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Modern Languages

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Our courses are designed, and our lessons conducted, in order that our students achieve high levels of comprehension, accuracy and fluency by the end of their schooling.


Students succeed rapidly, enjoying learning, and become enthusiastic and proud of their ultimate proficiency. They leave equipped to live in an international context, their skills underpinned by their competence in a major world language.

Modern Languages at Rishworth: French and Spanish

Depending upon the year they are in, students receive between two and a half to four and a half hours tuition each week given by fully qualified teaching staff, one of whom is a native speaker.


Students study both French and Spanish in Year 7 before choosing to specialise in the one language up to GSCE.


Students who have shown a particular aptitude in language learning are encouraged to continue with their chosen language to A Level in the Sixth Form.


The Department is committed to the provision of a pleasant and lively working atmosphere in which students freely and happily use their target language at every opportunity. In addition, Sixth Form students have access to the satellite room for independent viewing of French and Spanish television.

Languages at Work

Studying a language improves communication skills, the ability to work with others, and increases problem solving skills.


A language qualification can lead to jobs in sectors as diverse as the media, tourism, banking and computing. With one in five companies losing business because of language and cultural barriers, it is increasingly important for international businesses to address these obstacles to success. Appreciating that individuals from different cultural backgrounds have different cultural norms, practices and expectations is vital for success in international business. Companies wishing to trade with, and sell to, non-English speaking customers will be three times more likely to succeed if using the customer’s own language.

Other Information

Classrooms have interactive whiteboards with digital versions of course books and computers allowing access to the internet and a wealth of engaging, lively material.

Lower & Middle School French

Year 7 Topics:

  • Me.
  • School.
  • Leisure.
  • Where I live.
  • Holidays.
  • Animals.


Year 8 Topics:

  • Media.
  • Trip to Paris.
  • Me.
  • Where I live.
  • Talent.
  • Geography.


Year 9 Topics:

Social Media.




Lower & Middle School Spanish

Year 7 Topics:

  • Me.
  • Family.
  • School.
  • Animals.


Year 8 Topics:

  • Home.
  • My free time.
  • Local area.
  • Daily routine.
  • Meal times.
  • Shopping for food.
  • Shopping for clothes.


Year 9 Topics:

  • Media (TV, films, music and technology).
  • My school.
  • Health.
  • Fitness.
  • Lifestyle.
  • Jobs.
  • Future interventions.

GCSE Languages

From the Languages Block, all pupils study a Modern Foreign Language, unless, on the basis of demonstrated educational need and after consultation, a pupil is directed by the School to follow the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) or Particular Learning Needs (PLN) course. Pupils will pursue to GCSE the language they chose in KS3.  Pupils cannot change the language they study at this stage.  Those pupils whose educational needs will be best served by studying EAP or by having additional PLN lessons will be directed accordingly, and will not study French or Spanish.  Pupils whose first language is not English will, whenever possible, also take a GCSE in that language.


Modern Languages – French/Spanish


Course Content:

The aim of each course is to develop the ability to use a foreign language effectively for purposes of practical communication in everyday situations, for example when visiting the country as a tourist or on an extended visit, or when meeting, assisting or acting as host to a foreigner visiting this country.  Pupils also learn to write accurately.


A degree of previous knowledge is recommended.  Qualities such as enthusiasm, a love of the language and a willingness to use it actively, an interest in the cultural aspect and a sense of humour are just as important for success.


The philosophy of the course is to enable pupils to show what they know, understand and can do.  Pupils will be able to widen their knowledge by reading in the chosen language from the selection of readers available in the Library.  Satellite television is available in all teaching rooms and in a separate suite to offer pupils further opportunities for exposure to the language.


At the end of the course, pupils will be well prepared to continue with further study of the language to A Level or beyond.


Examination Board: AQA


The syllabus concentrates on four skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing.

Each skill is worth 25%.


Mode of Assessment:

All skills are assessed by terminal exams at the end of Year 11. There is no short course option.

A-Level Modern Languages


Whether you want to develop the knowledge and skills you have acquired at GCSE level for more advanced application or make practical use of your French/Spanish for work or leisure, following a Modern Languages course will:

  • enable you to gain a useful insight into another culture
  • help you reflect on various aspects of contemporary society
  • enhance your employment prospects
  • facilitate foreign travel
  • improve your linguistic performance and communications skills, including oral fluency and conversation skills.


This course is designed to be extremely flexible and enable each student to make the most of their personal strengths and interests.  In addition, you will have access to our satellite room where you will be able to watch the news in the target language, discover French and Spanish reality TV shows or watch the latest movies.  Or maybe you prefer to keep abreast of current events and of the latest trends via the internet?  The choice is yours.  All we ask is a commitment to your studies, a genuine love of languages and a B grade or higher at GCSE in your chosen language.


Examination Board: Edexcel for both French and Spanish.


Course content


French is based around 4 main themes:

Theme 1: Les changements dans la société française (family, education and work)

Theme 2: La culture politique et artistique dans les pays francophones (music, media, festivals and traditions)

Theme 3: L‘immigration et la société multiculturelle française (positive impact, challenges of integration and the extreme right)

Theme 4: L’occupation à la résistance (occupied France, the Vichy regime and the resistance)


In addition, students will study and write essays in Paper 2 on either two prescribed texts or one prescribed text and a film.


Spanish is based around 4 main themes:

Theme 1: La evolución de la sociedad espanola (family, work and the impact of tourism)

Theme 2: La cultura política y artística en el mundo hispanohablante (music, media, festivals and traditions)

Theme 3: La inmigración y la socieded mutilcultural espanola (positive impact, integration and public attitudes)

Theme 4: La dictadura franquista y la transición a la democracia (civil war, Franco’s dictatorship and the transition to democracy)


In addition, students will study and write essays in Paper 2 on either two prescribed texts or one prescribed text and a film.


Mode of assessment

Assessment is by terminal exam (100%) and takes the same format in both languages:

  • Paper 1: Listening, reading and translation (2 hours)
  • Paper 2: Written response to works (books/film) and translation (2 hours 40 minutes)
  • Paper 3: Oral (approximately 25 minutes, including discussions of the above themes, individual presentation of a chosen topic and questions based on that presentation)