French

In a world in which the professional job market is fiercely competitive, French competes strongly with English as a main language of business and politics.

Careers and ambition aside, learning French also opens up an understanding and appreciation of this very vibrant society: social issues, politics, film and literature. In spite of the ubiquitous Eurostar adverts, we do tend to forget that France is just a two hour train journey away. You certainly do not need to study French to survive in Paris for example, but how satisfying is it to understand quirky adverts on the métro, not feel thrown by the array of possibilities on a French menu, and simply go to see a film?

Overview

Our main aim is to make learning French a fun, stimulating and positive experience, which will lead our students to communicate confidently and effectively. We also aim to impart to students our enthusiasm for the language, culture and society of our closest neighbour. We wish to spark a passion for French in our students, which we hope will develop as they progress through the school.

Curriculum

All students in Year 7 study French for three periods per week, after which many students opt to continue to study French to GCSE level and through to A level.

In Year 10 and 11 students have four periods of French per week and follow the Edexcel IGCSE course. This covers a range of topics such as local area, leisure, education and employment, environmental issues, alongside a broad range of grammar. Students sit terminal examinations in Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing.

Trips, activities and clubs

Beyond the academic curriculum, the department aims to encourage its students to aspire not only to broaden their linguistic knowledge, but to explore French culture and society. To this end, students are encouraged to take part in cinema outings, trips abroad and other activities. Students in Year 11 upwards are encouraged to take advantage of the department’s broad range of literature and DVDs.

Study trips

  • A study trip for Years 10-11 to Nimes with an afternoon programme of cultural and sporting activities.
  • A Year 9 cultural trip
  • The department arranges cinema visits to central London.
  • Our older students have heard talks by outside speakers such as the Deputy Cultural Attaché to the French Embassy in London, on a range of topics such as Immigration Education in France and La Francophonie.

Clubs and societies

  • French Film Club – Within the school day we organise a series of film screenings for students from Year 7 to Year 11.
  • Senior French Society will form part of a larger Modern and Classical Languages Society as of September 2017 which will offer talks on a whole range of academic and contemporary topics from both staff and students. It is open to all students from Year 11 upwards to study a modern and/or classical language.

Staff

  • Miss L Scarantino BA
  • Mr D Boudon L-ès-L
  • Ms B Martin BA PGCE
  • Mrs A Senior L-ès-L (part-time)