In the MFL department at Longbenton High School we are passionate about the value of learning languages in the world today. We believe that knowing more than one language opens doors and offers a wealth of opportunities in life, both professionally and personally.


Students will develop the ability to communicate in, and understand, written & spoken French and Spanish on a variety of topics. They will learn how to use the past, present and future tenses and will also gain a greater understanding of the countries where French and Spanish are spoken.

The courses are designed to engage and interest students through the implementation of a variety of teaching and learning techniques.

We develop good relationships with our classes and have high standards and high aspirations for all of our students.

Our KS3 courses equip our students with a range of grammatical knowledge and skills which they will use in GCSE exams, such as confidence when speaking French and Spanish, translation skills and decoding strategies.


All students in Years 7, 8 and 9 learn French.

Students study various topics including family and pets, personal introductions, our region, local environmental issues, holidays, school and food and drink. We also cover important grammatical structures and supplement the course with mini projects such as a Francophonie Project in Year 7, Ma Maison Idéale in Year 8 and I’m a Celebrity in Year 9.


Students start to learn Spanish in Year 8. At the end of year 8 they can opt to continue with Spanish in Year 9. Topics covered include family, hobbies, school, the weather and life at home. We also complete a magazine project in Year 8 and a film project in Year 9.


Students study three themes across Years 10 and 11. These are:-

  • Identity and Culture
  • Local, National, International and Global Areas of Interest
  • Current and Future Study and Employment

Each of the four language skills (listening, reading, writing and speaking) are equally weighted in terms of assessment, which takes place in four separate exams at the end of Year 11.

Students develop a wide range and variety of transferable skills such as spontaneous speaking, dealing with role play situations such as an interaction with a friend or an authentic situation in France and/or Spain. Students also develop translation skills employing their grammatical knowledge.

A GCSE language helps demonstrate a strong skillset to future employers, whatever career path your child may wish to pursue.

Students will also gain an invaluable insight into customs, cultures and traditions of the country/countries where the target language is spoken, broadening their horizons and enriching their concept of the world around us.


Students can continue their French and Spanish studies by following the AQA A Level courses in Years 12 and 13. These will build on the skills acquired at GCSE and prepare students for further studies at university and their future careers.

The courses include the study of a French or Spanish film and a French or Spanish novel.


In KS3, homework is set fortnightly and might involve research, consolidation or further development of work done in class or vocabulary learning.

In KS4, homework is set weekly.

Extra-Curricular Activities

We work closely with Newcastle University to enhance our students’ language learning experience. This year we have a student ambassador working with some classes, our Year 9 students have been to a study day at the University entitled “Beat the Rat race” and Year 11 French students are involved in a French Science project.

Our French breakfast for Year 7 students to celebrate European Day of Languages is very popular.

We also organise a “Parents into Spanish” event to enable parents of Year 8 students to find out more about learning Spanish at Longbenton.