Modern Foreign Languages

A great way to start getting to know and understand other people better is by learning their language. You will learn so much more about them – the music they enjoy listening to, the food they like to eat, their sport, culture and history. Talking to people in their own language is important because it makes them feel good and you will feel more welcome – plus you won’t have to rely on their speaking English. There are three things that you should always remember about languages:

1. It’s a multilingual world – not everyone speaks English.
94% of the world does not speak English as their first language.
75% of the world does not speak English at all.

2. You do not have to be fluent in a language – a little language can make a lot of difference.
Even the basic phrases make a real difference.
Jobs from receptionist to top level management need language skills.

3. Languages improve the quality of your life and your understanding of how other people live and think.
You can travel more easily and meet new people.
You could earn more in your job one day!
Our Department works hard to ensure that the language learning experience for all our students is fun, challenging and enjoyable. Unlike some schools, we continue to offer two languages. Our uptake of languages is continuing to increase.


Key Stage 3

In Year 7 students study French. Focus is on grammatical structure appropriate to their ability, the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing (using all types of texts, including authentic and literary), the study of phonetics and translation skills – all in line with the Modern Foreign Languages Literacy Strategy. Students learn to introduce and describe themselves and other people and study the topics of school, hobbies, where they live and holidays. They should be able to respond to questions about themselves, as well as discovering a little about French culture.

In Year 8 most students follow a continued programme of study based on exploring the cultures and language of France and now have the opportunity to study German as a second langauge. In line with the KS3 curriculum, the students of French and German have been exploring the themes of school, home life and leisure. They continue to learn the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing, they further explore phonetics and continue to improve their translation skills. By the end of this year their knowledge of vocabulary and grammar in each language should have expanded, as should their understanding of how languages work. By including ICT, numeracy, literacy and thinking skills, authentic and literary texts in our teaching and their learning, in our teaching and their learning, we are also promoting memory skills, creativity, cultural awareness and enthusiasm for languages.

In Year 9 most students study their chosen language(s): French or German. They cover a wide range of GCSE-related topics and are encouraged to embed the learning skills and basic grammatical concepts required for GCSE. Equal attention is paid to the four skill areas; listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students aim to produce and manipulate language using past, present and future tenses by the end of Key Stage 3.


Key Stage 4

Click here for GCSE French and German information…

Year 11 subject revision checklist – French

Year 11 subject revision checklist – German


Curriculum Overviews

Click here to view details of topics and skills covered in our French Curriculum…

Click here to view details of topics and skills covered in our German Curriculum…


Homework in MFL

There is a variety of homework set at both key stages. Please refer to the school’s homework policy for how missing homework is followed up. Please note that learning at home is usually essential for progress in the next lesson and is just as important as reading/writing homework.


After each MFL lesson it is expected that students will learn the new vocabulary they have been introduced to in the lesson, as well as reading through any grammatical notes they have been given. They will be expected to spend 20 – 30 minutes learning the meanings of the words for the next lesson. For those who can learn the meanings in less time, they should then attempt to learn the spellings (especially dual linguists). Reading and writing tasks will also be set, when appropriate. Regular questioning or vocabulary tests will inform the teacher when learning homework is not being done. All reading and writing tasks will be marked.


Students are expected to automatically learn the meanings of new vocabulary within one week of it being introduced in class. In addition, reading and writing tasks will be set as deemed appropriate by the teacher. Students are also expected to use their initiative at KS4 and to take responsibility for their learning. They should use revision guides, revision workbooks, their notes and websites to reinforce/further assist them to understand any grammatical point which they find difficult to understand. Time should also be spent practising pronunciation. One hour is the minimum recommended time students should spend on their homework after each lesson. This time may, however, need to be increased, especially in order to prepare for a controlled assessment.


MFL Staff

Mrs Mairi Simpson (Curriculum Leader / Full time teacher of French and German)
Mrs Gillian Barrett (Full time teacher of French and German)
Mrs Joy Glenister (Deputy Headteacher / Part time teacher of French)


Additional Language Resources to Assist Students (French and German) (German)


Read about Modern Foreign Languages

Click here to see a list of fiction and/or biographical books related to MFL…

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