Subject Leader - Modern Foreign Languages

French and Spanish

Mrs L Hanks -  lhanks@ndonline.org

Aims

As a department we fully support the school ethos of educating the whole child ‘head, heart and hands’.  We offer our students the opportunity to develop a range of skills to become both culturally and linguistically aware of the world around them, equipping them with the knowledge needed in a global community.

As a department we aim to enable students to:

  • Understand and communicate in a new language – either French or Spanish
  • Develop learning strategies to allow independence in learning a new language
  • Make cultural and linguistic comparisons between languages and the UK and overseas
  • Increase awareness about cultural difference
  • Foster and develop positive attitudes towards other languages
  • Establish cross curricular links including numeracy and literacy
  • Improve prospects for future jobs and education
  • We will also be building core skills and developing strategies to enable a solid foundation for progression to GCSE

Curriculum

The topics below are a brief over view of what your daughter will be studying over the year.  They have been chosen to allow full development of language skills.  There is also an emphasis on cultural & global issues.  All Year 7 and 8 students study either French or Spanish, alternating each year.

Key Stage 3

All About Me

Introductions, family, friends, nationality, my house, school, physical descriptions, free time, daily routine, my city, the weather.

My Extended World

Describing others in detail, comparatives and superlatives, illnesses and remedies, food, healthy eating, shopping, holidays.

The World Around Us

Holidays, media, TV, film, internet, free time.

 

Students will study the past, present, future and conditional tenses.  Lessons will use a variety of strategies from games and speaking practice to translation and dictation.  We will also be building core skills and developing strategies to enable a successful progression to GSCE and onwards to A Level if required.

Key Stage 4

Our AQA GCSE course offers a valuable opportunity to not only hone linguistic skills but also the extension of both cultural and language knowledge in order to become a confident communicator in a foreign language.  The course will develop skills started in KS3 and encourage students to think about the further concepts of language learning whilst perfecting speaking, listening, reading and writing skills.

Topics covered include:

  • Friends, family and future plans
  • The local area and the positives and negatives of your home town
  • School and future study and employment opportunities
  • Health and how best to lead a healthy lifestyle
  • Free time
  • Jobs and pocket money
  • Daily routine
  • Future employment
  • Media (TV, cinema, internet), the uses of social media and the positive and negative impact
  • Social issues
  • Transport
  • Relationships
  • Environmental issues affecting us and the World at large

Key Stage Five

During the A level course we follow the Edexcel examination board.  Students will be working towards exams in listening, reading and writing as well as preparing a research based essay and oral examination.  The course allows students to develop a variety of skills including expressing their own opinion, debating with others and researching current issues.  They will be prepared to think about language in a modern context, sharing ideas about the world around them and perfecting key linguistic skills.

Assessment

You daughter will complete a baseline ability tracker when arriving in Year 7.   This will be evaluated at the end of each half term after a class assessment.  The tracker is a visual resource that allows students to monitor progress with teacher feedback.   These trackers a kept in a central location so that students can regularly look at their areas for improvement.

All students will have targets on the front of their exercise books and work will be regularly marked with feedback so that they are aware of their progress against their target grades.  All students will have the time to evaluate their feedback and to improve their work accordingly (DIT time), building in development of the skill of being able to critique their own work.

After each assessment students have the opportunity for ‘Dedicated Improvement Time’ (DIT) which allows them to go back and re think an answer or develop a skill.

Key Stage Three

Students will complete at least 5 module tests per academic year base on topics studied each half term.  These tests will focus on at least two of the four skills ( listening, reading, speaking, writing).

Key Stage Four

Students will be working towards their GCSE exams.  Mock exams will be conducted at various points across the academic year, including a mock oral exam in the November of Year 11.

Key Stage Five

Students will be working in preparation for their A Level courses.  This will include a research based essay, listening and reading exams and an oral exam.

Marking

Books are marked every regularly and students are given feedback both in class and upon marking class / homework using ‘What Went Well’ and ‘Even Better If’.  Self-assessment and peer assessment is used often in lessons as is the visual marking strategy so that your daughter can see whether she is on track.  Teachers will always give accessible strategies for students to improve their progress.

Literacy

Teachers use a variety of techniques in the classroom so that students are able to think about their listening, concentration and interaction and where this needs to improve.  The department use a variety of literacy activities to support complete language progression.

Essential Equipment

Within lessons and for the completion of homework it would be beneficial for your daughter to have a bi-lingual dictionary and access to the internet both for research and revision

We would recommend the use of the DUOLINGO APP that can be downloaded for free onto a tablet/smart phone.  This is an excellent tool for developing vocabulary and translation skills

 

Further information about our KS4 course with a variety of online resources can be found at www.aqa.org.uk