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A-Level English: Do Your Students Have What It Takes?

When it comes to choosing the subject to be taken for A Level, many students find it very difficult. These subjects may determine the job they will go on to do and/ or the degree they decide to get. So how can we help our students decide if A Level English is for them?

It is wise to discuss with you class about what A Level English will entail and explain the differences between the literature and language courses. You can offer students that seem interested some resources that are intended for Key Stage 5 English students to see how they find the work.

For example, you could download some of the highly rated worksheets and activities from the KS5 section in Teachit English, an online resource sharing site that is filled with the best tips and lesson ideas. Give the students a range of activities and see how well they do. If you find that they get on rather well with the work but need a bit of a push, it could be that you suggest they pick the subject.

Talk to students about their options after they finish school. Many students have no clue what they want to do with their lives at such a young age, so talking through options that aren’t readily available in schools such as job titles that aren’t well known that require English may help your students open their eyes to the possibilities.

Remember it is a hard tie for young people and definitely do not pressure them into taking the subject if you are not certain it is right for them. Discuss with individuals about their career prospects and find out whether this is the correct path for them.

Overall is important to be understanding, non-forceful and encouraging. The use of resources can help them see what is in store for them in the two years to come. Be prepared for students to say ‘no’.

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