Curriculum

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The Modern Foreign Languages Faculty

He who does not know foreign languages does not know anything about his own.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kunst and Alterthum

Languages are viewed as an important part of the curriculum at Humphry Davy School because the study of a language increases global understanding, improves employment potential, increases native language ability, sharpens cognitive and life skills, improves chances of entry into college or university, helps students to appreciate international literature, music, and film, makes travel more feasible and enjoyable and increases understanding of oneself and one's own culture.  

Key Stage Three

At Humphry Davy School all pupils study French as part of their language curriculum. The pupils will explore the following topics and practise key language skills such as grammar, listening comprehension, transcription, speaking, translation, reading comprehension, writing and cultural understanding.

Year 7

Language learning strategies & skills

Halloween & Toussaint

Personal details

Christmas

School & routine

Leisure & free time

Zoo animals

Poetry

French literature

Year 8

Language learning strategies & skills

My area

Christmas & New Year

Food & drink

Holidays

Narrate a story

Paintings & French artists

Bastille Day & the French revolution

Key Stage Four

Students can choose to continue studying French or choose to begin Spanish at Key Stage 4.  Classes will only run if there are sufficient numbers of students.  The students will explore the topics listed below in the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing, and develop their grammatical knowledge and understanding. 

Students entering Year 11 in 2016 will be the final cohort to use the EDEXCEL GCSE Exam Specification and the GCSE is assessed in the following way:

Unit 1 Listening: External Exam, 20% of the marks

Unit 2 Speaking: 2 Controlled Assessments, 30% of the marks

Unit 3 Reading: External Exam, 20% of the marks

Unit 4 Writing: 2 Controlled Assessments, 30% of the marks

Students entering Year 11 from 2017 will use use the AQA GCSE Exam Specification; this new GCSE specification is a linear course with no controlled assessment and the GCSE is assessed in the following way:

Unit 1 Listening: External Exam, 25% of the marks

Unit 2 Speaking: External Exam, 25% of the marks

Unit 3 Reading: External Exam, 25% of the marks

Unit 4 Writing: External Exam, 25% of the marks

GCSE French - Years 9, 10 and 11

There are THREE THEMES:

1.       Identity and culture

2.       Local, national, international and global areas of interest

3.       Current and future study and employment

Each theme contains a number of topics. The themes and the topics within them straddle all years, rather than taking the conventional approach of teaching each theme one by one in full. This means the grammar is transferrable, each unit builds on the previous one, and the structures and grammar that a student learns can be constantly reused and recycled by transferring them to other topics.

GCSE Spanish

Year 9

Myself

Free time

School

Family & friends

My area

Years 10 and 11

There are THREE THEMES:

1.       Identity and culture

2.       Local, national, international and global areas of interest

3.       Current and future study and employment

Each theme contains a number of topics. The themes and the topics within them straddle all years, rather than taking the conventional approach of teaching each theme one by one in full. This means the grammar is transferrable, each unit builds on the previous one, and the structures and grammar that a student learns can be constantly reused and recycled by transferring them to other topics.

Extra-Curricular

Each year, there are different language clubs offered depending on staff expertise and availability.  The clubs normally cover culture and basic conversation skills in a fun and informal way! There is also the opportunity for pupils to complete a GCSE in their home languages if they wish.

We have a strong working relationship with St Josephs School in Concarneau, Penzance’s twin town. Students in key stage 4 have regular contact with pupils from the school in the form of letters, videos and Skype sessions. Year 10 students also have the opportunity to take part in an exchange programme with the school, which is an excellent chance for them to experience France, the French language and culture.

We also have a similar link with a school in Ejea, Spain. Students in key stage 4 have regular contact with the pupils and in years 9 or 10 have the opportunity to take part in an exchange programme with the school, giving them the chance to experience Spain, the Spanish language and culture.