Simran Malhi and Gurveer Kahlon are the English Department’s new Learning Consultants. As well as their other Learning Consultant duties, they will be talking to teachers in the English department and observing lessons so that they can write this blog of what they have seen. Here are their observations for this term:
On Wednesday 20th March 2013, we observed a Year 9 English lesson taught by Mrs Yates. The lesson mainly focused on analysing how actors used different techniques to portray different age groups. Throughout the lesson, there were many oppurtunities for group discussion, working in pairs and sharing ideas and feedback with the rest of the class.
Mrs Yates also made the Learning Objectives clear at the start of the lesson, ensured that there were extension tasks for pupils to build on their learning if they completed the classwork and there was a plenary task which involved creating a success criteria for the lesson so that pupils knew if they had achieved as much as they could have in that lesson.
The lesson objectives related to previous lessons, which meant that pupils could build on what they had already learnt and the starter task involved identifying emotions which would be very useful later on in the lesson.
As well as making the tasks clear for the pupils, Mrs Yates was also on hand to offer a lot of help to students that struggled and offered suggestions for improvement to other students that had completed the tasks.
Pupils remained engaged and on task throughout the lesson, actively took part in discussions and, most importantly, enjoyed their lesson.
Gurveer and Simran
This term has seen a number of new teachers join the Communications Department here at OSCA – a warm welcome to Mr Stevens and Miss Clarke (both Modern Foreign Languages), Miss Tameta and Miss Simmons (both English) and Miss Clegg (Literacy Co-Ordinator) who all began in September. Welcome to OSCA.
There have been a number of trips since September which has allowed many pupils to witness a range of performances in both Birmingham and London. On 12th October all Year 7 students attended the Hippodrome in Birmingham to see “Sister Act” whilst on 4th December several Year 10 and 11 pupils travelled to the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden to see The Woman in Black. As well as this, on 20th December a number of Year 9 students also visited London to watch a production of War Horse. Many Thanks to Mrs Garner and Mrs Yates for organising these trips which were extremely popular with both pupils and staff.
December also saw the launch of OSCA Express – a termly published newspaper which celebrates the achievements and successes of our pupils. Miss Clegg and Miss Grace, together with their budding journalists and roving reporters from all years, have worked extremely hard to oversee this creation of our very own school publication. Miss Grace has also been instrumental in the emergence of a Creative Writing Club who meet every Tuesday at 3pm in room 32; not only do they share writing tips and enter literacy competitions but are also currently working towards forming an OSCA Anthology.
Finally, many Year 11 students have attended Saturday morning Support Sessions (as well as after school English revision clubs every Wednesday) in preparation for their Examination on 10th January 2013. Keep up the hard work over the Christmas period and maintain your high standards – Well Done.
It with sadness that we say goodbye to three valued members of the Communications team at the end of this term. Mr Peacock from MFL, and Miss Bayliss and Miss Hudson from English will all be leaving us to go on to exciting new adventures. We'd like to wish them all the very best in their new careers, and countries, and hope their new colleagues appreciate them as much as we do.
Goodbye and good luck from us all.
Hello & Goodbye
A belated welcome to Mr Bishop who joined the Communications Faculty this term as Intervention Co-ordinator for English; he has already been very busy working with a small group of year 11 students who were entered recently for GCSE Literature as they had made so much progress in their GCSE English Language course.
Congratulations to our current Year 10 students for the completion of their English Language GCSE. They are the first students to have completed the new GCSE syllabus, and have worked hard to achieve their potential. We look forward to their successful results this summer, then moving on to study English Literature with them in Year 11.
Finally, goodbye to our Year 11 students who have now completed their GCSE English & Literature courses. We have had our good times, and our more challenging times through their five years, but we shall miss them; fortunately we can look forward to welcoming many back to the VIth form in September when we will be offering A’Level English.
Year 11 students enjoyed a "horrifying" theatre trip to see The Woman in Black in London thanks to Mrs Yates. Many students (and staff) were far more scared than they cared to admit!
We have a busy time ahead with final completion of controlled assessments for both Years 10 and 11; a new syllabus is exciting but very hard work for everyone concerned.
Finally congratulations to Year 11 who have already achieved 53% A*-C in their English GCSEs. Keep up the good work - English resits and GCSE Literature still to come.
Staff and students are working hard to include “The word of the week” in their lessons. The first one was endurance, which is something we all need plenty of at the start of a new academic year! Year 7 students have begun their reading challenges using Renaissance Learning in the Learning Resources Centre, so I’m looking forward to seeing how well they perform in their quizzes.
Our budding journalists have made a start on our plans for BBC School Report day in March next year. We meet every Thursday lunchtime in the Learning Resources Centre. Anyone from years 7 to 11 is welcome to join us – see you there.
Our year 7 students are settling in well to their language studies; we’ve now introduced German for half the year group alongside French. Our options groups in year 9 are enjoying the challenge of GCSE French and BTEC Travel & Tourism. Both courses offer our students the chance to work in new ways, with a great deal of emphasis on independent online work.
We hope Mr Jenkins, who was due to join us at the start of this year will be in good health soon, so that he can begin his work in MFL and Homebase.
A new term, a new team.
Welcome to Ms Grace who has joined the Communications Faculty as a full-time English teacher; she will be an excellent addition to our already strong team.
Congratulations to our current Year 10 students for their success in their first English GCSE module this summer. It was a brand new syllabus and they coped very well with the demands.
Congratulations also to our current Year 11 students who achieved some excellent results in their full GCSE English exams this summer. The hard work continues though with a tight countdown to resits in November. Remember intervention and study support sessions are available, and clear your diaries on Monday 24th October, and Saturday 5th November for a last minute push to achieve your full potential and our highest grades yet.
Welcome to the new Communications Blog – all the latest English & MFL news.
It’s been a time of change for the English team this year with an exciting new GCSE course underway, bringing with it the challenges of controlled assessment. As the new course is completed in modular units, it also meant that Year 9 sat their first GCSE English Language exam this summer – working so hard towards it and behaving impeccably on the day. Well done to all of you!
The hard work continues with Gifted and Talented students in Year 9 having the opportunity to travel to London to work with expert mentors from the English Speaking Union later this month. They will take part in inspiring workshops called “Discover your Voice” designed to give students the confidence and skills to engage with challenging topics and ask probing questions about current affairs to a range of experts.
It’s also the time to say goodbye to Mrs Wilkinson who has been with us this year covering maternity leave and other absences. Her hard work will be missed and we wish her well for the future.
And finally a sad farewell to Mr Boden, who has decided to leave us, following a year of ill-health. We are all really sorry to see him go, as he has been a cornerstone in our department for many years and had a huge impact on the success of many students from this academy. His former students and colleagues wish him all the best for a long and happy future.
On the MFL side, Mr Peacock and Miss Rogers are nearing the end of their first year at OSCA. We are looking forward to welcoming Mr Jenkins joining the Department in September.
Just before the end of the Summer Term there will be a Specialisms Day when students will have the opportunity to study the origins of different languages and begin to develop their own language.
Currently we are busy preparing for two new courses for Year 9 – Travel and Tourism and GCSE French.
Bonnes vacances à tous!