English Language

Language is functional as it is a meaning-making resource people use strategically to achieve specific purposes. Language is influenced by social and cultural contexts. It not only represents but also actively constructs our worldview, values, culture and diversity. It is also an aesthetic tool for imagination and creativity.

Locally, the English language is the common language that facilitates communication and bonding among different ethnic and cultural groups. Globally, the English language grants Singaporeans the mileage to participate actively and effectively in a knowledge-based economy.

Lower Secondary – Language Arts Programme (LAP)

The LAP in SST infuses the study of Literature into the learning of English Language, and is foundational and integrative. Through the study of prescribed novels, poetry and plays, SST’s LAP aims to develop students’ language and literary skills in reading, writing, listening, speaking and viewing. It also focuses on the appreciation and creation of functional texts, poetry and mass media. Students apply the skills they have learnt across disciplines in accomplishing rigorous and engaging performance tasks through collaborative learning in authentic contexts.

Upper Secondary – Foundation for Academic Genres

The upper secondary English Language curriculum aims to prepare our students to engage with the world as critical thinkers and effective communicators. It also lays the foundation for academic genres required in tertiary education. Language, critical thinking and logical reasoning skills are explicated through genres such as exposition, reflective writing and review writing. Students are also exposed to a wide variety of reading materials aimed at building up their general knowledge and challenging their worldview

Learning Outcomes

At the end of four years, students will be able to:

  1. Communicate fluently and effectively using appropriate text types for the intended purpose, audience, context and culture
  2. Appreciate the nuances in language and its relationship to the writer’s craft and intention in a variety of contexts
  3. Employ critical and creative thinking skills in the evaluation of arguments and opinions and in generating ideas

Key Programmes

Student Congress

The Student Congress, organised to promote student advocacy, aims to give every student who is passionate about and committed to a cause, a platform and the support to make his or her vision a reality. It is organised by the English Department to integrate the event with the academic curriculum.

Facebook Group for Teaching and Learning

The department employs a social media strategy to engage our 21st Century digital native learners. A closed Facebook group is started for each cohort from Secondary 3 onwards to teach language use and critical thinking, encourage social constructivism, and allow both self-directed and collaborative learning across classes in a multimodal environment.

English Language Day

The English Language day is organised annually to promote an appreciation for the beauty of the English language. A local arts group is engaged every year for an assembly performance for all students, alongside fringe activities such as book displays and fun quizzes.

Oratorical Training and Creative Writing

Interested students are selected for training and equipped with basic oratorical or writing skills.

Mentorships

Students with the aptitude for the English Language are talent-spotted in their lower secondary school years through interactions with teachers as well as the work they produce in class. They are given opportunities to test their skills on platforms such as being the master of ceremony for school events, and for competitions such as the Plain English Speaking Awards and the Commonwealth Essay Writing Competition.

A closed Facebook group called the SST Writers Club provides a platform for these students to enjoy, critique and participate in creative writing projects and events. The students are encouraged to keep a portfolio of works and promising writers are mentored on their chosen pieces of writing in the form of poetry, prose, play-scripts or chapters of a novel for selection to participate in the Ministry of Education (MOE)’s Creative Arts Programme.

Industrial Attachments

Aspiring talented writers in various genres, including script writing and film, have the opportunity to be attached to local writers or playwrights

Programme Highlights

In his 2015 May Day Rally, PM Lee Hsien Loong mentioned that Singapore is an exceptional nation and that we will only continue to have a place in the world if we remain exceptional.

One reason why Singapore has become so exceptional is because of our people – our attitude, our beliefs, our values, our shared code of conduct. Therefore, in order for Singapore to remain an exceptional nation, we need to nurture our students to be exceptional individuals.

The ecosystem of the school is the ideal location for budding exceptional individuals to try their hands at building a better community; an exceptional community. To this end, 2015’s Student Congress revisited our code of conduct to explore ideas on how we can turn SST into an exceptional school.

The theme of Student Congress 2015 was “Revisiting our code of conduct – from exceptional school to exceptional nation”. In line with the theme, the various levels explored items in our code of conduct to come up with ideas how we can make SST an exceptional place.

For their performance task, students were asked to create a video broadcast (vodcast) of a live debate on a debate motion of their choosing from a range of available topics. The task was similar to debates students would have already watched on TV or on the Internet but with the additional challenge of producing a video of their own debate. So, apart from English language skills, students could also focus on developing a professional skill that would stand them in good stead in the future.

Click HERE to watch one such vodcast S3-07 students produced on their debate on the proposition that there should be a worldwide ban on the opening of new zoos.

Ever wondered how Infocomm Technology is being integrated into our English Language curriculum? Visit this link to view how our students are actively consuming and retaining information through the use of multimedia: http://goo.gl/9yCK7

Students were asked to create a group podcast for their performance task, based on selected topics pertaining to the theme of science and technology. The task was similar to what they would have watched on TV in the news and this allowed them to role-play as a newscaster, which would give them insights into the job scope of such a profession.

Click HERE to read more.

Want to Learn More?

Secondary 3 – Podcasts PDF