Modern Foreign Languages

The Modern Foreign Languages department at Sandbach High School is deeply committed to promoting the learning of foreign languages and developing the inter-cultural understanding of all students.
Developing new ways to deliver Modern Foreign Languages in and outside the classroom is the lasting legacy of our Language College status.

The department is committed to providing extra opportunities for language learning and enhancing the status of languages within the school. There is a wide and developing range of links with outside agencies, activities within school and visits and trips to Europe. These include German and Spanish exchanges, visits to cultural organisations and events, links with local universities and companies and we expect to develop such activities further.

French and Spanish are both taught throughout Key Stages 3 and 4. Staff teach across the age and ability range as appropriate to their qualifications and expertise in each language. Opportunity for professional development within the department is well established and amply supported. Our philosophy and practice are based upon collaboration and sharing ideas and resources. German is offered at KS4 and KS5 and is proving popular.

We have a suite of 5 specialist rooms, all of which have networked computers/projectors and all have access to video, audio and TV equipment. One room is a dedicated MFL computer suite; three rooms are equipped with smartboards and two with projectors.

French and Spanish are equal first foreign languages. Each year group is divided into two populations with one learning French and the other Spanish. Students have the option to study additional languages in Key Stage 4. Students are taught in the same groups for Modern Languages, Maths and Science, in a cluster system which aims to set by ability. In their first foreign language, students receive 5 x 60 minute lessons per fortnight in Year 7, 4 in Year 8 and 4 in Year 9.

A range of teaching and learning styles are used in order to promote pupil progress in the four skill areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing.

All students continue to study their first foreign language in Years 10 and 11 and have the opportunity to take a second language (French, Spanish or German) to examination level. Students are taught in ability sets, for 5 x 60 minute lessons per fortnight.

In Year 11 all sets study for a GCSE qualification awarded by the AQA Examination Board which currently involves two speaking controlled assessments and two writing controlled assessments in addition to two terminal examinations in reading and listening.

In Year 10 students follow the AQA syllabus, with terminal examinations in listening, reading, speaking and writing in Year 11.

We are also always willing to offer assistance to students in preparing for GCSE examinations in languages which are not taught within the department. In recent years students have sat examinations in Italian, Portuguese and Arabic.

A Level courses are offered in French, Spanish and German.  All students follow the AQA syllabus and as part of the course they will complete an Independent Research Project as well as studying a film and a work of literature.