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Modern Languages Beginners, (IB Standard or Higher Level) at Bexley Grammar School

Course description

Every student who takes the IB will take a language at either Beginners, Standard or Higher Level.

Bexley Grammar offers a range of languages that can be studied as part of the IB course. French, German, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Japanese and Chinese are currently offered at Higher and Standard Level. In addition, at least two Beginners languages are offered each year, generally to students who have not continued languages to GCSE level (or who struggled to obtain a pass grade at at language GCSE) as this enables them to start a language from scratch in Year 12.

At the heart of the IB is the idea of encouraging an awareness and appreciation of other peoples, their cultures and perspectives. In Modern Languages we want to help achieve this by taking each student to a country where their language is spoken at least once during the course, and we organise a successful work experience trip each year to help students combine their linguistic skills with the opportunity to gain business experience.

The Year 12 Higher and Standard courses will improve the overall level of students’ competence in the language, especially cementing the foundations of grammar laid down at GCSE. They will learn to skim and scan texts, and will be encouraged to read for pleasure as well as to write in both a controlled and targeted way and to express themselves freely. They will study three core topics (Communication & Media, Global Issues and Social Relationships) and at least two of the following five options: Health; Customs & Traditions; Leisure; Science & Technology; Cultural Diversity). All the time they will be encouraged to choose the target language as their means of communication.

The Year 13 courses will focus increasingly on the respective targets of Higher or Standard Level, with the Higher Level group extending the range and quantity of the material they cover, specifically through the study of target language literature, as well as refining their use of the language to reach the required Higher Level. The course is examined at the end of Year 13 with a range of written and spoken exams. Students will sit a reading comprehension paper (Paper I), an essay paper (Paper II) and a written assessment conducted in class which will give students the chance to write more creative pieces. In addition, students will sit three interactive oral exams, where they debate an issue with their classmates, as well as an individual speaking exam towards the end of Year 13.


Course content

Students will develop the four skills they have known at GCSE to the levels required to deal with adult themes, where they will need to reflect complex ideas and shades of opinion and to tailor their language to the situation in which they are using it. This will be achieved through a wide range of activities encompassing a variety of styles and registers. Full use will be made of the school’s access to a wide range of media (via satellite, the Internet, periodicals and films) to provide the broadest possible range of exposure to the language used by native speakers. All the time they will be encouraged to use the spoken language as their means of communication. To encourage this, additional support will be provided outside timetabled lessons by a foreign language assistant. The Learning Resource Centre will be stocked for research and reading for pleasure, as well as offering Internet access, while the language lab offers facilities for self-study.

The Modern Languages Department also runs a range of Key Stage 5 cultural trips, including recent theatre trips to the Barbican and a Year 13 cultural visit to Paris. We hope that this will encourage students to adopt an international outlook and provide them with a firm basis for further study, work and leisure linked to the language they study, and maybe others they choose to study in the future.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Bexley Grammar School directly.

Last updated date: 04 October 2016
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