Modern Foreign Languages

The Modern Foreign Languages Faculty

 

Mrs E Bond – Curriculum Leader

Mrs K Davies – Teacher of French / Careers Advice & Guidance

Mr S Jordan – Teacher of French

Mrs A Smith – Teacher of French / Year 8 Manager

 

Our Learning Aims

The Modern Foreign Languages Faculty aims to provide a rich and diverse learning experience for all students, combining sound grammatical knowledge with increased cultural awareness and encouraging creativity and independence. The department is strongly committed to making the study of a foreign language a rewarding experience for the entire ability range, so that each student will be able to achieve his or her potential. We aim to deliver courses which are enjoyable and rewarding, and which offer students a realistic opportunity to be successful at the highest possible level, thus providing a platform for further study.

French is delivered across Key Stage 3 and 4. At Key Stage 3 pupils are taught for 2 hours a week, which increases to 3 hours at Key Stage 4. At Witton Park Academy we follow the French course Studio by Pearson Education across the two Key Stages. The series is a lively and comprehensive new French course which boosts pupils’ enthusiasm, helps pupils become more independent languages learners, increases pupils’ confidence in speaking French, gives pupils a solid understanding of grammar and uses assessment for learning to maximise pupils’ progression. The MFL department has also invested in brand new ICT software called Active Learn for classroom presentation and homework assessments, which complements the Studio series and maximises pupils’ engagement. Through this service pupils can access a digital version of the textbook Studio and assessments in listening and reading which are generally set for homework.

In an increasingly competitive and challenging global marketplace the ability to speak a Modern Foreign Language is not only desirable, it can be the pathway to career enhancement.  Whether socially or in a business context, educationally or for enhancing personal growth through global travel, learning a language will take you on a journey of enrichment that can endure for a lifetime.

“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart”

– Nelson Mandela

 

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3 our curriculum has been written to reflect the world pupils live in, using contexts familiar to them in their everyday lives and teaching them the vocabulary that they need to communicate with young people of their own age on topics that interest and stimulate them.  They are introduced to young French people and given insight into the everyday life and culture of France and other French Speaking countries, encouraging intercultural understanding.

At the same time the Studio course ensures that pupils are taught the language learning skills and strategies that allow them to become independent learners.  The four elements of the Key Stage 3 Programmes of Study (Key concepts, Key processes, Range and content and Curriculum opportunities) and the five strands of progression in the Key Stage 3 Framework for languages are fully integrated into the curriculum.

Click below for overviews of the schemes of work at Key Stage 3:

 

Year 7
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Year 8
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Year 9

From this academic year students will be starting to follow the new AQA French Specification 8658 and following both Studio 3 Rouge and Vert and also Studio AQA GCSE French.

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Key Stage 4

Year 10

We deliver the new AQA GCSE 8658 Specification in French. This qualification is now linear. Linear means that students will sit all their exams at the end of the course.

Students study all of the following themes on which the assessments/exams are based.

Theme 1: Identity and culture

Theme 2: Local, national, international and global areas of interest

Theme 3: Current and future study and employment

GCSE French has a Foundation Tier (grades 1–5) and a Higher Tier (grades 4–9). Students must take all four question papers at the same tier. All question papers must be taken in the same series.

Paper 1 – Listening

Students are assessed on their understanding and responding to different types of spoken language. The paper is worth 25% of the overall GCSE.

It is a written exam of 35 minutes (Foundation Tier) worth 40 marks, or 45 minutes (Higher Tier) worth 50 marks.  Each exam includes 5 minutes’ reading time of the question paper before the listening stimulus is played.  In Section A are questions in English to be answered in English or non-verbally.  In Section B are questions in French to be answered in French or non-verbally.

Paper 2 – Speaking

Students are assessed on their ability to communicate and interact effectively in speech for a variety of purposes.  The Speaking exam is a non exam assessment worth 25% of overall GCSE.  The spoken exam lasts  7-9 minutes  + preparation time for Foundation Tier, and 10-12 minutes for Higher + preparation time for Higher Tier.  The exam is worth 60 marks for each of Foundation Tier and Higher Tier.  The format is the same at Foundation and Higher Tier, but different stimulus  questions for the Photo card and different stimulus materials for the Role Play.

Paper 3 – Reading

Students are assessed on their understanding and responding to different types of written language.  The paper is worth 25% of the overall GCSE.   The written exam is 45 minutes for Foundation Tier and 1 hour for Higher Tier, both exams are worth 60 marks.  In Section A  are questions in English, to be answered in English or non –verbally.  In Section B are questions in French, to be answered in French or non-verbally.  In Section C is the translation from French into English, for Foundation Tier a minimum of 35 words and for Higher Tier a minimum of 50 words.

Paper 4 – Writing

Students are assessed on their ability to communicate effectively in writing for a variety of purposes.  The paper is work 25% of the overall GCSE.  The written exam for Foundation Tier is 1 hour and worth 50 marks and for Higher Tier is 1hour 15 minutes and worth 60 marks. For Foundation Tier question 1 is write a message in response to a photo, question 2 is write a short passage of approximately 40 words, question 3 is a translation from English into French and question 4 is a structured writing task of approximately  90 words.  For Higher Tier question 1 is a structured writing task of approximately 90 words, question 2 is an open ended writing task of approximately 150 words with a choice from 2 questions and question 3 is translation from English into French.

We will be following the new Studio AQA GCSE for French by Pearson.  It will provide our students with continuation from our KS3 course and the resources are designed to drive engagement through interesting, culture-focused content and support us in preparing students for the new AQA GCSE French exams. The text books will be available as an interactive textbook accessible through the Pearson ActiveLearn website.

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Year 11

We deliver the legacy AQA Specification 4655 for French for the current Year 11.

This four-unit specification requires students to develop their ability to write and speak in French and to understand French when it is written down or spoken. This course has 60 per cent controlled assessment.

Unit 1: French listening, 20% of the marks.  This is an exam and students can be entered for either Foundation or Higher, but not both. The Foundation Tier Exam is 30 minutes long and the Higher Tier is 40 minutes long.

Unit 2: French reading, 20% of the marks.  This is an exam and students can be entered for either Foundation or Higher, but not both.  The Foundation Tier Exam is 30 minutes long and the Higher Tier exam is 50 minutes long.

Unit 3: French speaking, 30% of the marks.  Students complete two controlled assessment tasks. These tasks are untiered. Differentiation is by outcome, not by task. These are done in school within the classroom.

Unit 4: French writing, 30% of the marks.  Students complete two controlled assessment tasks. These tasks are untiered.  Differentiation is by outcome, not by task. These are done in school within the classroom.

We follow the Expo GCSE French course in preparation for the legacy AQA Specification.  The course offers a lively, communicative approach, underpinned by a clear grammatical progression.  The text books are available as an interactive text book on the school Moodle via the school website.

 

GCSE Textbooks Expo

Topics studied over the two years are shown below (click to enlarge):

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If you require any further information of the learning and teaching undertaken in the Modern Foreign Languages Faculty please do not hesitate to contact Mrs Bond (telephone 01254 264551) who will be happy to assist you.

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With attendance at 95% we’ve had our best results at KS3 and GCSE.