Modern Foreign Languages

MFL Staff List
Mr J McGee Head of Faculty - Spanish Teacher
Mrs D Fernandez  2nd in Faculty - Head of Spanish
Mr M Belt Head of French - French & Spanish Teacher
Mrs F Sandeman-Hall French & Spanish Teacher - Higher Ability Futures Lead
Mrs C Boyd French & Spanish Teacher / SCITT Mentor
Mrs L Ortega Spanish Teacher
Mrs M Gallagher French Teacher
Dr H Cheng French Teacher
Mrs S Hammond Spanish Language Assistant

The Importance of Languages

Languages are all around us every day. In a modern, multicultural and global society it is increasingly valuable to be able to communicate effectively with people of all races, creeds and cultures. At Leventhorpe we seek to develop students linguistic ability, in addition to their cultural knowledge in order to develop the whole linguist. 

Language learning has a proud tradition at Leventhorpe and many of our past students have gone onto further study and successful careers. In the past, students have gone on to study French and/or Spanish at degree level as well as combine their language with degrees in Law, Business, Engineering, etc. The knowledge of a foreign language offers wider opportunities to work or travel abroad and will enhance a wide variety of jobs and careers.

MFL teaching at Leventhorpe will enable students to grow and embed our school’s core values of excellence, commitment and respect

  • Excellence: Students will learn new skills that will stretch and challenge their abilities. They will build on their strengths and combat their weaknesses with resilience in a positive classroom environment.
  • Commitment: Students will practise their new communication skills in and out of the classroom in authentic language experiences. Their language skills will open new doors and opportunities for the future.
  • Respect: Students will be able to respect other cultures through their learning. They will learn from and embrace similarities and differences in different cultures and languages.

Curriculum Overview

At Leventhorpe students have the opportunity to learn French and Spanish from Year 7 up to Year 13. Students are assessed on a continual basis in all four skills - speaking, listening, reading and writing. Students can access the resources on Microsoft Teams, where they will be able to find PowerPoints and worksheets used in class, extra reading texts and grammar exercises. Homework will be set via Teams.

French and Spanish are accepted by universities and colleges for appropriate courses. In the past, students have gone on to study French and/or Spanish at degree level as well as combine their language with degrees in Law, Business, Engineering, etc. The knowledge of a foreign language offers wider opportunities to work or travel abroad and will enhance a wide variety of jobs and careers.

Many Language students go on to study languages at university. The choice of degrees is currently wider than ever before. You can study French or Spanish by itself or combine it with another subject, which tends to be the most popular option: hence, Spanish and French or Spanish and law are examples of possibilities offered by a considerable number of universities. Within French or Spanish itself, you could decide to further your knowledge of the language's literature or work towards a qualification that stresses the more vocational aspects of translation and interpreting. It is important to understand what different courses include before deciding which university to apply to. Modern Language graduates experience one of the lowest rates of unemployment following their degree. As members of Europe, Britain has close ties with businesses across Europe, and particularly with our closest neighbour, France. French is one of the main working languages of the European parliament and is highly regarded by universities. Spanish is a very employable language. The economy of Latin America has grown in recent years and Britain has recently made a commitment to deepening relations and to co-operating with this emerging part of the world. Spanish is the second most widely spoken in the world.

Key Stage 3 - Years 7, 8 and 9

The National Curriculum is delivered to all students* at Leventhorpe by the time they finish their language studies at the end of KS3 in year 9. In relation to grammar and vocabulary, students will have learned a surplus of grammatical structures required at KS3 and been exposed to an ample breadth of vocabulary. Students will develop their language skills across 5 major areas: listening, reading, writing, speaking and translation. Throughout their KS3 lessons, students will develop their knowledge, skills comprehension and ability to decode language. Source material will be drawn from a number of areas such as textbooks, teacher resources, teacher input, online resources and authentic materials such as movies, poetry, song and art. Language teaching at Leventhorpe places importance on a love of learning.

This KS3 platform enables students at Leventhorpe to demonstrate a high level of linguistic ability early on in their language learning journey, which prepares them well for the GCSE course in year ten.

KS3 Overview

KS3 French Curriculum Overview

KS3 Spanish Curriculum Overview

All students entering into year 7 begin both French and Spanish and they have the opportunity to continue their language study through to year 13. They have three one hour lessons of French and three one hour lessons of Spanish over our fortnightly timetable in year 7 and year 8. In year 9 this allocation increases to four one hour lessons over our fortnightly timetable. All students study one language* in year 9 with a number of students taking both French and Spanish. 

Our curriculum covers a number of topics that stretch student thinking but also equip them to use their studied language immediately to express themselves functionally and creatively, to decode and understand new cultures. In year 9 students sample a mixture of KS3 topics, and cultural activities, and are introduced to GCSE topics in order to prepare them for the transition to KS4. Student progress is monitored through fortnightly low stakes quizzes and also through the end of unit assessments. As a result of these summative assessments, interventions are put in place to ensure that all students make good or outstanding progress.

Teachers carefully use scaffolded target language in the classroom and expect students to converse in the target language when possible. Students use an online language learning platform, Memrise, with carefully selected courses that ensure lesson content and skills taught are reinforced at home (see links below).  Students are encouraged to attend the French film club.

Key Stage 4 - Years 10 & 11 (GCSE)

KS4 French Curriculum Overview KS4 Spanish Curriculum Overview
The aims of a language GCSE are to develop understanding of the language in a variety of contexts, knowledge of the language and language learning skills, the ability to communicate effectively in the language and awareness and understanding of countries and communities where the language is spoken.

Students are placed in mixed ability groups and have 5 languages lessons over the fortnight. The textbook Studio Edexcel is followed for the GCSE French course and Viva Edexcel is followed for the GCSE Spanish course. The KS4 curriculum enables students to develop their listening, reading, writing, translation and speaking skills. Students are expected to communicate to some extent in the target language in lessons.
Assessments at the end of each module are taken from the Studio Edexcel or Viva Edecel assessment pack. Mock assessments are based on GCSE past papers. Students are set one piece of homework per week, as per the school homework policy. In addition to this, all students must complete a predetermined amount of points on Memrise each week to aid vocabulary development in the target language.

Year 10 and 11 students are also given extra support from year 12 and 13 A level language students in order to boost their speaking skills. This happens as targeted intervention during lesson time with our sixth form students helping in their free periods. In addition to this, targeted GCSE support clubs are in place for both higher tier and foundation tier students and students are encouraged to book a 1:1 speaking support session with their teacher throughout the year.

Students sit the Edexcel French and Spanish GCSE assessments at the end of year 11 and can achieve a grade 1-9.
There are two tiers; in foundation tier students can achieve a grade 1-5. In higher tier students can achieve a grade 4-9. |
The assessment is made up of 4 components:

  • Listening (25% of overall grade)
  • Speaking (25% of overall grade)
  • Reading (25% of overall grade)
  • Writing (25% of overall grade) 

French GCSE Edexcel SpecificationSpanish GCSE Edexcel Specification

Key Stage 5 - Years 12 & 13 (AS & A2 Level)

KS5 French Curriculum Overview KS5 Spanish Curriculum Overview
Both French and Spanish are available at A Level. The course is designed to offer candidates opportunities to study the use of French/ Spanish for a wide range of purposes. It will provide a suitable foundation for progression into employment and a solid grounding in language skills and knowledge of French/Spanish cultures. 

In order to study French/Spanish at A Level students must have achieved the minimum Sixth Form entry requirements. In addition to this students must have achieved at least a grade 6 in GCSE Spanish and/or French. Sixth form language lessons at Leventhorpe blend together a deep knowledge of French or Spanish culture, society and history with students own interests. The skills examined at A level can be broken down into listening, reading, translation, writing and speaking. Each lesson has a specific skill focus however language learning at any level demands that these skills are interwoven into every lesson.

In Year 12 students have 9 lessons per fortnight between 2 teachers. In year 13 students have 8 lessons per fortnight between 2 teachers. Students have individual sessions with a Foreign Language Assistant to help develop their speaking skills. In addition to this students are offered 1:1 1:1 speaking support sessions with their teacher throughout the year if required. In order to study French/Spanish at A Level students must have achieved the minimum Sixth Form entry requirements. In addition to this students must have achieved at least a grade 6 in GCSE Spanish and/or French.
At the end of year 13 students sit their A Level language assessments. This made up of three papers:

  • Paper 1 – Listening, Reading and Translation (80 marks) – 2 hours – 40% of overall grade
  • Paper 2 – Responses to film studies and literature and translation - (120 marks) – 2 hours 20 minutes – 30% of overall grade
  • Paper 3 – Speaking – (72 marks) – 21 - 23minutes – 30% of overall grade

French A Level Edexcel SpecificationSpanish A Level Edexcel Specification:

Rewards, Extra-Curricular Trips and ICT to improve Languages 

Students have the opportunity to develop their cultural capital and linguistic skills on our annual trips to Desvres (Year 8) and Paris (Year 9 and 10) and Benalmadena (Year 10 and 12). Each trip includes cultural, academic and social activities in which students can take advantage of an authentic French or Spanish experience.

Learning outside of the classroom

We use a number of platforms to aid in the development of our students' language skills. Memrise is used by all class groups in years 7-11. Students can also use the Pearson Edexcel website to practice past papers in order to prepare for their GCSE and A level assessments.



Other useful websites to aid language learning:

QuizletBBC UKBBC Bitesize

Useful apps for language learning:

  • Babbel
  • Duolingo
  • Busuu