“Learning another language is not only learning different words for the same things, but learning another way to think about things.” Flora Lewis, journalist
At Theale Green we know that through learning another language you can expand your view of the world and other cultures. You learn to be flexible, tolerant and respectful of others. Language study improves your listening and memory skills and improves your knowledge of your own language too. It can give you a competitive edge in following your career goals. Learning a language enriches you in so many ways, opening the door to art, music, dance, fashion, cuisine, film, philosophy and science. At Theale Green we aim to ensure that students are confident and positive about learning languages now and in the future.
Key Stage 3
Students in years 7-9 learn French as their modern foreign language.
The curriculum at KS3 is structured to start with topics that allow students to talk about themselves and their family, moving on to where they live and what they do, and then to wider issues and experiences, such as travel, lifestyle, and personal responsibilities. As the subject content broadens, so does the complexity of grammar and structures, leading to confidence in using the past, present and future tenses by the end of the key stage. All of the topics in the KS3 curriculum have been chosen to provide a sound foundation for study at GCSE.
Learning is continuously assessed in a variety of ways, such as vocabulary tests, tasks completed in class, and homework. At set points in the school year, there are timetabled tests when progress is assessed through the following skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing, linked to the assessment style of the GCSE.
At GCSE we follow the AQA specification for French (8658) https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/french-8658
French GCSE is structured around 3 themes: Identity and culture, Local, national, international and global areas of interest, and Current and future study and employment. Learning is assessed continuously throughout years 10 and 11 through vocabulary testing, classwork, homework and past paper questions. There are exams mock in year 10 and year 11 in listening, speaking, reading and writing. In the final GCSE exams students are entered for either foundation tier (grades 5 to 1) or higher tier (grades 9-4).
If a student has a good level of fluency in another language, for example one that is spoken at home, it may also be possible to sit a GCSE qualification in that language.
At A level we follow the AQA specification for French (7652) https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/as-and-a-level/french-7652
French A level is structured around 3 areas: Social issues and trends, Political and artistic culture, and Literary texts and films. Students’ learning is assessed continuously through vocabulary testing, classwork, homework, presentations and independent research. There are mock exams in year 12 and year 13 to assess listening, speaking, reading and writing, in line with the final A level exams.
Studying French at A level is highly recommended for students who wish to apply to competitive academic courses at university. It is recognised as a ‘facilitating’ subject.
If a student has a high level of fluency in another language, for example one that is spoken at home, it may also be possible to sit an A level qualification in that language. This requires a commitment to independent study and exam preparation.
Your prospects of following any career that you choose will always be enhanced by knowing another language. There are obvious language-related jobs such as interpreting, translation, teaching and journalism, and there are also many wide-ranging career opportunities in multi-national and global companies who provide opportunities to travel the world. The tourism and hospitality industry is another field where being able to communicate face-to-face in another language definitely gives you the edge. However, practically any job these days may see you coming into contact with people who will always be impressed to hear or read a communication in their own language. Being able to speak another language can change your career, and your life!