Modern Foreign Languages
Modern Foreign Languages (MFL)
At Holy Family, the majority of students study both French and Spanish from Year 7. The study of a foreign language helps students to improve and understand their own language as they learn how the grammar of the new language works. Through their language learning, students develop an appreciation for the cultures and opinions of the people around them, as well as acquiring analytical and communicative skills which will enable them to flourish in our global society. The study of a foreign language is compulsory to GCSE level at Holy Family and both languages are also offered at A-level. The MFL department consists of five highly experienced teachers.
Key Stage 3
At Key Stage 3, students have 3 lessons of French and 3 of Spanish per fortnight. They are taught to read, write, speak and understand the foreign language and are assessed at least twice termly in these skills. Target language is used as much as possible in lessons to ensure that pupils are stretched and have maximum exposure to the language being learnt. Topics taught at Key Stage 3 include myself and my friends and family, daily routine, school and where I live, amongst others. Homework is set after every lesson and is considered an integral part of the students' learning, promoting independent learning and laying the early foundations for exam success. Students' work is marked approximately every 2-3 weeks, in line with the whole school marking policy, highlighting particular strengths, as well as suggesting specific areas for improvement. Students are taught in teaching groups.
Key Stage 4
At Key Stage 4, pupils can either decide to continue with both French and Spanish or continue with the study of just one language. They have 5 lessons per fortnight and build on the vocabulary and grammar of the previous Key Stage. Homework is still set after every lesson and may include a piece of extended writing, an exam style question or a listening or reading task from Kerboodle. Students sit a past paper in Listening and Reading every half term in the current Year 11 and are required to complete controlled assessments in Speaking and Writing as specified by their class teacher. The current Year 10 who will sit the new GCSE exam in 2018 will also sit half-termly past papers in Reading and Listening in addition to a written paper devised in line with the new exam. In keeping with the high expectations of the department, the majority of students are entered for the higher tier exams.
Exam board - AQA
Exam 2017 - 30% Speaking, 30% Writing, 20% Listening, 20% Reading
Exams from 2018 - 25% Speaking, 25% Writing, 25% Listening, 25% Reading
Key Stage 5
At Key Stage 5, students have 9 lessons per fortnight. The A-level exam is linear and so students sit their exam at the end of the 2-year course. Homework is still set every lesson and pupils are encouraged to do as much wider reading and independent study as possible outside of the classroom to enhance their language skills and improve their understanding of French/Spanish society. Pupils are given past paper exams every half term and are awarded a grade based on their performance. Oral and written feedback are given to improve exam technique. The core content of the A-level exam incorporates social issues and trends, political and artistic culture, knowledge of grammar and literary texts and films.
Exam board - AQA
Exam from 2018 - 50% Listening, Reading, Writing, 20% Written response to literary text, 30% Oral examination
Intervention sessions for GCSE students are held once per week and additional support sessions are held in the run-up to GCSE and A- level exams.