KS3 Modern Foreign Languages
At Wye School, we follow the National Curriculum at Key Stage 3. We teach our pupils to be confident and competent in the four key language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing. Within this model there is a strong emphasis on grammatical skills and understanding. This aids their progression to GCSE by creating strong foundations in both communication skills and knowledge of how a language works. Whilst we primarily follow the Expo 1 and 2 KS3 course, real life cross-curricular and topical approaches, such as pantomime and sport, are also used to increase the relevance of learning another language and to promote engagement. Our pupils are also involved in communicating with students from two partner schools in Brittany, France, where they can practise the French they learn in class in a real world situation.
We assess our pupils regularly with formal assessments at the end of each of our six terms. We give each pupil a National Curriculum target to work towards by the end of the year. We use a variety of approaches such as group work, pair work and independent reflection. The use of ICT is also promoted both in and out of school to develop language abilities. Games and puzzles and problem solving activities also form a solid feature of our teaching and learning programme. To enrich the learning of our most able students, we provide opportunities for them to tackle GCSE Level work and believe that there should be no age restriction on what is learnt, for example, teaching the subjunctive mood, an A-Level topic, to our most gifted students. For our lower ability pupils, there is an emphasis on speaking, listening, confidence building skills and enjoyment. Great use is made of visual and kinaesthetic approaches to teaching and learning to create an environment where all can access the curriculum.
Currently, year 7 are taught a variety of topics, including basic grammar and spelling, meetings and greetings, being able to describe themselves and their families and where they live. This is carried out through the medium of all four language skills, speaking, listening, reading and writing. In French, this year also involves a cross-curricular module involving a sports competition, such as the Football World Cup, where students learn the countries, nationalities and sports in French. Our year 7 Independent Learning Project complements the curriculum, with students researching in depth other French speaking countries around the world. Students are also encouraged to participate in the yearly National Foreign Languages Spelling Bee competition.
We expand upon previous understanding of our year 7s by giving our pupils transferable skills beyond the classroom, for example using email to communicate with French students. Year 8 develops the grammar and understanding from Year 7 and Year 8s are introduced to using both the future and past tense as well as the present tense in both languages. Topics covered include food and drink, clothes, my town and daily routines. In addition, for those taking French, this year involves a cross-curricular project with drama, with students performing a French pantomime. In this way, students are encouraged to understand the benefits of repetition, non-verbal communication and rote learning for language learning.
In year 9 students deepen their understanding and knowledge of the syntax and lexicology of the French language. Topics covered include talking about future jobs, food and drink, what you wear and making and responding to invitations. Higher ability students are introduced to the full GCSE course at year 9.
For more information about the modern foreign languages curriculum, please contact Madame Steed - firstname.lastname@example.org