Date: Thursday 14 January 2021

3 hour webinar
Code: 7992


This webinar will examine the skills needed for students to achieve Grades A & A* in OCR A-Level Latin examinations.  Led by  Henry Cullen, the session will demonstrate teaching and learning ideas for both language and literature options which will stretch and challenge able students and develop their higher level skills.  The webinar is 3 hours long, with breaks. Resources and teaching ideas will be provided, and mark schemes and examiners reports will be analyses to identify what marks out the top people.

Using feedback from 2018 & 2019 examinations, the course will outline what is expected of top students and explore ways to build your teaching practice around this.


  • Focused on identifying the demands of Grades A & A* and providing materials to help teachers prepare students effectively
  • Resources and teaching ideas will be provided that will allow teachers to cover the course in innovative and student-friendly ways that push the highest ability students
  • A detailed look at the demands of different areas of the A-Level examinations
  • Mark schemes & examiners’ reports will be analysed to identify what marks out the top candidates


  • All teachers of A-Level Latin


Session 1: (60 minutes) Grades A & A*: examinations and key student behaviours

  • Feedback and grading analysis from the 2018 & 2019 papers – what is required for A/A*?
  • Analysing the unseen language paper: where is an A/A* achieved or lost?
  • Key attributes of Grade A/A* students in the classroom
  • Which skills are the very hardest for A-Level Latinists?
  • Avoiding potential hazards: what can cost a top student their A grade?

15 min break

Session 2: (60 minutes) Training A/A* linguistic behaviours

  • Building vocabulary and developing skills for spotting cognate words
  • Varying approaches to unseen translation work in class to develop different skills – not just the same old task
  • Using grammatical analysis and prose composition to stretch able students
  • Approaches for the comprehension paper: preparing for different authors and question styles
  • How should a Year 12 Latinist maintain their language skills over the summer? Activity ideas for remote learning

15 min break

Session 3: (60 minutes) Teaching literature to stretch able students

  • Moving on from GCSE approaches – encouraging students to become sensitive readers
  • The value of context – using who?/what?/when?/why? questions to push students
  • Different approaches to discussing and writing about ‘style’
  • What makes a strong A-Level commentary? How can we build up to this?
  • Ideas for remote literature teaching: guided and independent work

Henry Cullen

Henry is Head of Classics at Colfe’s School, London, and prior to that taught at Tonbridge School and Winchester College. He has experience of preparing students for A-Level, Pre-U, GCSE, and IGCSE examinations in Latin, Greek and Classical Civilisation. He is co-author (with John Taylor) of Latin to GCSE (Bloomsbury, 2016), which is designed to cover the requirements of the new OCR GCSE (9-1) specification, and co-author of Latin Stories: A GCSE Reader (Bloomsbury, 2nd edition 2017). He has regularly delivered CPD sessions for Keynote and for Classics For All. He has been a tutor at the JACT Greek Summer School (held at Bryanston School) since 2011, and the course’s Director of Studies since 2014.