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    French, German, Spanish & Mandarin Chinese

    Our motto in the Languages Department is ‘Achievement through Enjoyment’. We aim to make studying a language fun and a languages classroom in Upton is an enjoyable place to learn.  Because language lessons are so varied and include a range of skills, we believe that there is something for everyone. Classrooms are equipped with the latest technology and students are encouraged to be interactive and explore different learning styles. Staff are dedicated to keeping up to date with new and innovative techniques in the classroom, working with interactive whiteboards and iPads. We offer our students French, Spanish and, for the more able, Mandarin.

    Our highly popular and oversubscribed study trips to France, Spain and Germany enable students to gain an invaluable cultural and linguistic experience. More information on these is provided below.

    Follow us on Twitter: @MFL_Upton

    Email the department:


    • Mrs J. Critchley, Head of Department, French & Spanish, E-learning Facilitator
    • Mrs L. Stanisstreet, 2nd in Department, Spanish & French
    • Miss W. Gordon, Director of SIxth Form, German & French
    • Miss S. Welch, Head of Year 7, French & Spanish
    • Miss L. Stedmans, French
    • Miss S. Beuzit, 2nd Deputy Head, French & Spanish
    • Mrs L. Granville, Mandarin Chinese
    • Mrs P. Trott, French, German & Spanish, Acting 2nd in Department
    • Mr C. Doherty, Spanish

    Language Assistants

    • Mrs N. Harlot, French Assistant
    • Mrs M. Serrano Williams, Spanish Assistant
    • Miss K. Fink, German Assistant


    Key Stage 3
    At Key Stage 3, learning is topic-based and is centred upon the world with which students are familiar. We cover a diverse range of subjects such as school, free time, where we live, family, pets, jobs, pocket-money, clothes etc. To ensure that learning is fun, lessons are very varied and may include group and pair work, speaking, reading, writing, listening, song, mime and a wide repertoire of games to help students practise and learn.

    Key Stage 4
    We believe that in today’s world, where the emphasis is on global communication, a qualification in a language is a valuable asset. As businesses and industries seek to forge stronger links overseas, there is an increasing demand for those who are able to communicate with others in their language and linguists are much sought-after in the job market. The language courses offered at Upton are designed to enable students to develop their language skills to a degree where they are confident in communicating in the foreign language.

    Students are encouraged to explore a range of contexts, through the foreign language, relating to their own lifestyle and that of those people in the country of the foreign language. The course enables them to gain knowledge and understanding of the language and culture. The topics covered are relevant to the modern world and young people and include a wide spectrum of themes under the three broad themes: Identity & Culture, Local, International & Global Areas of Interest and Current & Future Study & Employment.

    Methods of Assessment:

    • Listening paper, Foundation or Higher Tier (25%)
    • Reading paper, Foundation or Higher Tier (25%)
    • Writing paper, Foundation or Higher Tier (25%)
    • 1 speaking exam at end of course, teacher conducted (25%)
    • Students are entered for either Foundation or Higher Tier 

    We also offer overseas study trips for our Key Stage 4 students to support their learning and to give them an authentic experience of the country and the language they are studying.

    Sixth Form

    In the Sixth Form learning becomes more personalised. Languages are taught in small groups and the atmosphere is informal and teaching is geared to the needs of each individual. We study diverse topics that are global issues, such as the environment, health, addiction, aspects of the modern family, immigration and technology. Students also receive individual speaking sessions with the Languages Assistant to improve fluency and increase exposure to native speakers.

    Methods of Assessment are by skill:

    • Listening, Reading and writing are assessed in a formal exam
    • Speaking is assessed in a formal exam conducted by the class teacher.


    Our oversubscribed study-trips overseas for our Key Stage 4 students are highly popular. In the past we have visited Paris, Barcelona and the Rhineland, travelling with well established and respectable companies to ensure an enjoyable and valuable experience. We stay in hotels, with up to 5 students sharing rooms. Excursions are varied, educational and interesting and include visits to castles and museums, city sightseeing, boat trips and a day out to a theme park. These trips are extremely popular and our students often refer to them as the highlight of their course. They are invaluable in that they enable the students to practise the language they have been studying in an authentic context and to experience the culture first hand.