English language GCSE overview and guidance

English language paper 2: Section A

In Paper 2 Section A of the exam your child will spend 15 minutes reading the two
non-fiction texts provided and annotating these in preparation for answering 4
questions. The four questions follow a similar pattern each year and cover the
following skills:

  • Question 1 – Selecting and retrieving information
  • Question 2 – Summary of explicit and implicit information
  • Question 3 – Explain, comment on, analyse language
  • Question 4 – Comparison of writers’ ideas and perspectives
Question 1
4 marks
5 minutes
Students need to:
Identify 4 true statements from one text. 

 

 

 

 

Question 2

8 marks
8 minutes
Students need to:
Summarise the differences between ideas
presented in both texts.
Students to set out their 3 paragraphs as
follows:

1) Identify the difference between the two ideas

2) Use precise quotation(s) to support their point

3) Explain what the evidence suggests about the topic

Question 3
12 marks
12 minutes
Students need to:
Examine one text and analyse the use of
language and its effects.Students to set out their 3 paragraphs as follows:1) Identify the writer’s use of language and how it’s been used

2) Use precise quotation(s) to support their point

3) Explain the effects the language provides

 

 

 

 

Question 4
16 marks
20 minutes
Students need to:
Compare the writers’ ideas and perspectives and how they are conveyed.Students need to set out their evaluationas follows:1) Make a point linked to topic in question

2) Offer precise pieces of evidence to support your point on source A

3) Explore the connotations/effect of your feature

4) Link back to writer’s view/perspective

5) Use a connective to highlight difference

(whereas) and repeat 1-4 for source B

 

How can you help support your child with the reading sections?

  • Time your son/daughter completing a mock question using the times above
  • Find different types of fiction and non-fiction sources together and talk about what they are about
  • Encourage your child to read a variety of literature. This will ensure they are well-read individuals who have the ability to discuss great writing
  • Work with your child on annotating different sources, from their English revision pack, for the different skills needed for each question
  • Marking timed responses, together with your child, using the criteria outlined above

 

Section B on both language exams assess your child’s writing skills.

 

Paper 1 – Descriptive or narrative writing                                     Paper 2 – Opinion writing

Paper 1

40 marks

45 minutes

Students need to write for one of the following purposes:

● narrative

● describe – using an image as a stimulus

Students need to ensure they have included:

1) language features associated with the purpose

2) appropriate tone for the genre, purpose and audience

3) variety of sentences crafted for impact

4) a variety of punctuation crafted for impact

5) accurate spelling

6) ambitious vocabulary

7) paragraphs that are used accurately and crafted for impact.

 

 

Paper 2

40 marks

45 minutes

Students need to write for the following purpose:

● opinion

Students need to ensure they have included:

1) language features associated with the purpose

2) appropriate tone for the genre, purpose and audience

3) variety of sentences crafted for impact

4) a variety of punctuation mcrafted for impact

5) accurate spelling

6) ambitious vocabulary

7) paragraphs that are used accurately and crafted for impact.

 

 

 

 

How can you help support your child with the writing sections?

  • Time your son/daughter completing a mock question using the times above.
  • Create some writing questions together with your child that cover different forms, audiences and purposes.
  • Find different images together that your son/daughter could use as a stimulus for descriptive writing.
  • Marking timed responses, together with your child, using the criteria outlined above.
  • Encourage your child to redraft their creative writing once you have marked together.
  • Annotate examples of different types of writing and how their language use suits the text’s purpose.