We have an established, well-resourced French department with three full-time and one part-time members of staff, all French specialists and three of whom are French nationals.
In Year 7, pupils are taught the four skills of Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing in the communicative manner. They learn to talk about themselves, their family and their home. Grammar terminology is introduced. Pupils are also introduced to classroom commands and equipment in French. They are expected to use their own French/English dictionary.
Textbook : Expo 1. National Curriculum Levels 1 to 3.
In Year 8, pupils learn to talk about going to a French town, their daily routine and their hobbies. They are encouraged to further respond in French during class activities, and to explore more grammar constructions.
Textbook : Expo 1. National Curriculum Levels 1 to 4.
In Year 9, pupils learn about discussing food and drink, going on holiday, travelling and youth culture - topics for which they are required to use different verb tenses, more complex grammar structures and more sophisticated vocabulary and syntax.
Textbook: Expo 2, Higher and Foundation. National Curriculum Levels 1 to 6.
In Year 10, pupils who have opted for French as a GCSE Option start a two-year GCSE course.
The AQA French GCSE is a course divided between 2 units of Controlled Assessment (Speaking 30% and Writing 30%), and 2 units assessed by Examinations (Listening 20% and Reading 20%).
In Year 10, pupils are expected to write up, memorise and record two Speaking tasks on the topics of Lifestyle and Leisure.
In Year 11, pupils are expected to produce two Writing tasks on the topics of Home and Environment and Work and Education.
In May/June of Year 11, both Listening and Reading skills are tested with unseen papers from the AQA Examining Board on all four topics studied throughout the two years.
Course books: Expo GCSE Higher (grades A*-D) and Foundation (grades C-G).
At KS3 and KS4, teaching and learning are enhanced by the use of songs, games, video clips, films and access to ICT rooms. Each French classroom is equipped with a Smart Interactive Whiteboard and access to the Internet.
Heads of Year often choose to run trips to France during Activity Week in July. The French Department runs a yearly cross-curricular day trip to the Somme in France for KS3 pupils. AT KS4, we organise day trips to Central London, local schools or universities to attend GCSE conferences and linguistic events. French Theatre Companies also come to Hurstmere School to perform plays in French for whole year groups.
Some pupils come to us already fluent in a second language. Provided they are competent in the four skills of Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing, these boys are encouraged to take an additional GCSE in Year 11. In recent years, excellent results were achieved in Chinese, Turkish, Gujarati and Greek.
We hope that our approach is flexible enough to cope with the changing needs of each pupil at Hurstmere School.