Why study a language?
We live in a multilingual world with more than 6,900 living languages being used across the globe! 94% of the world does NOT speak English as their first language and 75% of the world does not speak English at all. What a wonderful skill it is, to be able to understand and converse with friends and associates from other countries.
When you learn another language, you are able to get a real insight and understanding into other cultures as well as open doors with your ability to communicate. In today’s global economy, knowing another language really gives you a competitive edge when applying for a job. Moreover, research shows that results in English and Maths are higher for students who study a foreign language.
Pupils will have the opportunity to study either French or German in their first three years at Tabor, taking them to a high level of competency and prepared to embark on a GCSE in that language. By the end of their third year pupils will have become proficient in speaking, writing, reading and listening to their chosen language, will be secure in three tenses and a broad range of topics and vocabulary, giving them a firm foundation for the transition to GCSE. In accordance with the new KS3 languages curriculum, pupils will enjoy regular dictation and translation tasks, as well as exposure to authentic French and German materials and selected examples of literature.
Having mastered the KS3 content, pupils will start a two-year GCSE course in year 10, where they will further develop and sharpen their skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing within topics such as sport, free time and entertainment, media and youth culture as well as knowing about everyday activities, routines, holidays, hobbies, health and fitness. The department is committed to ensuring that every languages student achieves their potential and understands how their languages qualification can work for them in their future career.
How will I be assessed?
Each of the four skills is assessed in an end of course examination and each skill is worth 25%. The speaking exam will take place in April or May of year 11 and is conducted by the class teacher, recorded and sent to the exam board for assessment. It involves asking and answering questions on two topics, a role – play and a picture-based discussion. The writing, reading and listening examinations take place in the exam season amongst the other subjects and are also assessed by the exam board. They involve answering questions to demonstrate comprehension as well as translation exercises.
We have always had a history at Tabor of supporting students to take a GCSE in a language spoken at home that isn’t English. We have offered GCSEs in a number of community languages in the past including Polish, Portuguese, Turkish, Italian, Spanish and Chinese. The MFL department works with students to fully prepare them for the exams. If you have any questions about community languages please direct these to your child’s language teacher or a member of the MFL team.