Modern Foreign Languages

"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart."    Nelson Mandela.
 

Students at Morton Academy have two lessons a week at KS3 and four lessons a week at KS4 (GCSE) of Spanish.

Our aim is to provide an excellent education for all our students, which brings out the best in them and prepares them for success in life. There are powerful educational benefits and career and workplace advantages to be gained from studying a foreign language in addition to social and travel opportunities.

Learning a language is not just about knowing the vocabulary and grammar. It involves learning about cultural similarities and differences and developing an understanding of the wider world and sparking an interest in other cultures, people and places.

Some examples of skills/talents that learning a language will develop:

  • literacy and an improvement in knowledge of your own language
  • communication skills
  • confidence
  • listening skills
  • oracy skills (presentation/verbal communication)
  • problem solving
  • creativity and imagination
  • ability to cope under pressure (resilience)
  • openness
  • memory skills
  • cultural awareness and understanding
  • perseverance
  • logic
  • ability to see and apply patterns
  • reading strategies – spotting cognates, selecting information and using context and clues.

Who works in the department?

Juliet Evans (Subject Leader)

Lucy Ingledow

Danielle Barkhodaee

Year 7

In year 7 the Curriculum aims at enthusing pupils with a love for the language and to firmly establish its basics in their long-term memories. There is a special emphasis on developing the ability to express and justify opinions and to equip pupils with language learning strategies that will serve them well now and in the future.

Unit 1 – Me presento
In this unit pupils are introduced to the basics of the language, including phonetic and spelling patterns and basic grammar such as agreements and word order. They develop their ability to understand classroom commands and to use basic classroom language among themselves and with the teacher appropriately. Pupils develop the ability to introduce themselves, ask others about personal information and to express what activities they usually do. They begin to develop their ability to express opinions and preferences.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: greetings and introductions, classroom commands and requests, days of the week, months, dates, numbers, countries and nationalities, physical and character description and simple opinions, likes and dislikes.

Unit 2: Mi familia y otros animales
In this unit pupils develop their ability to describe people and animals and express simple opinions about family members and preferences about colours and animals.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: family members, pets, colours, physical and character description.

Prior learning

  • Unit 1

Year 8

In year 8 the Curriculum aims at developing pupils’ linguistic competencies, extending their knowledge and proficiency in dealing with familiar and less familiar language. There is a special emphasis on developing the ability to narrate in the 3 time frames.

Unit 5 – Holidays
In this unit pupils further develop their ability to express future plans, learn to narrate simple events in the past and increase their range and confidence in expressing opinions and justifying them.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: countries, modes of transport, accommodation, holiday activities, places of touristic interest, exclamations (see below), opinions in the past (see below), time expressions (see below).

Prior learning

  • Units 1-4
     

Unit 6 – Going out & Staying in
In this unit pupils further develop their ability to express future plans and narrate events in the past. There is a specific focus on expressing opinions and justifying them, including giving book and film reviews and expressing simple recommendations.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: weekend activities including spending money, shopping, eating out, going to the cinema; types of TV programmes and films; music; arranging to go out and excuses

Prior learning

  • Units 1-5
     

Unit 3: Mi colegio
In this unit pupils develop their ability to express preferences and justify them, to discuss their school routine including times and the facilities at their school.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: subjects, times, school facilities, and co-curricular and break time activities.

Prior learning

  • Units 1-2
     

Unit 4 – Mi casa y donde vivo
In this unit pupils further develop their ability to establish comparisons and express their opinions including some justification. They develop their ability to describe houses and locations and express preferences, including where they would like to live in the future.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: types of houses, simple furniture items, location (places and prepositions), town/city facilities, revisiting weather.

Prior learning

  • Units 1-3

Year 9

In year 9 the Curriculum aims at inspiring young teenagers while consolidating and extending their language knowledge and ensuring a solid linguistic knowledge for students chosing to carry on with Spanish into GCSE. It therefore includes cultural topics and encourages the exploration of songs and literature.

Unit 9 – Relationships
In this unit pupils extend their ability to express preferences, future plans, to describe people and relationships and to narrate events in the past, including a range of past tenses.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: character adjectives, relationship and activities verbs and special consideration is given to time markers.

Prior learning

  • Units 1-8
     

Unit 10 – Festivals and traditions
In this unit pupils further develop their ability to express future plans and narrate events in the past. This is a predominantly cultural unit aimed at expanding knowledge of other countries’ traditions and to establish comparisons with own culture.  

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes vocabulary related to festivals, traditions and costumes; food will be revisited and extended.

Prior learning

  • Units 1-9
     

Unit 11 – City or region in a TL country
In this unit pupils further develop their ability to compare different countries and cultures. They also extend their knowledge about the Hispanic world or an area of a Spanish speaking country by learning about particular cities/countries/areas.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: geographical and tourist vocabulary, including activities such as shopping. Town facilities and holiday vocabulary can be revisited and extended.

Prior learning

  • Units 1-10

 

Unit 12 – The world around us
In this unit pupils develop their ability to express opinions and extend their knowledge about world-wide issues.

The key vocabulary for pupils to master in this unit includes: environmental issues and some possible solutions, rights and vocabulary related to helping others. There is a specific emphasis on modal verbs.

Prior learning

  • Units 1-11

 

GCSE Spanish

Students in KS4 will now be studying for the new GCSE. You can find the syllabus for this here:

http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/spanish-8698

Here you will find a list of GCSE vocabulary as well as the content and expectations of the course. There are also practice papers for students to gain exam practice. It is vital that students are regularly revising grammar and topics throughout the course and completing additional work on key areas such as verb formation. The links below will be very useful for GCSE students in consolidating the work covered in class:

www.espanol-extra.co.uk

http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/spanish/

https://conjuguemos.com/list.php?type=fillin&division=grammar&language=spanish

http://www.languagesonline.org.uk/Hotpotatoes/Index.htm

 

Prior to starting the course there are a number of things that parents and students can do Please see below the text of the letter sent to parents regarding how students can prepare between Year 9 and 10:

Our exam board is AQA and there are some useful resources and information on their website. The course we use is the Viva GCSE course, which gives students access to online practice and homework through the Activelearn service. All students will have their own login details for this site. There will often be tasks set for them to complete but they can access all tasks at any time in order to go over something again, practise some grammar or vocabulary, or even to learn vocabulary and grammar in advance of studying the topic in class.

Another very helpful website is www.espanol-extra.co.uk. This site covers Spanish topics and grammar from beginners through to A-level. As well as using it to consolidate what we do in class this is also a very good resource to revise work covered at KS3 that students may need to recap.

It would be useful if your child had a Spanish dictionary (there were some in The Works for £2!) and grammar guide at home and students should be learning/memorising vocabulary weekly. A key area in order to achieve higher grades at GCSE is knowledge of verbs in the different tenses. Your child will be starting in a strong position if he/she could use espanol-extra or another website, www.conjuguemos.com, to work on the present, preterite and future tenses before starting the course in September. One of the best ways to ensure that you know something is to teach it to someone else so you could get them to try to explain to you what they have been working on. When they have vocabulary to learn you could test them on it – you do not have to be able to speak any Spanish to be able to help with this as, on the whole, it is easy to link Spanish words in writing to what you hear.

Finally, one of the best ways to build vocabulary, improve pronunciation and accent, and develop listening and reading skills is to find authentic material on something you enjoy – encourage your child to find songs, adverts, sports commentaries, cartoons, films, news articles, blogs or anything else that sparks an interest and see how much they can understand. It may only be one or two words to begin with but the more they do the more they will increase their knowledge of Spanish and Spanish culture

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