Welcome to the English Department, where our main aim is to ensure that all of our students are given the best possible learning experiences every day. We are determined to help our students refine their skills in reading, writing and oracy in order to help them achieve their potential across the curriculum and to prepare them for life beyond school. We are a dedicated team, our resources are shared, our best practice is shared and we are committed to trying new and exciting projects to ensure that our subject remains lively and interesting. We are proud of our track record of visiting authors as well as our successful Virtual Author in Residence projects (please see bottom of the page).
Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 courses are designed to provide breadth and variety, with coverage of a wide range of texts from different genres, periods and cultures.
Key Stage 3
At Key Stage 3, students will focus upon a different unit each half-term; they will study novels, drama (including Shakespeare), poetry, non-fiction and media texts. Within each unit there will be specific assessment objectives and courses are structured around common assignments that allow monitoring of progress. In our lessons we also provide a close focus upon word-level and sentence-level literacy skills. One lesson per week for each year group is allocated for Masterclasses or Big Read, Big Write and Big Speak sessions so that students are both supported and challenged in Key Stage 3.
Key Stage 4
At Key Stage 4, students are banded according to ability. Groupings of students may change according to the profile of the year group. Groupings may include more than one group of equal ability or single sex groups for example. Extra staff are allocated to Year 10 and 11 to provide intervention when needed to support students with coursework preparation and exam preparation. All students follow the WJEC GCSE course in English Language and some will pursue WJEC GCSE English Literature. Again, depending on year group, we may also offer Essential Skills Wales qualifications.
Key Stage 5
At present we offer WJEC AS and A2 English Literature. Modules are taught by a English specialists to ensure support and effective moderation processes. There is scope however to broaden our subject choices if there is sufficient demand.
We run a variety of clubs for students at all key stages. These include:
Youth Speaks Out
BBC School News Report
In addition, we run a GCSE clinic every Wednesday to support students in Years 10 and 11 with coursework and exam preparation.
A TRANSTION EVENT OF EPIC PROPORTIONS!!!!!
By Sarwat Chadda, Chepstow’s Virtual Author in Residence
I've been working with Chepstow School for the last year, running a writer's group with a bunch of students, ranging from Year 7 to Year 9.
There have been some amazing work and I'm very impressed they all survived the journey! I am not known for my delicate editorial comments. Many was a homework that ended up being returned covered in red ink, but all survived, all produced a splendid final year short story, all collected under an anthology. I was very touched they all signed it. I'll hang onto it as I know in a few years time there will be some publsihed authors coming out of this group and I'll need proof to claim my 10% finder's fee.
So, it was great to head up to sunny (and it was sunny) Chepstow and see the gang, now they've all completed the course. But there was more in store...
Chepstow did an ASH MISTRY week! They turned that school in Wales into a little corner of India. EPIC! The incoming Year 6's gathered to turn out a mind-blowing performance of the key scenes of the story with special effects, actors and a march of the gods, no less!
My head was gigantically swollen by the end of the evening. I even got a chance to talk to some of the parents of the Year 6's and believe me they're in for a majorly exciting time!
Secondary school is a big deal, no two ways around it. This is where you'll become an adult. It is intimidating. There are exams, and tests and universities at the end of it. You'll have an amazing range of things to study, and homework. Lots of homework.
It will be hard. At times you'll feel it's impossible. You'll have moments when you wonder 'what's the point?' But do you know what…it will be great and you will love every minute of it.