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Orchard School Bristol


A different language is a different vision of life.
                                                                                                                - Federico Fellini. 

 The purpose of studying a foreign language is to provide students an opening to other cultures and ways of life. Languages are part of the cultural richness of our society here in the United Kingdom as well as in the world in which we live and work. Learning languages contributes to mutual respect, a sense of global citizenship and personal fulfilment and we have a moral imperative for understanding and communicating well, breaking down barriers and opening up opportunities in our multi-cultural society. In a world of change, where countries can look inwards and fear the unknown, the knowledge of languages and cultures inspire hope and optimism for young people's futures. 

The ability to understand and communicate in another language is a lifelong skill for education, employment and leisure in this country and throughout the world. The learning of languages affords students opportunities to develop their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills and to express themselves with increasing confidence, independence and creativity. Students explore the similarities and differences between other languages and English and learn how language can be manipulated and applied in different ways. The development of communication skills, together with understanding of the structure of language, lay the foundations for future study of other languages and support the development of literacy skills in a pupil’s own language.  

The Languages and EAL faculty believe that a high-quality languages education fosters students’ curiosity and deepens their understanding of the world - developing open-minded and respectful global citizens. Our teaching and learning aim is to provide learners with the skills to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It also aims to provide opportunities for students to communicate for practical purposes and to discover new ways of thinking and become creative and curious linguists. 

 Staff Profiles

  • Ms Claire Jones, MA (Cantab), PGDip, PGCE, Trinity Cert TESOL- Head of Faculty 

I studied law and MML at the University of Cambridge. After graduating I spent a year living in Barcelona, teaching English. As a languages teacher I have wide-ranging experience of organising extracurricular and enrichment activities, and recognise the vital importance for students of such opportunities. I am a member of subject associations for MFL and EAL, and have contributed to the ALL Languages Today magazine and the national Language World conference. I am passionate about developing myself and others and have been fortunate to have had opportunities to work delivering evidence-based CPD to colleagues across schools and mentoring new teachers.

  • Ms Grace Byron, BA (Hons), PGCE

I graduated from Newcastle University with a degree in Modern Foreign Languages, French with Spanish. I spent my third year of study abroad, the first semester in Grenoble and the second in Valencia. As Anti-Bullying Lead, I strive to maintain Orchard School Bristol's Gold Anti-Bullying Award, making it a safer and more open-minded place to be. I foster competitive spirit as the Dorchester House Champion and I am extremely passionate about languages and the opportunities that emerge as a result of their acquisition. I am a member of the Association for Language Learning and I support the work of the South West strand of this organisation. 

  • Mr Dorian Coxon, BA (Hons), PGCE

I graduated from Aberdeen University with joint degree in German and French and then went on to train as a teacher at Bristol University. I have a special interest in emotional health and the psychology of behaviours both in teenagers and adults. Outside of school, sport and art history dominate my time.

  • Mrs Enas Elmansuri, BA (Hons), MRes, MPhil

I graduated from Tripoli University and went on to complete a Masters of Research (TESOL) at Essex University and then a Masters of Philosophy at Bristol University. I have a particular interest in teaching English as an additional language and teaching English to other speakers of the language. I am a learning support assistant for EAL, an Arabic language tutor and a GCSE home language examiner.

  • Dr Priscilla Marie Sabine Phillips, BA (Hons), MA, PhD, PGCE

I am a native French speaker. I studied Modern Foreign Languages [English/French/Spanish] and subsequently completed a doctorate in Post-Colonial Literature at Swansea University where I also taught French Literature and Grammar to undergraduates. I was awarded several prizes for my work including the Mary Williams and the Roy Knight Prizes. When I obtained my PGCE in French and Spanish, I went to teach not only in the UkK but also in France, Mexico, and Reunion Island, where I originally come from. I am interested in travelling the world. I am a member of the Association for Language Learning.

  • Mr David Spence, BA (Hons), PGCE 

I graduated from the University of Bristol with a first-class degree in French and German. I am particularly interested in memory, retrieval practice and empowering student independence. I have a particular interest in literacy and oracy. 

Curriculum features

We teach French and Spanish to GCSE.  We provide opportunities for first language speakers to gain a qualification in their language, if one is available.  we also support students who are new to English to develop their English Language skills. 

The modern foreign language curriculum at Orchard School Bristol aims to ensure that all students:  

  • are resilient communicators, accustomed to listening to target language in the classroom, and develop their confidence, fluency and spontaneity in the language.  
  • are able to decode language and have the determination to persevere when only partial understanding has occurred.  
  • speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation.  
  • are able to recognise rules and patterns to support understanding of grammatical structures which are interleaved through Key Stage 3 and 4.  
  • develop a wide range of vocabulary, building in Key Stage 4 on learning in Key Stage 3 with Key Stage 5 stretch topics introduced to challenge students further.  
  • understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources including literary resources.  
  • broaden their tolerance and cultural horizons, comparing and contrasting sports, foods, festivals and traditions between countries.