Modern Foreign Languages - The Christ's School - Richmond -

Modern Foreign Languages


The modern languages department at Christ’s is vibrant and flourishing. We understand the importance of communication in an increasingly globalised world and the majority of our students study at least one foreign language to GCSE level. Our results are outstanding in both languages.  In French 97% of our students attain A*- C, with 59% of those achieving an A*-A. In Spanish 87% of our students attain A*- C, with 46% of those achieving an A*-A.

Our aims are:

  • To motivate and inspire students and kindle in them a love of language learning
  • To promote an awareness and acceptance of different cultures
  • To provide pupils with the skills to communicate effectively in at least one foreign language
  • To broaden our students’ horizons through educational visits abroad, contact with foreign language speakers and extra-curricular activities


In Year 7 pupils study French and Spanish until the October half term. They then choose which language they prefer. From then on they have five lessons a fortnight of their chosen language. In year 8 pupils whom we identify as being particularly strong in languages are offered a place in the dual linguist group for the rest of Key stage 3. They then receive 3 lessons a week of both French and Spanish. Single linguists receive 5 lessons a fortnight of their chosen language.

The languages department has four large classrooms and one smaller break out room. Each classroom is fitted with an interactive white board. There are six excellent teachers and two foreign language assistants in the department.

  • Mrs V McGrail - Head of Department and Teacher of French
  • Mrs J Campa  - Teacher of Spanish
  • Ms E Bradley -  Teacher of French and Spanish
  • Ms H Oddy  - Teacher of French and Spanish
  • Mr B Gooding - Teacher of French and Spanish

The department is well equipped with the latest text books (some of which are in digital format) and subscriptions to a number of online language sites. The department has access to the library and computer rooms whenever needed.


Key Stage 3

Year 7: Allez 1

  • Module 1
    Topics: Greetings, describing yourself, physical appearance, countries, nationalities, numbers and the francophone world.
    Grammar: Nouns, genders, present tense of avoir and être and adjectival agreements.
  • Module 2
    Topics: Personality, family, school subjects and friends.
    Grammar: Possessive adjectives, connectives, comparisons and use of transferable language.
  • Module 3
    Topics: School, home, animals and leisure activities.
    Grammar: Present tense er verbs, present tense of aller and faire, dictionary skills.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Food, mealtimes, ordering in a café, recipes, opinions and quantities.
    Grammar: Partitive article, negatives, pouvoir plus the infinitive, il faut.
  • Module 5
    Topics: Local area, directions, arrange to go out/meet
    Grammar: vouloir and pouvoir plus the infinitive, au, à la, etc. imperatives.
  • Module 6
    Topics: Lifestyle, clothes, the weather, leisure activities, music and national events.
  • Grammar: reflexive verbs, revision of all grammar taught this year for end of year examinations

Homework: Pupils will receive homework twice a week. One will be a learning homework and one a reading or writing exercise. Each homework should take 20-30 minutes to complete.

Year 8: Expo 2


  • Module 1
    Topics: families, jobs, weather and typical day.
    Grammar: er, ir and re verbs present tense.
  • Module 2
    Topics: Last weekend/evening, TV, films.
    Grammar: Perfect tense with avoir and être.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Going out, clothes, shops.
    Grammar: modal verbs, comparative adjectives.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Food, parties, markets, restaurants.
    Grammar: definite articles after aimer/préférer, partitive article, il faut.
  • Module 5
    Topics: Countries, languages, holidays, Sénégal, French revolution.
    Grammar: prepositions à/en, question words, perfect tense.
  • Module 6
    Topics: Friends, pocket money, gadgets.
    Grammar: using 3 tenses, avoir besoin, comparatives and superlatives.

Homework: Pupils will receive homework twice a week. One will be a learning homework and one a reading or writing exercise. Each homework task should take 20-30 minutes to complete.


Year 9: Tricolore 3

  • Module 1
    Topics: French speaking world, personal information, technology, internet, friends.
    Grammar: Present tense, adjectives, cognates.
  • Module 2
    Topics: Paris, tourist information.
    Grammar: perfect tense with avoir/être, prepositions.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Leisure activities, cinema, books, the past compared to nowadays, famous French people.
    Grammar: imperfect tense, expressions of frequency, faux amis.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Quebec, own town and region, climate, environment.
    Grammar: superlatives, devoir, il faut.
  • Module 5
    Topics: School, careers, future plans, work experience.
    Grammar: immediate future, future, negatives, position of adjectives.
  • Module 6
    Topics: theme parks, hotels.
    Grammar: irregular future tense verbs.
  • Module 7
    Topics: Healthy life styles, parts of body, chemists, doctors.
    Grammar: imperatives, perfect tense in reflexive form.
  • Module 8
    Topics: Holidays, countries, packing.
    Grammar: qui/que, object pronouns.

Homework: Pupils will receive homework twice a week. One will be a learning homework and one a reading or writing exercise. Each homework should take 20-30 minutes to complete.

Key Stage 4 - GCSE

Examination board: Edexcel

Years 10 and 11 Tricolore Total 4

  • Module 1
    Topics: Personal information, alphabet, numbers, countries, nationalities, family, friends, relationships, special occasions.
    Grammar: questions, present tense, adjectives, reflexives, depuis, possessive adjectives, present tense, ICT.
    Assessment: End of module test, reading and listening.
  • Module 2
    Topics: geography of France, towns, transport, directions. countryside/town, theme parks.
    Grammar: y, perfect tense.
    Assessment: end of unit test listening and writing.
  • Module 3
    Topics: future plans, staying with a French family, air and train travel, home, bedroom, household tasks, life in different countries.
    Grammar: future tense reflexives, complex sentences with si, emphatic pronouns, conditional mood, reflexive verbs in perfect.
    Assessment: end of unit test reading, listening and speaking.
  • Module 4
    Topics: school life, rules, work experience, compare school systems, suggesting school improvements, shopping, prices, clothes, problems, refunds, fashion, French poetry.
    Grammar: devoir, il faut, être oblige de, imperfect tense, ce, celui etc., quel/lequel.
    Assessment: Controlled assessment writing: work experience.
  • Module 5
    Topics: meals, preferences, healthy foods, shops and services, fast food restaurants.
    Grammar: en, indirect/direct object pronouns, venir de plus infinitive.
    Assessment: end of unit test reading and listening.
  • Module 6
    Topics: leisure activities, ICT, music, sport, TV, books and reading, going out.
    Grammar: comparisons, adverbs, superlative, pluperfect tense.
    Assessment: end of unit test reading and listening.
  • Module 7
    Topics: holiday types and preferences, ideal holiday, hotels and complaints, youth hostelling, weather.
    Grammar: conditional, future, past tenses, perfect infinitive.
    Assessment: controlled assessment presentation and discussion: holidays.
  • Module 8
    Topics: holiday health, chemist shops, injuries, emergency services, describing an accident, medical and dental visits, personal feelings, smoking, drugs, alcohol, addiction, life styles.
    Grammar: expressions with avoir, relative pronouns, reflexive verbs with parts of body, present participle.
    Assessment: controlled assessment: Writing, healthy living.
  • Module 9
    Topics: exams, plans for the future, work experience, jobs, pocket money, holiday work, preparing a CV, interviews, marriage and future.
    Grammar: verbs plus à plus de plus infinitive, future after quand, conditional.
    Assessment: Controlled assessment: a person I admire
  • Module 10
    Topics: world problems, climate change, natural disasters, news reports, car travel, pollution in cities, public transport, our environmental impact, local problems, Charities e.g. Croix Rouge.
    Grammar: passive mood, il faut plus infinitive, present subjunctive.

Homework: Pupils will receive homework twice a week. One will be a learning homework and one a reading or writing exercise. Each homework should take 30-40 minutes to complete.

Key Stage 5 / Sixth Form

Year 12 Pearson Edexcel AS

  • Module Transition
    Topics: Transition, what is important in life, ICT, fashion, sport, school, future, travel, holidays, environment.
    Grammar: definite/indefinite article, present tense, putative article, present tense, perfect tense, plurals, possessive adjectives, immediate future, qui/que.
    Assessment: vocabulary, grammar, speaking, reading.
  • Module 1
    Topics: The future, relationships, peer pressure, families, marriage, drugs, reality TV, internet, music.
    Grammar: future tense, negatives, direct object pronouns, imperfect, emphatic pronouns, comparatives and superlatives, adverbs, demonstrative pronouns.
    Assessment: listening, speaking, writing, reading, past papers.
  • Module 2
    Topics: Sport, extreme sport, leisure activities, life styles, healthy eating, weight loss, smoking, health choices.
    Grammar: conditional mood, à/de plus infinitive, y/en, imperfect tense, si, present participle, imperative, passive.
    Assessment: Year 12 mock examination.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Education and the future, French education system, sixth formers’ concerns, daily life, history and future of education, higher education in France, career choices, ways of working, world of work.
    Grammar: present tense, subjunctive, verbs that take the subjunctive, si, time prepositions, pluperfect tense, past infinitive.
    Assessment: vocabulary, listening, speaking and reading, past papers.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Francophone world, holidays, journeys, transport, environmental issues, global warming, natural disasters, developing world, saving the planet.
    Grammar: reported speech, complex sentences, past historic, indefinite pronouns, verbs followed by à and de, future perfect, conditional perfect.


Key Stage 3

Year 7 Mira 1

  • Module 1
    Topics: Spanish in the world, introducing yourself, greetings, classroom items numbers 1 –39, dates, classroom instructions, the alphabet.
    Grammar: masculine/feminine/plural nouns, verb tener, definite/indefinite article.
    Assessment: basic conversation talking about oneself.
  • Module 2
    Topics: School subjects, opinions, days of the week, lessons, describing a teacher, food and drink, Christmas in Spain/Peru.
    Grammar: verbs gustar, comer, beber, adjectival agreement, connectives y, pero, tambien.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and writing test.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Family, animals plus colours, numbers 32-100, hair and eyes.
    Grammar: singular form of irregular ser/ tener, possessive adjectives, adjectives of colour.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Describing where you live, house, rooms, prepositions, household activities.
    Grammar: all forms of vivir in present tense, prepositions: encima, al lado, detras, delante, debajo, using estar for location, present tense: regular verbs and some irregulars.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and writing test.
  • Module 5
    Topics: Free time, sports, hobbies, the time, plans for the weekend, Mexico.
    Grammar: porque, pero, present tense, immediate future.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 6
    Topics: Places in town, directions, the weather, inviting a friend out, Cuba.
    Grammar: salir, hacer, ir, immediate future, quieres plus infinitive.
    Assessment: end of year test: reading, writing, listening and speaking.

Year 8 Mira 2

  • Module 1
    Topics: Free time activities, describing friends (appearance and character), daily routine, nationalities, the day of the dead.
    Grammar: Present tense, reflexive verbs for daily routine.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 2
    Topics: Going out, places in town, invitations, excuses, where you are going in the future, Christmas.
    Grammar: Present tense, future tense, tener que plus infinitive, sequencing vocabulary.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and writing test.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Holidays, past holidays, transport, holiday activities, Carnaval.
    Grammar: Preterite tense of ser, ir, and ar verbs, question words, time expressions.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Food, mealtimes, shopping for food, eating in a restaurant, talking about a past meal, Easter in Spain.
    Grammar: preterite of comer/beber, future tense, high numbers.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and writing test.
  • Module 5
    Topics: Fashion, clothes, likes and dislikes, school uniform, favourite clothes.
    Grammar: present tense, past and future tenses together, comparative and superlative adjectives, festivals, flamenco festival in Sevilla.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 6
    Topics: Barcelona, tourist sites, types of shops, directions, tourism in Barcelona, Spanish festivals.
    Grammar: se puede plus infinitive, explaining opinions, using 3 tenses together.
    Assessment: end of year test: listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Year 9 Mira 3

  • Module 1
    Topics: Media and communication, computers, TV programmes, films, music, describing a film, Don Quijote de la Mancha.
    Grammar: present, past and future tenses, comparatives and superlatives.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 2
    Topics: School, subjects and opinions, describing teachers, school rules, Christmas in Spanish speaking countries.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and writing test.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Health, parts of the body, healthy and unhealthy food, lifestyle changes, traditions in Hispano-America.
    Grammar: me duele, me duelen, direct object pronouns, deber plus infinitive, past and future tenses.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test.
  • Module 4
    Topics: Pocket money, household chores, earning and spending money, jobs, winning the lottery, Easter in Hispano- America.
    Grammar: third person verb form, me gustaria plus infinitive, 3 tenses together.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and writing test.
  • Module 5
    Topics: Hispano-America, countries, living conditions in poor countries, environmental problems, fair trade.
    Grammar: conditional mood of deber, reflexive verbs, past tense.
    Assessment: end of unit listening, reading and speaking test
  • Module 6
    Topics: Projects and roles plays, planning a holiday in Spain, Sport project, traditional Spanish foods project. Roles plays of different topic areas, X factor game, composing a song in Spanish, making a film to promote modern language learning.
    Assessment: end of year assessment, foundation level past paper. Speaking exam.

Key Stage 4 - GCSE

Examination board: Edexcel

Year 10

  • Module 1
    Topics: Self, family, friends, alphabet, numbers, personal details, description of appearance and character, filling in a form, relations with family and friends, marital status, social issues and equality.
    Grammar: possessives adjectives, adjectival agreements, reflexive verbs, lo bueno/lo malo, comparatives, immediate future, impersonalse: se debe, se necesita, se puede, opinions, justifying opinions, dictionary skills.
    Assessment: Listening and Reading past papers.
  • Module 2
    Topics: Interests, hobbies, free time activities, invitations, town, shopping, music, money, fashion, technology.
    Grammar: reflexive vers, soler plus infinitive, adverbs, time, present continuous, object pronouns, demonstrative adjectives, opinions, points of view, contrast en vez/ sin embargo.
    Assessment: Speaking assessment. Presentation and discussion: Lifestyle/a person I admire.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Home and local area, work experience, jobs, future plans.
    Grammar: All tenses, present, preterite, imperfect, perfect, future and conditional.
    Assessment: Year 10 mock exams plus a written controlled assessment entitled My Work Experience.


Year 11

  • Module 1
    Topic: Out and about, weather, places in town, directions, holiday activities, future holidays, hotels, complaints, food, souvenirs.
    Grammar: Opinions, preterite, imperfect continuous, expressions with tener, relative pronouns, ísmo, imperfect for descriptions, usted, imperatives, prepositions.
    Assessment: Past papers. Speaking controlled assessment: picture based / holiday.
  • Module 2
    Topics: School, future plans, subjects, opinions, describing teachers, school routine, school facilities, uniform, rules, pressures, problems, primary/secondary school, ideal school, jobs, further education, work experience.
    Grammar: Reflexive verbs, preterite/imperfect, se debe, quantifiers, comparatives, future tenses.
    Assessment: Year 11 mock exam plus controlled assessment writing: My school/work experience.
  • Module 3
    Topics: Environment, local issues, weather, threats to the planet, being environmentally friendly, advice, global citizenship, the homeless.
    Grammar: Adjectival agreements, preterite, future, immediate future, conditional, present subjunctive, comparatives, opinions, using si plus present plus future.
    Assessment: Past papers.

Key Stage 5 - A Level

Module 1


  • Learning about Spanish speaking regions and countries (Unidad Puente)
  • Getting to know key people and places in the Spanish speaking world (Unidad Puente)
  • To talk about yourself and describe the place where you live. (Unidad 1)
  • Talking and writing about TV and radio. (Unidad 1)
  • Discussing the impact of advertising. (Unidad 1)
  • Discussing the role of the press. (Unidad 1)
  • Describing and commenting on new technology (Unidad 2)
  • Internet, usage and rules. (Unidad 2)

Grammar: The present, perfect, imperfect and preterite tenses, the present subjunctive with verbs of wanting, requesting and advising.

Assessment: Vocabulary, grammar, listening reading and writing.


Module 2


  • Talk and write about traditional and fun sports. (Unidad 5)
  • Discussing the links between physical exercise and health. (Unidad 5)
  • Talking about different sports personalities. (Unidad 5)
  • Relate modern lifestyles to health. ( Unidad 6)
  • Discussing the problem of addiction. Considering the ingredients for a healthy life. (Unidad 6)
  • Analysing government health campaigns. (Unidad 6)

Grammar: Direct and indirect objects, the imperfect continuous, the subjunctive for doubt and after “cuando”, Using “se” to avoid the use of the passive voice.

Assessment: Vocabulary, grammar, listening, reading and writing and speaking.


Module 3


  • Describing tourist destinations in the Spanish – speaking countries. (Unidad 7)
  • Discussing different types of holiday (Unidad 7)
  • Considering the impact of tourism on countries and local communities. (Unidad 7)
  • Examining the environmental effect of tourism. (Unidad 7)
  • Opinions on climate change. (Unidad 7)

Grammar: Use different registers of language, writing a formal letter, use of the passive, using impersonal verbs. Auxiliar “haber”.

Assessment: Vocabulary, grammar, listening, reading and writing and speaking.


Module 4


  • Examining relationships with family and friends. ( Unidad 8)
  • Discussing the values of young people. (Unidad 8)
  • Talking about generation conflict. (Unidad 8)
  • Discussing the importance of marriage and family in today’s society. (Unidad 8)

Grammar: Adapt information from texts. Use the subjunctive in a broader range of expressions. Use prepositions correctly.

Assessment: Vocabulary, grammar, listening, reading and writing and speaking



The department organises a number trips to France and Spain each year.

In Year 7 there is a five night residential trip for both languages. Those doing French go to Le château de la Baudonnière in Normandy. Whilst there our pupils are immersed in the French language. Every activity is delivered in French by the centre’s highly trained staff. The pupils enjoy a range of fun activities such as making bread, shopping in a market and exploring the Mont Saint Michel. The staff at the centre are native French speakers.

The Year 7 Spanish trip is to near Valencia in Spain. The centre is run by Spanish native speakers and all activities will be delivered in Spanish. These activities include games on the beach, a visit to the local town, shopping in a market, site seeing in Cartagena and preparing Spanish food.

Pupils in Years 8, 9 & 10 take part in our very popular exchange trips to Le Havre and Madrid. These trips each last a week. During the exchanges our pupils stay at their French or Spanish penfriend's house. During the day Christ’s teachers take them on a range of trips and visits. Later in the academic year the exchange partners come on the return visit to Richmond.

For pupils studying French and Spanish in the Sixth Form we are organising a work experience exchange with our link schools in Le Havre and Madrid. The pupils will work as foreign language assistants for a week and stay with their exchange partners.

We also take pupils on trips in this country such as to the British Airways languages centre at Heathrow and to courses put on by universities and the French institute.

All the trips we organise are very popular with our pupils and have a very positive impact on their learning.


It’s possible to study modern languages either as a single honours degree or alongside another subject as a joint honours degree. Common joint honours choices often remain within the humanities, including subjects such as politics, history and literature, but modern languages can also be combined with subjects such as chemistry or mathematics, for those wishing to keep their options as broad as possible.

A language degree can qualify graduates to work in education, translation, interpretation, tourism, trade, PR, communications and management. Many government jobs require language skills, particularly in the sectors of immigration and diplomacy. All sorts of career destinations- doctors, psychologists and physiotherapists need language skills to communicate effectively with patients whether they work in the UK or overseas; businessmen, bankers and entrepreneurs all need language skills to make deals and sell products on the global market. Politicians, historians, geographers and holiday reps all need language skills to get to know the people and area that they are passionate about. Languages are an invaluable skill to have.

Studies show that having a language can increase your salary from 8 to 20% and give you a head start on other potential employees as by speaking another language you’re vital to any company that does international business. Furthermore a language is also a prerequisite for lots of university courses.


The school subscribes to a number of websites that support our pupils’ learning:

There are also some free resources which you may find useful:

  • 12:57 PM - 16th August, 2018 Lots of very happy students as Christ's celebrates best ever A Level Results Read more Read more
  • 11:09 AM - 21st July, 2018 We are fundraising for a Grand Piano for music department. Take a look at our justgiving page: Read more
  • 11:08 AM - 21st July, 2018 End of term and farewell to some of our wonderful staff. Moving tribute paid to Mrs Blair who is heading off for a well earned retirement after 27 years of inspirational service. 👏🏻 Read more
  • 09:00 AM - 20th July, 2018 Please find below the link from Vicki Sharp, our official school photographer, for purchasable photos taken at the Sports Awards Evening on Wednesday 18th July. Read more
  • 08:49 PM - 18th July, 2018 We are very proud of the work that does. Lovely to hear from a visitor to the school! Read more