Modern Foreign Languages

Department vision

Languages are part of the cultural richness of our society and the world in which we live and work.  Learning a foreign language contributes to mutual understanding, a sense of global citizenship and personal fulfilment. At WGSG pupils also learn to appreciate the target language countries and their people, culture and way of life.  Learning a foreign language gives pupils opportunities to express themselves with increasing confidence, independence and creativity. We explore the similarities and differences between the target language and English.  Students develop their communication skills, an understanding of the structure of language and their general literacy skills.

Year 7

In Year 7 all students study French and Manderin.  In each language students start with basic greetings but by the end of the year will able to understand, write and speak about a variety of topics.  They will also learn simple grammar and study the structure of the language in order to use it accurately.  The Year 7 topics include:

  • Personal information

  • Classroom language and instructions

  • Where you live

  • The alphabet

  • Family and home

  • Animals and pets

  • Special occasions

  • Opinions

  • Town and local area

  • Weather

  • Food and meals

  • Leisure and sport

Year 8

In Year 8 all students continue with the two languages studied in Year 7.  They develop their linguistic proficiency further and are able to use more complex grammar and structures.  The topics include:

  • Shops and shopping

  • Countries and holidays

  • Travel and transport

  • School and daily routine

  • Restaurants and cafes

  • Clothes

  • Describing people

  • Free time and entertainment

Year 9

In Year 9 students continue to develop their skills in preparation for GCSE.  During year 9 students will consider whether they will continue with one or both of their languages in Key Stage 4.  They also undertake a project on European diversity, culture and politics.  The Year 9 topics include:

  • European languages spoken throughout the world

  • Technology and the Internet

  • Family life and daily routine

  • Travel and tourism

  • Leisure and culture

  • The media

  • Weather and climate

  • Environmental concerns

Year 10

One language is compulsory in KS4.  There is also the opportunity to continue with both languages studied in Key Stage 3.  For all languages students follow the Edexcel specification.  Students continue to develop their language skills and are assessed in listening, speaking, reading and writing. The current Year 10 topics include:

  • Local amenities

  • Accommodation

  • Public transport

  • Directions

  • Customer service and transactions

  • Personal information

  • General interests

  • Leisure activities

  • Family and friends

  • Future plans, education and work

  • Language of the internet

  • School and college

  • Work and work experience

Year 11

Students continue to develop their language skills which are assessed through written examinations, speaking tests and written assignments.  The Year 11 topics include:

  • Tourist and visitor information

  • Weather forecasts

  • Shops and shopping

  • Customer service and transactions

  • Dealing with problems

  • Cafes and restaurants

  • Lifestyle, healthy eating and exercise

  • Jobs careers and job advertisements

  • Job applications and CVs

Assessment

During Years 7 - 9 pupils are assessed after each unit of work.  The topics are revised in class and revision resources are provided electronically.  Students keep track of their progress in the Unit Tests and consider how they are performing against their targets.  At the end of the Year students sit a formal assessment in each skill, including a speaking test.

During Years 10 and 11 there are regular assessments for each skill.  After each assessment students review their performance through a personal learning checklist.  They keep track of their progress against their targets on a termly basis.  Towards the end of Year 10 and during Year 11 students undertake a minimum of four controlled assessments in speaking and writing which are put towards their GCSE grade.  These currently make up 60% of the GCSE.  Listening and reading are developed in lessons and practised with Edexcel past papers .  These are all available electronically for independent study. 

Post 16 at WG6

Four languages are offered for A level study.  These are taught across the two WG6 sites.  We have a long-standing and effective collaboration with Wilmington Grammar School for Boys which enhances the opportunities available in Modern Foreign Languages.  Our extensive offer Post 16 sets us apart from other schools in the area. We offer courses in:

  • French

  • German

  • Spanish

  • Italian

RELATED CAREERS

Did you know that 94% of the world’s population does not speak English as their first language and 75% do not speak English at all? It’s a multilingual world and UK companies are now realising that they need foreign languages to compete when trading internationally.  There are career opportunities in languages for all levels of ability and in a wide variety of contexts.  Although fluency will give the jobseeker more options, basic ability in languages is much in demand, as employers seek those capable of communicating  with foreign customers.  Salary uplift for those using languages at work can be anything from 8% to 20%, depending on how central languages are to the role. Jobs involving languages have many attractive features: travel/overseas placements, flexible working hours, opportunities for promotion and new responsibilities.  These are just a few of the careers available to linguists:

  • Translation and interpreting

  • Business and financial services

  • Marketing, media and technology

  • International Trade

  • Central government and Civil Service