In today's world the need to communicate internationally, both for business and leisure purposes, is increasingly important. Our students gain a maximum exposure to the language studied and are provided with the opportunity to participate in cultural events and visits to enhance their learning. By these means we aim not only to broaden the opportunities available to our students in an increasingly competitive workplace, but also to enable them to improve their experiences abroad through effective communication.
The department aims to:
• Produce confident and proficient linguists equipped for this challenge.
• Teach skills enabling us to understand and communicate in other languages
• Look at how cultures differ in countries where the target language is spoken
• Help students gain a valuable insight into how their own language works, by following grammatical rules and applying them in different contexts
What will my child learn?
The purpose of a language GCSE is to be able to communicate in the language and students will learn how to express themselves competently within the topics that they study. Students are assessed in listening, speaking, reading and writing. The topics covered are a natural extension of the themes studied in KS3 and range from expressing information about self and family to holidays and future plans.
At French and Spanish GCSE, students cover the following topics:
• Out and about
• Customer Service and transactions
• Personal information
• Future plans, education and work
Your child will be taught French and/or Spanish as far as possible in the target language by their class teacher in order to immerse them in the language as much as possible. The topics covered are listed above and students will hone their skills in listening, reading and of course, speaking and writing. They will gain an understanding of the grammar of the language and learn how to speak and write in different tenses.
How many lessons will my child have each week?
Your child will have five lessons per fortnight.
There are a number of activities on offer, from trips to the cinema, a film club, a conversation club and successful trips to France and Spain for Year 10 that have been run in the past.
What Sixth Form options does this course lend itself to?
With an A or an A* at GCSE, students can further their studies by taking an ‘AS’ Level in French or Spanish.
How will my child’s work be assessed?
The assessment format is as follows:
Unit 1 – Listening 20% (Exam - Foundation 30 minutes, Higher 40 minutes)
Unit 2 – Speaking 30% (2 controlled assessments to be submitted)
Unit 3 – Reading 20% (Exam - Foundation 35 minutes, Higher 50 minutes)
Unit 4 – Writing 30% (2 controlled assessments to be submitted)
Students are given the choice of whether they want to sit the Higher or Foundation paper in their Listening and Reading exams. This choice is guided by their teacher and performance in mock exams. As mentioned previously, Listening and Reading exams are weighted at 20% each and the Speaking and Writing elements are weighted at 30% each.