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Modern Foreign Languages Curriculum

Intent: why do we teach what we teach?

Our MFL mission is to ensure:

“pupils are able to manipulate the language accurately and confidently. Pupils are curious and feel passionately about the importance and relevance of languages and want to pursue them further.”

We believe that language learning goes much deeper than the language itself. All year groups are not only exposed to the target language but also to the culture, history, literature and politics that surround the language itself. We provide a deep understanding of another language to improve pupils’ native tongue, communication, empathy and understanding skills.

Curriculum design
Our curriculum is designed around what we believe makes a pupil successful in languages, that is, for pupils to be able to manipulate language accurately and confidently and for pupils to be curious and feel passionately about the importance and relevance of languages. In each year of MFL teaching pupils are exposed to authentic target language texts, learn about the history and culture behind the target language and re-use high frequency vocabulary and grammar within different contexts. We plan different projects throughout KS3 such as film, cultural and history projects. For example, in Year 9 French we have designed a project about WWII based on a film. In year 9 Spanish we have a project based on “Voces inocentes” about child soldiers. In summary, rather than teaching to the exams, we teach to develop, master and create curiosity, which results in excellent linguists.

We keep our curriculum updated in a variety of different ways driven by robust academic research. Our language gurus include Rachel Hawkes, GianFranco Conti and Steve Smith. All of the above have contributed significantly to the best practice behind the teaching of MFL. Department meetings are often driven by academic literature and department results.

Our KS3 topics are loosely linked to KS4 topics (GCSE topics) and grammar is taught in a constant loop of recycling through each topic. The GCSE topics are Identity and culture, local area, holiday and travel, school, future aspirations, study and work, and international and global dimension.

We make sure these are sufficiently covered across KS3 to provide students with a strong starting point in year 10.

Implementation: how do we teach what we teach?

Below is the break-down of how the curriculum is delivered to each Key Stage: 

Year 7

2 x 45 min a week for 1st and 2nd MFL

Work competed in books. Written homework and online practice.

Year 8

2 x 45 min a week for 1st and 2nd MFL

Work completed in books. Written homework and online practice.

Year 9

3 x 45min a week for 1st  MFL

2 x 45 min a week for 2nd  MFL

Work completed in books. Written homework and online practice.

Year 10

3 x 45min a week

Work completed in books, speaking practice following a rota. Written homework and online practice.

Year 11

3 x 45min a week

Work completed in books, speaking practice following a rota. Written homework and online practice.

Impact: how do we teach what we teach?

Assessment
The end of year grade that our pupils receive are a culmination of all 4 skills (reading, writing, listening and speaking) that have been tested at least once throughout the academic year but the end of year exam has a reading and writing focus. Writing assessments are designed following the same format as GCSE exams. At the end of every module, students are tested on a least two skills. We try to do a weekly vocab test for each year group.

Below is the break-down of how we assess our pupils: 

Year 7

Term 1: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One end of term assessment with reading and writing focus to be introduced this year.

Term 2: Two end of unit assessments.

Term 3: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One end of year assessment with reading and writing focus.

Year 8

Term 1: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One end of term assessment with reading and writing focus ti be introduced this year.

Term 2: Two end of unit assessments.

Term 3: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One end of year assessment with reading and writing focus.

Year 9

Term 1: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One end of term assessment with reading and writing focus to be introduced this year.

Term 2: Two end of unit assessments.

Term 3: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One end of year assessment with reading and writing focus.

Year 10

Term 1: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. . One end of term assessment with reading, listening and writing focus to be introduced this year.

Term 2: one end of unit assessment covering listening, reading and writing skills.

Term 3: one end of unit test covering listening, reading and writing skills and grammar. One end of year Mock exam (Modified GCSE past aper) with listening, reading and writing papers and a speaking mock.

Year 11

Term 1: Two end of unit tests covering the 4 skills and grammar. One Mock exam with listening, reading and writing papers and a speaking mock.

Term 2: Two end of unit assessments.

Term 3: one walking talking mock.

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