The English curriculum provides a sequenced plan of study for Grades 9-12. The faculty systematically builds students' skills in reading comprehension, writing, grammar, speaking, listening, and critical thinking. Each year includes study of Indian literature and Shakespeare. Completion of the Woodstock English programme provides oral and written communication skills, as well as the analytical skills necessary for university work.


Drama is both an academic subject and also an extra curricular activity. Click here for more information.


Mr. Brian Powles, HOD

Bryan Powles is the Head of the English Department. Having taught in his home country Australia for a number of years, Bryan first came to Woodstock School in 1996 - teaching English and Social Studies here for 3.5 years. Bryan then moved onto the international school circuit, teaching in the Philippines, Chile and Singapore before returning to Woodstock about four years ago.

Mrs. Karen Klein

Karen Klein has a BA in English from the University of Wyoming, where she also earned her teaching credential. She has taught for 19 years in Texas, Alaska, and now India. This is her first year at Woodstock School, but her third year living in India.

Ms. Emily Shriver

Ms. Emily Shriver received her BA in English and Secondary Education from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. Rooted in the banks of the Mississippi River in Wisconsin, she has grown up immersed in nature, enjoying all things outdoors. Emily teaches grades 7 and 8 English; this is her second year at Woodstock, as well as her first year living in India.

Mr. Matthew Brodie

Matt hails from Australia where he studied for a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Teaching (Secondary) with Honours. He also completed Post-graduate studies with a Certificate in Teaching English

Mr. Andrew Plonka

Mr. Adam Wunker

Adam has joined Woodstock this past year and is enjoying teaching Math and English. He has a Bachelor of Education and a Bachelor of Arts with Honours and is beginning his teaching career at Woodstock.

Mrs Bethany Okie - Drama Faculty

Bethany is in her second year at Woodstock and is enjoying her new role of Drama Teacher. With a BFA in Musical Theatre from Shorter University, she comes from Atlanta, GA where she has spent the past seven years as a professional actress on stage and film.

Senior School Course Descriptions

  • Grade 7
    1. Building critical literacy is a focus for Grade 7 English, laying a foundation for success in the Woodstock English curriculum throughout the high school years and international external exams. Skills include work in reading, writing, and speaking. Reading will build students' critical involvement with a variety of multicultural literature texts and responses in written and spoken forms. Students will develop an introductory understanding of themes and literary devices. They will practice sustained silent reading. Writing balances creative writing and academic writing skills. Vocabulary building and practical grammar grounding are fundamental components of this part of the curriculum. Students will receive instruction and practice in using the writing process and school literary resources. They will have regular timed writing exercises on a variety of topics to develop organizational and test taking skills. Students will develop speaking skills for use in prepared formal presentation situations and spontaneous discussion topics, memorization and dramatic expression.
  • Grade 8
    1. 8th Grade English is a natural continuation of the skills and materials covered in 7th Grade English, as well as serving the purpose of preparing students for the skills and materials that they will encounter in 9th Grade English.

      There is an emphasis on developing a background in international literature with particular attention to Indian and American Literature owing to our close connection to both our Indian environs and our American curricular focus and external assessment. Students are given a systematic approach to English skills which aims to give them confidence and direction while challenging and preparing them for future academic obstacles.

      Students will review the parts of speech, sentence and paragraph structure, figures of speech, plot, setting, characterization, and point of view. They should master punctuation, essay form, outlining and note taking, and independent reading which is bolstered by the inclusion of the U.S.S.R. program. This course includes an introduction to the use of colons, semi-colons, dashes, hyphens, types of sentences, theme, essay development, clauses and objects. The texts, supplemental materials, and assessments are directly related to these topics and skills.
  • Grade 9
    1. Grade 9 English focuses on reading different genres of literature from several English-speaking countries, and on writing in a variety of genres. Throughout the year, students read and discuss literature using analysis and appropriate literary terminology. Critical thinking skills are developed through reading, questioning, and discussion. The reading includes three novels, a Shakespeare play, selected short stories, poetry, personal narratives, and non-fiction. Genre and theme are areas of discussion and writing. Critical reading skills are further developed through consistent practice in class. Essay writing skills are a prime focus in Grade 9 as well as summary writing. Use of complex sentences, practice in different types of essays (narrative, descriptive, expository and argumentative), summary, directed writing, and vocabulary building are also practised in order to develop logical, well-organised writing. Grammar and style are covered as needed in students' own writing, particularly verb endings, subject-verb agreement, and punctuation. Grade 9 English includes special attention on productive use of the Media Resource Center. All of these basic skills provide a foundation for external exam preparation in grades 10, 11, and 12.
  • IGCSE English (Grade 10)
    1. Grade 10 English uses the Cambridge University International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) syllabus as its guide. English Literature is studied in depth. The specific selections are dictated by the syllabus but include a Shakespeare play, a selection of poetry, and two English-language novels. Students develop an understanding of characterization, narrative, plot, setting and language. Writing skills are further developed so that students can evaluate, select, order, present information and ideas, articulate their own thoughts orally and in writing, show awareness of appropriate style and exercise mechanical accuracy. By the end of the school year, students are prepared to sit for the IGCSE external English exams in Literature and Language. The Language exam is compulsory, while the Literature exam is optional. The grade 10 English course prepares students well for either the AP or AS level course in their grade 11 English year.
  • AP Language and Composition (Grade 11)
    1. While most of our work in this class will be based on responding to non-fictional texts, we will also use as a base for studying a number or different genres-e.g., film, memoirs, speeches, expository and argumentative essays, as well as a selection of fiction, short stories and poems. Students will practice and learn how to write in a variety of different modes, including narrative, analytical, argumentative and persuasive, expository, as well as descriptive and reflective. They will learn to recognise and employ a range of rhetorical strategies. As the final project, students will do a piece of scholarly research, which will require them to call on a number of reliable secondary sources on an issue of social, cultural, historical or political controversy. This project will culminate in a substantial research essay and oral presentation.
  • AP Literature and Composition (Grade 11)
    1. This course focuses on world literature, preparing students for future college/university studies and providing them with the necessary content and skills to sit the Advanced Placement English examinations should they wish to do so. Students read from Indian, American, English, Commonwealth and European texts. Students are taught literary analysis and how to write critically about what they have read.
  • Journalism (Grades 10, 11, 12)
    1. Journalism is a hands-on course enabling students to learn every facet of the news writing business, from brainstorming story ideas to interviewing sources to working on a team to produce a monthly newspaper. Students gain an understanding of publication law, different styles of journalistic writing, editing, and publication. There are few exams or traditional forms of assessment; instead, students put their newly gained knowledge to use by producing the monthly student newspaper, The Tiger. Plus, small groups work to deliver a weekly "newscast" during morning assembly. Individually, students hone their writing skills by following a monthly "beat," as well as creating and maintaining an individual blog.
  • Advanced Journalism (Grade 12)
    1. Advanced Journalism allows students who have passed Journalism class to continue with the subject, moving into editing roles. The class meets at the same time as Journalism, but instead of working on course content, advanced students work to produce the monthly student newspaper, The Tiger.
  • Yearbook (Grades 11 and 12)
    1. Yearbook is a hands-on course that allows students to produce the yearbook. The course meets in the evenings once a week. There are no lectures or formal assessments; instead, students compile photographs and written summaries to create yearbook pages. Each week, students will work on pages related to previous week's activities. Simultaneously, they will take and arrange mug shots of everyone on campus.

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