The English Department at Rydal Penrhos School is one of the central departments of the school. We teach most of the pupils in the first five years, and a number thereafter. Moreover, English is a crucial subject in the curriculum; one of the key subjects for teaching:
- analytical thought
- speaking and listening skills
- an awareness of language
- an understanding and appreciation of books, poetry, drama and other media;
- an understanding of the contexts in which texts are written;
- fluency, style and correctness in writing;
- the pleasures of reading;
- the power of the imagination;
- the value of human relationships;
- the nature of human experience;
- social, moral and ethical values.
Why study English?
English lessons are responsible for making pupils aware of themselves, their language, the world of imagination and feelings, of the demands of written language, and of the skills of exposition and argument. In these respects English has a unique breadth of thinking and response to offer pupils, and we must do all we can to get pupils involved and contributing positively in class and preps.
A crucial aspect of English is that it should be entertaining, lively and fun. Our teaching attempts to reach as many pupils, and provide as much stimulus, as possible. It is regarded as a priority that we act as ambassadors for our subject, and teach with enthusiasm.
As well as entering several teams each year for the Rotary Youth Speaks Competition, where we are nearly always successful at local level, we also organise an annual Public Speaking Competition for all of Years 7-10, adjudicated by outside judges, and always a highly entertaining event.
We organise several theatre trips a year, generally to see texts we are studying but also for cultural reasons, and have even been known to visit the cinema with pupils to see more erudite productions. Each year we organise at least one author visit in conjunction with the Learning Resource Centre and also we help run various reading initiatives, from National Storytelling Week to World Book Day all designed to promote the fun and enjoyment of literature. Last, but by no means least, we play an active part in the school magazine.
English is taken by nearly all students at Key Stage 3 and for GCSE and most also study English Literature as a full GCSE. We also offer a one year course for IGCSE designed to give pupils who arrive in year 11 the chance at a suitable qualification.
We teach A-level English Literature in which we have a good record of success and this remains a very popular choice for the pupils.
At IB we teach nearly all pupils, either for their first language (A1) which is primarily a literature based course, or for their second language (A2) which has more of a non-literary element. We teach towards the extended essay for the IB Diploma and English is generally one of the more popular choices.
As well as lively readers gauged to engage the interest of the various year groups, we have a good stock of focused text books designed to bring out various skills and to inform students about their courses better. Ranging from “Interactive Poetry” an IT resource with accompanying text books designed for Key Stage 3 through to the latest DVD versions of texts we are studying, the department’s cupboards are well stocked. But our greatest resource is in our teaching staff, with a wealth of experience added to much youthful enthusiasm.
Head of Department
Mrs L Crimes MA
Email Mrs Crimes
English teaching staff
Mrs R Jones MA
Mrs S Brown BA, MSc
Mr J Murphy BA
Ms F Earle BA