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English Language Programmes 2019

Extensive Reading

Chalk Talk in Argumentative Writing.jpg

To create a community of dynamic learners and to provide platforms for independent thinking, routines and tools such as Chalk Talk and Padlet were harnessed in the teaching of writing.



For example, Chalk Talk was employed to kickstart the Argumentative Writing module in Secondary 3 to allow students to generate their own viewpoints, respond to their peers’ viewpoints, and to adopt multiple perspectives when addressing an issue. Padlet was used as a precursor to the Reflective Writing module, titled ‘The World through your Eyes’, where students were tasked to upload a photo of a significant incident that happened in their lives, accompanied by a catchy title and some takeaways. This task aimed to make students more aware of the varied levels of reflectiveness that naturally exist in each individual, and for them to learn more from each. 

Extensive Reading

Engaging in dialogue during Reading Period.jpg

The Extensive Reading Programme is a whole-school programme by the English Language Department. Its objectives is to encourage students to read widely via exposure to different genre and activities.

During Reading Periods, which are on alternate weeks, students are given extracts of books or short stories and engage tin various activities such as ‘Hot Seating’, ‘Freeze Frame, writing of alternative endings, and/or discussions on movie clips based on the text, to enhance their understanding of the texts. At the Secondary One level, all students visit the Media Resource Library during English lessons to browse books and source for genres that they might be interested in reading.

The Extensive Reading Programme is connected to specific aspects of the English curriculum such as oral communication tasks or writing tasks.

Words Go Round - What Makes A Good Story? by Mr Kenneth Kwek

Words Go Round Talk by Mr Kenneth Kwek.jpg

In conjunction with the Singapore Writers Festival 2019, a talk was organised for all Secondary One students. Held on Friday, 25 February 2019 at the School Hall, the talk titled, “What Makes a Good Story”, was given by Mr Kenneth Kwek, a local author and screenwriter who recently published a children’s book, “Timothy and the Phubbers’.


The main aim of the talk was to introduce students to story writing strategies and methods shared by a Singapore writer. During the one-hour session, Mr Kwek shared some interesting details about his background as a screenwriter, film director and author. He went on to give students a few tips on how to make stories more interesting and engaging to readers. He provided a few examples on how simple plots could be further stretched through constant addition of elaborate details and catchy adverbials. He also drew some comparisons between plain, simple plots and extended, detailed plots that capture the readers’ attention throughout the stories.


As a continuation from the session, all Secondary One students engaged in Narrative Writing, writing their own stories collaboratively and individually. At the same time, students were also given the opportunity to participate in a few essay writing competitions which include the Commonwealth Essay Writing Competition 2019 in May and the New York Times Asia-Pacific Writing Competition 2019 in August. 

Commonwealth Essay Writing Competition

To hone their writing skills about topics that are relevant to the world today as well as to further develop critical and creative thinking skills, students were encouraged to participate in the 2019 Commonwealth Essay Competition to express their views, ideas and stories about global issues in various written forms.

The theme for this year’s competition was “A Connected Commonwealth”. It focussed on the different ways cultural, technological and environmental connections could be used by everyone across the globe to provide for positive change across the Commonwealth.

The competition was well-received by Woodgrovers - a total of 20 entries were submitted, of which seven entries were from the Lower Secondary classes and thirteen entries were from the Upper Secondary classes.

Congratulations to Julia Thet Mon Soe from 3E1, whose poem, ‘At All Costs’, was selected as one of the Gold Award Finalists! Her poem can be found in the link below: 

At All Costs by Julia 3E1.pdf