In Year 7 pupils take either French, German or Spanish for four periods per fortnight, which enables them to get a good grasp of the basics in grammar. They learn enough content to be able to speak and write about themselves and other people. In Years 8 and 9 they continue with this language and deepen their knowledge and skills.

It is in Year 9 that pupils start to think about their GCSE options and whilst a language at GCSE is not compulsory at St Bede’s, we encourage every pupil who is likely to achieve grade 4 at this level to take one, as we know that it can have a great influence on their later choices. We are always looking at our languages offer at St Bede’s and we always endeavour to offer a second language to those pupils who show an interest and an aptitude in language learning.

In the Sixth Form we run relatively small classes at A level and currently have courses in French, German and Spanish.

For more information about each key stage, please click on each of the sections below.

Key Stage 3 (Years 7, 8, 9)

Year 7

French, German or Spanish - Year 7 students begin their National Curriculum study of one of these languages in mixed ability groups. They cover a number of topics during the year including personal identification and home. Grammatical structures are taught formally within the context of these topics. Lessons contain a wide variety of activities, including the use of IT to develop their skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing. 

Year 8 and 9

Students continue their study of French, German or Spanish. They develop their skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing through topics such as travelling, holidays and free time. Grammar is formally taught and reinforced through these topic areas. Lessons contain a wide variety of activities, to present new language and develop linguistic and cultural awareness.

Key Stage 4 (Years 10, 11)

Year 10
The year starts with some revision of the ‘basics’ covered at KS3, before moving onto the GCSE theme of ‘Identity and Culture’. Students are assessed and their progress tracked at the end of each teaching unit as they develop their skills and confidence in listening, speaking, reading and writing. Much emphasis is placed on the teaching of grammar to prepare students for the rigours of GCSE assessment in each skill at the end of year 11. Students have the opportunity to take part in the exchange programme where they host and visit students in our partner schools in France, Germany and Spain.

Year 11
Students continue their study of the GCSE theme ‘‘Local, national, international and global areas of interest’ before moving on to the final theme of ‘Current and future study and employment’. They sit a mock examination in January before they take their real examinations in May/June.

Sixth Form

French / German / Spanish 

The first term of Year 12 is partly spent consolidating GCSE knowledge. Grammar is revised thoroughly so that students are well prepared to progress quickly. They  significantly broaden their vocabulary through study of the topic areas and regular testing. Much of each lesson is conducted in the target language and the students will get plenty of opportunity to practice speaking through pair work, group work and class debate. Students use authentic materials and access resources on the internet for research and individual study. Each fortnight there is an assessment period where students complete exam-style tasks under test conditions, providing valuable feedback for students and staff.  

For more information about this subject at KS5, please click here to view the relevant subject leaflet at the bottom of the page.