Languages and EAL

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We ensure that all students are given the opportunity to learn how to communicate in a language other than their own, whilst developing the skills necessary for academic success in languages. We also aim to raise awareness and foster appreciation for those with the ability to speak another language and demonstrate how language skills are to be valued and can support future career and personal goals.

Students choose which language they would like to study at the beginning of Year 7. They will continue studying this language until the end of Year 9, where they can continue to GCSE if they wish. Pupils can choose between French, Urdu and Spanish (from Year 7 2023).

Curriculum overview

  • KS3 – 2 lessons per week
  • KS4 – 3 lessons per week, plus additional revision sessions

Options offered at KS4

  • GCSE French (AQA)
  • GCSE Urdu (AQA)
  • GCSE Spanish (AQA)
  • GCSE in Community languages (as extra-curricular options): Arabic, Spanish, German, Italian, Bengali, Persian, Modern Greek, Modern Hebrew, Polish, Portuguese, Chinese (spoken Mandarin or Cantonese), Panjabi, Russian, Japanese, Gujarati, Turkish.

Topics covered

All languages will study four key skills – reading, writing, speaking and listening in order to make progress in pronunciation (phonics), vocabulary and grammar. Lessons are designed to improving resilience and spontaneity, as well as develop skills for success at GCSE, including translation, reading and communication strategies. Cultural knowledge of the language studied too is crucial.


At KS3, lessons and resources are prepared influenced by MARS-EARS methodology and are supplemented by authentic texts at an age-appropriate level. At GCSE, lessons are supplemented by the OUP GCSE French coursebook, with pupils also having access to Language-Gym and Memrise interactive resources at both Higher and Foundation tiers. Students are also given the opportunity to interact with students at our French partner school, the Lycée Jean Moulin.

  • Year 7 – Personal details, introductions, family and friends, school, hobbies and local area, basic opinions.
  • Year 8 – Daily routine, activities, holidays, sports, famous French speakers, media.
  • Year 9 – Using technology safely, life as an adolescent, healthy lifestyles, travelling, jobs and employment.
  • KS4 – Identity and culture; Local, national, international and global areas of interest; Current and future study and employment. Full details of the AQA GCSE Specification are available here. Note - from September 2024 pupils will study an updated GCSE course. Details of the course are available here and updated curriculum information will be shown when teaching of the course begins.


  • Year 7 – The Urdu Alphabet, dates, the classroom, colours, likes and dislikes, greetings and introductions.
  • Year 8 – Myself, my family, my home, finding my way, school, the weather.
  • Year 9 – Dates and birthdays, food and drink, shopping, describing people, life at home, travel and transport.
  • KS4 – Identity and culture; Local, national, international and global areas of interest; Current and future study and employment. Full details of this specification are available here.


Spanish is a new addition to the curriculum for 2023. 

  • Year 7/9 - Personal details, introductions, family and friends, school, hobbies and local area, basic opinions.

Assessment and Examinations

As part of standard lessons, teachers will be constantly monitoring and assessing pupil progress. At KS3, students also complete assessments at the end of each unit to measure progress in vocabulary, phonics and grammar.

GCSE languages are examined with four equally weighted exams at the end of Year 11. Students can enter at either Foundation (1-5) or Higher (4-9) tier. Full details of the GCSE assessments and Specifications are available here.

GCSEs are offered in Community Languages on a yearly basis, with the possibility of early entry in some languages. Students will still need to complete all qualifications through formal examinations in all four skills and pupils are supported in preparing for the lingustic demands of each. Different languages have different examination styles. For further information, please contact the Head of Languages.


English as an Additional Language

Curriculum overview:

KS3 – 2 lessons per week (carried out as interventions).

KS4 – 3 lessons per week.

Options offered at KS4:

ESOL Skills for Life (Pearson Edexcel). In all years, students will receive support in mainstream classes from the EAL Teaching Assistants or EAL Teachers.

Topics covered:

Students will study and improve their reading, writing, speaking and listening skills in the English language through a range of resources, planned and delivered in conjunction with colleagues across the school. They will also focus on vocabulary development and learn to apply rules of grammar. All of this is useful for everyday communication and essential for studying all school subjects.

Assessment and examinations (EAL)

At KS3, students are given a progress grade as well as an EAL step, which is shared with other teachers to support the preparation and delivery of lessons.

ESOL Skills for Life has five different tiers of entry, and students will be entered at the level which suits them best. These levels are Entry 1, Entry 2, Entry 3, Level 1 or Level 2. Student progress is monitored against the EAL steps and their progression through the different tiers of entry for the final exam. Further details of the course are available here.

ESOL Skills for Life is assessed through three exams at the end of Year 11. These are Reading, Writing and Speaking & Listening

The Languages Faculty:

  • Mr G. Morrison – Associate Assistant Headteacher / Head of Languages
  • Miss E. Simaei – Teacher in Charge of EAL / English Teacher
  • Ms S. Donnelly – French Teacher
  • Ms E. McGagh – Spanish / French Teacher
  • Mr A. Khan – Urdu Teacher
  • Ms T. Chaudhry – Urdu Teacher
  • Mrs M. Kolodziejska – EAL Teacher
  • Ms J. Hill - English / EAL Teacher