Skip to content ↓

According to the old Czech proverb: learn a new language, acquire a new soul!  With so many of our pupils having English as an Additional Language, there must be many divided or tripartite souls amongst our pupil and parental body!   At The London Oratory we study French, German and Spanish, all to GCSE. Learning a foreign language opens minds to understanding other people. It leads to encounters with people from many backgrounds and the experience of new cultures. Learning a new language can be fun and useful, be it for travelling, or for making new friends. One of the most important skills in the international market of today is the ability to communicate in more than one language, and ability in a modern foreign language communicates to employers that you have considerable accuracy and skill.

KEY STAGE 3 : French, German & Spanish

Whether in French, German or Spanish, pupils will study a wide variety of topics (such as travel, school life, family, free time, various cultural aspects of the TL country) using the four skills at KS3, KS4 and KS5.  Pupils study the grammar of the target language, and its application, how to express themselves using a range of vocabulary and structures, as we as developing a senses of cultural awareness.  They also develop an understanding of the spoken and written forms of F/G/S in a range of contexts, including materials from countries and communities where these languages are spoken

The content of the course covers the following three topics:  

identity and culture                       
Local, national, international and global areas of interest
Current and future study and employment

KEY STAGE 4 : french & German

All pupils will continue with the study of their first foreign language in the fourth and fifth forms and will take the GCSE examination at the end of the course.

Outline of Syllabus

The course is designed to build on and extend the work covered in the first three years.  The overall aim is to equip pupils with the ability to communicate effectively in the foreign language in practical, everyday situations.  The three topic areas covered are:

  • Identity and culture: me, my family and friends; technology in everyday life; free time activities; customs and festivals in French/German-speaking countries/communities.
  • Local, national, international and global areas of interest: home, town, neighbourhood and region; social issues; global issues; travel and tourism.
  • Current and future study and employment: my studies; life at school/college; education post-16; jobs, career choices and ambitions.

In the classroom the emphasis will continue to be on using the foreign language as the normal means of communication.  The importance of a sound grasp of the grammatical structure of the language cannot be overemphasised and the study of grammar forms an integral part of the course.

Scheme of Assessment

GCSE German and French have a Foundation Tier (grades 1-5) and a Higher Tier (grades 4-9). Pupils must take all four question papers at the same tier. All question papers must be taken in the same series.

  • Listening (25%):  the candidate is expected to understand and to respond to the spoken language using a range of skills and activities requiring understanding of and response to main points and specific details at an appropriate level. A range of question types will be used, requiring non-verbal responses or responses in English and in French/German.
     
  • Speaking (25%): the oral examination consists of three parts which are a role play, a description of a photo card and general conversation. Access to dictionaries is not permitted at any time during the test or the supervised preparation time. The test is conducted and recorded by the teacher and marked by an AQA examiner.
     
  • Reading (25%): the candidate is expected to understand and respond to the written language using a range of skills and activities requiring understanding of and response to texts at an appropriate level. A range of question types will be used, requiring non-verbal responses or responses in English and in French/German. There is also a translation from French/German into English.
     
  • Writing (25%):  the candidate is expected to communicate effectively in writing for a variety of purposes across a range of specified contexts. The Foundation Tier consists of writing a message in French/German, writing a short passage in French/German, translating from English into French/German and finally a structured writing task. The Higher Tier consists of a structured writing task, an open-ended writing task and finally a translation from English into French/German.


Awarding Body: AQA                                                    Specification:  GCSE French 8658
                                                                                                                        GCSE German
8668    

KEY STAGE 4 : spanish

Spanish is offered in the fourth form as a beginners’ course.  The pace of the course is considerably more rapid than in the five year, first foreign language course since pupils sit their public examination in Spanish after five terms of study.  The course is highly rewarding and a sound basis for continuing with Spanish in the sixth form.

Outline of Syllabus

The overall aim is to equip pupils with the ability to communicate effectively in the foreign language in practical, everyday situations.  The three topic areas covered are:

  • Identity and culture: me, my family and friends; technology in everyday life; free time activities; customs and festivals in Spanish-speaking countries/communities.
  • Local, national, international and global areas of interest: home, town, neighbourhood and region; social issues; global issues; travel and tourism.
  • Current and future study and employment: my studies; life at school/college; education post-16; jobs, career choices and ambitions.

In the classroom the emphasis will be on using the foreign language as the normal means of communication.  The importance of a sound grasp of the grammatical structure of the language cannot be overemphasised and the study of grammar forms an integral part of the course.

Scheme of Assessment

GCSE Spanish has a Foundation Tier (grades 1-5) and a Higher Tier (grades 4-9). Pupils must take all four question papers at the same tier. All question papers must be taken in the same series.

  • Listening (25%):  the candidate is expected to understand and to respond to the spoken language using a range of skills and activities requiring understanding of and response to main points and specific details at an appropriate level. A range of question types will be used, requiring non-verbal responses or responses in English and in Spanish.
     
  • Speaking (25%): the oral examination consists of three parts which are a role play, a description of a photo card and general conversation. Access to dictionaries is not permitted at any time during the test or the supervised preparation time. The test is conducted and recorded by the teacher and marked by an AQA examiner.
     
  • Reading (25%): the candidate is expected to understand and respond to the written language using a range of skills and activities requiring understanding of and response to texts at an appropriate level. A range of question types will be used, requiring non-verbal responses or responses in English and in Spanish. There is also a translation from Spanish into English.
     
  • Writing (25%):  the candidate is expected to communicate effectively in writing for a variety of purposes across a range of specified contexts. The Foundation Tier consists of writing a message in Spanish, writing a short passage in Spanish, translating from English into Spanish and finally a structured writing task. The Higher Tier consists of a structured writing task, an open-ended writing task and finally a translation from English into Spanish.

    Awarding Body; AQA                                                    Specification: GCSE Spanish 8698