English Home Language

The English syllabus is structured with the intention of developing fundamental language and communication skills by engaging the boys in literature, creative writing, grammar and oral work.

In literature, the boys’ creative and critical thinking skills are stimulated through the close reading of classic and modern texts and poetry. The boys’ perception and empathy are challenged, with the aim of developing their intellectual, moral and philosophical character.

Creative writing and oral work promote effective communication which is vital in our everyday lives. Real attempts are made to keep the learning meaningful, relevant, effective and stimulating.

Good English skills transfer to all other learning areas and so it is vital that the boys have a solid grounding.

The English Curriculum

In Forms 4 and 5, the boys study a play by Shakespeare, a classic novel, and two modern novels. They also read and study classic and modern poetry. The advanced classes study additional texts to extend them further. It is vital that the boys add private reading to this, as the richness reading gives cannot be overestimated.

Creative writing is taught and practised within the syllabus, while the boys are also exposed to outside competitions in which College regularly excels. They enjoy the sense of competition and the challenge of honing a piece until it is just right, and then sending it to an authentic audience (other than their teacher or peers).

Grammar is taught contextually in most instances. It is vital that this area is not neglected as it is fundamental in equipping boys with the knowledge and confidence to write and speak fluently, correctly and effectively.

The boys enjoy the oral dimension of the subject and are particularly good at it.


Assessment is continuous. 25% of the mark is comprised of structured tests, various written tasks done in class, and the June Exam. The June Exam consists of 3 papers and an oral assessment. 75% of the year mark is comprised of the November Exam, which includes 3 papers and an oral component.

The 3 exam papers the boys write in June and November are:

  • Paper 1: Language in Context (70 marks)
  • Paper 2: Literature (80 marks)
  • Paper 3: Creative Writing (100 marks)