All students of English acquire knowledge that enriches their lives forever. They also acquire qualities and skills that are, most importantly, valuable for living. The English Department believes that girls should encounter a wide range of texts, which asks them to develop their skills of good communication, close reading and critical thinking.
By Year 11, girls will have studied four Shakespeare plays, as well as pre and post-C20th novels and poetry. All girls take IGCSE English and IGCSE Literature. Typically around 30 pupils continue with the subject in the Sixth Form, where they follow the Cambridge Pre-U Literature in English.
WHEN I AM READING A BOOK, WHETHER WISE OR SILLY, IT SEEMETH TO ME TO BE ALIVE AND TALKING TO ME
Since 1986 the English Department has presented a Poetry Festival, in which girls read their own poems and attend a workshop run by a visiting poet (these have included Carol-Ann Duffy, Andrew Motion and Daljit Nagra). In recent years, we have had 6 girls in the top 85 in the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award.
There is debating, public speaking, creative writing, frequent theatre trips and Sixth Form English seminars. We have also made literary visits to the Lake District, Howarth and Dorset.
We aim to develop a curiosity in words which make readers think, feel and imagine.
The JAGS annual Poetry Festival wonderfully exposes raw and polished talent in the senior school and pupils’ skills in writing poetry in different forms. The complete anthology, including Ballad of Wanda Whistler by Daisy and Mary-Moon-Mother by Olivia, can be found here: Poetry Anthology Well done to all the poets.