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Modern Foreign Language

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Introduction

At The Warren School we are fully committed to developing languages and offer to students the opportunity to communicate successfully. In our school every student studies a foreign language. Currently in KS3 they study Spanish. In KS4 pupils can opt to continue with the language or start French from scratch. The language is taught in mixed ability classes. Homework is set for both KS3 and KS4 students once a week. Homework provides opportunities to extend knowledge and offers the opportunity of using the language in real life tasks such as interviews or reports. Students also benefit from homework and revision clubs.

KS3

At Key Stage 3, students study a varied Language curriculum based on real life topics. Students are then assessed in each of the four key skills; Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing at the end of each module. Other tests are undertaken to ensure every student achieve their full linguistic proficiency. This assessment information is used by staff to monitor progress and set measurable specific targets. We aim to nurture a love of languages by incorporating a variety of cultural aspects into our teaching as well as creative lessons such as practising songs in the Target Language (TL). We also focus on using creative writing to encourage students to develop their confidence as effective communicators.

In Y9 our students start the AQA GCSE course that provides complete preparation the new stages in years 10 and 11. During this year, Y9 students have the opportunity to study GCSE related topics in which they are assessed using a combination of class assessment and past papers in Spanish.

Year 7

Students in both, Spanish and French, will explore a series of topics such as family, schools, free time and local area. They will be introduced to the uses or regular verbs, adjectives and the three basic tenses:

  • Autumn term – Describing yourself and your school (adjectives/preferences/present tense)
  • Spring term – Free time and local area (comparisons/irregular verbs/ser/estar)
  • Summer term – Hobbies and free time (future and past tenses)

Year 8

In year 8 students continue with further important structures while consolidating the language learnt in Year 7.

  • Autumn term – Relationships/Free time (imperfect tense/comparatives and superlatives)
  • Spring term – Holidays and food (expressions of quantity/adverbs/prepositions)
  • Summer term – Fashion/Healthy Living (Future tenses/negatives/reflexive verbs)

Year 9

In year 9 you will have the opportunity to study GCSE related material. This year you will explore GCSE topics such as ‘lifestyle’ and ‘local area’ while revising the topics introduced during Year 7 and 8.

  • Autumn term     – Free time and future plans
  • Spring term       – Healthy lifestyle and environment
  • Summer term    – Holidays and family

By the end of KS3, students will learn how to use at least three tenses and a range of grammar and vocabulary structures that will enable them to communicate effectively in another language.

KS4

At GCSE, pupils will learn about a variety of topics following the AQA GCSE course in either Spanish or French. Pupils undertake tasks in speaking and writing and they will be tested using past examination papers in reading and listening to track their progress and prepare them for their final examination at the end of year 11. During Year 10, pupils will be able to complete assessments in speaking and writing and they will have the opportunity to take listening and reading exams throughout the year which will help the teachers monitoring the progress and set specific targets. In year 11, pupils will continue with new written and speaking assessments on the GCSE topics and they will undertake ‘mock’ examinations in December and March at either higher or foundation level. These assessments are used as a basis for target setting and monitoring purposes and ensure all of our pupils reach their full potential. Consistent oral and written feedback is given by teachers and regular catch-up sessions and vocabulary tests are set up throughout the year.

The topic areas which are covered during the course include:

Theme 1: Identity and culture

  • Me, my family and friends,
  • Technology in everyday life,
  • Free-time activities.
  • Customs and festivals in Spanish-speaking countries/communities

Theme 2: Local, national, international and global areas of interest

  • Home, town, neighbourhood and region
  • Social issues
  • Global issues
  • Travel and tourism

Theme 3: Current and future study and employment

  • My studies
  • Life at school/college
  • Education post-16
  • Jobs, career choices and ambitions

Unit 1: Listening (25%)
Written exam: 35 minutes (Foundation Tier), 45 minutes (Higher Tier)
40 marks (Foundation Tier), 50 marks (Higher Tier)

Unit 2: Speaking (25%)
Non-exam assessment • 7–9 minutes (Foundation Tier) + preparation time
10–12 minutes (Higher Tier) + preparation time
60 marks (for each of Foundation Tier and Higher Tier)

Unit 3: Reading (25%)
Written exam: 45 minutes (Foundation Tier), 1 hour (Higher Tier)
60 marks (for each of Foundation Tier and Higher Tier)

Unit 4: Writing (25%)
Written exam: 1 hour (Foundation Tier), 1 hour 15 minutes (Higher Tier)
50 marks at Foundation Tier and 60 marks at Higher Tier

How the course is assessed

The course is assessed through a range of assessments in all four skills. Students will sit a listening, reading and written examination and also a speaking test based on a general conversation and a role play (25% each).

What 6th form options does this course lend itself to?

GCSE in Languages offers a range of transferable skills to take into other sixth form subjects. As well as the obvious links, such as English Literature due to its literacy based nature, there is also links to Law, Sociology, Media Studies, History and Politics as Languages are strongly linked to cultural and political factors. Also, the enquiry element means it reinforces those subjects which are enquiry based.

GCSE Results 2019

Congratulations to the Year 11 students on achieving

73% grades 9-4 in Spanish

58% grades 9-4 in French

GCSE Results 2020

Congratulations to the Year 11 students on achieving

68% grades 9-4 in French and

75% grades 9-4 in Spanish

GCSE Results 2021

Congratulations to the Year 11 students on achieving

63% grades 9-4 in Spanish

Extra Curricular

Throughout the year students will be expected to complete homework on a variety of topics and language structures at least once a week. There are also regular homework clubs and revision sessions after school and at lunchtimes.

The department organises annual trips to Boulogne (France) and Paris and we are looking to re-launch our popular annual Granada (Spain) trip.

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