English and Film Studies

Overview of English/ Film Studies work and time scales

Teacher: Andy Smyth

Hi everyone!  There is a Shakespeare performance on YouTube (see link below).  Watch the performance and talk about it with your family.  (You will be able to find others online, or you could read about one of Shakespeare’s plays).
Then, choose from the following activities (you can do as many as you want):
  • Write a review of the performance
  • Try to cut the storyline down to 10 bullet points
  • Rewrite the story as a comic with words and pictures
  • Design a poster for a new and exciting performance of the play in a month’s time
  • Write your own play about ambition or greed

Here is the link to the Globe’s premiere of ‘Macbeth’ on youtube – https://youtu.be/PFwHmgA9nno


If you would like some inspiration for a new book or some ideas for something to read together as a family, take a look at this book list.

Click here to write and present a news report

Sir Patrick Stewart is reading one of Shakespeare’s Sonnets every day on his instagram page – search for @sirpatstew

Follow the link for some great worksheets to print at home – https://www.englishforeveryone.org/Topics/Reading-Comprehension.html

In the upcoming weeks, celebrities are going to read a different chapter of ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’, starting with Daniel Radcliffe himself! – https://www.wizardingworld.com/chapters/reading-the-boy-who-lived

J.K. Rowling has launched a ‘Harry Potter at home’ webpage which has different activities/ puzzles/ games/ reading passages etc – https://www.wizardingworld.com/collections/harry-potter-at-home

This link gives you access to a range of wonderful short stories, read fantastically well by different actors and celebrities – https://www.onceuponaquarantine.com/

Key Stage 3 (Secondary)

We suggest that you spend 2-3 hours a week on English.  Work through the packs sent home first and keep an eye on the school website as more work will be appearing there.  Supplement the packs with reading exercises and story time, sharing a book you and your child love. 

Click here for Reading Challenges you can complete with your child

  1. Review the journals you have been writing.  
  2. Pick 3-6 entries that strike you as important and re-read them carefully.  It would be great if you talked to the people you live with about them too, to get their thoughts.
  3. Redraft those entries, improving your spelling, punctuation, grammar and, if necessary, vocabulary.
  4. Add an additional entry, exploring how you feel now and how your feelings have changed since the early days of lockdown (aim to write 2 sides for this entry – the others may not be as long).
The above activities could take two weeks, or more, so please use the time to reflect on your experiences – don’t rush the tasks!

GCSE English

We suggest that you spend 3-4 hours a week working on English Language.  Try to maintain an equal balance of non-fiction and fiction, reading and writing.  Have a look at the past papers and example examination papers as they show the types of question and, also, the level of text that is appropriate.

  1. Write an article for the school magazine about life during lockdown.  You should aim to give information about the situation, add your own thoughts and feelings and give some advice for others who may experience a similar situation in the future.
  2. Write a story with the title “The View from the Hill”.
Aim to write 2-4 sides for each of the above tasks (this may take longer than one week).

Use BBC Bitesize to supplement the work – https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize

How to access BBC GCSE bitesize from home

How to access BBC KS3 bitesize from home

Lexia – Core 5 letter for parents

PowerUp – parents letter

Middlesbrough Reads Roald Dahl Challenges

GCSE Film Studies

We suggest that you spend 3-4 hours a week working on Film Studies.  Some of this time can be used to watch relevant films but it is also important to consider the theory element of the course.  Work through the packs sent home first and then keep checking the website for further information.  If you have access to a camera or other digital recording equipment, footage for the practical element of the course can be filmed.

After researching the Oscars over the last two weeks, you should have a fair idea of how films have evolved over the years.
There has recently been some controversy about “Gone With the Wind” (Academy Award for Best Picture in 1939).
  1. First, what are your thoughts on the controversy?  (If you aren’t sure why it has recently made the news, do a quick Google.  If you haven’t already seen the film, then try to watch it, bearing in mind that it was made a long time ago.)
  2. Can you see any other films on the list of winners that you feel may not be suitable to a modern audience – which ones and why?
  3. Are there any modern winners (within the last twenty years) that you think may be judged less favourably in years to come?  Again, which ones and why?
The above tasks may take more than a week.

Click here to view the top 30 ‘must see’ films

Click here for ‘Fifty film guides to use at home’

Free musicals and plays you can now stream during the Coronavirus outbreak – click here