English at Beaconhurst aims to challenge and inspire pupils by the material and methods we use.
English lessons teach the skills of reading, writing, talking and listening. We teach these skills through an exciting range of texts and approaches, developing independent thinking and enthusiasm about the written and spoken word.
From Transition to S2, pupils study a range of prose fiction, drama, poetry, non-fiction, media and moving image to give them a broad foundation for national qualifications later. S3 and S4 are devoted to National 4 and 5. During S5 many pupils follow the Higher course and some go on to Advanced Higher in S6.
The department runs theatre trips to support texts which are being taught, whenever possible. The examination subjects are supported by clinics to offer one-to-one support for pupils. The Debating Society takes place every week, developing skills in school and entering national competitions.
English develops literacy skills which are fundamental to all aspects of learning, in and beyond school. Proficient reading, writing, talking and listening skills are a basis for all types of study. This explains why the Higher English qualification is often a requirement for applications to further education institutions.
There are always opportunities for a pupil’s individual passions and enthusiasms in the English department. Whether it is creative writing, reading for pleasure or public speaking, there will always be a member of staff willing to help a pupil develop those skills.
A typical year for the younger Seniors will include:
- A Shakespeare play
- A selection of Burns poetry
- A range of other poetry
- A novel
- A play
- A media text (e.g. newspapers or magazines)
- A range of non-fiction
- A debate
- A regular spelling programme
- Regular private reading
- A shared reading scheme
- Regular library visits
From S3, we begin to prepare students for National SQA examinations, continuing to select a variety of appropriate and challenging tests to develop critical awareness and analytical skills. Small classes allow for plenty of discussion and feedback, ensuring that pupils explore their interests and fulfil their potential in a pleasant and supportive classroom environment.