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PGCE English interview texts - advice greatly needed!

Discussion in 'English' started by amylong, Jan 29, 2012.

  1. amylong

    amylong New commenter

    Try not to worry too much-they won't reject you if you dont know all of the texts you're likely to teach!! key stage 3 tends to be more diverse, depending on a school's English department's preferences, and also the texts in their store cuboard. I would have a look at the recommended GCSE and A Level texts that exam boards list to each- look on AQA.

    This is what we do, and many schools may be similar, particularyl for GCSE.
    ks3- yr 7-- Holes, skellig, bumface, fire bed and bone
    yr 8, private peaceful, sherlock holmes, stone cold, boy in striped pyjamas
    yr 9-noughts and crosses, the book thief, mortal engines
    across ks3 we look at shakespeare, and different poetry forms
    GCSE prose- of mice and men, to kill a mockingbird, lord of the flies
    GCSE plays/drama- post 19thC is very often an inspector calls-read it-it's great. Also, blood brothers, our day out, the crucible.
    GCSE poetry is often from the moon on the tides anthology where pupils have to choose one cluster of poems and compare them for their exam.
    non fiction texts and writing styles are often covered in the english/english language exam.

    I'd advise reading a few of these now, and during your pgce, thinking about how you could use them to teach. hope that helps! x

  2. jarndyce

    jarndyce Occasional commenter

    I'm not quite sure how much pre-1914 prose is actually required for GCSE. In any case, the way it's often taught is to focus on select chapters rather than the whole thing, have an overall objective for this part of the course (eg, a particular theme or character) and select material and teach accordingly. Basically, not to just slog through!

    C20 poetry - Duffy, Armitage, Clarke, Heaney, etc.

    Pre-1914 drama: nothing wrong with Shakespeare. Were you asked this question they would be most interested in how you would actually teach it.

    Incidentally, as far as AQA goes at least, the new categories seem to be "English Literary Heritage" and "Contemporary". As soon as a writer kicks the bucket, s/he's now "Literary Heritage". Vernon Scannell (died 2007) now appears as ELH... along with Shakespeare and Browning.

    But back to your post, I'm fairly sure that interviewers would be more interested in -how- you teach your texts, rather than how original your selections are.
  3. thequillguy

    thequillguy New commenter

    As posters have said, the pre and post 1914 distinction seems less rigorous now (or a least to me!) Instead you have contemporary and classic.

    The one point I'll emphasise, as others have said, is that An Inspector Calls is a tremendous play for the post 1914 slot. Especially relevant in our times of capitalist morality. Wish I taught it this year.

    I would also reconsider why you think KS3 wouldn't get to grips with Keates. Certainly, many would struggle with classical allusion, but Ode to Autumn is rich enough in inference and imagery for KS3 students to offer an response.

    Good luck! I think the most important question they ask is 'why are you going into teaching?'
  4. Thanks very much for the advice [​IMG] I completely forgot about Inspector Calls and I've studied it as well! Silly me! I'm going through how I'd teach them now. Thank God for the Folger Library on Shakespeare, some amazing ideas on there!

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