St Thomas More Catholic High School

Modern Languages

The aim of the Modern Languages department is not merely to teach pupils how to communicate in and understand either one or two foreign languages, but to develop an awareness and understanding of other cultures and ways of life. This serves to broaden students’ minds and develop a true multi-cultural society. Our foreign visits and exchange are therefore an integral part of the curriculum.

Standards and expectations are high, students engage with a range of media and teaching approaches to emerge themselves into their language learning with the emphasis being on enjoyable, challenging and effective lessons.

Examination success levels are high, with the majority of students going on to achieve a GCSE in at least one Language, this is well above the national average.
Students learn key skills to be able to tackle a variety of tasks in their language(s): speaking, listening, reading, writing and translating.


KS3 (years 7-8)
In year 7 all students study French and the top two sets also learn German. The key aim at KS3 is to bring the language(s) to life- students engage with a range of authentic material and learn how to manipulate language authentically.
In year 8, students who are studying both French and German choose either to study both languages or select one which they will continue with to GCSE.
Students who study only French will continue with this language into GCSE.
Students in year 8 have the opportunity to spend a week in France in June and those studying German can apply to take part in the German Exchange to our partner school in Bavaria.


Students in year 7 study the themes of self, family and friends, school, leisure and home life.
Students in year 8 study the themes of media, character, relationships, home life and Paris.




Students in year 7 study an introductory unit and then the themes of the world and I, family and pets, leisure and travel
 Students in year 8 study the themes of holidays, media, health and travel and festivals


KS4 (years 9-11)
All students study at least one language at GCSE, they can opt to study two.  In addition, all Polish speakers take Polish GCSE in year 10.
In year 9, students are introduced to the key skills needed at GCSE and start to study the GCSE topics.
The ‘new’ GCSE is assessed on final examination of the key skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing under the three broad themes:


Theme 1: Identity and culture
Theme 2: Local, national, international and global areas of interest
Theme 3: Current and future study and employment


Students follow the AQA examination board


We are delighted to be able to offer the more linguistically able students the opportunity to study Latin during after school, twilight masterclasses.


Top revision tips:
In order to revise for examination success, here are some top tips
  • Use your vocabulary books to learn all of the key vocabulary, learn words regularly and for a relatively short amount of time- it is better to spend just a few minutes each day. Make sure you cover up the words, write them, check you are right and keep doing this
  • Do as much listening and reading practice as possible- use past papers, exemplar material or indeed any authentic material which is at the correct level – ask your teacher for suitable material
  • Create spider diagrams / mindmaps to collate all of the key vocabulary, constructions and grammar which you have learnt for each topic
  • Try recording your spoken French,  you can then listen back at your leisure, alternatively ask your teacher to record some answers for you so you can practise your pronunciation


 Top Online revision resources:



You can contact Mr K. Lemon by e-mail here.