Director of Learning - Mrs Heather Swinnerton
In today’s rapidly changing society, if students are going to be successful, healthy and happy members of any future society, they will need to be competent, confident and innovative in their use and understanding of language.
All lessons at Hugh Christie will be concentrating on improving students’ Literacy through conversations, activities and reading connected to the different subjects studied.
Students will be encouraged to read as much as possible and they should practice this at home too. Reading a wide variety of fiction and non –fiction is key to success in examinations.  Having conversations and discussions will also help students’ to improve their communication skills and encouraging them to speak in sentences will definitely improve their chances of success.
Information and ideas on reading are attached to this page and these documents will be updated regularly. This is the area where Home and College can work together to help students be as successful as possible.
Reading Titles at Hugh Christie - Click to see the full suggested reading lists
Children's and Young Adult's Authors
HCTC Reading list in Categories
The school's Literacy Policy can be viewed by clicking the link here.

Year 8 writing project - message from mrs swinnerton

I would like to tell you about a project we run with Year 8 which aims to improve their writing skills. This project has now run for four years and has helped Year 8 students become more creative and accurate in their writing.  

As you may be aware from the news, the English and Maths examinations that Year 8 will take in Year 11 are different to the ones you may have taken and are much more demanding.  They will be graded from 1- 9 and there will be no more coursework. These new examinations are going to ask students to write longer, essay style, answers which will test their ability to write fluently and accurately. Therefore, the Year 8 Writing Project has been designed to begin our students’ training for these final examinations in their Year 11.

Also, we are very aware, that students still need to be able to write with a pen, even in today’s technological world, and that their handwriting should still be clear and legible. Students also need to be able to be creative, using their imaginations to create a piece that is interesting for someone else to read. They must also be able to use a variety of words to communicate their ideas.  This project will help the students practise these skills and be imaginative in what they write.

The Year 8 Writing project will require all Year 8 students to complete one piece of writing a week for Homework. These pieces are being set by all their subjects and a programme of tasks is included with this letter. All your child’s subjects are taking part in this project as it is not just in English that students need to be able to write and we want to emphasise the need for accurate, clear writing in every subject and every task.

Students must complete these pieces using pen and paper. They will be given a word limit by their teachers, but what they write is for them to decide in relation to the task. Teachers will mark the pieces in 5 key areas: sentences, paragraphs, punctuation, presentation and achieving the word limit. A central record will be kept at school of all these pieces and you will receive an update on your child’s progress at Year 8 Parents’ Evening and at the end of the year.

Please do support and encourage your child to complete these pieces properly and to the best of their ability. Please do talk through the tasks with them before they write and then read through their work with them so that they see how another reader responds to what they have written. I know this could be tricky, but getting your child to re-write a piece before it is handed in would help them improve their writing skills.

Thank you for you support in this project; it does give our students the best possible chance of success in future examinations, jobs and life.

If you would like to discuss this further then please do not hesitate to contact me at school or by email at hswinnerton199@tonbridgefederation.co.uk.

Mrs Swinnerton