The study of Modern Foreign Languages is an important part of the curriculum at Churchdown School Academy. The department is staffed by five well-qualified language teachers, and we teach French, German and Spanish up to A Level.
Language lessons are taught in a modern, purpose- built suite of classrooms. Each room is equipped with air -conditioning, interactive whiteboards, and all staff use the latest technology and language software in their daily teaching.
In Year 7 all pupils study one language, currently either French, German or Spanish. They learn to speak about themselves, their families and their interests, and how to use the language for real purposes of communication. Year 7 pupils are introduced to the basic language patterns and grammatical features which gives them an understanding of how the language works. They are also taught skills in order to better equip them throughout their language learning experience at Churchdown, such as dictionary skills and pronunciation strategies.
In Years 8 and 9, pupils continue to study one language. It is hoped that some pupils will be able to pick up a second language in Year 8 if they have shown a particular aptitude for their first one. They draw on the generic language learning skills that they picked up in year 7 to develop their confidence and ability as they learn to speak in different tenses across a variety of stimulating topics. Topics covered include:
- Family, Friends, Interests
- Holidays & Travel
- Media & Technology
- Food & Drink
Edexcel GCSE German/French/Spanish
From September 2016, the topics that are covered across the 4 language skills are designed to help pupils to understand and be able to communicate effectively across a range of relevant contemporary and cultural themes. There are 5 main themes that are broken down into sub-topics:
- Identity and Culture:relationships, friends and family, everyday life, food and drink, social media, celebrations, sport, music, TV
- Local Area, Holidays and Travel:holiday preferences, travel and accommodation, dealing with problems, shopping, eating out
- School:school day, subjects, rules and pressures, school trips, events, exchanges
- Future Aspirations, Study and Work:using languages beyond the classroom, employment, further study, volunteering
- International and Global Dimension: sports and music events, campaigns and good causes, environmental issues, being “green”
AQA AS and A Level German/French /Spanish
At AS and A Level students will further develop their linguistic skills alongside their understanding of the culture and society of the countries where German/ French/ Spanish is spoken. Pupils will study a range of different topics based on social and technological change. For example, at AS Level they will explore the changing state of the family, aspects of youth culture, including fashion, music and television. At A Level they will go on to look at integration, immigration and racism. They will also focus on the digital world, and highlights of German/ French/Spanish speaking artistic culture, including art and architecture. They will look at festivals and traditions. At A Level pupils will discuss the European Union and Politics and Youth. They will also explore the influence of the past on present day German/ French/ Spanish speaking countries, and the issues and influences that have shaped them. At AS Level they will study a film. At A Level they will also study a book, and they will be able to carry out independent research on an area of their choice.
Extra Curricular Opportunities
The MFL department is committed to providing a variety of opportunities for enthusiastic and talented linguists at Churchdown. We offer trips abroad to France, Germany and Spain for all pupils. We hold the European Day of Languages on 26th September every year, and encourage all staff and students to try a different language as they greet each other. For example, every pupil or member of staff asking for a cake in a foreign language from the MFL cake stall at break, gets it for free.
We run a House Event each year, for example a 'Singalonga Disney' competition in different languages.
We organise various intervention clubs at lunchtimes and after school for Year 11 students, which are well attended.
The department runs a range of educational visits. Pupils are offered the opportunity to go on a four day residential visit to the Rhineland in Germany, Normandy in France or Murcia in Spain. Underpinning all of our trips is the aim that our pupils experience the culture and history of these fabulous European countries, and use their language in a real context.
Next steps or Where the subject leads
People with language skills are highly thought of in the modern world. They stand out as talented and successful people, excellent communicators, with broad and exciting horizons! Taking a formal qualification in German/French/Spanish will mean that you will:
Be able to study German/French/Spanish at A Level in the sixth form, and to degree level at university, if you study A Level
Add an extra dimension to your personal skills profile, which will impress anyone who reads your CV
Be in a stronger position to get a job in companies with international links
Be able to speak and write German/French/Spanish spontaneously, and have a deep understanding of the lifestyle and culture of German/French/Spanish speaking countries
- Careers using Languages include:
These are interactive websites to help you revise, where you can play games and complete activities on line for immediate feedback. If you require past papers or downloadable / paper resources, your MFL teacher can point you in the right direction.
If you need any logon details, just ask your MFL teacher.
www.suttonhighmfl.110mb.com (not to be missed!)
www.goethe-verlag.com/tests (fantastic for practising gap-fill exercises)
www.hellomylo.com (quite simple stuff but good for revising the basics)
www.aiglonlanguages.ch (use the drop down menus to find the activities)