English and Modern Languages

Course leaflets here



English Faculty

The English Faculty plays a lead role in the development of language and communication skills that will play a vital part in all other areas of learning and the future life of all pupils. The personal and social development of all pupils is enhanced by confident use of language skills when reading, writing, talking and listening.


A good command of English is the key to success in many aspects of life and work. It is important to be able to communicate well with others and to express yourself clearly in writing and talking. Skills in English will help pupils in many other school subjects and in the world of work. Reading books, newspapers and magazines provides enjoyment and information throughout life.

Course Outline

There are three main elements in this course

Reading: studying poetry, drama, novels and short stories in detail and writing about them critically.

Writing: completing a variety of writing tasks ranging from pieces which give information, to creative work in which the imagination is used and ideas developed.

Talking and Listening: learning to play a useful part in discussion as well as giving individual presentations, and learning to respond appropriately to what they have heard in a range of contexts.

Additional skills which are developed in this course include:

working with others in groups

learning to review, improve and redraft work.

The Faculty also provides opportunities for field trips, events and visiting speakers. Trips include visits to the theatre in Aberdeen and the Edinburgh Festival in August. Performing Arts groups present productions tailored to the needs of school pupils. Professional writers visit and talk about their work and deliver workshops. The Veronica Thomson Public Speaking Competition is held annually and is a major event in the department’s calendar.


Faculty of Modern Languages

Faculty of Modern Languages

Miss Grenet, Faculty Head, is a French native speaker who has many years teaching experience in our Scottish system.

Mrs Phelan lived and worked in Austria for 9 years and has years of experience of working in tourism and the oil & gas industry in Austria, France and UK.

  1. Méthivier is a French native too; he has years of teaching experience and has also worked as a business developer.

The varied backgrounds of the language teachers underpin their teaching and is key in encouraging our students to make connections between languages and the wider world.

Activities and events that we have organised include:

  • a school trip for senior pupils to Paris,
  • Modern Languages in Business events for S3 pupils
  • an annual European Day of Languages event for S1 pupils
  • a project for S3 pupils to encourage them to promote Aberdeenshire as a key tourist attraction for French and German visitors
  • Seniors get a chance to bake using cookery books in the target language
  • partnership with a German school in Bavaria, where pupils exchange letters with pen pals from the partner school.

We plan to include more project based learning across the curriculum, to illustrate the use of languages in real-life contexts and the local community.

What’s the subject about?

The aim of this faculty is to provide a worthwhile and enjoyable educational experience for the pupils and develop their language skills and knowledge of other countries and ways of life.

This prepares the youngsters to cope with a variety of situations and opens a world of possibilities:

  • It increases the learner’s awareness of their own language, improving communication skills.
  • It helps them build up an insight into the life of another country and increase their opportunities and confidence to travel abroad.
  • It provides an advantage for future careers. Being able to speak another language is a useful addition to any CV and can be an asset in a variety of jobs, including, but not limited to tourism, engineering, journalism, oil and gas industry, international business, teaching, as well as interpreting and translation.
  • Pupils can also choose to continue their study of this language at university, either alone or as an additional subject in courses such as business, engineering, law…



Course outline

Courses from S1 – S3 consist of 4 main elements: Reading, Listening, Writing and Talking, with pupils following the experiences and outcomes outlined in curriculum for excellence.


  • In S1 pupils expand on their knowledge of French for half a year and learn some German for the other half. Learners develop language skills based in cultural contexts. At the end of S1, they will choose which language they want to focus on in S2 and S3. This will allow them to deepen their knowledge of that language and do purposeful and enjoyable projects embedded in a real-life context.


  • In S3, while most pupils will be continuing their chosen language, some will be recommended for International Studies as an alternative.
  • In French and German, pupils prepare for an SQA Qualification over the course of the school year:  Modern Languages for Life and Work Award. This award which aims to develop learners’ language and employability skills in practical and relevant contexts for life and work is genuinely recognised and valued by employers. Employability skills will also be strengthened by the Project Based Learning in which the students will get to work on a realistic professional situation working hand in hand with a local business.
  • In International Studies, instead of focusing on the one language, pupils will learn transactional language in a more practical way and through interesting projects.


  • In the senior phase, pupils have the opportunity to choose to study either French or German at National 4, National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher Level. They can also study the two languages if they wish, thus broadening their range of language skills.
  • The purpose of these courses is to build on prior learning and continue to develop the four skills of TALKING, LISTENING, READING and WRITING.
  • At National 4 level assessment is carried out in these skills internally only; whereas at National 5 level and at Higher the 4 skills will be externally assessed except for Speaking, which will be internally assessed but externally moderated.
  • The variety of options available in Turriff Academy means that classes available at National 4, National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher may be delivered individually, bi-level or multi-level as appropriate and as resources allow. This means pupils are expected to do independent learning at times.

Learning at Home

Home learning plays a crucial part in consolidating class work. Pupils are asked to do specific tasks as homework and learn the new vocabulary given in class every day. They are also encouraged to go over the grammar lesson taught in class and learn it at home.

We strongly advise pupils to make use of the unlimited wealth of online resources which can be used to develop language learning at home when no specific homework has been set.

  • com

All pupils are expected to regularly log in to Quizlet.com to revise at home the vocabulary that has been learned in class.  Pupils have their own login and should have joined the relevant Turriff Academy class on Quizlet and have access to the vocabulary sets.

  • Microsoft Teams

Modern Language Classes all have a Microsoft Team set up.  Pupils access this through GLOW. They’ll find resources used in class under FILES and homework that can be completed and handed in online under ASSIGNMENTS.

This website presents language activities for all language learners, in a lively and entertaining way, which pupils can use to reinforce and practise class work.

Pupil can access this website to reinforce learning through activities and games. The username and password are available from the class teachers.



For Senior Learners (S4-S6):


The BBC Bitesize website has video clips and other activities to help pupils prepare for National 4, National 5 and Higher in French and German.

Log on to the Bright Red Digital Zone (free-of-charge) for Listening resources, quizzes and other activities which complement the work done in class: National 5 and Higher in French and German.

  • Scholar

Pupils have access to Scholar through GLOW.

The scholar website is developed by Heriot-Watt University and links fully with SQA courses.

There are full courses available for Higher and Advanced Higher French and German, and support materials available for National 5.

  • Coffee Break Languages

CoffeeBreak Languages provide free Podcasts at a variety of levels, in different topics which are excellent for practicing listening skills.



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