The Modern Languages Department at Great Sankey is committed to:

v  Creating a successful, dynamic environment where staff and learners alike are valued, and individual strengths are celebrated and maximised

v  Raising achievement at every level, so that every learner reaches his or her potential

v  Creating an atmosphere where learners wish to learn and  so give of their very best.

v  Encouraging positive attitudes to learning a foreign language and to speakers of that language, and a sympathetic approach to other cultures and civilisations.

v  Ensuring that through a range of inclusive, exciting and innovative learning opportunities, learners will become effective communicators, critical thinkers and good global citizens, developing the necessary transferable skills to be fully prepared for the world of work.

We aim to introduce and develop pupils’ ability to use a foreign language effectively for purposes of practical communication. The languages courses offer an insight into the culture and civilisation of the countries where the language is spoken and encourage positive attitudes to foreign languages learning. In so doing, pupils’ understanding of themselves and their own culture is enhanced, creating an awareness of the nature of language and language learning.


In Year 7 pupils currently study EITHER French or Spanish. Pupils will study both languages throughout Key Stage 3. German is currently on offer in Year 9 and will be re-introduced into the Year 7 curriculum in September 2014.

Wherever possible the pupils will be exposed to authentic materials and situations in the four skill areas of speaking, listening, reading and writing in each modern foreign language. In the speaking component, pupils are required to fulfill a variety of tasks ranging from role-plays in everyday situations to eliciting information, to responding to questions and to holding conversations on prescribed topics.

In the listening component, pupils work from a variety of materials including audio material and video extracts. They are expected to understand specific details of what they hear and extract relevant specific information.

In the reading component, pupils are expected to understand instructions, signs and notices on public display and to extract information from a wide variety of materials such as newspaper articles, advertisements and weather forecasts.

In the written component, pupils work from a given stimulus and are expected to write accurately, conveying all the information required. This is done using coursework written in years 10 and 11. This written coursework accounts for 30% of the final GCSE grade. GCSE Modern Foreign Languages has controlled assessments in each of the four areas (speaking, listening, reading and writing) – Speaking 30% of the marks, writing 30% of the marks, listening 20% of the marks, reading 20% of the marks .



Pupils will cover the following topics in the language that they are studying:

  • Personal information
  • The classroom
  • Hobbies likes and dislikes
  • Family and pets
  • Where I live
  • Countries and nationalities
  • Food
  • Weather


All three languages are offered as options in Year 10. Students follow the AQA specification for French / German and the WJEC syllabus for Spanish.

The course is topic based as outlined below:

  • Lifestyle: Health / Relationships and Choices
  • Leisure:  Free Time and the Media / Holidays
  • Home and Environment: Home and Local Area / The Environment
  • Work and Education: School, College and Future Plans / Current and future jobs



In KS5 students also follow the AQA specification.

The A level course builds on topic areas covered at GCSE and encourages students to communicate confidently, clearly and effectively using increasingly accurate, complex and varied language. Students will also be able to develop critical insights into the contemporary society, cultural background and heritage of the target language country.

In Year 12, the topics studied are:

  • Family and relationships
  • The media
  • Healthy living and lifestyle
  • Popular Culture


In Year 13 the topics covered are:

  • The environment
  • Science and technology
  • Contemporary social issues
  • Two cultural topics (the study of an author / director / a region / a period of history)



Pupils studying French in Years 7-9 are following the Expo series of course books. Learners in Years 10 and 11 use the AQA GCSE textbook/Métro 4 and in Years 12 and 13 Élan 1 and 2 are used a basis for study.

In German, learners use Echo in KS3 and the AQA GCSE textbook/Logo 4 in KS4. Zeitgeist 1 and 2 are used in Years 12 and 13.

In Spanish, learners use ¡Mira! Express 1 and 2 in KS3, ‘¡Mira! 4’ for GCSE, and Animo 1 and 2 for A Level.

All courses are supplemented by Boardworks, Kerboodle (for which all KS4 learners receive a log-in),, Linguascope, Exampro and OxBox, along with materials developed within the department.


The Modern Languages Department organises a variety of trips each year. Such trips aim to enhance and consolidate learners’ academic, linguistic and cultural experience, by offering them the opportunity to view their language learning in context.

The next scheduled trip is the Year 9 French trip to Paris – 13th – 18th July 2014


Students in Years 11 to 13 have the opportunity to join the lower school trips as ‘student leaders’. Year 13 students also have the opportunity to undertake a work placement in France, Germany or Spain as appropriate.

                                               Paris 2013


This nationally accredited award is offered to Year 12 students as part of their Curriculum Enrichment. They do not necessarily have to be studying a language at A Level although we do recommend that all A Level linguists take advantage of this opportunity.

Students undertake the award one period per week. They have the opportunity to develop their leadership skills by working with primary school learners. To this end, they plan mini lessons and resources and make visits to our feeder primary schools. The course culminates with a Year 6 Languages Festival, held at Great Sankey, for Year 6 learners.

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