Modern Foreign Languages

Here at The Crossley Heath School we really value languages and language learning. Students at Key Stage 3 learn both French and German, and it is compulsory for students to continue to learn at least one Modern Foreign Language at Key Stage 4. We also offer both French and German at A-Level. German is spoken by over 130 million speakers and, due to the size and importance of its economy, is one of the most commonly used languages in business. French is one of the most widely spoken language in the world and is an official language of the United Nations, the European Union, UNESCO and NATO. At a time of considerable political change in Europe and against the back-drop of a national decline in language learners, we give every single Crossley Heath student the chance to learn a foreign language and to recognise the wide-ranging benefits which learning a foreign language brings.

Language learning significantly enhances communication skills. We promote pair and group work and develop in our students the ability to express themselves clearly and listen to others. We aim to build the confidence in our students so that they feel happy to converse with native speakers when on foreign visits or holidays. Students are also encouraged to work independently and use their initiative to solve problems by making connections between French, German and English. Therefore, through learning French and German, students also have an improved understanding of English.

❝You can never understand one language until you understand at least two.❞
‒Geoffrey Willans

Through our study of topics such as Festivals and Traditions, we foster an understanding of different cultures and an appreciation and tolerance of difference. We require students to take risks and to work outside of their comfort zone, for example by talking to our foreign intern students, by taking part in our foreign language talent show or by participating in our highly successful exchange programme.

These skills are valued by universities and employers. Languages are used and can be helpful in lots of different jobs not only translation, interpreting or teaching. In fact, many employers reward people with language skills with extra salary because they know they are essential in today’s international business world. Therefore, we aim to dispel the myth that English is enough.

❝One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.❞
‒Frank Smith

Grammar is taught explicitly from the start of Year 7, as our objective is to ensure that students can use the language accurately but also manipulate it creatively. Lessons are engaging and are taught by highly-skilled and enthusiastic subject specialists who are passionate about languages. Teachers use a range of activities including games, songs and languages websites to suit different abilities and learning styles. Lessons are conducted in French and German and students are expected to communicate with each other and their teachers in the language. The four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing are practised as well as translation skills and, later, the ability to paraphrase and summarise. Students enjoy learning French and German at The Crossley Heath School, succeed highly in their exams and value the opportunities these subjects provide.


French at Key Stage 3

Year GroupTerm 1Term 2Term 3
7Greetings and say name
Alphabet
Numbers and say age
Months and say birthday
Objects in schoolbag
Objects in the classroom
Likes and dislikes
Hobbies
Pets

Present Tense regular -er verbs
Describe members of family
Say where you live
Learn names of countries
Weather

Irregular verbs : ‘avoir’ and ‘être’
Describe people’s personality
Describe what people look like
School subjects
Give opinions
Describe your school
Say what you can eat in the canteen.
Online activities
Sports
Hobbies
8Types of TV programmes, films, books.
Discuss what activities you do on the internet.

Revision of present tense –er verbs, avoir + être
-ir,-re verbs + irregular verbs aller + faire
Describe a trip to Paris
Say what you did

Perfect Tense
Talk about relationships with friends and family
Discuss clothes, fashion and music
Prepare for a talent show.

Reflexive verbs
Future Tense

German at Key Stage 3

Year GroupTerm 1Term 2Term 3
7Introduction to Germany and German
Greetings and say name
Alphabet
Numbers and say age
Countries and say where you live
Classroom phrases
Favourite things
Your possessions
Likes and dislikes
Hobbies
Pets

Genders and articles
Present tense verb endings (regular verbs)
Present tense of verbs ‘sein’ and ‘haben’
Possessive adjectives
Question words
Pets
Family members
Larger numbers
Descriptions of family members
Months and birthdates
Sports
Hobbies
Online activities

Pronouns
Plurals of nouns
Modal verb ‘können’
Adjective endings
Adverbs ‘gern’ and ‘nicht gern’
Irregular verbs
Word order – verb inversion
School in Germany
School subjects
Days of the week
Telling the time
Describing teachers
Describing the classroom
Give opinions
Describe your school
Say what you can eat in the canteen.

Verb second idea
Possessive pronouns
Prepositions and the dative case
Modal verb ‘dürfen’
8Talk about what you did on holiday
Ask questions relating to holidays

Form the perfect tense with ‘haben’ and ‘sein’
Dative case with ‘mit’
Word order – ‘TMP’
Give opinions on types of TV programmes, films, books.
Ask questions about the past

Qualifiers
Modal verbs
Talk about breakfast and traditional German food
Understand recipes
Healthy lifestyles
Describe dinner parties
Understand rules in a youth hostel
Daily routine
Places in the town and directions
Traditional festivals in German-speaking countries.

Dative and accusative
Imperative
Future Tense
Adjectival endings
Reflexive and separable verbs

GCSE Curriculum: Years 9-11 French and German

Our objective for GCSE is to enable students of all abilities to develop their French/German language skills to their full potential, equipping them with the knowledge to communicate in a variety of contexts with confidence.

We firmly believe in the benefits that learning a language can bring; it is a skill for life and something students should enjoy and find rewarding.

The course covers three distinct themes. These themes apply to all four question papers.

Students are expected to understand and provide information and opinions about these themes relating to their own experiences and those of other people, including people in countries/communities where French/German is spoken. Students are also taught grammatical skills throughout the course to enable them to communicate clearly.

Theme 1: Identity and culture

Topic 1: Me, my family and friends

  • Relationships with family and friends
  • Marriage/partnership

Topic 2: Technology in everyday life

  • Social media
  • Mobile technology

Topic 3: Free-time activities

  • Music
  • Cinema and TV
  • Food and eating out
  • Sport

Topic 4: Customs and festivals in French/German-speaking countries/communities

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

Topic 1: Home, town, neighbourhood and region

Topic 2: Social issues

  • Charity/voluntary work
  • Healthy/unhealthy living

Topic 3: Global issues

  • The environment
  • Poverty/homelessness

Topic 4: Travel and tourism

Theme 3: Current and future study and employment

Topic 1: My studies

Topic 2: Life at school/college

Topic 3: Education post-16

Topic 4: Jobs, career choices and ambitions 

Assessment

GCSE French/German 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 (25% of GCSE)

Understanding and responding to different types of spoken language. Questions in English and French/German

35 minutes (Foundation Tier),

45 minutes (Higher Tier)

Paper 2: Speaking (25% of GCSE)

Communicating and interacting effectively in speech for a variety of purposes. The test comprises 3 tasks: Role-play, Photo card, General conversation

7–9 minutes (Foundation Tier) + preparation time

10–12 minutes (Higher Tier) + preparation time

Paper 3: Reading (25% of GCSE)

Understanding and responding to different types of written language. Questions in English, questions in French/German, a translation from French/German into English

45 minutes (Foundation Tier),

1 hour (Higher Tier)

Paper 4: Writing (25% of GCSE)

Communicating effectively in writing for a variety of purposes

1 hour (Foundation Tier),

1 hour 15 minutes (Higher Tier)

Foundation Tier

Question 1 – write a message in French/German

Question 2 – write a short passage in French/German

Question 3 – translation from English into French/German

Question 4 – structured 90 word writing task in French/German

Higher Tier

Question 1 – structured 90 word writing task in French/German

Question 2 – open-ended 150 word writing task in French/German

Question 3 – translation from English into French/German


German A Level Curriculum

Studying German at A-level enables students to develop their linguistic skills alongside their understanding of the culture and society of the countries where German is spoken. Students study technological and social change, looking at the multicultural nature of German-speaking society. They will study highlights of German-speaking artistic culture, including art and architecture and will learn how Germany’s political landscape was formed. Students will explore the influence of the past on present-day German-speaking communities. Throughout their studies, they will learn the language in the context of German-speaking countries and the issues and influences which have shaped them. Students will study texts and film and will have the opportunity to carry out independent research on an area of their choice.

Assessment tasks will be varied and cover listening, speaking, reading and writing skills.

The course consists of 2 main topic areas: Social issues and trends + Political and Artistic Culture.

A-level students will study the grammatical system and structures of the language during their course. They also study one novel and one film.

Topic Area 1: Social issues and trends

Aspects of German-speaking society

  • The changing state of the family (Familie im Wandel)
  • The digital world (Die digitale Welt)
  • Youth culture: fashion and trends, music, television (Jugendkultur: Mode, Musik und Fernsehen)

Multiculturalism in German-speaking society

  • Immigration (Einwanderung)
  • Integration (Integration)
  • Racism (Rassismus)

Topic Area 2: Political and artistic culture

Artistic culture in the German-speaking world

  • Festivals and traditions (Feste und Traditionen)
  • Art and architecture (Kunst und Architektur)
  • Cultural life in Berlin, past and present (Das Berliner Kulturleben damals und heute)

Aspects of political life in the German-speaking world

  • Germany and the European Union (Deutschland und die Europaïsche Union)
  • Politics and youth (Die Politik und die Jugend)
  • German re-unification and its consequences (Die Wiedervereinigung und ihre Folgen)

Literary texts and films

Students study one novel (Der Vorleser) and one film (Good Bye Lenin!)

ape1: Listening, reading and writing

Assessments

Paper 1: This examines the topic work (Social issues and trends + Political and Artistic Culture).

Listening exam, Reading exam, Translation into English, Translation into German

  • Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • 50 % of A-level

Paper 2: This examines the study of the novel and the film. Students write 2 essay of approximately 300 words each in German on the book and the film

  • Written exam: 2 hours
  • 20 % of A-level

Paper 3: Speaking

Speaking exam:

  1. i) Discussion of a sub-theme with the discussion based on a stimulus card
  2. ii) Presentation and discussion of individual research project
  • 30 % of A-level (conducted by the teacher)

French A Level Curriculum

Studying French at A-level enables students to develop their linguistic skills alongside their understanding of the culture and society of the countries where French is spoken. Students study technological and social change, looking at diversity and the benefits it brings. They will study highlights of French-speaking artistic culture, including francophone music and cinema, and learn about political engagement and who wields political power in the French-speaking world. Students also explore the influence of the past on present-day French-speaking communities. Throughout their studies, they will learn the language in the context of French-speaking countries and the issues and influences which have shaped them. Students will study texts and film and have the opportunity to carry out independent research on an area of their choice.

Assessment tasks will be varied and cover listening, speaking, reading and writing skills.

The course consists of 2 main topic areas: Social issues and trends + Political and Artistic Culture.

A-level students will study the grammatical system and structures of the language during their course. They also study one novel and one film.

Topic Area 1: Social issues and trends

  • The changing nature of family (La famille en voie de changement)
  • The ‘cyber-society’ (La « cyber-société »)
  • The place of voluntary work (Le rôle du bénévolat)

Topic Area 2: Political and artistic culture

  • Positive features of a diverse society (Les aspects positifs d’une société diverse)
  • Life for the marginalised (Quelle vie pour les marginalisés ? )
  • How criminals are treated (Comment on traite les criminels)

Literary texts and films

Students study one novel (No et moi) and one film (Entre les murs)

ape1: Listening, reading and writing

Assessments

Paper 1: This examines the topic work (Social issues and trends + Political and Artistic Culture).

Listening exam, Reading exam, Translation into English, Translation into French

  • Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • 50 % of A-level

Paper 2: This examines the study of the novel and the film. Students write 2 essays of approximately 300 words each in French on the book and the film.

  • Written exam: 2 hours
  • 20 % of A-level

Paper 3: Speaking

Speaking exam:

  1. i) Discussion of a sub-theme with the discussion based on a stimulus card
  2. ii) Presentation and discussion of individual research project
  • 30 % of A-level

The enriched curriculum

Teaching and learning is underpinned by a range of extra-curricular activities and experiences for students across Years 7-13:

  • Year 10 German exchange trip to Aachen.
  • Year 12 Berlin trip.
  • Y12/13 trip to Manchester Christmas markets.
  • Study Days for German A-Level at universities.
  • Speaking and listening practice with native speakers (intern students) from Paderborn University. We have hosted 2 students in 2018-19.
  • Opportunity to volunteer to run The Language Café and demonstrate resources on Open Evening (11+ and sixth-form).
  • Calderdale Linguafest – a talent competition for Years 7 and 8 launched in June 2019.
  • This Is Language online resource for Years 11-13 to improve vocabulary, grammar and listening comprehension.
  • Linguascope online resource for KS3-4 – a fun resource for practising and enhancing vocabulary and listening.
  • Pearson Active Learn – online resource to accompany the KS3 text books to enable students to practise the skills, vocab and grammar in each topic.
  • Kerboodle – digital text books and online resources for KS4 and KS5.