What an extremely busy term this has been for our language learners here at PGHS. We have been writing letters to our penfriends, reading German fairy tales, baking some delicious German bakes and preparing for our speaking exams. It has been busy but fun with lots of activities taking place and lots of opportunities to further our love of learning languages. We have even hit a record number of pupils opting to take a language at GCSE in both French and German! This is just testament to how hard our team has worked this year to bring languages to life and also how hard our girls have worked during lessons and the success that it now brings.
Year 8 French
Year 8 have been learning about typical hobbies in different French-speaking countries. We also enjoyed reading the letters we received from our French pen pals, where they described their school day and their timetable. They have sent us the official brochure from their school and we are very impressed with how many languages they learn. They finished for the summer at the end of June, but we are not too envious. From reading their timetable, we realised they often finish much later (5 or 6pm) and have double lessons. Therefore, we don’t really wish for longer summer holidays. Non, merci!
Year 7 German
Year 7 have been busy learning all about school life in Germany and all the vocabulary related to school subjects, teachers, lessons and the school rooms and buildings. They have watched little videos about life in a German school and found out some super interesting facts. Did you know that German schools start at 7:45am and finish at 1pm and they do not wear a school uniform? Our girls think this is a great idea but didn’t really like the rule that if you do not pass your subjects or your head of year thinks you are not working hard, then you are in danger at some schools of having to repeat the year! Some pupils have also been writing their letters to their German penfriends and finding out about life in German schools. We cannot wait to make some videos of our school to send to Germany!
9J Fairy Tale Board Games
9J have been busy with Mrs Gill making their own fairy tale board games to depict a story from the Grimm Brothers. We had lots of fun making them and also playing them (although some liked to bend the rules a little bit!!!!) The girls added lots of German vocabulary on to them and made some of the questions really tricky. It was brilliant fun playing them together!
Year 8 German
Year 8 German pupils have been busy this term learning about travelling to Germany and staying in a youth hostel, giving instructions and directions to people, learning to tell the time and learning about all the wonderful festivals and celebrations that take place in the German calendar. We even got to see some of the fabulous traditional German costumes from Frau Gelder and Frau Gill. Our particular favourites were the Dirndl and the Lederhosen! We even made some German board games based around the festivals and had lots of fun playing them and learning all the vocabulary.
Frau Williams and the Café in Berlin
A small group of Year 8 students have been improving their reading skills by tackling a German book. It is about a young Sicilian man who comes to Berlin looking for work. He also needs a flat to live in and German lessons.
The students have chosen their favourite chapters and given you a taster of what is happening in the book. We have also created Avatars of the main characters.
Yesterday, Dino ate pizza at an Italian shop called o sole mio which is owned by 2 Palestinian brothers. They ate tuna fish pizza at a good price but it didn’t taste the best. The pizza place was a few metres away from the apartment. No one cooks and there are stacks of mysterious dishes lying around. Dino describes the fridge as a ‘black hole’ as when he buys something and puts it in the fridge, it will disappear shortly. They have separate compartments with their own food in the fridge but they say it is easier to eat out. They eat donner kebabs from Turkey, Berlin burgers, lamb from Pakistan and Palestinian pizzas and much more. A Berlin Currywurst is a speciality here. It has an interesting story. In 1949 a Berlin woman got Worcestershire sauce from a British soldier and Indian curry sauce and mixed it together with American ketchup and Currywurst sausage was made. It is typically German with multicultural mixes.
Chaper 2 Multikulti
My chapter explains all the diversity and different culture in Berlin. My favourite part is when they say that they have mysterious mountains of dishes yet no one even cooks! In German, it is ‘Niemand kocht, aber wir haben immer Berge von Geschirr. Es ist ein Mysterium’.
Vocabulary – Currywurst
• Berge von
• Geschirr = Mountains of dishes
• Niemand kocht = No one cooks
• Ein Mysterium= a mystery
Year 9 Penfriend letters and Cards with Frau Gill
9P have been busy in German returning letters to our German partner school, Sickingen Gymnasium. Our pupils were very excited to receive their letters earlier this term and we quickly got started on returning a letter ourselves. Our focus was to use the imperfect tense that we have been learning in lessons so we used it to describe our past weekend for our German friends. We even designed little gifts to put in the envelopes to send over to Germany. We are hoping that they receive them before they go on their summer break.
Y9 French penpals
Year 9 have written back to their French pen pals. In their previous letters, they had told us all about their ideal holidays. We then wrote back about our favourite celebration and described our favourite food. The students were delighted to receive our letters which arrived on their last school day before “les grandes vacances”.
Year 10 German
Year 10 German have been learning all about friends and family and how to discuss relationships and life at home. The pupils took on the challenge of doing their practice speaking exam. They really showed just how much progress they have made in recent months and completed a role play, a photo card description and a conversation. It was a real success and despite finding it a little daunting at first, once they started they realised it wasn’t as bad as they had thought and there were lots of smiles all round. The more practice we do on these speaking tasks, the more confident we become! Everyone put in a super performance but some stand out performances were from Donalia M, Yusairah B, Ellie R, Nur A, Ellie M, Sophia R, Zahra A, Zahra N, Carla D. Well done, everyone!
French Food and Culture with Madame Raine
Louise from 9J has kindly written about our French lessons: “Recently in our French lessons, we have been studying the food culture in France and the typical dishes from different parts of the country. This included ‘la quiche Lorraine’ – bacon quiche from the North East of France, ‘les crêpes Suzette’ – pancakes drizzled in orange sauce from the North West and ‘la bouillabaisse’ a fish stew from the South. We also learnt about ‘les moules-frites’ which is a dish consisting of mussels and chips. As a big mussel fan myself, I was excited at the prospect of eating this dish one day and even wrote about it to my French pen pal asking if she had ever tried it. Over the holidays, my family and I went to a local restaurant and to my surprise “moules-frites” was on the menu! I knew I had to try it and so I ordered the speciality. It came with the mussels in a creamy, white sauce with lots of “aïl “(garlic), a pot of chips on the side and two pieces of salty bread. I enjoyed every bite – c’était délicieux! “ Louise P-R 9J
Year 9 German
Year 9 German have been learning all about how to describe what we used to do as a child and what items we had when we were very little. We have also been reading some fabulous German fairy tales and learning all about the Grimm Brothers. We even got chance to write some of our own little stories!
Year 10 French
Year 10 have been learning how to describe their town and region. We practised new complex structures; we can now write about and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of where we live and how we could improve our area. Madame Raine has spotted a few politicians in the making! We have learned new tenses to help us reach higher grades. We listened to a recording of a GCSE speaking test and we now have a better understanding of what the speaking test will be like. We can do this!:)
Despite Year 11 having finished their exams and are no longer in school, Year 11 French and German students were given the opportunity to meet virtually with Sally Conroy from Cardinal Newman College and her students from the MFL department to discuss learning French and German at A Level. It was a fantastic meeting and gave a super insight into A Level French and German. Our students were able to listen to all the information and then ask questions directly about language learning and the college. Hopefully this gave them lots of things to think about as they further their language learning.
Mrs Gill, Curriculum Leader for MFL