Skip to content ↓

Modern foreign languages

In an increasingly inter-connected world languages are more important than ever. At Bryanston there is a focus not only on the importance of effective and authentic communication, but also on the cultures of the various languages taught. Indeed, four teachers are native speakers of their taught languages as well as three language assistants (French, German and Spanish) who bring their experience directly into the classroom.

The three major languages offered throughout the School are French, German and Spanish. In addition, Italian is offered at ab initio level at IB and other languages are regularly taken in public examination sessions, including Modern Greek, Mandarin, Turkish, Russian and Italian.

Laurent Johnson
Head of Modern Foreign Languages



On arrival in D most pupils have good foundations in French and increasingly they have learned other languages as well. In the first few weeks pupils receive lessons in Spanish and German, in order for pupils and staff to decide where the best prospects for future study lie. Pupils then continue with two languages from French, German and Spanish for the rest of D, by the end of which pupils have covered the major tenses as well as many of the topics tested at iGCSE. 

Pupils are expected to study a language at Key Stage 4 and go on to take iGCSE in one or two languages. Pupils benefit from much individual support, for example in preparation for oral examinations or in respect of pupils' individual grammar and writing skills.

A level and IB

In the sixth form pupils may continue to study languages as part of the IB or A levels and here cultural topics, such as literature, film and art, move to the core of the curriculum.

Class sizes tend to average around eight pupils, allowing pupils to express themselves freely and seek support as required. Classes are usually taught by two teachers in order to provide exposure to a variety of teaching styles. A weekly lesson with a native-speaker Foreign Languages Assistant is at the heart of the teaching provision and enables pupils to further develop their fluency and confidence in the spoken language. These lessons tend to be taught one-to-two in A3 and one-to-one in A2. 

Modern foreign languages in detail

  • Tweet

    With huge thanks to @BFI our Sixth Form German classes attended an excellent online seminar today on the A level film Das Leben Der Anderen. It was an engaging session and super revision for A2 in particular. Thanks to @brycatering for the refreshments!

    4 Oct

  • Tweet

    On Saturday I really enjoyed watching my IB class interview Herr Flitters about his experiences as a student in the former East Germany as part of their study of ‘Life under a Dictatorship.’ Some great exchanges!

    3 Oct

  • Tweet

    And today they made croquetas!

    8 Jun

Hide Show

Language ECAs

Pupils can choose from a range of language-based extra curricular activities, including linguistics, film clubs and a newsletter.



Modern Foreign Languages

Since starting Spanish at Bryanston, I feel that it has become core to my learning and the way I approach all types of intellectual tasks. The language pushes my mind to think in different ways and this aspect excites me. There is so much to learn in Spanish it is almost impossible to become bored, and it is now one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. I hope that it will help me throughout my life, wherever it may take me.