Make English Literature Optional

**helen****helen** Mod malarkistPosts: 9,236 Boards Champion
Have you heard about Gove's plans to make English Literature an optional subject? What do you think of it? Aware this isn't 'news' as such, I just came across author James Dawson's blog post about it:

http://www.jamesdawsonbooks.com/2013/05/an-idea-about-english-literature/

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Um, sorry Govey it is optional already. Only the top sets do English lit, and even then you can wiggle out of it if you want to. Of the 250 in my year only 60 did English lit. Gove is talking out his arse, yet again.
  • **helen****helen** Mod malarkist Posts: 9,236 Boards Champion
    Um, sorry Govey it is optional already. Only the top sets do English lit, and even then you can wiggle out of it if you want to. Of the 250 in my year only 60 did English lit. Gove is talking out his arse, yet again.

    Ahh, I didn't realise that. Do you think that's how it should be?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Yea the way it is at the moment is fine, in my school at least they recommended that only the top set (predicted grade B+ in English language) take it since it is quite difficult but if someone in a lower set was desperate to then they could after discussion with their class teacher.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think that trading a lot is a great way to learn the English language. even without an exam I think that extra trading should be needed to do a qualification in English language.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Everyone at my school did English Lit. I think it's the best way to learn about a language - which is why when learning a foreign language you study texts and films.

    English is way more than just spelling and grammar and 'how to write a persuasive letter' or whatever the exam tends to be on.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    When I was at school, I (and some others) were picked to do English Lit too. I hate English and didn't really want to stay after school to do it. And we had one year to learn 2 years worth of work because they changed the exam board.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    English language should stay compulsory, they should insert conditions that most of it should be handwritten as well. As for literature, nothing wrong with books and reading. Shouldn't be compulsory though, some of the shit we had to read at school put me right off.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    All English work, exam and assessment, is hand written unless you have a scribe or are allowed to type in the exam (due to really bad handwriting, broken arm, learning disability etc)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Whowhere wrote: »
    As for literature, nothing wrong with books and reading. Shouldn't be compulsory though, some of the shit we had to read at school put me right off.

    I agree.

    We were able to use the computer for the written assessment last year.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    We weren't! And if anyone had to type it would be on word pad (no spell check or grammar check)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    We used Microsoft Word. But the spell checker had to be turned off. And we couldn't save to memory sticks just in case we decided to work on it at home, etc.
  • SkiveSkive No discipline! No morality! No respect! New ForestPosts: 14,924 Part of the furniture
    Only those of us in the top three sets (out of ten) were able to do English lit GCSE, and that was 18 years ago.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    We weren't! And if anyone had to type it would be on word pad (no spell check or grammar check)

    Quite right too.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    **helen** wrote: »
    Have you heard about Gove's plans to make English Literature an optional subject? What do you think of it? Aware this isn't 'news' as such, I just came across author James Dawson's blog post about it:

    http://www.jamesdawsonbooks.com/2013/05/an-idea-about-english-literature/

    It's already optional. Gove's making some changes to the English Language syllabus - which is going to concentrate on language and literature will only be used to teach this. Some claim will mean that schools will only bother to teach through short extracts, others point that there's no reason why they would do this and that teaching language can be done just as easily by making them do Hamlet as through loads of short extracts. Personally I think that unless English teachers all hate books and plays they're going to teach through the second, but as someone who had to suffer Shakespeare and Austen at school and still hates them I'd hope for the children's sake it's the first...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Here's the relevant part of the English Language guidance
    GCSE English language is designed on the basis that students should read and be assessed on high-quality, challenging texts from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Each text studied must represent a substantial piece of writing, making significant demands on students in terms of content, structure and the quality of language. The texts, across a range of genres and types, should support students in developing their own writing by providing effective models. The texts must include literature and extended literary non-fiction, and other writing such as essays, reviews and journalism (both printed and online). Texts that are essentially transient, such as instant news feeds, must not be included. The number and types of texts, and their length, are not prescribed.
  • Annaarrr!!Annaarrr!! Noob Posts: 876
    Doing Lit and Lang was great. Meant you weren't doing the same shit every lesson. I think it makes it more varied. I enjoyed it, think it would be a shame to make it completely optional cos some people who might actually enjoy it might just choose not to cos they cba
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