Girls study a range of subjects taught by teams of specialist staff.
GCSE Curriculum brochure
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The Art department teach skills under a cultural theme. For example Year 8 has been creating ceramic work, paintings and lino prints under the theme of Haida Art. This also included a visit to the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford where the students were encouraged to draw directly from artefacts in the permanent collection. Year 9 has been following the theme, Drawing and Materials culminating in a project on ‘Self Identity’ while studying Pop Art and the culture of consumerism. Year 7 students have been studying African Art which included a visit to the British Museum to view various artefacts exhibition. Their observations and drawing will be developed in ceramic, print and the construction of a mixed media painting.
The Art Department follow the AQA syllabus which is 60% coursework and 40% practical examination. The coursework portfolio comprises of work produced under one theme but which is designed to develop more mature skills in ceramics, printmaking and oil painting as well as Photoshop skills. Themes in the past have included Dutch and Flemish Art with a residential visit to Bruges and Amsterdam, Art and War which included a trip to Berlin, and more recently, French Art with a trip to Paris to study impressionism.
At A Level, students design their own project under the guidance of staff. Beforehand they go through a mini foundation course to enable them to have the skills and maturity to develop their own ideas. The skills course will introduce them to portraiture, figure and life drawing, more mature ceramic sills as well as etching and drawing and painting using a variety of skills. During the A Level course, students are encouraged to attend extension clubs. These have included modelling clay heads, figure drawing and etching as well as attending life drawing sessions at the local art college. Girls are encouraged to visit galleries in their spare time but as a department we regularly take them to major exhibitions throughout the year to aid their research such as the annual BP Portrait Awards at the National Portrait Gallery. Under the guidance of Mrs Craske, students are taken to the Design Your Future Course in London to look at the diversity of art courses in further education. Students also have an opportunity to go on an optional joint art, photography and textiles trip to New York where they can visit a wide range of galleries to research their chosen topic as well as visit Parsons and other art colleges in New York.
Girls at Tudor Hall follow the AQA Business Specification (7132). It offers girls a new, highly relevant and interesting area for Sixth Form study. In choosing to study Business, they develop a broad knowledge of business operations and strategy, as well as gaining targeted knowledge and skills in more specialist areas of marketing, finance, operation and human resource management.
The prospect of academic challenge and practical focus makes Business a popular A level choice and indeed a popular subject to pursue in higher education. Many girls combine their study of Business with an extra-curricular role in a Young Enterprise company, where they learn to put their classroom learning into action and test their skills.
During years I-III girls design and make products in Graphics, Resistant Materials, and Electronics. They study and explore Product Design and manufacturing using traditional and modern materials and processes. Students are assessed in their design thinking and design realisation/making skills.
Girls will take an IGCSE in Product Design with Cambridge International, with a Graphic Products Specialism. The syllabus covers Resistant Materials, Electronics, and Graphic Products. The course includes a large Graphic Product design and make coursework project, as well as 2 theory examinations covering their broader subject knowledge. The coursework is worth 50% of their final assessment and the two written papers are weighted equally at 25%.
At A Level girls may take AQA Product Design. The course is weighted as the GCSE with 50% of the marks available in coursework and the completion of a design and make project. Girls have the opportunity to design and make larger products and more in-depth investigations within their specialist area. The written exam tests knowledge of materials, components, manufacture and application.
In year I (Todd) all girls begin Latin and continue studying Latin in the IIs. Pupils joining in the IIs also study Latin initially through a catch-up course for the first term. In the IIIs, girls can either continue with Latin (a decision that is made by their parents in conjunction with their teacher) or study a one-year Classical Civilisation course. There is also an option for those who join in the IIIs to study Latin if they have not studied Latin previously.
Girls may take GCSE Latin (Eduqas) which includes translation and comprehension of passages of Latin, and the study of selected verse and prose literature.
In the sixth form girls may take A Level Latin (OCR) or Classical Civilisation (OCR). There is also the option to study GCSE Classical Greek (OCR) ab initio. Latin and Greek include the study of both language and literature, with the literature options changing every two years. Classical Civilisation modules are:
- The World of the Hero (studying Homer’s Iliad and Vergil’s Aeneid)
- Imperial Image (studying the reign of the Emperor Augustus and how he aimed to portray himself and his rule)
- Politics of the Late Republic (studying how any why the Roman Republic fell from 80 BC to 43 BC)
During years I-II girls have a lesson in dance each week. They learn a range of different dance styles and study different professional dance works. They are encouraged to work from a range of stimuli.
Girls can take GCSE Dance (AQA syllabus). The course consists of a written paper (40%) which consists of analytical appraisal of six professional dance works and three practical components (60%):
- two Set Phrases performed as a ‘solo’ and created by a professional choreographer
- a Performance piece created by the Dance teacher and students and performed as a ‘duet’ or ‘trio’
- a Choreography piece created by the student as a ‘solo’ piece using a stimulus given by the AQA Examining Board.
All year groups can attend Dance clubs. The students may choose to create a solo/duo/trio or larger group pieces. There are also, two School Dance groups, Reaction Dance (the main School Dance Group) and Evolution Dance (for younger years and a ‘feeder’ group for Reaction Dance). Both highly regarded groups perform twice a year in the Dance performances at Christmas and in the Summer term.
During years I-III girls focus on the key areas of making, performing and responding. They enjoy lessons which develop their skills and introduce them to a range of experiences and stimuli. A written notebook is kept by all girls to help them reflect and improve.
Girls may take AQA GCSE Drama. 60% of the assessment is of practical coursework which can be chosen from a variety of performances. The 40% written component requires the girls to evaluate scripted, devised and improvised work, and to respond critically to productions they have seen in the theatre.
At A Level girls may take Drama and Theatre Studies. To do drama you must be a psychologist, detective, historian, philosopher, sociologist, artist, collaborator, motivator and scientist.
In the A Level students must study the work and methodologies of two influential theatre practitioners. They must also complete a minimum of two performances, one devised and one from a performance text which has been studied as part of the course.
Drama is a creative as well as an academic subject; there are numerous clubs and trips as well as school productions which support the formal curriculum.
Economics is everywhere around us, affecting every aspect of our lives and so, whether you have realised it or not, the subject surrounds you and shapes your choices. To understand these choices more fully, to think more logically about the world we live in and so to make more informed decisions are therefore crucial benefits that the study of economics can provide. The subject is undoubtedly valuable to our roles as consumers, employees, entrepreneurs, voters and citizens.
The rigorous and logical thinking demanded and developed by the study of economics is highly valued by university admissions tutors and employers. The skills developed in studying economics complement any other A Level subject, whether it be in the humanities, arts or sciences, as well as preparing students for the rigours of any university degree.
Girls at Tudor Hall follow the Edexcel A Level Economics course, newly designed from 2015 to reflect today’s global economy and the current economic issues we face. The course looks at markets and market failure, the UK economy, business behaviour and the labour market, as well as international economics.
During years I-III our girls study a range of classic and contemporary literature, including a selection of novels, plays and poems. Additionally, the girls study a range of non-fiction and media and gain a detailed understanding of different forms and registers of writing. Plays include work by Shakespeare and Charles Dickens, while novels range from contemporary youth fiction (such as ‘Rooftoppers’ by Katherine Rundell) to classic work by authors such as Arthur Conan Doyle. Girls also study poetry by writers such as Ted Hughes, Carol Ann Duffy and Wilfred Owen.
At the end of Key Stage 4 our girls take Edexcel iGCSEs in both English Language and English Literature. The Language qualification tests a range of reading and writing skills. The Literature qualification asks girls to read a range of poetry, prose and drama, including a Shakespeare play. Perceptive and individual responses are rewarded highly.
At A Level, Upper Sixth girls study for OCR's English Literature A Level. This is a two-year, linear A Level which covers a wide range of texts, currently including: Sense and Sensibility, A Room with a View, A View from the Bridge, The Tempest, Jane Eyre, The History Boys, Dracula, The Bloody Chamber, A Doll's House, and Christina Rossetti. There is both a coursework and an examined element. Lower Sixth girls are studying the Edexcel English Literature A Level, with texts including Hamlet, Tess of the d'Urbervilles, Wuthering Heights, The Importance of Being Earnest, the poetry of Philip Larkin, Here Bullet, and Slaughterhouse 5.
The English Department lays on many events outside the classroom. The English Club meets once a week, working through texts from the wider literary canon - recently we have looked at The Mayor of Casterbridge and Vanity Fair. There is also a Sixth Form Book Club, popular for the cake and literature equally, and a junior creative writing club. Outside of school we aim to make good use of the proximity of Stratford to take in a variety of productions.
Girls also enter as many competitions as possible, regularly achieving success at the Deddington Festival, the BBC Radio 2 500-Word Short Story and the Young Writers competitions. Old Tudorian and published poet Mo Browne recently inaugurated a school poetry prize.
Our girls attain highly in English and go on to study at top universities.
During years I-III girls learn about maps, rocks and weathering, industry and settlement, population, sustainability, plate tectonics, tropical storms and the geography of the UK. They focus on Brazil, Kenya, Japan and Antarctica. There is opportunity for fieldwork in each year group.
Girls may choose to study at Geography at GCSE (AQA) which involves an even split between human and physical geography which are assessed under examination conditions. There are two fieldwork investigations.
At A Level the girls will follow the new AQA Geography syllabus which focuses on physical and human geography and geographical skills. The A Level has a fieldwork element, which will be assessed as an individual project. Many girls go on to read geography at Russell Group universities and are successful in their careers.
Geographical, cartographic, graphical and ICT skills are developed through the years. The girls are encouraged to take active research into topical, local, national and international issues related to geography.
History of Art
History of Art is a very popular option in the Sixth Form at Tudor Hall School, where we follow the Edexcel A Level syllabus. In the LVI the students are taught how to formally analyse and interpret works of art (painting, sculpture and architecture) using subject specific terminology. They are also equipped with a visual literacy and chronological understanding of works of art from within the European tradition and beyond, from Classical Greece (500BC) to the present. In year one of the course, the LVI cover one thematic study, War, and one historical period, the Baroque in Catholic Europe (1597-1685). Artists covered in this period include Caravaggio, Bernini, Rubens, Borromini and Velazquez. In the UVI, the girls cover their second theme, Nature, and their final period, the Avant Garde, focusing on French and British works of art from 1848-1899. Artists covered in this period include Holman Hunt, Manet, Rodin and Rossetti.
Students are expected to enhance their classroom studies with visits to exhibitions, galleries and museums in London, Oxford and beyond. As part of the course, girls have the opportunity to visit works studied in class on day trips and annual trips abroad to Rome and Paris. Students are also encouraged to attend school trips to Venice and New York if offered. Many girls go on to study History of Art as undergraduates at a range of universities, including Bristol, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Oxford Brookes and Leeds.
History, Government and Politics
Junior History aims to engender an interest in learning about the past whilst developing the girls' critical thinking skills.
In Todd we begin with developing historical vocabulary and practicing key skills by looking at aspects of medieval life. In the IIs we build upon these skills by looking at the success of the Tudors and the failures of the Stuarts and in the IIIs we focus on aspects of 21st Century History. The impact of slavery is explored via source analysis, extended writing and a consideration of the ways and means by which it was eventually abolished. Aspects of World War II include an in-depth study using video, audio and written testimony to consider how the Nazis arrived at the Final Solution and how far the atomic bombing of Japan can be justified. The girls also undertake a WWI project looking at causation and aspects of the WWI experience related to their individual interests.
History explains how the world works currently; without a study of the past it is impossible to understand current events today. It is developed by source work and looking at many different aspects and opinions. At GCSE, girls may study iGCSE Modern World History (CIE), which focuses on the USA in the 1920s and 30s and the origins of World War Two. A tailor made-trip to the battlefields helps girls understand the impact of war on the lives of the combatants.
A Level History
At A Level, history is studied through looking at sources and writing in-depth essays. This gives a good basis for understanding why the world is as it is and why we should try not to repeat the past. Girls may study OCR British History specialising in the Glorious Revolution and its impact, and the role of Mussolini. The coursework is on Nazi Germany and the synoptic paper is on the Tsars and Commissars from 1855-1964. There is a trip to Krakow and Auschwitz to support this.
A Level Government and Politics
Girls may also take Government and Politics A Level which covers British politics, political ideologies and global politics (covering climate change, human rights and international relations). A study of politics brings a good understanding of how the world around us works, as well as an ability to argue issues from many points of view. The department runs the school's Model United Nations teams which compete successfully throughout the country.
In year I and II there is a cookery club once a week. In year III there is a cookery lesson every Saturday.
Girls may study for GCSE Food and Nutrition (EDUQAS syllabus). This involves practical cookery lessons and nutritional theory lessons. 50% of the qualification is awarded for coursework.
In the Sixth Form girls may take the Leiths Introductory Certificate in food and wine. Students are shown a wide range of professional practical cooking methods and are taught the associated theory, the primary aim of this course is to provide students with a vital life skill for independent living, which should they so choose, could open up areas of possible employment. Students will gain the confidence to cook by making judgements on the ingredients they buy, the dishes they put together in their menus, and the methods they use to cook and serve the food to achieve the best results. By the end of the course, students should be able to show that they can produce specified dishes to the required standard under timed conditions using professional methods
ICT & Computing
All girls from Todds to IIIs receive 2 lessons of Computing a week (70 minutes in total). The curriculum focuses on building core computing skills, e-safety and Computer Science. Computing Skills are developed by giving the students opportunities to use the latest software packages in project based work. Computer Science is introduced through computational thinking and programming using a variety of methods such as Scratch, BBC Microbits, Lego Mindstorm and Python programming language.
In the IVs, girls can either opt to do the CIE iGCSE Computer Science examination over two years or complete the Duke of York Digital Enterprise Award in one year. The iDEA award gives students a great overview of a number of different current computing topics.
During years I-II girls study number, algebra, shape and space and data handling all of which help to develop the girls’ reasoning and problem-solving skills. In year III girls study topics relating to the iGCSE.
All girls work towards Edexcel iGCSE Mathematics specification A with the aim of taking the higher tier exams. The course covers most of the GCSE topics as well as more traditional topics such as sets, functions and differentiation.
At AS and A2 girls may take Mathematics and Further Mathematics and benefit from small classes. Here we follow the AQA board. Girls also attend masterclasses and lectures at various venues.
All girls have the opportunity to enter the UKMT Mathematics Challenge, take part in workshops and other activities arranged by the department as well as the regular maths clubs on offer.
Modern Foreign Languages
During years I-III girls study French. They are grouped carefully according to their different levels at entry. In the IIs all girls study German and Spanish for half a term each, before deciding which to continue, alongside their French.
Girls may study French, German and Spanish at GCSE following the Cambridge iGCSE syllabus. The course equips the girls to express their views orally and in writing on topics such as family and home, leisure pursuits, travel, health and the environment. A solid grammatical foundation and practice in translation are also given.
At A Level, girls may study French, Spanish and German (AQA syllabus). The course give the girls a chance to study issues such as youth culture, the digital world, historical and political issues and literature and film. They develop skills in translation, research and presentation and essay writing.
In addition to A Level studies, girls in the Sixth Form can take beginners’ Russian. The Language Leader Award scheme is also offered, enabling students to develop leadership skills and self-confidence by learning to teach modern languages and run cultural events for junior and primary school pupils.
Language studies are enhanced by regular co-curricular activities such as European cookery workshops, clinics, foreign language plays and oral clubs. In addition, we offer regular trips to France, Spain, Germany and Austria to enable pupils to practise their language skills in authentic settings and to experience different cultures first hand.
During years I-III girls have 70 minutes of class music lessons each week. Each lesson includes listening and appraising music in a variety of genres, composing pieces in various styles, and performing solos and ensembles in classroom concerts and practical sessions. There is much focus on developing the musician as a whole, with emphasis on the importance of musical theory and how music can reflect social and historical events and traditions.
The GCSE course involves solo and ensemble performance, composition, and analysing historical and contemporary works in preparation for a written and listening examination.
If taken for A Level, the candidates study a more extensive variety of historical works, involving analysing and appraising at a higher level, alongside compositional study and aural work. At this stage they will also perform a recital.
All girls are encouraged to extend their music studies through the provision of theory clinics and aural clubs. Practical students preparing for their external music grades are also provided with opportunities to work with an accompanist prior to their examination.
There are many performing opportunities for all girls, including 'Music School' concerts for beginners, 'Ballroom Recitals' for the more advanced performers and large concert platforms for solo and ensemble items in our termly concerts. We perform in the local area, further afield, and some girls are members of County ensembles. Our girls have also enjoyed much success in local and national festivals.
Philosophy, Theology and Ethics
Tudor Hall has its own unique approach to religious education. We enable students to develop high-level critical-thinking skills by engaging them in a wide range of philosophical, theological and ethical debates. Students are introduced to conflicting religious and non-religious worldviews in these debates and they are encouraged to critically consider their own responses in an informed and intelligent way.
During years I-III girls focus particularly on Christian, Islamic and Humanist views on key philosophical, theological and ethical “puzzles”: God, the universe, the afterlife, Jesus, suffering and ethics. Two key skills are developed throughout:
- Students learn how to examine and explain different worldview responses.
- Students learn how to evaluate and assess the possible strengths and weaknesses of different points of view, while formulating their own judgement on the issues.
We follow the AQA GCSE Religious Studies course, syllabus A (8062). This continues to build on the critical-thinking skills developed at KS3. The ‘Themes’ paper in the IVs explores a range of philosophical and ethical topics such as: the existence of God, evil and suffering, miracles, crime and punishment, medical ethics, abortion, euthanasia, and animal rights. The Vs paper focuses specifically on Christianity and Islam, examining their different beliefs and practices.
AQA A Level Religious Studies (7062) again covers a whole range of philosophical, theological and ethical material. In philosophy, students examine arguments for and against the existence of God, religious experiences, religious language, miracles and debates about the afterlife. In ethics, students examine religious and non-religious ethical theories and their different responses to controversial issues such as: embryo research, abortion, euthanasia, capital punishment, same-sex relationships, and gender debates. Religious Studies is one of the most popular A Level options at Tudor.
The department has a consistent record of producing outstanding examination results. In the last few years, some of our A Level students have gone on to study Philosophy and/or Theology at leading universities such as Bristol, Edinburgh and Durham.
During years I-III girls are coached in netball, hockey, lacrosse, rounders, athletics and tennis. There is a range of clubs and fixtures during the school day and on Saturdays.
Girls can choose to take AQA GCSE PE full award which includes studying anatomy, physiology, sport psychology, reasons for participation in sport as well as food and nutrition. The girls are assessed on their ability to perform across four sports to demonstrate a range of skills.
At A Level girls may take the AQA specification in Physical Education which focuses on physiology, psychology and the social and contemporary influences of modern day sport. Girls are also assessed in their practical ability.
Most girls at Tudor love their sport and gain skills in teamwork and leadership from their involvement in a range of clubs and teams.
Girls who chose to study Psychology for A Level follow the AQA course. In the first year, this specification focuses on social influence, memory, attachment, approaches in Psychology, Psychopathology and research methods. In the following year the girls will study relationships, gender, cognition and development, stress, aggression and Forensic Psychology to name a few of the topics in the specification.
During years I-II girls study a broad range of practical and theory based science using the Activate Science for Biology, Chemistry and Physics. In the IIIs all girls begin their preparation for AQA GCSE Science courses.
In the IVs girls opt to study either AQA GCSE Trilogy (Dual) Combined Science or AQA GCSE Separate sciences - Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Girls may also opt to take GCSE Astronomy as a co-curricular option.
Girls may take A Levels in Physics, Chemistry and Biology. We follow AQA courses for Biology and Physics and OCR for Chemistry.
Science lessons are supported by a wide range of trips and lectures as well as plenty of hands on experiments.
Textiles at Tudor Hall School is creative in approach and encourages students to explore a wide variety of approaches, to fabric design, embellishment and construction.
During the first three years the emphasis in the Textile department is developing skills, confidence and knowledge. Todd presently learn a range of hand embroidery, alongside introduction to the sewing machine. The current students then combine this knowledge with surface pattern techniques to produce their own individual design.
IIs are working on 3 Dimensional sculptures and having recently had a workshop with a bridal wear designer are now designing and constructing fascinator head pieces on the theme of butterflies.
IIIs are taught about fashion illustration in the autumn term producing their own designs emboldened by a visit to the Clothes Show Live fashion show just prior to Christmas. The spring term is where a skirt is designed and decorated with further surface pattern techniques, an individual design is created by the students, involving, Batik, screen printing, and fabric painting.
The Textiles department follow the OCR syllabus. The structure of the course allows the first term to comprise of learning a foundation of skills and new techniques that can be employed in the portfolio of coursework. This year the project is Fashion in Detail, inspired by Alexander McQueen’s Savage exhibition that has been so inspirational for the fashion and textile world. Small groups allow each girl to study personal themes for work, which can vary from constructing her own textile garment or a stand-alone piece of Textile art. Visiting Artist and Designers are inspirational to the students alongside relevant visits to gallery or international shows.
The Students follow a further foundation of sophisticated techniques and learning of skills. This is followed by a personal investigation into an area that interests them. This will be then be explored in detail and different media to create a personal and contextual informed outcome. Again the course is supported by relevant, inspirational visits, this year to New York that will also widen the student’s visual awareness of the Textile world, and also a number of research and study trips to local and London museums and galleries.
Godfrey Library is open to all Tudor Hall girls and staff.
We have a selection of books, both Fiction and Non-Fiction for you to read. The Fiction is on the ground floor with Art, English, Modern Foreign Languages and Well Being. We also have an Aim Higher section for books to extend your knowledge or interests if you would like to challenge yourselves! There are magazines and Graphic Novels as well. Upstairs is the rest of the Non-Fiction, Biographies and Reference.
Todd – IIIs work downstairs and IVs –U6 work upstairs normally. However, due to current social distancing measures, different Bubbles are accessing the Library at different times.
The Library is also accessible in the virtual space where the girls can explore links to the catalogue, podcasts, blogs and more. We have access to a variety of online platforms including Encyclopaedia Brittanica, The Day, The London Library and History Today as well as having a large number of books available as E Books and Audio Books. The Digital Library is growing daily.
Mrs Price (Librarian) is here to help the girls find what they need and runs a drop-in clinic on study and research techniques for Sixth Form. She is always able to help girls find the next book they might like to read, whether in person or by email.