The SGS English Department is a vibrant community of teachers who are committed to the department vision of ‘Language for Life’.
Beyond examinations, we want students to realise that language learning is for life. We aim to cultivate critical, competent, confident and clear communicators who enjoy the English language and use it effectively to analyse, communicate and persuade. Through appreciating the beauty of Literature, words and stories, their lives can be enriched and made meaningful. Through lively debates and class discussions on current affairs, we grow as a class community in our awareness of our impact on the world beyond us, and develop compassion for others.
Sharing and Professional Development
The English Department believes in continually refining our mastery of the teaching and use of the English Language in the classroom. To this end, we collaborate regularly with external partners (such as ELIS and NIE) to conduct research into the dialogue that takes place in our classrooms.
Our teachers present their findings and share their learning at international conferences such as NIE’s Redesigning Pedagogy and the RELC International Conference. This exchange of ideas allows our teachers to remain at the forefront of language teaching and learning, and provides them the opportunity to contribute to the professional development of the teaching fraternity within and beyond SGS.
Plain English Speaking Award (PESA)
PESA aims to promote the use of simple and clear English in speech to achieve effective communication. PESA emphasises that good English means conveying your ideas effectively to the listeners in simple and clear English. Each year, all students are given the opportunity to present a speech to the whole school during the PESA competition. This is a chance for students to share their thoughts in an engaging and entertaining manner. The winners’ speeches are printed in the school’s annual publication of essays, The Pensieve. The top performers represent the school at the national PESA competition. This year, Kyra Xue Ting of 3E2 made SGS proud as she cruised to the Finals – that’s Top 7 in Singapore!
We believe that a picture paints a thousand words, and a theatre trip lasts a lifetime. The immersion in theatre experiences enhances literary knowledge, tolerance and empathy. Each year, we organise exciting experiences for our students across all levels and streams. This year, the Secondary 3 Literature and Advanced Literature students were treated to the classic Shakespearean play, Hamlet by the London Royal Shakespeare Company.
An Afternoon of Poetry Appreciation
This year the dynamic Advanced Literature students wanted to breathe life to the poetry they are exposed to. The highly motivated group of Sec 2s chose the poems they wanted to perform, directed the poems, did the publicity and put up a fine show in the school vhub. The concert provided the students with an opportunity to show off their talent, creativity and expression. Their enthusiasm was so contagious that even the teachers spontaneously read some of their favourite poems with the students. Well done Ad. Lit students, in inspiring a rich Literature culture in SGS.
Every year, each level and stream has a book that they will read together throughout the year. This introduces students to new genres and popular award winning titles, including those which have been made into movies. We also screen the movie adaptations of these books to help students develop a love of reading for pleasure.
Beyond enjoying fiction, students also read current affairs articles and watch documentaries each week to discuss specific themes. Students look forward to these engaging lessons for the opportunity to learn more about the world and think critically about issues.
Lit Up Programme
The Lit Up programme is a four-year programme focusing on literature and experiencing literary and drama art forms. Students with interest and aptitude are identified in Secondary 1 and given opportunities to explore the language arts via drama education, stage performances and through reading Upper Secondary Literature. A highlight of the programme is the annual student-led Lit Up Camp. Lit Up is a great way for students to develop a love for the Language and Literature in a family of creative change-makers.
National Schools’ Literature Festival (NSLF)
For the last six years, we have actively taken part in the annual NSLF so as to showcase our students’ passion in literature and the arts. The NSLF is the biggest literary festival for students in Singapore and our students have always done our school proud with their zest and desire to excel each year.
During the festival, each level takes part in a specific category ranging from choral reading and book trailers to unseen and set text debates. The following is a list of our achievements:
- Lower Secondary Book Trailer [1st]
- Upper Secondary Unseen Poetry Debate (Sec 3) [WINNER]
- Upper Secondary Unseen Poetry Debate (Sec 4) [WINNER]
- Upper Secondary Set Text Debate on The Joy Luck Club (Sec 4) [WINNER]
- Upper Secondary Unseen Text Debate [WINNER]
- Lower Secondary Book Trailer (Drama) [2ND]
- Lower Secondary Book Parade (Exhibition) [TOP 10]
- Upper Secondary Unseen Text Debate (Sec 4) [WINNER]
- Upper Secondary Set Text Debate (Sec 4) [WINNER]
- Upper Secondary Unseen Text Debate (Sec 3) [WINNER]