A high level student essay to the following question:
Starting with this speech (Act 1 Scene 5 ‘The raven himself is hoarse’) explain how far you think Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth as a powerful woman.Write about:
• how Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth in this speech
• how Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth in the play as a whole.
The PowerPoint contains colour coded annotations to showcase a deliberate and easy to imitate method for helping students structure a successful response.
A grade 9 804 word 45 minute response to the May 2019 AQA exam about Macbeth as a violent character. I have included the extract and the response all on one A4 sheet for ease of printing.
The question was as follows:
Read the following extract from Act 1 Scene 2 of Macbeth and then answer the question that follows. At this point in the play, the Captain tells Duncan about Macbeth’s part in the recent battle.
Doubtful it stood, As two spent swimmers that do cling together And choke their art. The merciless Macdonald – Worthy to be a rebel, for to that The multiplying villainies of nature Do swarm upon him – from the Western Isles Of kerns and galloglasses is supplied, And Fortune on his damnèd quarrel smiling, Showed like a rebel’s whore. But all’s too weak, For brave Macbeth – well he deserves that name – Disdaining Fortune, with his brandished steel, Which smoked with bloody execution, Like Valour’s minion carved out his passage Till he faced the slave, Which ne’er shook hands, nor bade farewell to him, Till he unseamed him from the nave to th’chaps And fixed his head upon our battlements.
Starting with this speech, explore how far Shakespeare presents Macbeth as a violent character.
A collection of 10 grade 8/grade 9 top band exam responses to A Christmas Carol. All 10 responses include the extract and the question and have formatted to snugly fit onto one page for ease of printing.
Includes responses to the following questions:
How does Dickens present Scrooge’s fears? (2018 AQA question)
How is Bob Cratchit presented
How is Scrooge presented as an isolated character
How are the ghosts presented
How does Dickens present Scrooge’s attitude to charity
How is Scrooge presented as an outsider to society
How are places presented in the novel.
How is Scrooge presented as an outsider to society? (Completely different argument)
Explore how Dickens uses the ghosts to help Scrooge change his attitudes and behaviour. (2019 question AQA question)
How does Dickens present the suffering of the poor? (Nov 2020 question)
This lesson was inspired by the AQA 2018 English Language Paper 1 Question 5. Students were asked to describe the face of an old man. To help students improve their description, I have created a bank of 275 words that students can use to add precision to their descriptions.
The follow up tasks gives students 8 images of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth (Polanski version). Students must select the adjectives carefully to describe one of the 8 images. Peers then have to work out which image they have described from the quality of the description.
The plenary asks students to write down their favourite words to describe each aspect of the face.
22 key quotations briefly explained for Macbeth and Lady Macbeth on a visually engaging poster. There is an editable word version and a pdf version.
Images were sourced from openclipart.org
For more Macbeth resources try the following links:
grade 9 model responses:
This popular resource includes 3 grade 9 Romeo and Juliet responses, 1 grade 8 response and 1 grade 7 model response to 5 AQA style GCSE examination questions on Romeo and Juliet. The exam questions and extracts are included beside the model responses.
I have tried to produce responses at the level reasonably expected of a high-level GCSE-aged student within 45 minutes of examination time.
Sometimes when teachers write exemplar responses, they produce such a high level of analysis that students find them overwhelming. I tried to avoid that.
Includes a grade 9 model response to the AQA May 2019 question on Romeo and Juliet’s relationship. Includes the extract and some brief examiner comment.
Includes a grade 9 model response to the AQA May 2018 question on adults and children.
Includes a grade 8 model response to the AQA May 2017 question about male aggression and asks students how they could turn it into a grade 9 response through deeper language analysis (A02).
This resource is ideal to use to show students how to write successful answers that meet the criteria for A01, A02 and A03.
I have also included a sixth examination question so that students can have a go at an exam question themselves using my 9 step method.
Student-friendly, double-sided revision cards to cover 6 themes in Macbeth:
Each revision card has 3 sections:
key parts of the play that link to the theme
key quotations linked to each theme
ideas about context/Shakespeare’s purpose for each theme.
The back of the card has space for students to make analytical notes on quotations.
I have now added revision cards for the 6 main characters and 9 revision cards to cover the character of Macbeth.
A grade 9 critical and exploratory response to the May 2019 Romeo and Juliet.
The question was:
Starting with this conversation, explore how Shakespeare presents the relationship between Romeo and Juliet.
• how Shakespeare presents their relationship in this conversation
• how Shakespeare presents the relationship between Romeo and Juliet in the play as a whole.
I have included the extract and a brief examiner commentary to help explain why the response would achieve grade 9.
The response is 662 words along which is about the average length of a grade 9 essay in 45 minutes of exam conditions.
Romeo and Juliet relationship
Romeo and Juliet relationship
AQA May 2019
A grade 8/9 borderline exam response answering the A Christmas Carol AQA 2018 question:
Starting with this extract, explore how Dickens presents Scrooge’s fears in A Christmas Carol. (30 marks)
I have also included a writing frame that I used with a much lower ability class (target grades 4 and 5).
This A3 revision sheet revises key quotations for 6 key characters and 4 key themes in the play. There are also notes on context for each theme and an exam question for each character and theme.
Students found this really useful to help them revise for the new closed book examinations.
A grade 9 response to the AQA May 2019 question on A Christmas Carol.
Starting with this extract, explore how Dickens uses the ghosts to help Scrooge change his attitudes and behaviour.
The response analyses all 4 ghosts and is over 1200 words in length - perhaps a little long for a 45 minute answer.
It includes the extract that was provided to students.
Cheaper if you buy the bundle of 9 different grade 9 responses:
9 high grade GCSE style exemplar responses to various AQA-style Macbeth questions. All responses include the extract provided as the starting point.
Includes a grade 9 response to the following:
May 2019 AQA question: Macbeth as a violent character.
May 2018 AQA question about the supernatural.
May 2017 AQA question about ambition
Includes a grade 7-9 response to questions on the following characters and themes:
These responses have been designed to reflect the ability of high-attaining GCSE students within the time constraints of a 45-50 minute exam. They are not at A Level standard because this is a GCSE question. Some responses are clearly grade 9. Others have perceptive moments but may achieve grade 8 depending on the grade boundaries in any particular year.
Several helpful and printable revision sheets and activity sheets covering key quotations for characters, themes and stage directions with links to examination questions and context.
The themes covered include:
Wealth, Power and Influence.
PowerPoint for an exam walk-through looking at the AQA Question from May 2017.
Differentiated starter: define the key words linked to male aggression and make links.
Main: Analyse 5 key extracts that demonstrate male aggression with a focus on A01 and A02. Suggested answers are on the PowerPoint to guide students through each extract.
Plenary: Draw a line graph to chart the intensity of male aggression across the play.
Also includes a grade 8 model response to the question so students can look at how to develop it into a grade 9 response.
Lesson explaining how to answer a Macbeth question on the theme of guilt for AQA GCSE.
Also includes a grade 7 sample response and a grade 9 sample response to allow for a comparison.
Includes worksheets for exploring the extract.
Also includes a grade 5 model paragraph to assist lower ability students with writing about the extract and then moving to outside the extract.
A grade 8 model response comparing how conflict with nature is presented in Prelude and Storm on the Island.
I’d give it a mark at the top of Band 5 24/30 which I predict is around grade 8.
It is well-structured, thoughtful, detailed and developed with apt evidence.
To reach Grade 9 it needs to be more critical and exploratory with more convincing exploration of alternative interpretations and contectual factors.
I have many other Power and Conflict resources also on my shop such as the following: