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Blakehurst High School

Blakehurst High School

Nihil Sine Labore

Telephone02 9546 3281

Year 9

In Year 9, students focus on refining their English skills. The Year 9 program is designed to provide students with a diverse learning experience that encompasses a range of text types and composition styles, including creative writing and use of ICT. Students' own compositions become increasingly focused on analytical and extended writing to prepare students for senior studies.

Term 1

Theme study – the environment

This unit requires students to engage with a variety of texts and text types (prescribed and related, including documentaries, music videos, newspaper articles, cartoons and a novel) to analyse the ways in which composers convey their concerns about the environment. As a result, students become more aware and active members of the wider community. In order to demonstrate the skills developed through this study, students compose a speech in the form of an exposition detailing the ways in which a particular composer has used techniques to convey environmental themes. Also, students will learn how to recognise, use and evaluate the use of persuasive language.

Prescribed texts:

  • Advanced texts:  
  • Exodus – Julie Bertagna
  • The Blooding – Nadia Wheatley
  • Z for Zachariah– Robert C O'Brien
  • In The Trees – Pauline Fisk.

Standard texts: 

  • Lake at the End of the World – Caroline MacDonald
  • Blueback– Tim Winton
  • Lockie Leonard Scumbuster – Tim Winton
  • Pond Scum–Alan Silberberg 

Supplementary texts: 

  • Window- Jeannie Baker (picture book)
  • Where the Forest Meets the Sea- Jeannie Baker (picture book)

Term 2

Composer study: Oodgeroo Noonuccal or Samuel Wagon Watson

Students explore the poetry of two Aboriginal poets, examining the composers' contexts, ideas and experiences and the language features through which meaning is made. Students engage in a close study of some of the poems to learn about the composers' styles. Students are engaged in both creative and analytical styles of composition.

Prescribed texts: Selection of Poetry.

Term 3

Drama – Shakespeare

Students begin to experience a classical text by studying the elements of drama that are as relevant today as they were in Shakespeare's time. They learn about Shakespeare's context and how it impacted on his work. Students also develop a deep understanding of the characters and thematic concerns of one play. They culminate their studies in a formal essay composition which provides an in-depth analysis of the play. 

Students will study one of the following prescribed texts:

  • Twelfth Night
  • Macbeth
  • A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • Merchant of Venice.

Term 4

Film study

In this unit, students explore issues relevant to popular and youth cultures and how these issues are presented in the film 'Stand by Me'. Students complete an in-depth study of the film which provides the opportunity to explore film techniques and the theme of growing up from childhood to adolescence. The issues examined include: social classes, violence, bullying, discrimination, rebelliousness, a sense of belonging to family/friends, peer pressure, etc.

Through a close study of Rob Reiner's film 'Stand by Me' students develop an understanding how cinematography is used to convey the issues presented in the film. Students utilise their knowledge of themes, issues and cinematographic techniques to create their own composition using appropriate technology. They also engage in group work activities to evaluate and refine their compositions.

Prescribed Text: 'Stand by Me' by Rob Reiner (film)

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