Modern Foreign Languages

Why learn a language?

Learning a language is fun, it’s a skill for life, it’s impressive and it’s really useful!

Plus…It’s good for brain growth, it prevents dementia, promotes listening skills, learning one language helps you learn others, it boosts your memory you get better at multi-tasking, it increases attention span, it activates more parts of your brain and it improves your English!

75% of the world’s population have no English. 29 countries have French as an official language (80 million speakers) and 21 have Spanish as an official language (405 million speakers).

Both French and Spanish are taught at KS3, students have the option to choose one or both languages for GCSE and Advanced level.

The language you will learn will enable you to cope in everyday situations, for example on holiday or when a French/Spanish visitor is here.

We have contact with a school in Brittany with whom we exchange letters, and have foreign students visiting our school.  In the past we have run foreign trips and hope to do so again in 2017.

There are 4 members of the Modern Foreign Language department, 2 specialise in Spanish and 2 specialise in French, but all teach both languages.

Staff

Mrs H Coley Head of MFL  
Mrs K Howden Head of Spanish & Teacher of French
Miss M McConnachie Teacher of French & Spanish  mcconnachiem
Mr D Jones Teacher of Spanish  jonesd

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9
In year 7 students will study both Spanish and French in equal measure. In the first half of the year they will study one language, French or Spanish, and in the second half they will study their second foreign language. Students will have 6 lessons a fortnight. This will give students a balanced experience of both French and Spanish which will enable them to make an informed choice about which language they would like to do in years 8 and 9. In year 8 students will choose either French or Spanish based on their experiences in year 7. They have six lessons a fortnight. In year 9 students will continue with their chosen language for four lessons a fortnight.

Current Courses

French GCSE

WHAT EXAM BOARD IS USED ? EDEXCEL

HOW WILL I BE ASSESSED ?

Two speaking controlled assessments (each worth 15% of GCSE)

Two writing controlled assessments (each worth 15% of  GCSE)

(Controlled assessments are done at intervals throughout the course in years 10 and 11)

Terminal exam in Listening comprehension  (20% of GCSE)

Terminal exam in Reading comprehension (20% of GCSE)

Spanish GCSE

WHAT EXAM BOARD IS USED ? EDEXCEL ( current year 10 and thereafter ) AQA ( Current Year 11 June 2015 will be the last year doing this board)

HOW WILL I BE ASSESSED ?

Two speaking controlled assessments (each worth 15% of GCSE)

Two writing controlled assessments (each worth 15% of  GCSE)

(Controlled assessments are done at intervals throughout the course in years 10 and 11)

Terminal exam in Listening comprehension  (20% of GCSE)

Terminal exam in Reading comprehension (20% of GCSE)

New Specifications from September 2016

French/Spanish GCSE

WHAT EXAM BOARD IS USED ? Decision to be based on new specifications

HOW WILL I BE ASSESSED ?

Terminal Oral exam (conducted by teacher, externally marked) (25%)

Terminal exam in Listening comprehension  (25%)

Terminal exam in Reading comprehension (25%)

Terminal exam in Writing (25%)

Current courses

French A level

WHAT EXAM BOARD IS USED?  OCR

Topics areas for AS are:

Aspects of daily life: The family,Food, drink, health, obsessions and addictions

Leisure and entertainment: Sport, Tourism,Leisure activities,

Communication and media :Communication technology, Media

Education and training:  School and school life, Work and Training, Topic areas for A2 are:

Society: Integration and exclusion, Law and order, Unemployment

The environment: The individual and the environment,Energy management, Pollution,   Conservation of the natural world

Science and technology:Medical Progress, Scientific Advances,Technological developments

Culture:  Literature and the arts, Political issues, Heritage and history

HOW WILL MY WORK BE ASSESSED?

AS

There are two externally assessed units at AS which form 50% of the four-unit Advanced GCE

Unit 1 is the speaking test, with a role-play (6 minutes) and topic discussion (10 minutes).  It represents 30% of the marks for AS (15% of A Level)

Unit 2 is a written paper (2 ½ hours) testing the other three skills with a variety of listening, reading and writing tasks.  It represents 70% of the marks for AS (35% of A level).

A2

Unit 3 is the speaking test, with a discussion of a topical article in the target language (6 minutes) and topic discussion (12 minutes) It represents 15% of the marks for A level

Unit 4 is a written paper (2 ½ hours), testing the other three skills, with a variety of tasks involving comprehension and manipulation of the language as well as an extended essay.  It represents 35% of the marks for A level.

Spanish A level

WHAT EXAM BOARD IS USED?  EDEXCEL

Topics areas for AS are:

Young Person in society: Family life, Fashion, New Technologies, The Generation Gap, Addiction and Alcoholism

Leisure and entertainment: Sport, Leisure activities, Healthy living, Diet

Education and Careers: Differences in the Spanish and English education systems,  School and school life, Work and Training

Tourism and the environment: Tourism today, Eco-tourism, The long term effects of tourism on the environment.

Topic areas for A2 are:

Human Rights: Immigration, Sexual discrimination, Euthanasia,

The environment:Spanish Flora and Fauna, Sustainable energy sources, Climate change

The law: Terrorism, The drugs war, Criminality

Culture: Literature and the arts, Film, Heritage and history

HOW WILL MY WORK BE ASSESSED?

AS

Unit 1 – is a combined listening, reading and writing paper. Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes (25%)

Unit 2 – is a speaking examination which includes a role-play and short conversation on one of the four topic areas

A2

Unit 3 is the speaking test which requires candidates to defend a point of view on any polemical issue.

Unit 4 is a written paper (2 ½ hours), this includes a short translation from English into Spanish, a discursive essay on a topical issue and an essay on a researched topic. The researched base topic can be a film or literary work in the Spanish language, a geographical area in the Spanish speaking world or a period of Spanish or Latin American history.

New Specifications from September 2016

French/Spanish A level

WHAT EXAM BOARD IS USED?  Decision to be based on new specifications

AS and A Level in French/German/Spanish gives learners the opportunity to develop and deepen their awareness and understanding of the language, as well as the cultural knowledge of the countries and communities where the language is spoken.

In addition to the focus on speaking the language confidently and coherently, learners will increase their knowledge of the countries and communities where the language is spoken by their study of language in its cultural, literary and social context, as well as through cinema and literature.

HOW WILL MY WORK BE ASSESSED?  Depending on exam board but a typical example would be:

Comprehension paper: Listening comprehension, Reading comprehension, Translation into English

(40% of total A Level, 2 hours 30 mins)

Writing: Translation into French/Spanish, critical essay on a prescribed film or text, literary essay  (30% of total A level, 2 hours 45 mins)

Speaking : Discussion of stimulus material, talking about a research projects (16-18 minutes, 30% of total A level)