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GCSE English Literature Unit 2 Feedback from June 2011 Online event. Aims and Outcomes. The purpose of this event is to: provide an overview of the unit from the summer 2011 series

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Gcse english literature unit 2 feedback from june 2011 online event l.jpg
GCSE English Literature Unit 2Feedback from June 2011Online event

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Aims and Outcomes

The purpose of this event is to:

provide an overview of the unit from the summer 2011 series

Talk through the standardisation scripts from the website to understand how the mark scheme is applied for each tier

Collate delegate questions and concerns to create a document for the unit for all teachers to use as a guide for the forthcoming examination series

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General comments from the examiner report – June 2011

  • The paper is split into two sections – a compulsory unseen poem question and a choice of Anthology poetry questions.

  • Examiners were impressed by evidence that students had understood the contexts and purposes of the chosen poems

  • They were also impressed by the ability to select pertinent examples of the poets’ language and the successful application of the ‘point, evidence, explain’ approach to language analysis

  • Less successful responses wrote reasonably about each of the two poems but failed to make clear connections and compare the poems effectively.

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Foundation Tier

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Question 1Section A: The Unseen Poem

The unseen poem was ‘Messy Room’ by Shel Silverstein’

Explain how Shel Silverstein presents the subject of the messy room. Write about what happens in the poem, how the writer has organised the poem, how the writer uses evidence for effect. Use evidence from the poem to support your answer.

Summary for Q1 from examiner report:

Almost all candidates were able to respond to the poem’s ideas and language as well as the central joke about the identity of the room’s owner and the structure of the poem

A band 5 response interpreted soundly the use of rhetorical questions and spotted how the tight structure of rhyming couplets contrasted with the disorganised state it was describing.

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Script F1C – Unseen poem

  • Read script F1C question 1 on the screen

  • This response scored 20 out of 20

  • The examiner comments that ‘the candidate shows real understanding and engagement, therefore meriting mark at the top of Band 5. Considers organisation and structure, including pararhyme’

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Script F1C – Unseen poem

Band 5

AO2: explain how language, structure and form contribute to writers’ presentation of ideas, themes and settings

Sound understanding of the poem’s content/ideas

Sound explanation of how the writer uses language, structure and form to present the poem’s content/ideas

Sound, relevant textual evidence to support response

*Sound organisation and communication of ideas. Spelling, punctuation and grammar are mostly accurate, with some errors

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Section B – Anthology poemsCollection A: Relationships

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Question 2(a)

Describe the writer’s thoughts and feelings about his grandfathers in ‘Lines to My Grandfathers’. Use evidence from the poem to support your answer.

Summary for question 2(a) from examiner report:

  • There was a range of responses to the chosen poem with weaker candidates recognising the basic idea of ‘family love’ and quoting some, limited, examples

  • Better candidates were able to pick out the ways the writer intersected with his grandfathers’ lives and the amused admiration he expressed.

  • There were also some relevant points on the ‘knuckleduster’ and the different senses of the word ‘lines’.

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Script F2Db(ii) – Relationships

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  • Read script F2Db(ii) question 2 (a) on the screen

  • This response scored 13 out of 15

  • The examiner comments that ‘the candidate makes sound explanation of how the writer uses thoughts and feelings to create effects, with relevant connections to thoughts /feelings about keeping personal items. Refers in relevant way to past. Includes some evaluation.’

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Script F2Db(ii) – Relationships

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Question 2 (a)

Band 5

AO2: Explain how language, structure and form contribute to writers’ presentation of ideas, themes and settings

  • Sound explanation of how the writer uses thoughts and feelings to create effect

  • Sound, relevant connection made between his thoughts and feelings and the presentation of ideas

  • Clear, relevant textual reference to support response

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Section B – Anthology poemsCollection A: Relationships

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Question 2(b)(i)

Explain how the writer of ‘Nettles’ presents a different family relationship to those shown in ‘Line to my Grandfathers’. Use evidence from the poems to support your answer. You may include material you have used to answer 2 (a).

Summary for Q2(b)(i) from examiner report:

  • With ‘Nettles’, candidates at all levels could make at least some comparative points on the different feel of the two poems, and the contrast between someone looking back to his ancestral past and someone writing about his own son.

  • At the upper end, there was some exploration of the way the two writers were both ‘protecting’ their family.

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Section B – Anthology poemsCollection A: Relationships

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Question 2(b)(ii)

Explain how the writer of one poem of your choice in the ‘Relationships’ collection presents different ideas about relationships from those shown in ‘Line to my Grandfathers’. Use evidence from the poems to support your answer. You may include material you have used to answer 2 (a).

Summary for Q2(b)(ii) from examiner report:

  • Candidates’ own choices of poem were varies and appropriate, including ‘Valentine’ and ‘Kissing’.

  • The very different contexts of the second poems allowed candidates to consider family relationships from a variety of perspectives

  • In ‘Kissing’, for example, the topic of generations was discussed soundly

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Script F2Db(ii) – Relationships

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  • Read script F2Db(ii) question 2 (b) (ii) on the screen

  • This response scored 15 out of 15

  • The examiner comments that ‘the second poem: ‘Kissing’ was a very suitable choice. The answer is well focused and has strong internal balance. Clearly at the top of the expected range.’

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Script F2Db(ii) – Relationships

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Question 2 (b) (ii)

Band 5:

A03: Make comparisons and explain links between texts, evaluating writers’ different ways of expressing meaning and achieving effects

  • Sound comparisons and links

  • Some clear explanation of the different ways of expressing meaning and achieving effects

  • The selection of examples is appropriate; shows some support of the points being made

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Higher Tier

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Question 1Section A: The Unseen Poem

The unseen poem was ‘Cider Mill Farm’ by David Harmer

Explore how David Harmer presents his experiences at Cider Mill Farm. Use evidence from the poem to support your answer.

Summary for Q1 from examiner report:

Most candidates showed clear engagement and understanding with answers focused on the poet’s happy childhood

Higher band answers combined detailed analysis with a sense of overview and were able to comment on the effect of devices and what they contributed to the whole rather than merely ‘feature spotting’

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Script H1C – Unseen poem

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  • Read script H1C question 1 on the screen

  • This response scored 13 out of 20

  • The examiner comments that ‘the candidate starts in a very focussed way, with development of a range of points. Textual reference is pertinent. Thorough and at times assured explanation of language features.’

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Script H1C – Unseen poem

Band 4

AO2: explain how language, structure and form contribute to writers’ presentation of ideas, themes and settings

Assured explanation of how the writer uses literary techniques to create effect.

Assured understanding of how techniques contribute to presentation of ideas, themes and settings.

Relevant connection made between techniques and presentation of ideas, themes and settings.

Pertinent textual reference to support response

*Sentences are purposefully structured, with assured control of expression and meaning with assured control of a full range of punctuation devices. Spelling is almost always accurate, with minimal errors.

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Section B – Anthology poemsCollection B: Clashes and Collisions

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Question 3(a)

Explore how the writer presents the violent events in ‘Our Sharpeville’. Use evidence from the poem to support your answer.

Summary for question 3(a) from examiner report:

  • This was answered well

  • Emotive language was understood and explored and the imagery was admired and analysed

  • Form, structure and voice were not ignored and overall this poem produced some mature answers with an appreciation of the political situation.

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Script H3Bb(i) – Clashes and Collisions

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  • Read script H3Bb(i) question 3 (a) on the screen

  • This response scored 14 out of 15

  • The examiner comments that ‘the candidate has perceptive overview of the poem and attitudes conveyed, with a discriminating use of evidence.’

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Script H3B b(i) – Clashes and Collisions

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Question 3 (a)

Band 5

AO2: Explain how language, structure and form contribute to writers’ presentation of ideas, themes and settings

  • Perceptive explanation of how the writer uses attitudes to create effect

  • Discriminating, relevant connection made between attitudes and feelings and the presentation of ideas

  • Convincing, relevant textual reference to support response

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Section B – Anthology poemsCollection B: Clashes and Collisions

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Question 3(b)(i)

Compare how the writer of ‘Belfast Confetti’ explores different violent events from those in ‘Our Sharpeville’. Use evidence from the poems to support your answer. You may include material you have used to answer 2 (a).

Summary for Q3(b)(i) from examiner report:

  • Most students commented on the sense of the importance of time in the poems as well as the street violence and drew comparisons between the poems.

  • Happiness and fear were also common areas for comparison as was the idea of children having to grow up quickly

  • Some students also discussed the sounds in ‘Belfast Confetti’ and compared them to the miners’ chants in ‘Our Sharpeville’

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Script H3B b(i) – Clashes and Collisions

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  • Read script H3B b(i) question 3 (b) (i) on the screen

  • This response scored 15 out of 15

  • The examiner comments that ‘this is an excellent response, with discriminating comparisons and links throughout. Evidence used is perceptive and wide-ranging’.

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Script H3 B b(i) – Clashes and Collisions

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Question 3 (b) (i)

Band 5:

A03: Make comparisons and explain links between texts, evaluating writers’ different ways of expressing meaning and achieving effects

  • Discriminating comparisons and links showing insight

  • Perceptive evaluation of the different ways of expressing meaning and achieving effects

  • The selection of examples is discriminating; fully supports the points being made

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Section B – Anthology poemsCollection B: Clashes and Collisions

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Question 3(b)(ii)

Compare how the writers of ‘Our Sharpeville’ and one poem of your choice from the ‘Clashes and Collisions’ collection reflect the effects of violence on society. Use evidence from the poems to support your answer. You may include material from 3(a)

Summary for Q3(b)(ii) from examiner report:

  • There was a variety of appropriate examples available. For example, ‘Parade’s End’ was selected because it had a different approach to violence on the streets, but a similar focus on racism

  • Similarly, ‘The Drum’ has striking images for the impact of war on the countryside as well as human life.

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Any Questions?

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