Year 7 lessons are taught by one of the English team; Miss Eyre, Miss Haynes, Miss Harris, Mr Story and Miss Cofer.

We aim to encourage a love of learning and fascination with the English language in all its written and oral forms. Our KS3 curriculum plan has a literature spine for direct reading and vocabulary instruction which is broad and balanced in terms of the voices, themes and genres it covers so that all students see themselves in the literature we share. Students have five lessons a week of English. In analytical literature lessons, students are challenged to become critical thinkers as they explore plays, novels and poetry from different eras and perspectives. In writing instruction and grammar lessons, students build the skills to become fluent, precise and eloquent writers across a range of formats including reviews, letters of application, persuasive speeches, summaries of research, and a whole host of creative writing. The fun, excitement and enjoyment of writing is injected through our engagement in termly national writing competitions and students certainly relish the chance to show off their creativity and talents.

In the summer term, Year 7 students complete a writing scheme of work on the theme of heroes which includes writing persuasive speeches nominating a local person from our town for a ‘Haverhill Heroes’ award. This culminates in an evening celebrating the volunteering and selfless giving of people in our community all hosted by our wonderful Year 7s; an event when we get to listen to their voices and hear their stories of pride and acknowledgement for all that is done to make Haverhill great.

This year, Year 7 students also showed what makes Castle Manor such a supportive community by using their letter writing skills to compose notes of good luck and support to our Year 11 students as they embarked on their GCSE exams. This is a tradition we shall certainly be repeating.

StrandAutumn Term (19th C Literature)Spring Term (Shakespeare)Summer term A (Language: Writing)Summer term B (CUSP What does it mean to be human?)
Heroes and Villains in Literature (2 lessons)TextGreat ExpectationsA Midsummer Night’s DreamHaverhill Heroes – writing unitBlended unit of reading, writing, literature and vocabulary skills on the concept of humanity and being ‘human’ from the USP CUSP team.
KnowledgeLife in Victorian London; Victorian crime; the form of a novel; workhouses; the poor laws; Abel Magwitch, Pip, Miss Havisham; moralityLife in Elizabethan England; life in ancient Athens; Shakespeare’s life; the four lovers; the love potion; Elizabethan family relationships; the form of a playPersuasive speech writing, poetry and writing a ‘How to’ guide all on the theme of heroes. Polishing and perfecting work for display at the Year 7 showcase
Vocabularyvillains and victims; vulnerable; corrupt; naïve; orphan; moral; benefactorsoliloquy, severe, conflict, unrequited love, to mock, chaosHero / kindness / volunteer
Grammar (1 lesson)Writing in complete and full sentences; identifying the action and verb; subject-verb agreement for ‘to-be’, regular and irregular past simple verbs, avoiding fragments; avoiding fused sentences; using capital sentences accurately; using pronouns; sentence structure; paragraphing; speech punctuation.
Writing (1 lesson)5-week cycles: Intro and model, generate ideas, slow writing x 2 lessons, edit and polish using feedback.
Reading (1 lesson)Direct Reading Instruction for the continuing of development of fluent and comprehending readers (Prose, Fiction & Non-fiction, Poetry) ‘We are Displaced’ – Malala Yousafzai    ‘There’s a boy in the girl’s bathroom’ – Louis Sachar   ‘Things the eye can’t see’ – Penny Joelson            ‘Life of Pi’ – Yann Martel    ‘Sapiens: Graphic Novel (Volume 1)’ – Yuval Noah Harari