modern foreign language

Modern Foreign Languages (MFL)

Intent

Our aim is to provide an excellent education for all our students; an education which brings out the best in all of them and prepares them for success in life. 

In MFL we aim to maintain and stimulate lasting pupil curiosity, interest and enjoyment in Modern Languages; to create an atmosphere where pupils wish to learn, so that they come to enjoy the subject, because they are active participants in it. 

The purpose for language learning is to broaden our knowledge and understanding of different countries and culture. The importance for students to know more about the world in which we live is evident in a world where global opportunities are increasing. Languages are also important to develop social skills and confidence and we ensure that our students speak regularly in the language they are learning in order to feel more self-confident. This is designed to provide students with the skills and knowledge that they will need for success in education, professional development and later life. In our curriculum we teach the importance of speaking a foreign language in regards to careers and global issues.

Implementation

We enable each student to achieve their potential in a variety of situations, using an abundance of resources appropriately, to ensure the highest level of achievement for each student. 

We work on developing the ability to use Modern Languages effectively for purposes of practical communication enabling pupils to be familiar with a body of knowledge, skills and vocabulary in Modern Languages.

End of unit tests in listening, speaking, reading and writing skill areas are carried out in all Key Stages. These are done in order to produce both formative and summative methods of assessment. This also assists learners with the retention and recall of knowledge. The school’s curriculum allows subject confidence to develop over time. Teachers within our department are able to meet regularly in order to discuss pedagogy and share good practice. Staff also share expertise on effective pedagogic techniques which help our students embed learning and achieve well.

In our lessons within the department, we use the Rosenshine Principles and Lemov’s Teach Like A Champion strategies.  Students review their previous learning through starter activities. They are consistently questioned on prior knowledge in order to embed knowledge in their long term memory. New material is given to students in small steps, such as through a variety of short activities using the necessary skills for language learning: listening, reading, speaking and writing.

Impact

As a department we strive to create a love of language learning and we hope to encourage students to visit the world in order to discover new and diverse cultures. We strive to ensure students are aware of all the different avenues for their future aspirations, ambitions and that they have a thirst for knowledge for the world around them. For students who wish to study in this area for GCSE and A level we aim to support students in fulfilling their potential, helping them to achieve the highest possible results so that they are well equipped to pursue a future career in this area should they wish to do so.

'Choices at 14+' Booklet

Students can opt for their core language at GCSE. We currently work towards the AQA examination, entering at either Foundation or Higher tier depending on student ability. 

A wide variety of source materials are used to teach at GCSE. We also encourage students to use Microsoft Teams which contains all audio files relating to the current language course books. Examination students also have access to the laptops for intensive practice during the lunchtimes and after school in the lead up to the examination period. 

Currently there are three main topics of study: 

  1. Identity and culture
  2. Local, national, international and global areas of interest
  3. Current and future study and employment

Details of External Examinations 

This is a two year course and examinations in all skills will take place in the summer of the second year of study.

The examination award system is as follows:

  • Foundation Tier (Grades 1-5)
  • Higher Tier (Grades 4-9)

Students must take all four questions papers at the same tier All questions papers must be taken in the same examination period.

The examination structure is as follows:

  • Listening exam 35 minutes (F)
    45 minutes (H)
  • Speaking exam 7-9 minutes (F)
    10-12 minutes (H)
  • Reading exam 45 minutes (F)
    60 minutes (H)
  • Writing exam 60 minutes (F)
    75 minutes (H)

Each examination is weighted at 25% of the total GCSE marks.

Additional Information 

By choosing to study MFL to GCSE level, you will have the benefit of following a study programme which is carefully tailored to build on and revise, in its initial stages, the topics and grammar covered in KS3, meaning that there is a steady transition into Year 10.

You will be encouraged to develop a more independent approach to language learning which will enable you to achieve your potential at GCSE and help you gain a valuable insight into the language, culture and people of target language speaking countries.

There are many different ways for you to discover more about MFL at William Hulme’s. The department is well resourced with books, magazines, and audio and visual materials, and you can enhance independent study by accessing  Pearson Activelearn, GCSEPod and Seneca platforms; to which the school subscribes.

Through the study of a modern language our sixth formers learn to understand and appreciate different countries, cultures and people – and as they do so they are able to think of themselves as citizens of the world as well as of the United Kingdom. Our modern linguists build on their knowledge of the structures of the language that they have already learned up to GCSE level. They are encouraged to develop an understanding of the spoken and written forms of their chosen language from a variety of registers. They learn how to communicate confidently, clearly and effectively and to manipulate and apply the language in more sophisticated ways. 

Students develop critical insights into the contemporary society and culture of countries where their chosen language is spoken. The development of these skills, together with their knowledge and understanding of the structure of the language, lay foundations for future study either of the same language or of other languages at University. 

In Year 12 students are guided carefully through the transition from GCSE to A-level and they are encouraged to adopt a much more independent approach towards their studies. They are able to draw on a wide range of resources for their own independent research: they are taught how to surf the World Wide Web using their target language to find relevant articles for their coursework; they are encouraged to use email to correspond with their fellow linguists in other countries. 

They have access to magazines, various texts, audio and DVD materials in the Department’s well stocked library and in the Learning Resource Centre. Here they can work on a vast range of texts, past papers and individual assessment tasks. Students have the facility to download audio files in MP3 format in order to work on them outside school.  

The presence in this area of the French Cultural Delegation, the Goethe Institute and the Instituto Cervantes, as well as the proximity of several universities, gives our sixth form modern linguists access to a wide range of teaching materials, language days, play performances and films, all of which provide an invaluable extra dimension to their studies. 

Languages are widely viewed as increasingly important in today’s global economy and indeed many university departments such as Business Studies and Law look favourably upon applicants with a language ‘A’ level. Graduates of Modern Languages enjoy one of the highest employment rates of any subject in the UK. The many transferable skills they acquire through living and studying abroad gives them a competitive edge in an increasingly global job market. 

View more information on A Level French

View more information on A Level German

View more information on A Level Spanish 

RM Portico - all students have log in details

Linguascope - all students have log in details

Languages Online 

AQA - Exam Board

Pearson Activelearn

GCSEPod 

Seneca

Staff

  • Mrs H Sackfield - Head of Faculty / Teacher of French and German 
  • Miss C Bauer - Second in Department / Teacher of French and Spanish 
  • Mr D T Evans - Community Languages Lead, Teacher of French and German 
  • Miss E Ruiz-Gonzalez - Teacher of Spanish and French 
  • Mr B Howarth - Teacher of French and German

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