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Hampstead School

English and Media


Head of Faculty Mr D Robson

Deputy Head of Faculty
Subject Leader Media

Mr M Cook
Key Stage 3 Co-ordinator, English Mr A Hickson-Lovence

Key Stage 4 Co-ordinator, English


Key Stage 5 Co-ordinator, English


What we aim to do:

English and Media have pre-eminent places in education and in society. English teaches students to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, students have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables students both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society.

The overarching aim for English is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping students with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.

Media Studies complements this, through thinking about the media, involving investigating media texts and their various contexts and creating for the media, involving planning, producing and presenting media texts.  We live in a media-saturated world, where we are surrounded by media messages for most of our waking hours.  The discipline of Media Studies, both explicitly as a subject and as part of English across key stages, helps students investigate how far the media reflects our reality – and controls the ways we view it.

At Hampstead School we are passionate about our subjects, and want students to develop their love of them too, which, in turn, will drive them to ever higher achievement.  We are also interested in staying at the cutting edge, both within our subjects and across teaching and learning.

Key Stage 3 Curriculum and Assessment – English:

At Key Stage 3 the students are taught through units of poetry, drama, prose, media, novels, non-fiction, language study and short stories. They also study a Shakespeare play each year and will have the opportunity to see a Shakespeare play during Key Stage 3. Students are taught reading, writing and speaking and listening skills within these units. Knowledge about language, how to spell and punctuate correctly and how to use grammar accurately is developed through analysis of what the students write, formal grammar exercises and the use of practical texts. Speaking and Listening is practised in a variety of ways, such as small group debating, drama and whole class discussions. We use a variety of texts from different genres.

We encourage Key Stage 3 students to develop a love of reading and a private reading habit by taking part in the Accelerated Reader Challenge (rewarding students' reading across a variety of genres) and by shadowing the Carnegie Award winners.

Key Stage 4 Curriculum and Assessment:


At Key Stage 4 students study for two GCSEs, English Language and English Literature.  They explore a range of topics in Othello, Of Mice and Men and An Inspector Calls (2016) and Lord of the Flies (2015). They work on skills of non-fiction, understanding how writing is used and adapted for different text types, audiences and purposes.  Writing is assessed, both creative writing and in non-fiction. The study of Spoken Language allows for a range of viewpoints on how we communicate to be heard.  Speaking and listening is also assessed, and is certified separately from the GCSE.

GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature are exciting, vibrant subjects that encourage creativity and exploratory thought.

Media Studies:

At Key Stage 4 students follow the WJEC Media Studies course, producing a series of coursework folder pieces in Year 10, Children’s’ TV, Film and Pop Music, and a practical life style magazine study in Year 11.

Students sit an examination at the end of the course which assesses their research skills, knowledge of the media and creativity.

Key Stage 5 Curriculum and Assessment - English:


At Key Stage 5 students have the option of studying AQA A Level English Language & Literature and OCR A Level English Literature.  Students study a variety of poetry and prose from the 1800s to present day. They are expected to read widely and discuss works of non-fiction and literature both orally and in writing.

Media Studies:

At Key stage 5 we follow the OCR Media studies specification. At AS the topics are New Media Technology, Action Adventure films, Situation Comedy and Charity Advertising production.

At A2 this is extended to include critical research studies into Women and Film, Sport and the Media and Children and the Media, in addition to Local Newspapers, British Contemporary film and Horror film production

Film Studies is offered as Key Stage 5, on the WJEC specification.  Students explore processes behind the making of film and film industry and carry out analysis of key scenes, as well as storyboarding. 

Enrichment Opportunities:

Run from within the Faculty is the Hampstead School newspaper (named by the student editorial team as “Etc”). There is also a weekly Friday debate club, with opportunity to debate in competition across the country.  A number of students have travelled across the country and even as far as Germany to debate under the supervision of English teachers. Media and Film students have worked closely with the Roundhouse (where they have passes to visit and work with the media resources in their own time) and Tricycle cinema/theatre, while a number have volunteered to be part of an ongoing project with the October Gallery.

All students have the opportunity to see live plays and visit a local cinema for a bespoke film screening and questioning session.

Additional Information:

Key Stage 3:

Key Stage 3 English Curriculum Map

National Curriculum for Key Stage 3 from September 2014

Recommended Authors

Key Stage 4:


Year 11 Language Exam – Foundation

GCSE English Language Exam – Higher Tier

GCSE Language Terms

Browning Anthology