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Modern Foreign Languages

“A different language is a different vision of life” Federico Fellini

The language department’s philosophy at Palmers Green High School is to encourage a love of foreign languages and civilisations. Languages play an important role in the school’s curriculum and senior pupils study French in Years 7, 8 and 9 with Spanish being introduced in Years 8 and 9. In Years 10 & 11 one MFL is compulsory at IGCSE with pupils also having the option to study another at IGCSE.

The language department has access to a wide range of resources and pupils are taught through various activities including class oral work, pair work, group work, acting and vocabulary learning in order to develop oral, aural, reading and writing skills. Pupils also learn through video and audio media such as listening and watching recorded material, songs, playing language games, dictation, using interactive computer resources, memorising talks and writing compositions.

Palmers Green High School Year 7 French Linguatrivia Competition 2013

The Modern Foreign Language Department aims to:

  • develop the skills of listening, reading, speaking and writing a foreign language through a wide range of activities and resources.
  • equip students with the language skills they need for both practical purposes and to enhance their experience of travelling abroad through residential trips.
  • teach pupils orally, supported by careful study and practice of grammar and vocabulary to ensure they leave PGHS with excellent linguistic skills.
  • encourage pupils to pursue their learning of languages to a greater level and enjoy the benefits of such an asset in their everyday lives.


All pupils in Year 7 will study a Modern Foreign Language to Year 9. Spanish is introduced in Years 8 and 9 and pupils have the option to study this language and/or French at IGCSE. Recently, numerous candidates have chosen to study two languages successfully at this level. The department introduced the IGCSE (Edexcel) in September 2009 in both languages as it is felt that it is the most appropriate examination for pupils, preparing them greatly for further studies. As this is an internationally recognised qualification, this will provide a firm foundation on which to develop their studies of languages as well as broaden their horizons further.

The MFL Department is now following the new IGCSE (9-1) and the first examination will be in June 2019.

Extra Curricular Activities

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Residential Trip to Valencia

There are numerous extra curricular activities that pupils can become involved in both within and outside of school ranging from:

  • Day trips to Boulogne (Year 7)
  • Weekends in Paris (Year 9/Year 10)
  • Annual residential trips to France and Spain
  • Language surgeries
  • Theatre visits (Onatti)
  • Visiting Drama Workshops
  • Hispanic Day celebration
  • Food tasting - Mardi Gras crepes, le petit dejeuner francais, la galette des rois
  • National poetry competition
  • National comprehension competition (Linguascope)
  • Reading competitions
  • Making of videos and puppets
  • Creating and recording songs and drama
  • Celebrations of European day for languages
  • One to one conversation with the Language Assistant