Homewood’s modern languages department is a loud and vibrant place where pupils not only study a language but experience new cultures and develop a global outlook on the world and the confidence to use their knowledge on holiday or in the business world.
The school is proud to have been awarded the Gold International Schools’ Award and the languages department’s links with schools in Europe and China contribute greatly to this status. We have a large number of trips to Europe where pupils can use their language and experience the culture that they have been studying and are also visited regularly throughout the year by our other partner schools who either accompany our pupils to lessons in order to experience British schools or take part in joint activities using English and their own language.
In Key Stage 3 (Years 7 + 8) most pupils study French and German for 2 lessons each per week. Some groups study one of these languages for 3 lessons per week and have one lesson of cultural studies. There are also taster sessions and immersion days in mandarin. One year 7 teaching group is part of a new project and is studying mandarin intensively. In year 9, all students have the option to continue one or both of the languages they have previously studied when making their option choices. They may also start a new language altogether. These are 3 year GCSE courses which contribute to the English Baccalaureate.
In the vertical curriculum in Key Stage 5, pupils are able to continue their language to A-level but the languages department also offers languages units for the IBCC business qualification.
The German department was recognised by Youthbridge, part of the British German Association, as a department committed to promoting the importance of the language to British school pupils. Over the years, they have rewarded our best pupils through their award scheme and provided a number of competitions and some financial support to raise achievement and participation in the subject. We are also very proud to continue to run a successful German exchange programme with our partner school in Koblenz with whom we have been working for over a decade.
All pupils are introduced to a language for 3 lessons a week in Years 7 and 8 with taster sessions and immersion days in all the other languages that we offer. In Year 9, all students have the option to continue their first foreign language, add a second or start a new language altogether when opting for 3 year GCSE courses in Key Stage 4. All our GCSE courses contribute to the English Baccalaureate.