English Language & Literature
Language is a vehicle for communication and expression, and students are equipped with the essential skills to communicate effectively in English. It is precisely with this aim in mind that the English Language instructional programme provides many opportunities for students to use English in a variety of situations and contexts.
Using a wide range of materials other than the textbook, students learn to listen, read, view, write and speak with understanding, accuracy and critical appreciation. Through oral and writing activities such as debates, role-play, advertisements, and reports, students learn to speak, write and make presentations in standard English that is grammatical, fluent and appropriate for purpose, audience, context and culture.
Our mission is to provide opportunities for students to become
√ Proficient writers
√ Confident communicators
√ Critical thinkers
English Reading Programme
The school believes strongly in cultivating a strong reading habit among the students. Regular reading underpins mastery of a language. We want our students to have access to good reading materials and we will provide a conducive environment to nurture the reading habit.
- Cultivate in students a reading habit and expose them to a range of reading materials and genres.
- Stimulate students’ interest in reading for pleasure and information.
- Inculcate in students the importance and usefulness of reading.
- Encourage students to think about and evaluate what they have read.
Students cultivate a daily reading habit
All lower secondary students will participate in the Buy-A-Book programme and be involved in interesting classroom activities related to the books.
Students select a book of their preference from a specially curated list of 15 popular titles in the Buy-a-Book programme. From a list of 15 specially selected titles, the students have the opportunity to choose a book title and purchase it for their personal reading. They are encouraged to read the book during assembly or at their own time to develop a habit of reading. Students can explore ways to infuse ideas from the book and use the vocabulary or expressions in their Writing and Oral presentation.
Students select a book of their own preference for Buy-A-Book programme
To boost the language and critical thinking skills of students, the English Department has curated a range of educational magazines (namely iThink, Inspire or “I”) for students to subscribe to. These magazines complement the English curriculum and at the same time, extend students’ general knowledge.
EL Programmes to Develop Effective Communicators
The Speak Good English Movement (SGEM) aims to encourage students to speak English more fluently and instill a love of reading amongst students of all levels. It is also a platform for students to practise public speaking and develop their self-confidence. Every week, selected representatives from each class make a presentation to the whole school. The presentation could be a response to an article they have read or on any topic of their interest.
Our SGEM has also evolved with pandemic. With the earlier safe management measures, presentation was done digitally, via video, to the school. This new platform of delivery not only gave students the opportunity to hone their communication skills but also their IT skills. With the easing of safe management measures, our SGEM has now taken on a hybrid presentation form, providing opportunities for students to showcase their unique strengths.
We hope students will find reading and speaking English fun through this programme!
Our Choral Reading Programme aims to encourage students to articulate well through choral reading, and to develop in students public speaking skills. Students choose their favourite texts that reflect their experiences to read aloud in unison with their group mates. As this unique approach increases their level of engagement, the programme also helps students build their fluency and self-confidence.
A critical eye is essential in this time and age, and Literature trains students to have this!
Students learn to interpret and engage with literary texts. Through drama, teachers create a positive classroom environment where literary texts are discussed; and provide opportunities for students to develop individual viewpoints and perspectives to various literary texts. Students learn how to present their ideas clearly through constructive reasoning. The Literature programme also equips students with the ability to respond to others’ views on texts, including their peers’ and teachers’, and refine their own views in light of different perspectives. Through the exposure to a wide range of literary texts across prose, poetry and drama, the department aims to develop students into sensitive and confident people with a sensible and mature view of the world.
This year, the Secondary Three students took part in an inter-school debate competition with St. Patrick’s Secondary School. Students debated on motions based on their literature text Kindred. The debate competition gave students an opportunity to develop teamwork through preparing their debate together and broadened their insight as they heard arguments from another school. In addition, it gave students the chance to showcase their understanding of the text’s characters, plot and themes through their speech and argumentative skills. Also, debating against students from St. Patrick’s Secondary School enhanced students’ critical thinking skills as they had to think on their feet and formulate arguments. Lastly, through the debate competition, students expanded their perspectives by listening to the various arguments made.
Literature Enrichment Programme
Every year, the Literature students participate in a series of workshops to enrich their learning. The workshops cover the range of examinable texts, as well as the common areas of learning Literature, like The Unseen. Leading the workshops are lecturers from NIE, who are able to provide invaluable insight into the subject that enhances students’ appreciation and mastery of Literature. The students also gain the valuable opportunity to connect and converse with students from other schools to broaden their perspectives and sharpen their critical thinking skills. Invariably, our GEMs benefit from these enriching experiences, not just for Literature, but holistically as well.