Modern Foreign Languages
Students at Harris Academy Peckham have the fantastic opportunity to learn French, Spanish or German. The languages curriculum has been designed to enthuse students through building a curiosity and love for learning languages.
The apprenticeship of learning a language provides an open road to the world. Through languages at Harris Academy Peckham, we promote students’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of different countries’ people, culture, history, literature and arts. We challenge students to consider their own identity and place in the world and to appreciate and empathise with different ways of seeing the world.
We aim to equip students with the confidence, lexicon and grammatical foundations that allow them to express their ideas and opinions, to seek information and to respond to speakers of the language across the skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. By developing students’ linguistic, communicative and intercultural skills, we strive to foster rounded individuals ready for lifelong language learning and entry into a global, more cooperative and more peaceful world.
At Harris Academy Peckham, students are offered three language lessons per week in Years 7 and 8, and four language lessons per week in Years 9, 10 and 11. Each year of study is based around three themes, with one theme studied each term. The curriculum moves at a gradual pace in terms of content and strives for depth of learning. This allows for greater recycling of language and embedding of key concepts, allowing a focus on high frequency words, transferrable language, grammar and skill development.
We aim to have students revisit familiar topics in order to consolidate language, whilst always pushing linguistically and intellectually deeper into both content and concepts. This results in a familiarity upon which students can build with confidence whilst also providing new, stimulating and related content and ideas.
Key Stage 3
In Year 7, students start to build the foundations of language by learning to introduce themselves, as well as their families. They will also be able to give their opinions on the subjects that they study and the ways in which they spend their free time.
In Year 8, students continue to extend their language skills through themes that explore the wider world. They will be able to describe what they normally do on holidays and start to use different tenses to be able to give accounts of events in the past. They will also be able to describe their home as well as talk in more detail about their hobbies, modern technology and their entertainment preferences.
In Year 9, students will continue to reinforce what they have learned in previous years by consolidating their prior knowledge of vocabulary and developing new grammatical skills. They will build on the solid foundation of language and grammatical structures that they have learnt in Year 7 and 8 and be able to talk about aspects of their daily life in detail. This will include topics such as school, relationships, hobbies and celebrations. They will develop the use of complex grammatical structures, as well as a variety of tenses, to be able to discuss these topics in the past, present and future. Towards the end of Year 9 students choose which language to study in Year 10 and begin the GCSE course. We strongly encourage all students to opt for a language course for GCSE study.
Key Stage 4
In Year 10, students will build on previous knowledge of vocabulary and grammar from Key Stage 3 and begin to focus more on the requirements of the GCSE course. Students will learn to talk and write in detail about the topics of their local area, holidays, entertainment and school. They will also consider the ways in which their lives compare to young people in other countries and practice language that they can use in real life situations when travelling abroad.
In Year 11, students will complete the final two modules of their course, ready for the GCSE exams. They will learn to talk about their ambitions for the future including higher education, volunteering, travel and careers. They will also focus on one of today’s most pressing issues, the environment, and study ways in which society can work towards protecting and improving the state of the planet.
We evaluate the success and impact of our curriculum through the creation of competent and confident linguists, who not only achieve great outcomes in their assessments and final GCSE examinations at the end of Year 11, but who also develop their cultural capital, and intercultural awareness and understanding. We aim for our students to either go on to further study of languages, or to provide them with a solid foundation for future travel or work.
In addition, we use the following methods to evaluate the success of our curriculum:
- In-class Assessment for Learning and low-stakes testing, including weekly vocabulary tests and recall exercises every lesson.
- Bi-annual centrally-written assessments, covering the four main language skills; listening, reading, writing and speaking.
- AQA GCSE results at the end of Y11
- Feedback from students.
Please see the attachments below for a more detailed overview of our language curriculum.