Notre Dame Catholic College
and Sixth Form

A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies...The man who never reads lives only one.”

– George R.R. Martin


Our English curriculum provides pupils with an introduction to the essential literary and language knowledge that they need to be educated, rounded and communicative citizens. It introduces students to the best that has been thought and said; and helps engender an appreciation of human imagination, creativity and achievement.

Mrs A Kane

Mrs A Kane

Director of English

Our English curriculum is carefully designed and delivered to:


  • inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past and present through the study of novels, poetry and plays (OPENING HEARTS through inspiration)
  • develop in pupils a coherent knowledge and understanding of a bank of rich social, historical, world and cultural knowledge (OPENING MINDS to new knowledge)
  • help pupils develop as perceptive readers and listeners (OPENING MINDS to deeper understanding)
  • equip pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word (OPENING DOORS through the application of communicative disciplines)


Year 7, 8 and 9 Curriculum Content

The framework for the Key Stage 3 English curriculum is shaped by the sequence of carefully selected texts listed below, which every student reads cover-to-cover. Each unit of study is supplemented by a plethora of associated supplementary literature including playscripts, short stories and non-fiction pieces such as letters, reports and recounts. 

Year 7Unit/Topic
AutumnRick Riordan's 'Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief'
SpringCharles Dickens' 'Oliver Twist'
SummerArthur Conan Doyles' 'The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes'
Year 8Unit/Topic
AutumnCharlotte Bronte's 'Jane Eyre'
SpringJohn Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men'
SummerWilliam Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet'
Year 9Unit/Topic
AutumnSusan Hill's 'Woman in Black'
SpringWilliam Shakespeare's 'Henry V'
SummerMarjorie Blackman's 'Naughts and Crosses'

Year 10 and 11 Curriculum Content

At Key Stage 4, students follow the AQA English Language and Literature programme of study. The order in which we cover the content of these specifications is listed below. All students are examined in both courses at the end of Year 11 and so revision throughout the two-year course is essential to a student’s success.

Year 10Unit/Topic
Autumn19th Century novel - 'A Christmas Carol' by Charles Dickens
SpringExplorations in creative reading and writing (English Language Paper One)
SpringModern texts and poetry - 'An Inspector Calls' by J.B. Priestley
SummerWriters' viewpoints and perspectives - non-fiction (English Language Paper 2)
Year 11Unit/Topic
Autumn 1'Macbeth' by William Shakespeare
SpringAQA Relationships Poetry Anthology
SummerRevision and Examination

Key Stage 4 English students follow the AQA GCSE English Language and Literature specification. For further details, please follow the link below.

Download Full GCSE English Language Specification

Download Full GCSE English Literature Specification


Key Stage 5 English Literature students follow the AQA A Level English Literature specification. For further details, please follow the link below.’

Download Full A Level English Literature

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Success Story

“Somethng inspirational and glowing about the English department at Notre Dame.”

Former Notre Dame student, went on to study English Literature at University of Cambridge