BIENVENUE! WILLKOMMEN! ¡BIENVENIDOS!
Head of Modern Foreign Languages: Mrs Banks
Assistant Head of MFL: Mr Earnshaw-Crofts
Teachers: Mr Lennon, Mrs Guerrero, Miss Rashid, Mrs Hodge
INTENT, IMPLEMENTATION AND IMPACT OF THE MFL CURRICULUM
The purpose and intent of the MFL curriculum is to provide BGS students with the transferable skills and cultural and subject specific knowledge needed to be successful at KS3, GCSE and beyond; inspiring our students as successful linguists and responsible learners, instilling a love for languages and for the cultures of the countries in which they are spoken, as well as encouraging study at A-Level and beyond in a subject which is highly regarded in academic circles.
Students will also develop their confidence and personal skills, though embracing challenges, which are relevant to all aspects of their studies, as well as the world of work, thereby enabling them to develop into caring individuals and active citizens.
Departmental curriculum maps ensure the logical and systematic development of language skills from KS3, through GCSE and onto A Level.
At KS3, vocabulary and grammar knowledge are steadily developed, via the means of meaningful themes which are personal and relevant to the students. All four skills (Listening, Reading, Speaking and Writing) are continually developed with regular assessment essential to monitor progress, using course books and online materials.
There is an impetus in Year 8 for students to make greater progress, as they opt for one language with double the teaching time, compared to Year 7. From 2022-23 students will study a single language in Year 7 to enable additional progress at KS3 to be made.
There is also a large focus on students developing the ability to work independently as responsible learners, using other resources to consolidate and expand subject knowledge and accuracy of language production. Students will also be encouraged to take risks and to be prepared to make mistakes as part of the learning process, therefore consistently embracing challenge.
In Years 9-11, there is a significant increase in complexity, and systematic use of the Oxford Higher GCSE materials and accompanying Kerboodle online materials allow students to cover the three themes of the course in detail. Progress Grade assessments reflect the format of genuine GCSE tasks, enabling students to develop familiarisation of the examination content from the beginning of the key stage. Regular usage of Grammar and Translation books allows development of accuracy in key writing skills.
Students will have enhanced their ability to communicate confidently in and understand a foreign language, to appreciate the cultures of the countries and regions in which the languages are spoken, as well as developing an awareness of accuracy and precision in their work.
By the end of A Level, students will have developed their language skills to an advanced level, enabling greater fluency, and a greater appreciation of the nuances of the language. They will broaden their knowledge of the culture and life of the target language countries, through study of a film and a work of literature, as well as undertaking an Individual Research Project, which forms the major part of their Speaking Exam.
Three languages are currently taught at Burnham Grammar School – French, German and Spanish. The department is staffed by six teachers, with the majority of lessons taking place in four dedicated rooms on the second floor (S26, S35, S37 and S38) each equipped with a smartboard and S26 is an ICT rich classroom.
Exam board for GCSE and A Level: AQA
Links for GCSE specifications:
Links for A Level specifications:
The department uses the following coursebooks and accompanying online platforms for study during lessons and for homework:
French – Dynamo 1 and 2 (Y7-8) with Pearson ActiveLearn, Oxford AQA GCSE French Higher / Kerboodle (Y9-11), Oxford AQA A Level (Y12-13) / Kerboodle.
German – Stimmt 1 and 2 (Y7-8) with Pearson ActiveLearn and Oxford AQA GCSE German Higher / Kerboodle (Y9-11)
Spanish – Viva 1 and 2 (Y7-8) with Pearson ActiveLearn and Oxford AQA GCSE German Higher / Kerboodle (Y9-11), Oxford AQA A Level (Y12-13) / Kerboodle.
The department subscribes to the following digital learning resources to use in both class and at home:
French - Dynamo (Y7-8) and Kerboodle (Y10-13)
German - Stimmt (Y7-8) and Kerboodle (Y9-11)
Spanish - Viva (Y7-8) and Kerboodle (Y9-13)
Year 7 students are allocated a language by the school to be studied in Years 7 and 8; either French, German or Spanish. If there is a strong reason why your son/daughter should not study a language, e.g. The language is spoken at home, then this should be made known by email to Admissions and the Head of MFL, Mrs Banks, as early as possible during the academic year prior to entry. Students in Years 7 and 8 have six lessons per fortnight in their language, in order to focus intensively on embedding key grammar and vocabulary that will underpin their future progress. During Year 8, students make their GCSE options. It is not compulsory at BGS to study a modern foreign language to GCSE, but it is positively encouraged and uptake is high.
All three languages are offered at GCSE. We also encourage native speakers of the languages we teach to gain a GCSE qualification (if they have not taken the subject as one of their options). Students are then able to continue their language studies to A Level.
The curriculum covered in all 3 languages mirrors the requirements of the AQA GCSE and A-Level exams. At Key Stages 3 and 4, the following topics are revisited each year in increasing depth and grammatical complexity:
- Me, my family and friends
- Technology in everyday life
- Free-time activities
- Customs and festivals
- Home, town, neighbourhood and region
- Social issues
- Global issues
- Travel and tourism
- Current and future study and employment
At Key Stage 5 the topics are as follows:
- The role of the family
- Gender equality
- Voluntary work
- Artistic culture
- Political life
- Additionally, a film is studied in Y12 and a book in Y13
To enhance students’ knowledge and enjoyment of language-learning we offer a number of trips to various year groups to France, Germany and Spain. These trips are always very popular, not only with the students but also with members of staff – we are never short of volunteers amongst the teachers!
Additionally, a film is studied in Y12 and a book in Y13. Furthermore, students must undertake an Individual Research Project relating to an area of interest within a French- or Spanish-speaking country. The students' research and findings will then form the majority of the conversation of their Speaking Exam at the end of Y13.