Language Acquisition


Welcome to Language Acquisition Home Page

 

Languages, whether for leisure or business, have an important role to play in education. Language Acquisition is as much about the discovery and understanding of a culture other than one’s own as it is about the understanding of, and ability to communicate in, a foreign language. Education is about opening as many “doors” as possible – about giving ourselves as many different opportunities in life as we can. Developing an understanding of a foreign language helps to ensure that “doors” all around the world are open to us.

Internationalism is integral to the philosophy of Parkfield School and we hope to help inspire our students to regard themselves as citizens of the world and to find their own place in their local, national and global communities. Students study French and/or Spanish - together with the cultures of French and Spanish speaking countries around the world – throughout their time at Parkfield School. From Reception through to year 8 they study both French and Spanish, exploring the similarities and differences between these two languages in relation to their own. In year 9 students specialise in one language which they will continue for the remainder of their time at the school. This specialisation in one language allows for more in-depth study and understanding.

Throughout their time at Parkfield School, students are encouraged to enjoy languages and we hope to instil a genuine love of language acquisition as well as to inspire a desire for onward study of their chosen language and others.

A Curriculum Overview

The Primary Years

In the Early Years and at Key Stage 1 children are introduced to the concept of other countries and cultures through a range of age-appropriate games, exercises and songs. They are given the opportunity to discover France and Spain and to interact with a range of basic vocabulary and short phrases.

As they progress through Key Stage 2, there remains a heavy emphasis on games and play with the target language and culture. However, students are increasingly encouraged to begin to communicate in both languages. The aim is that by the end of year 6, students have exceeded what might be expected from Primary-level language acquisition.

Key Stage 3

The study of a foreign language in the IB Middle Years Programme (MYP) provides students with a greater opportunity to develop more detailed insights into the features, structures and craft of language, the concept of culture, as well as to realise that there are diverse ways of living, behaving and viewing the world.

The Assessment Criteria for Language Acquisition are:

Criterion A   Comprehending spoken and visual text

Criterion B   Comprehending written and visual text

Criterion C   Communicating in response to spoken and/or written and/or visual text

Criterion D   Using language in spoken and/or written form

 

GCSE

At Parkfield School we have chosen AQA as our exam board. The GCSE course follows a four-unit specification which requires students to develop their ability to write and speak in French or Spanish and to understand French or Spanish when it is written down or spoken.

We are entering into a period of transition with all GCSEs and languages is no different. Current years 10 and 11 will complete the old specification GCSE which is assessed in a 60-40 split between Controlled Assessment (completed throughout the two years of the course) and Examination (at the end of Year 11). Current year 9s will be the first cohort to complete the new specification GCSE which is a ‘linear’ qualification, that is to say all four skills will be assessed at the end of the course in separate exams.

For more information please see the relevant pages on the AQA website or contact the Languages department.

Old Specification GCSE:

French - http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/french-4655

Spanish - http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/spanish-4695

New Specification GCSE:

French - http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/french-8658

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