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‘Language is power, life and the instrument of culture, the instrument of domination and liberation.’ Angela Carter.


English is a subject with vital purposes.

Firstly, English is the lens through which our pupils navigate the world. English surrounds them, gives meaning to their environment, allows them to communicate and express themselves, to engage with democracy, to be active citizens, to gain employment, to have healthy relationships with others, to understand and to be understood, to exist. A life without English in an English-speaking country risks being a life of isolation. English, therefore, is the key to unlock a happy, healthy life. Through the English Curriculum at King’s, we seek to ensure that pupils can communicate confidently and clearly, enabling them to be successful citizens.

Secondly, English is an art form. Its language is beautiful and should be celebrated. It is able to inspire a full range of emotions, to act as a microcosm of society, to hold a mirror to ourselves, to challenge power and highlight injustice. Pupils should be exposed to its richness. Through the English curriculum at King’s, we seek to instil that love of the written word so that they can engage with it as an art form, opening up a world of possibilities.

Academic Skills/Independent Learners

English is a key subject through which the King’s academic skills can be implemented. Through a selection of challenging and thought-provoking texts, we encourage students to develop their ability to unpick texts, construct arguments, and see how the construction of rhetoric can impact people.

Where students with literacy needs or an identifiable barrier need further support or adaptations, adjustments are made in line with the school inclusion registers and advice from the school SENCo.


We know that the vocabulary gap has an impact on the chances of being successful. In order to negate that, we have to develop our pupils’ vocabulary. In the English curriculum, we have a huge focus on vocabulary instruction, both for Tier 2 and Tier 3 words. We teach words through the use of examples, through words’ etymologies, and through morphemes, to create a rich linguistic schema in each of our pupils.

Explicit vocabulary teaching in our lessons through etymology allows students to develop problem solving and word recognition skills which support them across the school curriculum and where students access intervention, this is cohesive with skills in our school reading programmes.


English at King’s aims to be all inclusive regardless of any potential barriers to learning and/or SEN. Any adjustments to facilitate the learning experience are informed by our Inclusion register and where a staff member needs further support in adapting work for a learner, they follow the SEN referral system. SEN does not mean low attaining, therefore, all students will be stretched and challenged regardless of need.


There is naturally a tension in English when selecting texts for study between choosing from the literary canon, giving pupils a foundational knowledge of the history of the subject, and choosing texts from a diverse range of sources. With that in mind, our focus in the Foundations Curriculum is more geared towards the literary canon, with texts from diverse sources being chosen where appropriate. In the Bridging Curriculum, we explore a greater range of texts to ensure that pupils see the written word being used by people from the widest variety of backgrounds possible.


2023 - 24 English Subject Narrative