Key Stage 3
The focus of KS3 subjects is to spark an interest and intrigue in the subject through a range of inter-curricular strands, investigating the sights, sounds and tastes of the countries where each language is spoken. This is in the hope that once piqued, this curiosity will continue into GCSE and beyond, beginning along-standing interest in the language.
Students are taught to listen, speak, read and write in the foreign language through a range of activities using authentic resources and cultural references to enhance learning. Teachers conduct their lessons as much as possible in the target language and students regularly use CDs, DVDs and video clips to help them develop their listening skills. To encourage students to communicate in the foreign language, they take part in activities including pair/group work, songs and games. Reading skills are developed through the use of whole class reading comprehensions, dictionary work and languages websites and programmes such as Rosetta Stone and Linguascope. Written work ranges from simple statements about themselves in year 7 to more extended writing.
Key Stage 4
In Year 9 students start their GCSE course in either Spanish, French, Arabic, Mandarin or Latin if studied in Year 7 and 8. Students do have the opportunity to study both Spanish and a second language at GCSE level. Since the introduction of the English Baccalaureate, the majority of students are expected to continue studying at least one language at in KS4.
In years 9,10 and 11, all students study their GCSEs in Spanish, French and Mandarin, with speaking and written elements examined throughout the last two years of the course, examined once teachers feel that students are ready for the testing. Although in Latin and Arabic there are no controlled assessments, teachers provide opportunities to inform students’ performance and to identify areas for improvement.
Key Stage 5
Fluency in Spanish opens up educational, employment and travel opportunities,especially in Europe, Latin America and the US, where Spanish is the most widely spoken language after English. Students find it an accessible and attractive language to learn. The study of a foreign language encourages students to use a different part of their brain, develop confidence and learn to appreciate a culture other than their own. The study of grammar often improves their competence in English. The aim of this course is to develop speaking,listening, reading and writing skills and to enable students to use the language for practical communication at an advanced level.