Modern Foreign Languages – Summer Term News

German Spelling Bee

What an exciting term for our German spelling bees!

Our two regional final winners, Poppy and Zoha, went to the Sedgewick Site at Cambridge University on Monday 27th June to compete in the national final of the ‘Routes into Languages’ German spelling bee.

The day was broken down into two halves. In the morning, they competed in the semi-final. Each student had one minute to translate and then spell as many words as they could using the German alphabet. Both girls did so well and made their families and all of us at PGHS, super proud!

We then had a nervous wait for the grand final.  It’s possible that Miss Gelder was the most nervous of all! The grand final then followed the same routine as the semi-final.

Unfortunately, we did not make it into the final four but by Miss Gelder’s count, it was extremely close.

Both girls should be proud of themselves for making it to the final. Out of nearly 20,000 official entrants, our girls finished in the top 29 in the country – an incredible achievement!

Miss Gelder has been truly blown away with the effort and commitment of all competitors. You have been truly amazing and made everyone so proud. We cannot wait to get started with the year 8 Translation Bee in September.  Watch this space!

German Penfriend letters

We have had a really successful year with our German partner school, Sickingen Gymnasium by exchanging letters and video calls with them this year. Mrs Gill’s year 8 German class have received some fantastic letters from our friends in Landstuhl and we have returned some amazing letters, telling our friends about our Easter holidays and what we plan to do in the summer holidays.  This has not only helped to improve our German but also enabled us to find out interesting information about our German friends, their town and their culture.  We look forward to continuing this partnership in 2022/2023.

French- Penfriend letters

Year 8 have been very excited to receive replies to our penpal letters from France. They wrote to us about their school and their timetable, and we have been shocked by the length of their school day, from 8.00am till 4.40 pm! However, we are still a little envious about their longer summer holidays and Wednesday afternoons…

Year 9 received lovely letters from their penpals and some students even sent friendship bracelets. Classes have enjoyed receiving and sending letters this year. This has helped them develop the PGHS core values of empathy and curiosity.

French – Y8 Roleplay Practice

Every year, around 60 students have the opportunity to start learning French in year 8 as an additional foreign language alongside studying German. Year 8 have worked really hard this year and made huge progress in a short amount of time. I am super proud of them. Bravo! Madame Raine ☺

In French, this term, we have been learning to read, write and speak all about different sports and hobbies. We have been covering everything from horse riding to football and then discussing our opinions on them in French. We have also been learning to describe the weather – il pleut beaucoup! We’ve been improving our pronunciation and working on our understanding of masculine and feminine words. I thoroughly enjoy French as it is always a fun and lively class. I love learning about its culture and the day-to-day life of children in France. We all have French penpals that we write to every term – mine is called Naim. Rosie Y  

Students have been learning how to form questions in French. They practised their questioning skills to interview celebrities. You may recognise familiar faces…

French – 8p Boules Practice

As part of the Festival of Performance and Arts, 8p have been practising their “Boules” skills.   8p had a good time, but I feel some students may need to work on their techniques!!!

Märchen.  The Brothers Grimm.  Year 9

We all know and love the stories of Little Red Riding Hood (Rotkäppchen) and Cinderella (Aschenputtel).  These stories were originally German folk tales, which were collected and adapted by the Brothers Grimm.

In year 9, we have been making storyboards based on fairy tales or stories which we enjoyed when we were younger.

There is a great deal of linguistic skill involved in writing a story in German. German books are written in the imperfect tense and it is important to master this tense, if we are to read for pleasure in German.  We have also tried to keep to the Grimm Brothers’ distinctive style of presentation.

We hope you can work out what the stories are about and that you enjoy Year 9s German versions of some well-loved classics.

Masks. Year 8

For our final module in Year 8 German, we have been exploring different festivals in Germany, Switzerland and Austria.  I can certainly say that we have been working hard with the PGHS Core Value of curiosity.  

Our studies have taken us from onion festivals in Switzerland to music festivals in Austria, finger wrestling in Bavaria to the World Beard Championships in Hesse.

The festival which caught our imaginations the most, was Fasnacht or Fasching (depending on which part of Germany you live in).  It is an opportunity to drive out ‘evil spirits’ with scary masks, costumes, processions and loud music.

Here are some of the masks we made.  Can you work out if your daughter is hiding behind a mask?

Mrs Gill

Curriculum Leader for Modern Foreign Languages

Posted in MFL

Stars of the Term

Posted in MFL

Year 11 Exams

The French and German department have been busy this last half term preparing our Year 11 students for their final listening and reading exams and we have looked ahead to our writing exams after the half term holiday. All our language students also completed their speaking exam at the end of April.  What a fantastic effort they all made and the standard was fantastic in both foundation and higher!  I am extremely proud of all our students who stepped up to this challenge and gave it their best shot.  By the sounds of it though, there will be a lot of students playing football at the park with their friends this weekend, so beware if you are heading out!

Mrs Gill

Curriculum Leader for MFL

Posted in MFL

Year 8 French

In French, this term, we have been learning to read, write and speak all about different sports and hobbies. We have been covering everything from horse riding to football and then discussing our opinions on them in French. We have also been learning to describe the weather – il pleut beaucoup! We’ve been improving our pronunciation and working on our understanding of masculine and feminine words. I thoroughly enjoy French as it is always a fun and lively class. I love learning about the culture and the day-to-day life of children in France. We all have French pen-pals that we write to every term – mine is called Naim. Rosie Y

Posted in MFL

Cinema Club

Our next French film will start after half-term and depicts the life of a gifted teenage singer as the only hearing person in her deaf family. This film inspired the recent US version “CODA” (Child of Deaf Adults), which you may have seen at the cinema.

“La Famille Bélier” received six nominations at the 40th César Awards, winning Most Promising Actress for Louane Emera.  Louane is now a famous French singer and Y10 French have enjoyed listening to one of her songs to help them practise the imperfect tense!

Madame Raine 

Posted in MFL

German Spelling Bee

Herzlichen Glückwünsch!! A massive congratulations to our year 7 Spelling Bees on an amazing Spelling Bee regional final! Our girls should be incredibly proud of being part of the last 51 students out of a staggering 3686 who entered the competition from the North West. Out of these 51 pupils, 2 of our Germanists here at PGHS were placed 3rd and 4th overall and are therefore through to the National Final at Cambridge University on 27th June. I’m sure the whole school will join me in congratulating them.

The girls have said how excited they are to be competing and to get the chance to visit Cambridge and the university. They are both nervous but are hoping to do well. With all their hard work, I am sure they will do amazingly well and we are all super proud of them.

Mrs Cattanach says, “This is an absolutely fantastic achievement, girls! Very well done! We are all very proud of you. Viel Glück in Cambridge!”

Mrs Gill says, “What an achievement and I am very proud of the commitment that these girls have put in all year and it is thoroughly deserved.  Viel Glück in Cambridge and enjoy every minute.”

Congratulations to:

  • Saniya S – Regional Finalist
  • Naomi S – Regional Finalist
  • Zoha A – National Finalist
  • Poppy M – National Finalist

Mrs Gill

Curriculum Leader for MFL

Posted in MFL

Modern Foreign Languages News

The MFL department have been busy finishing off all the displays and walls in our new classrooms in our Richard Pye Language Innovation Zone and I think you will agree they look fantastic!  The facility is dedicated to the memory of Mr Pye, a committed and much respected MFL teacher at Penwortham Girls’ High School from 2005 – 2019.  We are incredibly grateful for the donation that has given us the amazing opportunity to purchase our brand-new laptop and listening studio.  This is equipped with laptops and headsets which look amazing and is a great asset to our languages area.  It gives all of our students the opportunity to use the fantastic facilities that we have now and they will be able to access language specific software and websites in small groups to enhance their learning further in French and German.  We may even get chance to watch some German and French series in this area too, as well as accessing Quizlet, Blooket, Active Learn and other language websites. 

A huge well done to our Year 11s this term for their hard work in getting all their speaking work ready for the second week back after the Easter holidays when we have our final speaking exams.  They have worked hard in their preparation for this.  Year 7 have been busy in German learning about pets and families and are now learning about free time and sports.  Year 8 are just embarking on a wonderful journey learning all about German food.  We have even been tasting some German Brezls and we had a Brezl competition.  Here are some of our entries:

Year 9 have been learning about German music, bands and festivals and we even sampled some German music such as Rammstein, Helene Fischer and Namika, who was the most popular (we really liked ‘Ein Gummibär’).  Year 10 have been busy learning about free time activities and festivals in Germany and have found out about how much our German friends like to party!

Year 8 French have been busy learning all about life in a French school and Year 9 French have been learning about French towns and what there is to do there.

Mrs Gill

Curriculum Leader for MFL

German Spelling Bee

Our German Spelling Bees have been practising their latest set of vocabulary in preparation for stage three, the regional final! This would normally take place in Manchester but due to current situations, we are recording our entries and sending them in for judging. They will have one minute to translate and then spell as many words into German as they can. We have been making use of the iPads to practise vocabulary on Quizlet and have been racing each other (and Miss Gelder) in spelling different words. They have been working so hard and are making all of us proud. We are keeping our fingers crossed!

Miss Gelder

Penpals German

Our ongoing projects are going from strength to strength with our partner schools in Landstuhl in Germany and Lille in France.  At Christmas, 8G had a zoom call with Frau Woesner’s class and we have continued with our letters to Germany and France.  We have just received some letters back and are very excited to write some more and send them some Easter cards and let them know what we have been doing this term.  We hope to have another video call in the next term with them to see how they all are.  

Mrs Gill

Film Club

Film club for both French and German has continued to be really oversubscribed.  Our French society have been watching Ratatouille and our German group are now on to Ostwind 4. Having watched all the first three, we are really hooked.  The exciting news is that in 2021, they produced Ostwind 5 so we will be sure to try and get that on order to watch after Easter. 

Mrs Gill

French Baking

Did you know that Pancake Day is celebrated on a different day in France? “La Chandeleur” is celebrated every year in France and other European countries on February 2nd. They also celebrate “Mardi Gras” (Shrove Tuesday) when they enjoy more pancakes and Carnival celebrations.

9AL learned about it during one of their cultural enrichment lessons.  They also practised ordering different pancakes and were treated to a tasting session.

Y9 French had the opportunity to make pancakes after school in the food tech room, following a recipe in French. It turns out that some of us are more gifted than others at making pancakes!! Practice makes perfect! A big “thank you” to Miss Scott for helping us out.

Madame Raine

Stars of the Term

Abby L Lucy P Sana RY11 FrenchGreat progress, particularly in Listening.
Hannah E Izzy MY11 FrenchIntervention heroes.
Charlotte BY10 FrenchAmazing performance in latest assessment.
Maryam M Louise P-R Sian H Sofia RY10 FrenchGreat progress overall.
Jennah K Hannah T Mya G Mia S-B Vanika M Hannah B India A Millie SY9 FrenchHighest score on Active Learn.
Abigail K Eden F Hattie C Niamh L Grace C Sophie S Mariella M Juliette RY8 FrenchAmazing performance in the Speaking assessment.
Natalia N Ana C Abeeha F Olivia H Martha F Saffiya M Izzy SYear 7 German Mrs GillFantastic efforts in the German listening and reading progress checks!
Lexa K Rosie Y Aysha M Holly W Saskia H Darcey P Rebecca L Eden F Rani I Ebony M Phoebe B Ruby R Juliette R Elizabeth N Deanna KYear 8 German Mrs GillAll round great efforts in German!
Jennah K Tasneem A Savo A Mya G Victoria K Heather P Charlotte R Hannah B Ella H Neve G Gracie H Molly T Charlotte BYear 9 German Mrs GillAmazing attitude and all round hard worker in German this term.
Sandra H Elijah K Rukaya R Katie K Tilly P Isabel C Jessica L Kathrin C Naomi J Hana M Zahra S Mia SY10 German Mrs GillFabulous Module 2 progress checks in listening and reading.
Caitlin R Grace S Macie BY11 German Mrs GillGerman intervention stars.  
Marwa AG Ellie R Carla D Mia H Donalia M Laura G Eva W Mya JYear 11 German Mrs GillGerman revision stars.
Poppy M Naomi S Saniya S Lily T Zoha IY7 German Miss GelderSpelling Bee Stars.
Chloe A Evie B Sara D Mollie H Helena M Maddie R Sophie S Naomi S Faye S Tia WY7 German Miss GelderFantastic efforts in our listening and reading progress checks.
Safa A Lydia W Sofia W George G Abi S Amy L Katie T Dhriti S Dayana E Emma C Holly PY8 German Miss GelderExcellent attitude and all-round effort in German this term.
Etta W Khitam A M Sumayya B Emily K Masoomah E Freya W Bismah C Jennifer K R Madiha BY9 German Miss GelderExcellent attitude and all-round effort in German this term.
Sana A Isla B Khadija B Jessica B Maariyah P Rebecca SYear 10 German Miss GelderFabulous Module 2 progress checks in listening and reading.  
Marissa T Holly B Mia C Amelia S Grace S Emma A Megan B Khamilla C Emily S Keira WYear 11 German Miss GelderExcellent attitude towards German and fantastic efforts towards their GCSE.

Mrs K Gill

Curriculum Leader for Modern Foreign Languages

Posted in MFL

MFL News February 2022

Christmas Baking

In our last week of Term 1, Mrs Gill teamed up with Mrs Scott in Food Technology and they organised a German Christmas baking club after school.  It was incredibly popular but, unfortunately, we only had space for 20 students so we pulled names out of a hat and the lucky 20 girls got the opportunity to bake some delicious German bakes.  Firstly, the students had to read a recipe in German, match up the English and German instructions and then read through them to understand what to do.  Once everyone knew what the process and instructions were, we began the baking. We baked some lovely German gingerbread biscuits and then decorated them.  The students had a fantastic time and the biscuits looked and tasted amazing.  Well done, everyone!  As this club was incredibly oversubscribed, we will be running another MFL baking club to give others a chance to take part so watch out for that!

Year 7 Wanted Posters

This term, Year 7 have been working on our new unit of work, which involves learning all about how to give information about animals, pets and family members.  We have been working on learning about whether words are masculine, feminine or neuter and learning the definite and indefinite articles and also the plural forms of the nouns.  To complement our learning, we have all made ‘wanted’ posters for our pets.  Unfortunately, our pets escaped one night and ran around Penwortham so our students have put up ‘wanted’ posters to try to find them again! The students gave a detailed description of their animals and wrote about their personality and special powers that they possess in German, even offering a ‘Belohnung’ (a reward) in a bid to get them back!  They also enjoyed practising ‘superpowers’ in groups, explaining what their animals can do.  Looks like ”Niamh kann fliegen!” (Niamh can fly!)

German Spelling Bee

The German Spelling Bee is a national competition that brings together Year 7 students across the country to compete in their German spellings.  Students must try to spell as many words in German in one minute and move through the different rounds.  Congratulations to our Stage One German Spelling Bee winners! These girls have worked tirelessly to learn all 50 words for Stage One and performed incredibly in their individual Stage One final. Each girl had to reply with the German translation of the English word given and then spell it out using their German alphabet. They each did as many as they could within one minute – I think you can agree that’s very impressive!

These girls now move on to Stage Two where they will learn an additional 100 words for the school’s final, where the winners will be moving on to the regional final in Manchester. We cannot wait to head to this competition and show everyone how well we are doing!

French Penpals

Year 8 and Year 9 French were very pleased to receive replies from our French penpals. We got some lovely Christmas cards and letters which arrived throughout December and January. As always, we are so impressed with their English and love receiving real letters. We are already busy writing back to them.

This term, Year 9 have practised asking for food in a café and used the future tense to plan for a special weekend in Paris. Madame Raine was impressed with how well they did in their Speaking assessment. Bravo!

Year 8 are learning how to talk about their typical school day, uniform and are discovering what differences and similarities there are between French and English schools.


Students have enjoyed practising vocabulary using Blooket for homework and we have had the opportunity to use iPads in lessons too. Some students are incredibly competitive!

MFL Speaking Mocks

Year 11 took on the challenge this half term of our French and German speaking mocks.  We are super proud of them all as it was their first experience of a formal speaking exam.  All of our students gave their best, tackled the role play, photo card and conversation with confidence and all had lovely pronunciation and intonation throughout.  Well done to everyone, the MFL team are proud of you!

Mrs Gill, Curriculum Leader for Modern Foreign Languages

Posted in MFL

MFL News December 2021

What a busy first term it has been here in the MFL department! As the term draws to a close, I would like to thank all our students for working so hard in their French and German lessons and giving their all.  Year 7 have worked on learning how to introduce themselves and we have written to our penfriend letters in Germany.  Year 8 Germanists have learned how to describe their past holidays and learned our new favourite word ‘Kakerlaken’.  Year 8 French students have learned how to introduce themselves, give personal information and opinions.  Year 9 students have also been working hard and have produced some lovely letters and cards to send over to France and Germany. A huge well done to Year 11 for working through a really busy term and mock exams, pushing towards our goals next year and taking on the new challenges as we prepare for our mock speaking exams in January.  A big cheer for our Year 10 students embarking on their first term of GCSE French and German and producing some outstanding results in their recent Module 1 assessments alongside a brilliant attitude.  Well done, girls!

Year 10 French Video

During the festival, Year 10 French had the opportunity to make a video for our French penpals in Lille. They had to talk (in French, bien sûr!) about friendship and explained what being a true friend means to them. Well done, Louise, Charlotte, Stevie, Olivia, Isabel, Sofia, Joudy, Maryam, Beth and Sian for volunteering. We all loved watching the video!

Berlin Wall and German Reunification CGE

As part of our cultural enrichment this term, the girls have learned all about the Berlin Wall, it’s fall and subsequent reunification of Germany. To coincide with the public celebrations in Germany, we created an artwork using our hands on brightly coloured card. It takes pride of place in our new MFL corridor and I think you’ll agree it looks amazing!

Christmas Card Competition CGE

Our annual MFL Christmas Card competition has been launched with full gusto! Students have been invited to create a Christmas card in either French, German or any other language they know. We have already received some outstanding entries! These will be judged and prizes will be delivered to the winners and runners-up in each year group during the last week of term. Best of luck to all entrants!

Year 8 postcards

Year 8 have been working hard this term on the topic of holidays. To finish off our module and to show off the knowledge we have learned, 8Ge3 made some wonderful postcards to describe a holiday they have been on using the past tense. Miss Gelder has been super impressed with the creativity of the language and the effort that went into the design of these postcards. They look fabulous and include lots of brilliant German.  Well done, girls!

MFL STARS of the Term


Y7: Mia-Grace C, Lois W, Jemima A

8p: Hattie C, Elizabeth B-R, Amy McV

8g: Aysha M, Rosie Y, Saskia H

9p: Jennah K, Mya G, Victoria K

9g: Heather P, India A, Charlotte B

Y10: Charlotte B, Louise P-R, Elyse F

Y11: Abby L, Eliya D, Sana R


Y7: Uswa H, Naomi S, Lucia V

8G: Dayana E, Scarlett G, Emma C

8P: Emma D, Georgia J, Safa A

9G: Olivia S, Emily K, Ieeman M-S

9P: Elli-Ann S, Jennifer K, Bismah C

10B: Jessica B, Sana A, Isla B

11B: Holly B, Amelia S, Mia C


7: Sumairaa B,  Grace S,  Sophia A

7:  Grace A, Evelyn W, Grace I

8:  Lyla K, Esme H, Ruby T

8:  Carly W, Maisy E, Florence B

9:  Maryah M,  Maisie K,  Saga G

9:  Abi C,  Hannah B,  Fatima P

10:  Amy B,  Lucy S,  Zainab V.

Mrs Gill:

7P:  Tanisha S, Olivia H, Abeeha F

8G:  Aysha M, Vidhya P, Emily B

8P:  Eden F, Amy Mc, Abigail K

9G:  Heather P, Charlotte B, Charlotte R

9P:  Jennah K, Mya G, Maisie W

Y10:  Tilly P, Emma B, Elijah K

Y10:  Isabel C, Zahra S, Alexa L

Y11:  Zahra N, Carla D, Ellie R

Y11:  Jaz C, Marwa AG, Zahraa K

Christmas Markets MWI

To follow from MWI and photos from KGI

In our final two weeks of term, we have looked at how our French and German friends celebrate the Christmas festive period and that kicks off a little earlier in Germany with Nikolaustag on the 6th December.  We learnt about how the German children leave their boots out for St Nikolaus to come and hopefully leave us treats if we are good enough! Mrs Gill’s Year 8 class have also been lucky enough to be selected to take part in a video call with our German partner school ‘Sickingen Gymnasium’ which has been a great opportunity for us to ask and answer questions and find out about life in Germany.

We wish you all a wonderful, safe and relaxing Christmas and look forward to sharing our language joy in the new year and further our links with our German and French schools.

Mrs Gill, Curriculum Leader for the MFL Department

Posted in MFL
  • Arts Council England - Artsmark Gold
  • Lancashire Socio-economic Equality Badge
  • School Mental Health Award
  • Ofsted - Outstanding Provider
  • Arts Council England - Artsmark Gold
  • Lancashire Socio-economic Equality Badge
  • School Mental Health Award
  • Ofsted - Outstanding Provider