The department currently offers French and German for the whole ability range up to GCSE level. In Year 7 all students study French. More able linguists are given the option to take a second language in Year 8 from German or Spanish. Languages are a popular option choice here at GCSE.
Learning a foreign language is a valuable skill in many ways. It can help to gain access to Higher Education and also opens up opportunities for varied career paths in many fields. Languages are a vital tool for increasing understanding with people of other cultures and nationalities and they open our eyes to the diversity around us. They teach important lessons about the value of careful and accurate work, and they also help with understanding how our own language works. Languages are looked upon as important by employers, who recognise the achievement made by successful candidates and the many skills a linguist has to offer.
Homework / Assessment
All pupils are given a progress booklet with tasks to be completed throughout the year. They also include the vocabulary needed to complete the tasks as well as MAD pages (making a difference) for pupils to act on the feedback given in order to improve their marks and progress. Parents and carers are asked to sign their child’s homework and teachers set regular targets for improvement.
At GCSE the students also have a progress booklet for each topic as well as a programme of revision which includes weekly testing of vocabulary.
At the end of each topic at KS3 and KS4, the pupils sit End of Unit assessments, which give us an overview of the progress made over the whole module of work. In addition, every student will sit an end of year exam to assess their progress over the year’s work.
Resources and Facilities
Pupils are encouraged to use their own time to access ICT based resources, including Linguascope.com, to which the department subscribes and which encourages independent vocabulary learning and Activelearn on which teachers set online tests to be completed at home. The shared area of the school’s network also includes many helpful resources to aid revision and learning, such as Powerpoint presentations and lists of vocabulary.
Extra-Curricular and Extended Learning
Help is regularly available at lunch and after school from teachers for pupils who want extra support or advice. There are also targeted revision and catch up sessions. Lesson 6 is a weekly session provided by all year 11 teachers in order to support progress and achievement