Cardinal Heenan

Cardinal Heenan

Catholic High School

Modern Languages
Modern Languages

Language Courses

Curriculum Leader: Mrs H Stanton

Languages Curriculum Intent

Learning a foreign language enables pupils to deepen their understanding of the world. It encourages an openness and appreciation for other cultures and their means of communication. There is much satisfaction and enjoyment in being able to communicate in a different language! As we live in an ever more multicultural society, language skills are integral in promoting social cohesion and in providing learners with an opportunity to live and work wherever they choose. There are further benefits from studying a language; it reinforces our command of the English language; it improves our communication skills; it opens doors in a global jobs market; it can even make the brain more resilient to ageing!


There are two GCSE Language Courses available, French and Spanish. If you want to achieve the English Baccalaureate then it is essential that you study at least one of these courses.

Tiers of Entry
In order for each student to have the opportunity to achieve their maximum potential, Language GCSEs have two tiers of entry. The content of the examination papers is targeted at the grades that can be achieved at that tier.

Foundation Tier: Grades 1-5. Candidates entered for the foundation tier can only achieve grades 1-5.
Higher Tier: Grades 4-9. Candidates entered for the higher tier can only achieve grades 4-9.
Each student’s tier of entry will be decided in Year 11.

French GCSE

Course Level: GCSE Exam Board: Edexcel Course code: 1FRO

Spanish GCSE

Course Level: GCSE Exam Board: Edexcel Course code: 1SPO

The French and Spanish GCSE language courses aim to enable students to:

• develop their ability to communicate confidently and coherently with native speakers in speech and writing, conveying what they want to say with increasing accuracy
• express and develop thoughts and ideas spontaneously and fluently
• listen to and understand clearly articulated, standard speech at near normal speed
• deepen their knowledge about how language works and enrich their vocabulary in order for them to increase their independent use and understanding of extended language in a wide range of contexts
• acquire new knowledge, skills and ways of thinking through the ability to understand and respond to a rich range of authentic spoken and written material, adapted and abridged, as appropriate, including literary texts
• develop awareness and understanding of the culture and identity of the countries and communities where the language is spoken
• be encouraged to make appropriate links to other areas of the curriculum to enable bilingual and deeper learning, where the language may become a medium for constructing and applying knowledge

• develop language-learning skills both for immediate use and to prepare them for further language study and use in school, higher education or employment
• develop language strategies, including repair strategies.

What the courses cover
The five themes are:
• Identity and culture (family and friends, free time activities and leading a healthy lifestyle)
• Local area, holiday and travel
• School
• Future aspirations, study and work
• International and global dimension (the environment and being a global citizen)

Assessment for each language GCSE consists of four examination papers
• Paper one Listening 25% of total grade
• Paper two Speaking 25% of total grade
• Paper three Reading 25% of total grade
• Paper four Writing 25% of total grade

Where the courses can lead
A Level French/A Level Spanish.