Bangor Grammar School


Modern Languages


Mr Gavin Nicholl

Mrs Catherine Henry

Mrs Katharina Nicholl

Mrs Tracy McKee

Ms Jessica Smyth

Subject Overview

Languages form an integral part of the school’s curriculum. There are countless merits to the learning of a foreign language.

  • Languages allow me to find out about different countries’ cultures and how other people in other countries live. -Lewis, Year 9
  • I like languages because they sound cool! -Year 10 pupil
  • I like to learn about the way foreign people speak compared to how we speak. -Daniel, Year 9
  • It helps me understand some of the country’s cultural differences and enjoy my holiday more by knowing I’m not that different from them. -Tony, Year 8
  • I can learn how to speak with the many people who do not speak English. -Jack, Year 8
  • I like languages because they are taught through a range of interesting and enjoyable activities. -Mitchell, Year 10
  • When I go to different countries I could maybe meet new friends, talk to them and get better at that language. -Ryan, Year 8
  • I love languages because they will be good for jobs and they provide me with a challenge. -David, Year 10


The Modern Foreign Languages department has 4 fully equipped general purpose classrooms, two of which have direct access to the Languages Resource Room.



The Department continues to forge links with schools throughout Europe. A number of middle school pupils take part in an annual exchange visit to Lachendorf, Germany while senior pupils were involved in a Spanish home stay programme to Salamanca. Boys have also had the opportunity to visit Brussels recently in a combined trip of the MFL and Politics departments.


As part of our celebration of European Day of Languages, Year 8 pupils have the opportunity to share a French breakfast together. They sample a variety of typical French cuisine such as croissants and pain au chocolat.


As part of the A2 course, pupils study a film. We attend the NICILT Film Days organised at Queen’s. There pupils get the opportunity to view the film, hear from an experienced lecturer and discuss the topics with pupils from other schools.


AS and A2 French and Spanish pupils have the opportunity to attend the relevant Debating Club to allow them to improve their fluency in the target language. This experience has proved very beneficial to them when sitting their speaking examinations and has allowed them to access the highest scores available. In previous years, the school has sent a team to the Northern Ireland French Debating Competition and we hope to continue to do so.

Key Stage 3

All boys entering the school in Year 8 study French. Boys have two 1 hour lessons a week meeting a range of themes such as family, hobbies and their local area. Extensive use is made of ICT within class in order to promote an interactive and lively language learning environment. At the start of Year 9, boys will have the opportunity to further develop their knowledge of foreign languages by studying either German or Spanish in addition to French.

Key Stage 4

Boys are strongly encouraged to study at least one language at GCSE level. At present the pupils follow the CCEA syllabus in all 3 languages at GCSE. For further details on course content please check:

CCEA French Specification

CCEA German Specification

CCEA Spanish Specification

Key Stage 5

At present the pupils follow the CCEA syllabus in all 3 languages at AS and A2 level. For further details on course content please check:

CCEA French Specification

CCEA German Specification

CCEA Spanish Specification

The school is very fortunate to have the services of Foreign Language Assistants for French, German and Spanish on an annual basis.

Career Opportunities

Boys will gain confidence in developing their speaking and writing communication skills as well as gaining numerous insights into different countries and cultures. Several former pupils have continued their language studies through to university level either as stand-alone language courses or in combination with a host of other courses including Law and Accountancy.