Studying another language allows students to overcome cultural barriers and gives a wider vision of the world from a different perspective. Students are able to consider their place in the world in relation to other cultures, as well as embracing the diversity and richness of life that can be explored through another language.
The study of another language offers students a deeper understanding of their own language, for example by recognising that rules and patterns exist across all languages, through considering the similarities and differences between the two languages, and through questioning how we put together words, sentences and text.
Language learning is particularly powerful in terms of building confidence and allowing students to feel a strong sense of accomplishment through being able to understand and communicate effectively with others.
Students experience both French and Spanish at the beginning of their language learning journey before continuing to study one of these languages in greater depth. This offers a sense of choice and encourages students to think about the purpose of language learning and which language may suit them best.
In Year 7, students start by learning basic French and Spanish language skills through topics such as introducing oneself, describing personal attributes, and discussing favorite objects. They also explore the French-speaking world and learn to write and understand simple poems.
Moving on to Year 8, students delve deeper into various themes. They learn to express opinions, describe family and friends, talk about school and leisure activities, and discuss clothing, weather, and daily routines. Grammar concepts include possessive adjectives, prepositions, and the present tense of regular and irregular verbs.
Year 9 expands further on the themes, covering topics like technology, professions, healthy lifestyles, and travel. Students develop skills to describe technology, discuss jobs and ambitions, talk about relationships and pressures faced by teenagers, and engage in discussions about health and future plans. Grammar focus includes conditional tense, imperfect tense, and a range of pronouns.
In Year 10, students explore various themes, including relationships, technology, home, town, and travel. They learn to discuss family and friendships, use technology for leisure activities, describe their local area, and plan holidays. Grammar concepts covered involve possessive adjectives, reflexive verbs, conditional tense, and a range of tenses.
Year 11 focuses on further themes, such as studies, careers, and education post-16. Students develop skills to describe their studies, discuss life at school and college, talk about jobs and ambitions, and explore topics like charity work, healthy living, and travel and tourism. Grammar topics include direct and indirect object pronouns, conditional tense, and revision of tenses.
Throughout both key stages, students practice listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, building vocabulary and grammar knowledge. Cultural aspects of the French and Spanish speaking world are incorporated to enhance students' understanding and appreciation of the countries' language and culture.