AQA new specification · English · Uncategorized

Teaching the critical evaluation question – The Haunting of Hill House

The new spec is giving me every excuse to indulge in using great extracts from a range of texts. We looked at an extract from Shirley Jackson’s Haunting of Hill House and also used the corresponding extract to the film to stimulate discussion.


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Setting the scene…

Show this image of the two characters, Eleanor and Theo and we talked about what we can INFER from the image. This word crops up all over our lessons!

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Watch the sequence from the film; pupils can see how their inferences from the stills pay off.

Read the sequence from the book.

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Pick out a few lines from the text. I get the pupils to annotate these in groups and pass them on to another group who can build on their comments.


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To link this with Paper 1 Question 4, pupils need to work with those critically evaluative statements – “A student having read this extract said…”.

Two ways to go from here. If you want to challenge your more able pupils, then get them to think of their own statements. I give them a big speech bubble to write in. Or else you can give the class some statements and they can discuss the most appropriate.

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