Download the Curriculum Statement for Modern Foreign Languages

Academic year 2020-21

What are we studying?


Having prepared the transition project over the summer term, students should return with vocabulary and language they will be applying again in similar contexts throughout the Year 9 course. Students start with the theme of holidays and will be discussing travel and comparing means of transport. They will be taking part in role plays, buying tickets and talking about travel plans. As this is a topic that they also studied in year7, it offers an opportunity to revisit previous learning, consolidate and build on this by incorporating new structures. They will use authentic sources from France to plan a holiday and build up confidence using past tenses to describe a past holiday. They will also be talking about types of home and describing rooms in a house and imagining their ideal home.

Students explore the future tense more in this term as they discuss future plans, careers and how life in general might be like in the future. This theme also allows them to see the relevance of languages in the global economy and how they may apply their skills in future employment. There will be cumulative assessments in this term that will require recalling earlier themes and allow students to fill any gaps they may have in learning, particularly from Year 8.

Students review and develop an earlier theme,’Ma famille et mes amis.’ They will be able to describe what they and others look like and define character. They will enjoy watching the hilarious film, ‘La Famille Bélier’ which is perfect for consolidating understanding on the theme of family and relationships, while giving students an experience of French cinema. Family and friends and Relationships are discussed through photo cards and role play as students get used to the requirements of the new spec GCSE. Skills being focussed on this term include: Grasping nuances in meaning and identifying familiar structures and applying to new situations

Students analyse how young people use technology, discuss the advantages and disadvantages and develop reading strategies. They draw on ideas they developed while doing the transitional passport project in the summer term and revisit prior learning from year 8 on technology and communications. In this term students get to visit the Virtual Reality suite at Futures Institute where they can use interactive technology and French to complete some engaging tasks.

Students will develop the themes of Free time, music and cinema. They will practise their listening skills using songs by various French artists. They will be encouraged to support opinions with a range of language giving reasons and examples in different tenses. Students practise speaking task types at both foundation and higher tier. They also study the theme of Eating out and food culture in France and get to sample some typical French food. This term the focus is on developing their use of future time phrases and reflecting on listening strategies.

Students will study the theme of French culture and traditions. They find out about famous French festivals like the ‘Fête Nationale’ and ‘Mardi Gras’. Cultural input provides an engaging and relevant part of learning alongside the language itself allowing students to develop their awareness of other cultures and traditions. There is an emphasis on the correct use of the imperfect and past simple tenses in the context of describing festivals.

This is a key year to build up more complex language and develop key skills.

Students are expected to learn 15-20 words/phrases which will be tested weekly.
This is essential to ensure good progress in languages.


Students begin their GCSE exploring the theme of local area, town and home. Skills will involve:

  • Using adjectives to enhance descriptions
  • Recognising key topic words in reading and listening tasks
  • Using verbs which start with a vowel
  • Simplification and paraphrasing
  • Recognition of hidden meanings and being able to infer from higher reading and listening texts.

Students will discuss social issues including Charity/voluntary work, Healthy and unhealthy living, Eating habits and Comparing old and new health habits.

Students are encouraged to vary vocabulary, to add mark winning phrases and to use different tenses accurately. Key skills include:

Using verbal context when listening, using adverbs to enhance sentences and recognising common patterns in French when listening.

There will also be an opportunity to see a play in French, which is created with GCSE students in mind and includes a lot of key topic vocabulary.

Students define and discuss environmental issues such as pollution, recycling and alternative resources. They will analyse problems and come up with solutions. In this term students will focus on: reusing known verbs and phrases and making use of social and cultural context when listening.

Students explore social issues such as homelessness and poverty, evaluating the current situation and creating solutions to problems of social inequality. There is an emphasis on justifying answers and using key phrases for agreeing and disagreeing in a discussion. Students will be preparing their speaking booklets and boosting their confidence for the speaking exams in term 5.

Students describe holiday experiences, express and justify preferences and talk about holiday activities in the perfect tense. This is a popular theme for discussion in the speaking examination which also takes place this term.

There is a focus on: using negatives to improve writing, paraphrasing and expressing opinions using intensifiers.

Students develop their uses of tenses when describing holidays. As they work on developing their productive skills, they are encouraged to apply descriptive and narrative structures (using Success at Speaking and Writing booklets). They will also work through a vocabulary booklet which focuses on specific areas of language from time phrases to question words and provides a great opportunity to consolidate learning before the final GCSE year.


Students will start year 11 studying the theme, ‘My Studies’ in which they discuss life at school and college. They will be using extracts from the higher tier course , where mark winning structures are encouraged. A Foundation and higher tier file is used for vocabulary consolidation and will be tested weekly in a Tuesday morning MFL mentoring session aimed to support and revisit prior learning.  In class they will be focusing on key exam skills including: Recognition of hidden meanings and being able to infer meaning through reading and listening texts.

Students will be studying the theme of Education- post 16. Students will focus on increasing their confidence speaking and will take part in exam style photo card and role play scenarios using current themes. They will be encouraged to use a variety of tenses in their answers and to try and talk for two minutes on each task.

Students will be studying the theme of Jobs, Career Choices and Ambitions. Students will focus on learning useful higher tier structures and learn to vary vocabulary and language in order to achieve the highest grades. They will also begin recalling earlier themes from Identity and Culture.

Students will continue reviewing all themes covered over the 2 year course in the context of exam style tasks from AQA website. Students given both higher and extension listening and reading tasks to do from kerboodle.

Students will be preparing for the speaking exam (early May) There will be a review of all themes using AQA revision powerpoints/recap to retain revision worksheets and analysis of past papers. There will be an emphasis on grading and exam criteria so students start thinking from the examiner’s point of view and see how they can maximise their marks. We will be using the kerboodle assessment file on all 4 themes: higher level practice assessment in listening, reading, writing and translation. Students are encouraged to attend the Friday am sessions to supplement their learning and to receive tailored feedback.

BBC Bitesize French

Vocabulary consolidation

Practice of key language structures/tenses and topic vocabulary


Mrs Foster – Assistant Principal and Head of College

Mrs Graver- Head of Modern Foreign Languages

Miss Minihan – Teacher of French and Spanish

Everything you need to be successful in French

  • A dictionary (book or online access)
  • Keep an eye out for documentaries
  • An eagerness to learn about the world, other cultures and languages.
Where next


What Will I Learn At Wykham Park Academy? Read the Wykham Park Academy Curriculum Statement 2019-20 here Art and Design Business Computer Science Design Technology,…