Students

Welcome to the Languages Department

The Department aims to ensure that every student is educated to a high standard and appropriate to their ability. As a Department we have high expectations of all the students in our care, and we strive to establish an atmosphere in which all students feel safe and confident to succeed. Learning another Language encourages students to work collaboratively and communicate with others. It greatly improves listening skills and increases oral confidence as students try to have conversations with each other or native speakers in the foreign language.

Staff

  • Mr S Cox Head of Languages
  • Alexis McKernan 

Languages Film

Links to SMSC:

Throughout all Key Stages students learn about the different way the world has shaped us, especially with reference to French and Spanish speaking countries. In all units students will either study different aspects of culture, religion, political implications and how these impact on society. We try to teach students that there are different but equally valid ways of approaching life. A key example would be the cultural topic studied in A level.

Links to British Values including Prevent duty:

The study of languages covers all aspects of our British values, which are constantly referred to when analysing the values of French and Spanish speaking countries.


Key Stage 3

Course title: KS3 Modern Languages (French / Spanish)

Course Overview: The Key Stage 3 curriculum is currently being amended to adapt to the changes in the new specifications at GCSE and A level.

The languages on offer are French and Spanish which are alternated on an annual basis.

2016 – 2017 Year 7 students will be studying French at KS3.

A variety of teaching strategies are used to engage students through the four skill areas of Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Students take part in group work, co-operative learning, surveys, pair-work, drama, singing, interactive games and quizzes. We also use ICT to develop students´ skills and computer programmes make a valuable contribution to the acquisition of a foreign language.

Key Areas Of Study:

Students will study a variety of themes across KS3.

These themes cover topics such as:

  • Describing oneself and family,
  • greetings,
  • numbers,
  • school life,
  • free –time and leisure,
  • food and drink,
  • holidays and global and cultural issues and differences.

Grammar is a key feature at KS3. Students will be expected to write and speak in at least two time frames by the end of KS3, such as the present and past tense.

Assessment: Students are assessed at regular intervals in all the four skill areas in line with Raising Stars (every 6 weeks)

Course Length: 2 years

Progression to: Students choose GCSE option choices at the end of Year 8.

Extra-Curricular Activities: Drop in session Mondays 2.30 -3.30 for help with IL

Trips: Students also have the opportunity to experience the language for real on study trips to either Spain or France.

In March last year, we went to Paris and in previous years we have been to other parts of France and Spain!

Facilities: All MFL classrooms have interactive whiteboards.


Key Stage 4

Course title: GCSE French or GCSE Spanish

Course Overview:

  • Develop understanding of the spoken and written forms of French/Spanish in a range of contexts;
  • Develop the ability to communicate effectively in French/Spanish through both the spoken and written word, using a range of vocabulary and structures;
  • Develop knowledge and understanding of the grammar of French/Spanish, and the ability to apply it;
  • Apply this knowledge and understanding in a variety of relevant contexts which reflect their previous learning and maturity;
  • Develop knowledge and understanding of countries and communities where French/ Spanish is spoken;
  • Develop positive attitudes to French/ Spanish learning.
  • Provide a suitable foundation for further study and/or practical use of French / Spanish

Key Areas Of Study:

  • Theme 1 - Identity and Culture
    • Me, my family and friends Technology in everyday life Free time activities Customs and festivals in the target language-speaking countries / communities
  • Theme 2 – local, national, international and global areas of interest.
    • Home, town, neighbourhood and region Social issues Global issues Travel and tourism
  • Theme 3 – current and future study and employment
    • My studies Life at school/college Education post-16 Career choices and ambitions

Assessment:

  • 1 Exam including the following which are each 25% of final marks.
  • Unit 1: Listening
    • Foundation Tier: 35 mins (+ 5 minutes reading time)
    • Higher Tier: 45 minutes (+ 5 minutes reading time)
  • Unit 3: Reading
    • Foundation Tier: 45 mins
    • Higher level: 1 hour
  • Unit 4: Writing
    • Foundation Tier: 1 hour
    • Higher Tier: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Unit 2: Speaking 25%
    • Non exam assessment
    • Foundation Tier: 7-9 min (+ Preparation time)
    • Higher Tier: 10-12 minutes (+ Preparation time)

Course Length: 2 years

Progression to: Passport to French (Year 11), A level French

Extra-Curricular Activities:

  • Revision session on Mondays 2.30-3.30
  • Easter revision sessions.
  • Intervention classes.

Trips:

Students also have the opportunity to experience the language for real on study trips to either Spain or France.

In March last year, we went to Paris and in previous years we have been to other parts of France and Spain!

Facilities: All MFL classrooms have interactive whiteboards.


Key Stage 5

Course title: AS/A Level Spanish (AQA)

The two new qualifications are completely separate.

Course Overview

The new A Level course aims to develop students´ speaking, listening, reading and writing skills.

AS and A Level students will study the structure and the grammatical system of the language. The end of the course will test their use of accurate grammar and structures appropriate to the tasks set.

Key Areas Of Study

At AS Level students develop their knowledge of Spain/France, they learn about aspects of Hispanic/ French speaking world, such as modern and traditional values, cyberspace and equal rights. Students will learn about artistic culture in the Hispanic/ French world and will study modern day idols, Spanish/ French regional identity and cultural heritage or cultural landscape. Students will also study one book or film from the lists given by the exam board.

At A2 Level students will study all of the year 1 content at AS. They will then go on to learn about multiculturalism in Hispanic/ French society and will study, immigration, racism and integration. They will also learn about aspects of political life in the Hispanic/ French world and will cover themes such as; Today´s youth, tomorrow´s citizens, monarchies, republics and dictatorships and popular movements. A Level students will also conduct an individual research topic on a subject of personal interest, relating to the country or countries where the language of study is spoken.

Assessment at AS Level:

  • Paper 1: Listening and responding to spoken passages from a range of contexts and sources, covering different registers. Reading and responding to a variety of texts written for different purposes, drawn from a range of authentic sources.
    • Translation into English.
    • Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes.
    • 80 marks
    • 40% of AS
  • Paper 2: Translation into the language of study.
    • One book from the list of set texts or one film from the exam specification.
    • Written paper: 1 hour 15 minutes
    • 60 marks
    • 30% of AS
  • Speaking
    •  Knowledge of two sub-themes.
    • Speaking test: 12 -14 minutes (plus 15 minutes´ preparation time before the test begins)
    • 60 marks
    • 30% of AS

Assessment at A Level only:

  • Paper 1: Listening and responding to spoken passages from a range of contexts and sources, covering different registers. Reading and responding to a variety of texts written for different purposes, drawn from a range of authentic sources.
    • Translation into English.
    • Translation into the language of study
    • Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes.
    • 160 marks
    • 40% of A- level
  • Paper 2: Two books from the list of set texts or one book from the list of set texts and one film from the list in the specification.
    • Written exam: 2 hours
    • 90 marks
    • 30% of A Level
  • Speaking
    • Individual research project.
    • Knowledge of one of the sub-themes.
    • Speaking test: 21-23 minutes (including 5 minutes´ preparation time at the start of the test)
    • 60 marks

Course Length:

  • 1 year for AS
  • 2 years for A2

Progression to: Degree in French / Spanish

Extra-Curricular Activities:

  • Easter revision sessions.
  • Intervention classes.
  • One to one speaking classes with native speaker of French / Spanish

Trips

Students also have the opportunity to experience the language for real on study trips to either Spain or France.

In March last year, we went to Paris and in previous years we have been to other parts of France and Spain!

Facilities: All MFL classrooms have interactive whiteboards.


Further Information

All students at Harrogate High School study either French or Spanish at Key Stage 3 (years 7 & 8).  Currently languages are rotated on an annual basis.  For example the intake for 2016-17 will be studying French.

The Department aims to ensure that every student is educated to a high standard and will be grouped according to their ability.  As a Department we have high expectaions of all students in our care, and we strive to establish an atmosphere in which all students feel safe and confident to succeed.

Learning another language encourages students to work collaboratively and communicate with others.  It greatly improves listening skills and increases oral confidence as students try to have conversations with each other in a foreign language.  Having knowledge of a foreign country, its culture, and understanding how people in other countries think, will enable students to interact effectively with them.  This is a skill which prospective employers are actively looking for in all professions and industry.  Having a qualification in Languages is also the requirement of many universities.  Whilst Languages are not compulsory at Harrogate High School, at Key Stage 4 we aim to give the right advice and guidance to students through our pathways programme, to ensure that each student is on the right course and has the best possible chance of success in external examinations.

Where does a Modern Language qualification get you?

Whatever students decide to do as a career, it is possible that they will one day find themselves working for a multi-national company or firm with connections abroad, or even just using the language while on holiday.  Employers want people with skills such as engineering, law and chemistry who can speak a language too!  Many companies give preference to applicants with suitable language skills.

Teaching and Learning

A variety of teaching strategies are used to engage students through the four skill areas of Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.  Students will take part in group work, co-operative learning, surveys, pair-work, drama, singing, interactive games and quizzes.  Computer programmes make a valuable contribution to the acquisition of a foreign language and form an integral part of our teaching.  We use a variety of inter-active CD ROMs and other programmes to allow students to practise various skills according to their needs.  All our language rooms are equipped with an inter-active white board.

We also often have the use of foreign nationals to assist the teacher both inside and outside of the classroom by promoting their country and culture and by providing valuable authentic speaking practice.  As a Department we strive to make our lessons fun and enjoyable for all.

Enrichment Activities

The Department hold additional sessions after school each week to reinforce student learning or extend and deepen student knowledge in preparation for examinations.

Trips and Visits

The Department have, over the last few years, organised many successful trips to both France and Spain.  Our last trip in the spring of 2015 was a visit to Paris.  Other foreign trips include visits to Cantabria, Barcelona, Normandy and Strasbourg. Students always find these study trips rewarding memorable experiences and enjoy practising their chosen language in the authentic situation.

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