At Honywood we aim to provide learners with a great wealth of experience across French, German and Spanish to motivate and enable learners to communicate in an ever globalised world. Throughout the learning in languages we aim for learners to appreciate the importance and powerful nature of languages as a tool for communication across a range of countries, cultures, and opportunities.
"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart."
‒ Nelson Mandela
"The limits of my language are the limits of my world."
‒ Ludwig Wittgenstein
"Those who know nothing of foreign languages know nothing of their own."
‒ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
"Language is the road map of a culture. It tells you where its people come from and where they are going."
‒ Rita Mae Brown
"Language is the blood of the soul into which thoughts run and out of which they grow."
‒ Oliver Wendell Holmes
"One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way."
‒ Frank Smith
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During cohort 7 and 8 the focus of learning in languages is about the process of acquiring language. Learners will discover the techniques/ skills of learning of language followed, by the practice and the creative application of the language. Indeed the focus of the how we learn in languages will enable learners to become successful later in their quest to be qualified with a GCSE in French, German and Spanish.
Every learner at Honywood studies languages. In cohort 7 from September 2014, all learners will study French, German and Spanish. In cohort 8 when learners make their Guided Choices they will have the choice of studying French and/or German at GCSE level. Spanish is also available as a second language choice.
Learners will learn across a wide range of themes with the key focus on language acquisition. Learners will learn the building blocks of languages and how to piece them together to construct and use sentences successfully. For example, learners will learn the toolbox of grammar they need to communicate and express themselves successfully in French, German and Spanish.
Learners now have the fantastic and exciting opportunity to embark on a journey of discovery to become an effective linguist across three languages!
Learners will study French, German and Spanish in Cohort 7 and the aim will be for learners to acquire key linguistic skills and then apply them across the three languages in order to allow learners to become keen linguists. Furthermore, this will allow learners to make a decision to become qualified in a GCSE across any of the three GCSEs.
Learners will be given the choice of the language they wish to study across the different ignition points. However, learners are required to complete a minimum amount of study periods in each language.
Learners are encouraged to use language within a context that they enjoy and are intrigued by! After all language is a tool for communication and learners are given a wide range of opportunities to express such skills
Every learner will be allocated an MFL coach who will be a member of teaching staff. This person will be responsible for their progress and well-being in languages. The coach will hold mentoring with the learner at least once during each study period to discuss the progress and learning taking place in their chosen language. In addition, the mentoring will allow learners the opportunity to express their development regarding the key skills, in order to become a successful linguist.
At Honywood, such mentoring is key to providing a personalised approach to learning so that all youngsters can be successful.
Learners will chart their learning along the line of enquiry of their chosen language based upon key language points designed on a tube map styled document. The youngsters may choose the combination of enquires they wish to follow and will be guided by the advice given by their MFL coach.
Finally, the workshops will encompass all four key skill areas in languages; listening, speaking, reading and writing as well as offering an intriguing and real learning experience for your youngster.
GCSE Course Structure
Cohorts 9 & 10 & 11
Learners now begin the task of becoming qualified in languages with a GCSE qualification. Initially, in cohort 9 learners will build their confidence applying the grammar toolbox they have formed to a range of themes from fashion, extreme sports, TV & film, and my future. Learners will build upon their grammatical knowledge and construct and armoury of structures to communicate and express themselves confidently in the target language. At the beginning of cohort 1o learners will begin to cover the GCSE OCR specification topics of:
Topic Area 1: Home and Local Area c10 autumn term
• Life in the home, friends and relationships
• Local Area
Topic Area 2: Health and Sport
• Sport, outdoor pursuits and healthy lifestyle
• Food and Drink
Topic Area 3: Leisure and entertainment c10 summer term
• Socialising, special occasions and festivals
• Current affairs and social issues in the context of media
Topic Area 4 : Travel and the Wider World c11 Autumn Term
• Holidays and exchanges
• Environmental, cultural and social issues
Topic Area 5: Education and Work c11 Spring term
• School life
• Work experience
The learning across the 5 topic areas will enable learners to apply their knowledge and links are made to the real world and purpose of learning a new language. Indeed learners will develop the following skill areas: Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing. Learners are given choice and guidance in their learning and are given regular personalised feedback. In addition there is a strong focus on motivation and purposeful and rewarding nature of learning a language. It is important to make the learning experience real, fun and rewarding!
GCSE Assessment Criteria:
The GCSE in French, German and Spanish are assessed all in the same way:
60% of the final mark is controlled assessment
• 30% Speaking Learners will complete 6 speaking exams over the 3 years (2 each year) with the best two tasks selected for submission to the exam board.
• 30% Writing, Learners will complete a range of written tasks over the 3 years with the best two tasks selected for submission to the exam board.
40% Exams to be taking at the end of cohort 11
• 20% Reading Exam
• 20% Listening Exam
Learners’ progress is monitor at KS3 by their MFL coach who will hold regular mentoring sessions to talk about the learning taking place. During the sessions learners will share the highs and low points of their learning and the skills they are acquiring to becoming an effective and successful linguist. In addition for each study period learners will fill out their progress booklets tracking their learning with I can statements for each skill area of Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. The I can statements are based along the language acquisition of key structures and the GCSE grading. Learners need to evidence the language used and the process they went through to achieve such success.
Learners will have their progress recorded regularly across the four skill areas in MFL of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Teachers will inform learners of the progress made in each skill area and where they need to improve. Indeed, progress is carefully linked to the regular assessments that take place. However, progress feedback is given in a range of formats and coaching on an individual basis is the key to success.
Approach to Independent Study
Independent study is crucial to become a success linguist and each learner will be set clear tasks to complete. We encourage the little but often approach to independent study in languages. For example, learners to learn at home new vocabulary daily and complete tasks set in school. Furthermore, at KS4 learners should allow sufficient time to prepare for written and spoken controlled assessments and clear guidance is always given by the teaching time regarding time and strategies.
Resources to support learning:
Learners are emailed a large range of resources during their learning in languages.
In addition at KS4 we recommend the following:
French/German/ Spanish Dictionary
French/German/Spanish Verb Book
French/ German/ Spanish Vocabulary book
Questions about studying a language
Everyone speaks English, don't they?
Well, no. Actually only about 6.5% of the world's population speak it as a first language. Researchers calculate that another 18.5% speak it as a second or foreign language which leaves 75% of humanity who don't understand a word. No one would deny that English is now a global language, and that there has been a massive growth in English learning throughout the world - but that just means that the world is becoming more multilingual - and monolingual English speakers are being left behind. Today there is a global market for jobs. Once others speak English, they can compete for jobs in the English-speaking market. They are not learning English for our benefit!
Languages are not a vocational option
Languages can be studied in an academic way - but many courses are really practical, especially those that combine languages with another subject. The range of vocational degrees involving a language is virtually limitless - from Accountancy with Russian to Engineering with Italian. Subjects like Business Studies or IT combine particularly well with a language and you'll get a much broader range of possibilities after graduating. And even if you don't want to do a language as a main subject, many universities offer institution-wide language programmes which mean you can take up a new language or keep up one your learnt at school alongside your other subjects.
The only jobs you can do with languages are teaching or translating
Language graduates have a vast array of career opportunities open to them, ranging from work with well-known multinational companies to international organisations or charities. There are exciting opportunities - often involving travel abroad - in almost every sector. A recent survey shows that only about 5% of language graduates go into teaching, and much fewer into translating or interpreting. About 27% go into business services, and around 10% go into each of the following: manufacturing, sales, banking/finance, community/social services, transport/communications. Don't think you're limiting your career options by choosing languages.
There's no demand for language skills in the jobs market
You may be surprised to know that language graduates have lower rates of unemployment than graduates in the great majority of other subjects - only 3% of German graduates were still unemployed at the time of a recent survey, as opposed to over 5% of those with degrees in Business Studies, and an amazing 8% of those who did Computing. Employers are waking up to the need to recruit people with languages - and not just the obvious ones either. Community languages such as Arabic, Urdu and Chinese are increasingly being required too, as are Welsh and British Sign Language. Rest assured if you choose languages your skills will be in high demand.
Jobs with languages don't pay well
Because of the shortage of English native speakers with language skills, employers are willing to pay over the odds. The Guardian reported last year that secretarial and clerical staff with languages can earn 20% extra than those with only English. Another survey of the jobs market generally found employers paid on average 8% more for staff with languages. Having another language often gives you the edge when it comes to promotion or competing for a plum job.
Language courses are all boring
With languages, the idea is to learn to communicate, and course designers have realised for some years now that sitting with your head in a book is not the best way to do this! The project work and activities you can get involved in on language courses now are really exciting. For example, students at the University of Central Lancashire take part in an international challenge via video-conferencing, competing with teams in Germany and Scandinavia to resolve a business problem. Language courses may give you experience of working in international teams and a whole range of ICT applications which will be useful in the future as well as fun.
Learning languages is a hard slog!
Languages are a very sociable subject. It's hard work learning to banter or tell jokes in another language, but it's fun too! If you enjoy being with people and communicating with them, the chances are you'll enjoy doing it in a foreign language too. And you get to travel abroad! Most language courses include a year in a country where the language is spoken, where you can attend courses at a foreign university or get valuable work experience.
It doesn't teach you anything worthwhile
Another language is a concrete and demonstrable skill - like being able to drive a car or touch type. But learning a language teaches you all sorts of other valuable things too - which you'll find invaluable later when you get into work. Using language to persuade, argue or explain, preparing presentations, putting text in different forms for different audiences, just putting ideas across clearly - all these are vital skills for the workplace, whatever language you're operating in. Learning how to interact with speakers of other languages can help you to see things from a range of perspectives - making you more adaptable, creative, and insightful. The ability to operate cross-culturally is becoming just as much valued by employers as straight language skills.
It's difficult to get to a good enough level
Of course some jobs - like translating into the foreign language - involve a very high level of competence and are best done by a native speaker. Others require specialist knowledge of the context you're working in - which you will pick up on the job. But in today's multilingual world, when a different language can pop up any time in an e-mail or on the phone - then what you'll need is the ability to tell at a glance whether that fax is an order, and which department it should go to; to make the foreign visitors feel at ease and welcomed; to spot opportunities or problems that the monolingual won't be aware of. You'll be surprised how much you can do, and how your flue
The MFL Team