What is our English curriculum purpose and rationale at Ark Kings?

At Ark Kings, our English curriculum aims to ensure our students are literate, articulate and creative. Reading underpins all aspects of the curriculum and we believe there is no greater gift we can give our students than the gift of reading. As such, we deliver an English curriculum that is underpinned by quality texts for children to enjoy. Students also have opportunities to write at length for a variety of audiences and purposes across different subject disciplines.


What is the all-through English strategy?


Please see our all-through Reading and Writing strategies, which outline our implementation of the English curriculum to ensure pupils are prepared for the next phase of their education or employment:

AKA All-through Reading Strategy.pdf

AKA All-through Writing Strategy.pdf


What approach do we take to early reading?


All children are initially taught to read via the Read Write Inc Phonics programme. The programme is a complete literacy resource for beginner and emergent readers and starts in Early Years and Year 1. It is proven to develop fluent and enthusiastic readers who quickly develop an in-depth comprehension of texts. Through the programme children learn to read and write letter-sound correspondences, decode effortlessly and spell and handwrite systematically. The programme also helps our children write confidently using oral rehearsal. Read Write Inc lessons are exciting and fast paced.

We welcome parents of Reception to Year 2 pupils into school every Friday morning from 8.30am – 9.00am to engage in parent reading mornings where they have the opportunity to share quality texts with their child, as well as learn how to support their child with phonics.


How do we promote a love of reading at Ark Kings?


We love to see our students reading at Kings – this may be in the library, on the playground or in lessons! Our students have access to a wide variety of quality texts through our school library, classroom book corners and reading scheme books. We use quality texts in every subject, not just English lessons – this allows our pupils to use reading as a tool for discovery and inciting awe and wonder. All students from Nursery to Year 11 have time allocated for reading for pleasure where they can choose texts to read independently or engage in whole-class stories. We also celebrate World Book Day every year and encourage pupils from different year groups to read together.


Primary Phase - Further Information


Our Primary Reading Curriculum Purpose and Rationale provides more phase-specific detail: Primary Reading Curriculum Purpose and Rationale.pdf

Our Primary Writing Curriculum Purpose and Rationale provides more phase-specific detail: Primary Writing Curriculum Purpose and Rationale.pdf

Our Reading Text Overview outlines the texts pupils encounter in Reading lessons. Please speak to your child’s class teacher for information regarding texts studied in Writing and other subjects in our curriculum. 

Primary Reading Texts.pdf


Secondary Phase - Further Information


In the Secondary phase, we continue to teach the core strands of reading, writing and oracy to help develop students communication skills and develop their love of reading, writing, speaking and listening further. In Key Stage 3, each term is centred around a core text that is taken from the rich literary canon. Students study some of the very best works of literature ever written, and spend time discussing and analysing them in class. Their study of these texts is complimented by a range of supplementary texts that they read alongside the core text. Students study these texts in depth, and draw on their ideas and the way that they are written to inspire their own writing. In Key Stage 4, students study for both English Literature and English Language GCSEs, with lessons split between these two strands to allow students to focus on developing their English skills across both subject domains.

Our Secondary English Curriculum Purpose and Rationale provides more phase-specific detail:








Core text: Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of crime


Myths and Magic

Core text: A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of myths and magic

The Natural World

Core text: Poetry anthology by selected poets on the theme of the natural world


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of the natural world




Core text: Sherlock Holmes Adventures by Arthur Conan Doyle


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of investigations




Core text: The Tempest by William Shakespeare


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of prejudice

Power and Corruption


Core text: Animal Farm by George Orwell


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of power and corruption


Education through Time


Core text: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of education




Core text: Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of family



Core text: Anthology of poetry on the theme of journeys by selected poets


A range of supplementary texts on the theme of journeys


An Inspector Calls – J.B. Priestley

AQA English Language Paper 1

A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

AQA English Language Paper 2

Macbeth – William Shakespeare

AQA English Language Revision


Power and Conflict Poetry

AQA English Language Revision

Exam Revision for English Literature and Language





How can parents support their children at home in English?


Daily Reading (all pupils)

Please read for just 15 minutes per day with your child. This can be them reading to you or you reading to them. Your child will be provided with a school reading book, but we encourage our children to read whatever book or text they are most interested in!


Weekly Spellings (Years 1-6)

Your child will be receiving ten spellings to practise at home each week. Spellings will be given to pupils on a Monday (or the Friday prior) where they will be taught the spelling pattern or focus for the week. They will have the week to practise them before being tested on the Friday. Pupils will have some opportunities in school to practise their spellings, however, it is essential that children practise at home, even for just 5-10 minutes a day.

Spelling is an important skill as children who feel confident with letters and word patterns are able to read and comprehend more complex texts. They also have the necessary language tools to better convey their own ideas through both written and verbal communication. All of these skills are the foundations to allowing your child to access the wider, enriching curriculum that we offer here at Ark Kings.

These are the spelling lists for Academic Year 2020-21: AKAP Spelling Lists 2020-21.pdf


Topic Vocabulary (Years 1-6)

Included in your child’s curriculum newsletter that you will receive at the start of each half term, there will be up to 10 key vocabulary terms that your child will need to know and understand in order to better access their History and Geography lessons. Please support your child in committing these words to memory.