Modern Foreign Languages
The Modern Languages Department aims to enable students across all age and ability ranges to study foreign languages with success and pleasure.
Students will be encouraged to:
• develop the ability to understand foreign languages effectively for the purposes of practical communication.
• develop the ability to use foreign languages imaginatively and creatively.
• develop an understanding of the structures, grammar and nature of foreign languages.
• enhance study skills, in particular language learning skills.
• appreciate the culture and civilisation of foreign countries, sometimes through visits abroad.
• adopt positive attitudes to foreign language learning and to native speakers of the language.
• use skills which have wider application, such as information technology.
• consider pursuing the study of languages to a higher level where appropriate and desirable.
Key Stage 3
Prior to arriving at the school, pupils are allocated to either a French or Spanish group.
In Year 8, all pupils will learn the modern foreign language that they started in the Year and will also start German. Pupils continue with two foreign languages in Year 9.
Key Stage 4
All pupils must learn French or German or Spanish; they may opt to learn another language as well.
Facilities and Resources
The Department has four dedicated classrooms, including a 28 station digitised audio language laboratory. There is also a room for the assistant's lessons and 6th Form study with widescreen TV, TV DVD monitor and two computers. Each classroom has DVD facilities. All rooms have a computer and amplifier through which to play sound recordings and a data projector. Two ICT rooms are easily accessible.
Each language in each year is supported by a specialist course. Pupils at KS4 and KS5 follow the AQA OUP course which is also benefits from the Kerboodle website and can be accessed from home. For all languages software is available, ranging from the Interactive TaskMagic exercise/game generating software to the PowerPoint-based Boardworks.
The Department is also making increasing use of Google Classroom so that pupils can easily access resources and communicate easily with their class teacher.
Trips and visits
To enhance the students' feel and understanding for their language learning and to give them first-hand insight in to the socio-cultural backgrounds of the languages which they are learning pupils are strongly encouraged to participate in the visits abroad and other cultural activities laid on by the Department.
a) Every year a short stay trip for Year 7/8/9 takes place to France, Germany or Spain in the summer during which they will undertake mini language projects.
b) A trip to Berlin in conjunction with the EP and History department for Year 10/11 normally takes place in October with the same format as the Paris trip.
Students, especially older ones, are encouraged to make trips abroad by their own initiative. Information about gap years and work experience abroad is posted from time to time on Departmental noticeboards.
The Department also arranges a number of trips to support pupils’ learning and promote interest in the learning of languages and the encourage curiosity about the cultures of their chosen language. This academic year there have been a number of trips: including Y10 German trip to HOME cinema in Manchester.
The Department is dedicated to providing a wide variety of learning opportunities. We currently offer a Russian Club and an Italian Club, as well as support and revision sessions.
We also encourage participation in a number of regional, nationwide and indeed international competitions including the Young Translator’s competition for 6th Form in November and the Northern Schools MFL Debating Competition. In February, we run the Linguistics Olympiad Competition for Y9 and above. In June, there is an MFL Poetry Aloud competition aimed at Y9 students. Y9 and Y10 German pupils have also had the chance to take part in an essay writing competition organised by Oxford University.
In addition to this, we organise a European Day with outside speakers and various cultural and linguistic being offered which reflect the diversity of Europe. Y11 pupils also have a dedicated Language Enhancement afternoon with guest speakers for Lancaster University and industry as well as taster sessions in different languages including Russian and Japanese.