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Modern Languages

Being able to speak a foreign language is an essential life skill whether at work, in education or for leisure purposes.

Becoming a global citizen and being able to communicate in other languages has never been so important. French, German and Spanish are all taught at Parrs Wood across Key Stages 3, 4 and 5, with Urdu also offered at Key Stage 4.

Key Stage 3

Our Languages ethos is embedded within the KS3 curriculum, which builds confidence through the challenge of the ‘speak first’ approach to advancing oracy skills. This requires the isolation of auracy and oracy prior to the reinforcement of the language, through reading texts and production of the written word for a variety of purposes. Students acquire their language using language structures and patterns that provide the building blocks to successful communication. Our curriculum is designed to teach these key skills through compelling contexts. These are based on authentic foreign films and literature, as well as music, songs and poetry, in order to engender motivation, curiosity and enjoyment of language learning. Additionally, an appreciation of cultural understanding within target language countries across the world enriches our students to become global citizens for the modern world.

Key Stage 4

At KS4, we further the core skills acquired at KS3, to deepen students’ abilities to manipulate language for purpose and develop their thoughts through speech and writing. Students learn to hone their grammatical knowledge and apply it, using problem solving skills with a greater independent approach. Students will broaden their understanding of how to acquire information from a range of listening and authentic reading materials, as well as perfecting practical translation skills. These aspects, coupled with a heightened understanding of the importance of register in different settings, allow our students to emerge from KS4, as confident and capable communicators, ready for the current world of work, equipped with the vital communication skills to succeed, through a sound knowledge of the culture of the various countries where the language is spoken.

French, German, Spanish and Urdu are all offered at GCSE. There is also the possibility of continuing a second language if chosen as an option. As a key subject in the EBACC, we strongly recommend our young people continue with at least one language to GCSE, as this will open many doors to the career and future of their choice. It is important to note, however, you cannot study a Language for GCSE, if you have not previously learned it at KS3 OR if you are not already a fluent speaker of that language.

Key Stage 5

Our KS5 Languages curriculum is ambitious and enriching, allowing students to be fully immersed in the target language and the culture from the beginning of the course. Many topics are explored throughout the course which are relevant to the political and social context of modern-day France, Germany or Spain and other countries around the world which use the chosen language. Furthermore, students study a work of literature and a film, and carry out an in-depth, individual research project, which will form the basis of their A Level Speaking exam. Students will continue to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the language and will become comfortable with manipulating complex language to express themselves and present a range of different opinions on complex subjects relevant to the modern world.

Students will have an appreciation of the link between literature and film, and the wider social, historical and political contexts in which key themes are presented. Students should be able to formulate opinions that are substantiated with evidence, demonstrating analysis and evaluation. This includes the ability to critically evaluate the themes within literature/film. Students will also learn to use a wide array of tenses and vocabulary in various contexts confidently.

Each language student also has an individual session with a native speaker on a weekly basis. In all languages there is the possibility of taking part in an exchange/work experience, as well as attending local conferences and attending talks given by local universities.


Director of Faculty: S. White (s.white@pwhs.co.uk)

Quality Marks, Awards and Affiliations

We strive for excellence and are very proud of our achievements and affiliations.

If you believe something is missing or should be removed from the list below, please let us know.

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Ofsted Good Provider logo Leading Parent Partnership Award logo Music Mark logo The FA Charter Standard Schools logo Inspiring IAG logo School Games Gold logo Healthy Schools Manchester logo Speaker's Schools Council Awards logo Artsmark Gold Award logo