Our Learning Intent:

Our purpose is to make the difference for all students by providing them with the skills to communicate in the language that they are learning so that they have the confidence to go out and express themselves in a globalised world. 
“We want our students, regardless of ability, to have the confidence to go out into the real world and have a go.”
At Southborough we place a big emphasis on the development of oral communication right from the beginning of Year 7. Students learn how to give their opinion and start a discussion with their partner within a few lessons. We try to develop the skills they will need for success at Key Stage 4 as early as possible in their learning.

Why learn a language?

“Learning other languages made me become another person. I found out something entirely new about myself.”
“Learning other languages has meant that I have been able to immerse myself in the culture of the diverse range of countries I have visited, and to make real friends around the world. It also provided fantastic opportunities to live and work abroad."
“Learning a language is a great way of making new friends and meeting people from other countries. Speaking their language allows you to see things from their perspective.”

Languages at Key Stage 3
Year 7

Students typically learn how to give basic descriptions and talk about their family, discuss school life as well as talk about their local area and free time interests.

The year ends with the now traditional finale in which boys create their own six-a-side football tournament, learning football songs in French and Spanish and writing banners in the target languages. Prizes go to the team that uses the most French and Spanish on the pitch!

Year 8

Year 8 sees a greater emphasis on the developing our student’s knowledge of grammar. A focus is based on developing the ability to ask questions and speak using the present, past and future tense. Topics studied in Year 8 typically include fashion, food, holidays and a case study of key cities in France and Spain.

In the final half term students re-visit the topic of food and get the chance to make a series of traditional French and Spanish dishes.”

Year 9

In Year 9 students learn new grammatical tenses like the imperfect and conditional that help prepare them for study at GCSE. There is a project focus on the wider French and Spanish speaking world and in the final half-term we re-visit the topic of sports to learn about contemporary summer events.


 Around 40% of our students choose a language at GCSE, in line with the national average for boys.
We take pride in the excellent outcomes we attain at GCSE.

In 2019 outcomes for our students at Key Stage 4 were particularly strong in Spanish.

Progress 8 at Spanish GCSE was + 0.22 with 89.5% of students attaining levels 4-9.

In French GCSE 75.8% of students achieved Level 4-9.

At Key Stage 4 we follow the current AQA GCSE specification for French and Spanish.

At GCSE students develop many of the skills they have learned at Key Stage 3 with a syllabus that reflects many issues that typically affect teenagers. These include; family and personal relationships, the media, their local area, holidays, the environment, school life, jobs and future careers.

AQA GCSE Spanish specification

AQA GCSE French specification

AS/A2 Level

We are currently running  A-Level French and Spanish groups and follow the AQA specifications.

 AQA A-Level Spanish specification

AQA A-level French specification


We believe that our students benefit from being exposed to languages through a variety of different mediums and contexts. During the last few years at Southborough we have held a number of different events to promote languages such as a Flamenco workshop, trips to the British Film Institute for film workshops and food mornings.


Trips abroad play a key role in fostering cultural interest and linguistic independence. Over recent years we have run successful residential trips to Brittany in France and Madrid, Spain as well as a day trip to the Christmas markets in Lille.

Boys are encouraged to try out the skills they have learned in the classroom and sample the local cuisine!
Our partner school – Colegios El Valle, Madrid.

A key development over recent years has been our partnership with Colegios El Valle in Madrid. Our twice weekly lunchtime Skype club gives our students the opportunity to develop their spoken confidence in their language. Each student has their own pen-pal who they communicate regularly with via email and hand written letter. We have found that the initiative has given a real context to our student’s learning and has had a significant impact on their motivation and progress.

Links GCSE

AS/A2 Level

 Our Spanish partner school:

Spanish Exchange with Colegios el Valle 2019


BBC Bitesize:
Aula International:

MFL GCSE Revision Leaflet 


School Calendar

Southborough High School
Hook Road
020 8391 4324
Registered Office: Hook Road, Surbiton, Surrey KT6 5AS, Registered in England
& Wales, Company Registration No. 07776910
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