There are many excellent internet sites suitable for students to explore. The following sites are useful for students to carry out independent work
• ‘How do you mean?’ from the London Gifted and Talented network http://hdym.londongt.org/
• ‘In between the lines,’ from the London Gifted and Talented network http://teachertools.londongt.org/index.php?page=inBetweenTheLines
• http://www.bl.uk/# The British Library’s excellent website. Click on the ‘Discover’ tab and try some of the ‘Learning’ activities- but don’t miss the opportunity to look at some of the beautiful illuminated manuscripts in the online gallery, or under ‘Treasures’
• http://www.learnerator.com/ap-english-literature a set of online tests examining your ability to analyse a selection of texts
• http://www.englishcompanion.com/pdfDocs/styleanalysis.pdf a useful guide for analysing texts
• http://freerice.com/#/english-vocabulary/2494 to help improve your vocabulary. Starts off easy- but becomes more of a challenge!
• http://www.kwarp.com/portfolio/grammarninja.html – Grammar Ninja has been a big hit in the English department. Some of the examples are really complicated!
• http://school.discoveryeducation.com/brainboosters/#word – lots of lovely word games.
Media and Drama
• British Film Institute: http://www.bfi.org.uk Film archive, cinema programmes, festivals, films, publications and learning resources to inspire young film makers.
• Creative Drama & Theatre Education Resource Site http://www.creativedrama.com/ Games and ideas on plays for performance
• Film Education: http://www.filmeducation.org/ Educational resources and information on classic films and recent releases.
• First Light Movies: http://firstlightmovies.com Funds and inspires young people to make films reflecting the diversity of their lives.
• Mediabox: http://www.media-box.co.uk Information about grants for young people between 13 and 19 to make creative media projects for film, television, radio, online, print and multi-media platforms.
• Lit2go – A site with lots of free literature to download or listen to as MP3 including whole texts of novels, plays and a readabilty score for each selection
• The Cambridge History of English and American Literature: http://www.bartleby.com/cambridge Encyclopedia of English and American Literature and literary criticism
• Project Gutenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/ More than 49, 000 free e-books. Most classic works of literature are available here, for free!
• http://www.cambridgeschoolshakespeare.com/: This interactive website is entirely free – you just need to register. Compare how different actors play the same role, step into the shoes of a director or create your own Shakespearean insults and compliments. It contains a wealth of games, quizzes, video and audio clips, photo galleries, notes and performance tips.
Competitions – There are always many writing competitions which pop up throughout the year. Entering some of these would be an excellent way of challenging yourself. Keep an eye out in the English corridor, as we will pin up information about any competitions that we know about. Here are the 2015-2016 competitions about which we have information now:
BBC Young Writers’: http://www.booktrust.org.uk/prizes/21
Young Writers’: https://www.youngwriters.co.uk/competitions/secondary-school.php
First Story: http://www.firststory.org.uk/competitions/
National Literacy Trust: http://www.literacytrust.org.uk/schools_teaching/competitions
We would encourage you to watch live theatre productions, or, failing that television/ film adaptations of books. Obviously, anything at The National Theatre or The Globe Theatre would be worth seeing, but we are also lucky enough to have some excellent local theatres:
• http://www.millatsonning.com/#section=news The Mill at Sonning often gets some really good productions
• http://www.nationaltheatre.org.uk/ The National Theatre often does live streams of its more popular plays. These are often shown at Showcase.
• Here are some great examples of popular books which have been turned into films: http://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2015/mar/05/best-book-to-film-adaptations
Reading is the best thing you can do to improve your progress in English- and indeed in any subject. We don’t mind what you read. Research suggests that there is a correlation in later life between people who read for pleasure and those who are in the most successful jobs. Start reading for fun now!
• Booktrust suggest 100 children’s book to read before you turn 14. We have a link to these on the library system: http://www.booktrust.org.uk/news-and-blogs/news/222/
• What to read next leaflets. The library have created some leaflets for suggestions for Junior Reading (years 7 and 8) split into genre. These are attached:
• Suggested reading for Year 9 – the library system has a link to a list of titles which can be borrowed from school. Have a look, or ask the librarian!
• Both of these two websites have reviews from recent readers of books: http://www.lovereading4kids.co.uk/ and http://www.goodreads.com/