Head of Department – Mr I Charnock
All students study both French and German in years 7, 8 and 9 with a few students taking just one language in year 9.
Languages are optional at KS4 and students who decide to study the subject at KS4 obtain very good results (89% 9-4 in French and 98% 9-4 in German 2019). The department strives to provide its pupils with a positive learning experience which will encourage them to pursue their studies for life.
Many think that the only jobs available for language students are in translation, interpreting and teaching but with 75% of the world population not speaking English, UK companies now need foreign language speakers to compete in global markets. A wide range of careers opportunities are enhanced, whether based in the UK or abroad, in a variety of fields including: international business, politics, education and travel.
Because languages are an invaluable asset in today’s multicultural world the course aims to enable students to express themselves proficiently in conversation and in writing on a variety of topical issues, as well as developing research skills. It will develop their ability to extract information from a range of spoken and written texts, to recognise points of view and opinions and develop their awareness of other cultures, including their literary heritage.
This is a two-year linear course during which time students will study topics under the following four themes: Aspects of French speaking society: (family, technology and the role of voluntary work), Aspects of French speaking society, Artistic culture in the French speaking world (music, cinema, heritage), Aspects of political life in the French speaking world (teenager’s politics and immigration). There will be a focus on knowledge and understanding of the target language culture.
Whilst acquiring a much broader range of vocabulary, students will also consolidate their grammatical knowledge of the subject developing their communication skills.
The skills of Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing remain at the core of Language Teaching and students will be engaged in a variety of activities, including presentations and group projects, as well as independent research and teacher led tasks.
The course will continually develop accuracy in language and students must be able to discuss one of the above themes orally, explaining their views. They will analyse aspects of the theme by developing arguments and form conclusions. The course will also develop students’ ability to research a theme of their choice independently which they will then present orally demonstrating their knowledge and understanding of the cultural and social context of their research.
In addition, a literary text and a film will be studied over the course of the two years.