Modern Foreign Languages

The ability to communicate in a foreign language is a highly-valued skill and much sought after by employers.   A language qualification can lead, not only to a richer and more rewarding quality of life, but also to higher earnings as those with skills in a foreign language are, on average, paid more.

75% of the world’s population does not understand a single word of English.   Foreign language skills are valued, not only by companies operating on overseas markets, but also by those dealing with visitors to the UK.   Sectors such as retail, tourism, financial services, fashion, media and sport all recognise the value of being able to communicate with customers in their own language.

The opportunity to study and learn about other cultures, the ability to memorise and recall information, and the challenge of using a range of communication skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) are just some of the unique skills experienced when learning a language.

In the MFL Faculty at HRS, all students have the opportunity to learn French and Spanish from the beginning of Year 7.   Once Year 7 students have settled into the subjects and had a basic experience of both languages, they are set broadly according to their ability.   At the end of Year 7 further refining and preferences allow for the most able to continue with both languages, whilst other students continue with one.   Students regularly exceed their target levels at the end of KS3.

Many students choose a language to complement other EBacc subjects.   Students may study either French or Spanish, or both at GCSE.

Assessment at KS3 and GCSE is based on the four core skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing.

The topic coverage at KS3 focuses largely on the student’s experience of the world: family, friends, leisure activities, holidays and school.   At GCSE, these topics are dealt with in greater depth and additional topics, such as protection of the environment and world citizenship, are introduced.

Students are assessed and mentored regularly to check progress and address underachievement through targeted interventions.   Classrooms are equipped with interactive whiteboards and visualizers as well as sound systems.   Overseas trips and enrichment activities are organised throughout the year.

Expectations in MFL are high and consistently applied with the aim of creating a secure but challenging learning environment.   We aim to develop positive relationships with students, based on a mutual desire to enable the student to achieve his/her full potential.

French studies:
Key Stage three:  In Year 7, all students have three hours of French a fortnight.   We use “Studio 1” to support the study of the language.   Lessons are interactive and varied. Students are encouraged to use as much French as possible.   Our committed, experienced and well qualified team include native speakers of French.

In Year 8, dual linguists continue to study French and Spanish while the remainder of the students continue to study either French or Spanish.   Studio 2 textbooks are used in French to deepen students’ understanding of the language.   A residential trip to Paris is offered to dual linguists.

Key Stage four: in Year 9, Students embark on the Edexcel French GCSE course and practise listening, speaking, reading and writing skills further.    Like Year 8 dual linguist students, they have the opportunity to participate in the residential trip to Paris.

Spanish studies:
In Year 7, all students study three hours of Spanish per fortnight.

At Key Stage 3 (Years 7 and 8), staff and students use the “Mira” range of textbooks to support teaching and learning.

At the end of Year 7, the most able linguists continue to study both languages in Year 8. Others continue with either Spanish or French.

Students are regularly assessed in four core skills: listening, speaking, reading (including translation from Spanish to English) and writing (including translation from English to Spanish).

Those opting to study Spanish at GCSE work towards the exams of the Pearson Edexcel exam board.

As well as participating fully in lessons and completing all homework tasks, all students are encouraged and expected to work independently to consolidate and embed their learning.

Students may also benefit from trips to mainland Spain.   Our most recent trip was to the beautiful and historic city of Salamanca.

Staff Names Staff  Titles
Mrs V Newell Head of Spanish / French / Spanish
Mrs S Roy Head of French / French / Spanish
Mrs M Aldous Spanish and French / Director of PPG student achievement/rewards
Mrs S Winchester French and Spanish
Mrs B Kuhnell French / ICT