In Year 7 pupils study one language from French, Spanish and German in detail, and then study an additional language in Years 8 and 9.
Topics covered in each language include Personal Information, Family and Friends, School, Hobbies, Travel and Tourism, Healthy Lifestyles (including food and drink), and Shopping.
During the three years students will also build up a range of general linguistic skills, including how to tackle unfamiliar language in texts, how to give opinions and use connectives to create more complex sentences, and how to identify and use verbs in three different time frames. These skills are assessed through regular end-of-unit tests. Students also learn about the culture of Spain, and have the chance to discuss similarities and differences to our own. Dowdales has links with the IES Miguel de Cervantes in Granada which is supported through collaborative projects and student visits.
Speaking is an essential skill which the students work on throughout the three years. We encourage the students to work collaboratively in lessons to develop confidence in this area, and pair and group work activities are a regular part of our lessons.
At the start of Year 8, students in high ability classes will have the opportunity to pick up a second language. This academic year these students study Spanish, where in the Autumn term they cover the topic of introducing themselves, their families and asking for and giving personal information.
During the spring term Spanish students will cover the topic of school, time and introduce opinions, as well as covering the grammar required to form the past and future tense in Spanish.
Moving into the summer term students cover the language required for describing their house and home-life, with a focus on the future tense and then move swiftly into using points of view and debating language to discuss fair trade countries and programmes outside of Europe.