Chinese is spoken by one-fifth of the world’s population and the UK is developing much closer relationships with China than ever in various areas including business, travel and tourism, and politics.

At New Line Learning Academy, pupils will develop their Chinese language skills, as well as their cultural awareness. Pupils should be able to communicate at a basic level using these four skills and understand Chinese culture better in Key Stage 3. Their language skills will be tested and rewarded through their GCSE exams.

The Department:

The Department has 2 language classrooms.

Mrs A. Fowden – Head of Modern Foreign Languages

Mrs A. Du – Mandarin Teacher

Two Hanban teachers

The Curriculum:


Pupils have two Mandarin lessons every week. We cover the basic introduction to Pinyin, characters and culture. Pupils then start to explore different topics such as numbers, family members, self-introduction, occupation, daily routine, means of transportation, colours, clothing and parts of the body. Lessons are taught through games, role-play and other fun-filled activities.

KS3 Topic Overview and Assessment

Year 7Year 8Year 9
BasicsFood and DrinksAll About Me
Family and HomeHolidaysMy Town
HobbiesAll About MeShopping


Pupils’ listening, speaking, reading and writing skills are enhanced and challenged during this time. Authentic material is extensively used to help pupils improve the four language skills. In order to foster pupils’ independent learning, dictionaries and online resources are used under the supervision of the classroom teacher. Pupils begin to link their everyday life to the target language and develop abilities to communicate through listening, speaking, reading and writing activities. At the end of the course pupils should be able to communicate basic information in Mandarin Chinese.

KS4 Topic Overview and Assessment

All exams are externally assessed by AQA at the end of Year 11.

  • Writing exam 25% – One translation and two open response questions.
  • Speaking exam 25% – one role-play, one picture-based task and one general conversation. 
  • Listening 25% final examination.
  • Reading 25% final examination

KS4 Topics:

Theme 1: Identity and Culture

  • Me, my family and friends
  • Technology in everyday life
  • Free-time activities
  • Customs and festivals in Spanish- speaking countries/ communities

Theme 2: Local. national, international and global areas of interest

  • Home, town, neighbourhood and region
  • Social issues
  • Global issues
  • Travel and tourism

Theme 3: Current and future study and employment

  • My studies
  • Life at school/ college
  • Education post-16
  • Jobs, career choices and ambitions


The development of language skills and understanding of the structure of language lay the foundations for future study of other languages.  Foreign language skills are increasingly valued in the world of work and are highly regarded by higher education institutions. GCSEs in MFL are usually followed by AS and A level courses although more sixth forms and colleges are now also offering the International Baccalaureate.

 A Modern Foreign Language also opens up possibilities of joint-honours degrees in, for example, International Law and French or International Relations with Spanish. Equally, a language can be combined with History, Music, Science, English and many other subjects. 


In school, the department offers a KS4 intervention session during lunchtime and after school. 

Assessment & Key Performance Indicators


Assessment at Key Stage 3:

End of term assessments are carried out at the end of each term and end of year assessments take place at the end of each year.

Assessment at Key Stage 4:

Current year 11

Paper 1: Listening and Understanding in Chinese. Written exam. 20% of GCSE. The examination consists of a number of passages or interactions in Chinese with a variety of question types. (All questions will be asked in English.)

Paper 2: Speaking in Chinese. Controlled assessment. 30% of GCSE. Pupils must demonstrate the ability to use the Chinese language for different purposes and in different settings, and will be assessed on two speaking activities chosen from the following task types: an open interaction, a picture-based free-flowing discussion or a presentation with discussion following.

Paper 3: Reading and Understanding in Chinese. Written exam. 20% of GCSE. The examination consists of a number of short texts, notices or news reports in Chinese which include a range of settings and styles, both formal and informal (for example text messages, advertisements, emails). All questions will be asked in English and the Chinese language reading material will be produced in both traditional and simplified script.

Paper 4: Writing in Chinese. Controlled assessment. 30% of GCSE. The pupil must complete two separate writing tasks.

Current year 10

Paper 1: Listening. Written exam. 25% of GCSE. Understanding and responding to different types of spoken language.

Paper 2: Speaking. Non-exam assessment. 25% of GCSE. Pupils need to show the ability of communicating and interacting effectively in speech for a variety of purpose.

  • Role-play
  • Photo card
  • General conversation.

Paper 3: Reading. Written exam. 25% of GCSE.

  • Section A – questions in English, to be answered in English or non-verbally.
  • Section B – translation from Chinese (Mandarin) into English (a minimum of 35 characters for Foundation Tier and 50 characters for Higher Tier).

Paper 4: Writing. Written exam. 25% of GCSE. Foundation Tier:

  • Question 1 – message (pupil produces four sentences in response to a photo.
  • Question 2 – short passage (pupil writes a piece of continuous text in response to four brief bullet points, approximately 30 characters in total)
  • Question 3 – translation from English into Chinese (Mandarin)
  • Question 4 – structured writing task (pupil responds to four compulsory detailed bullet points– there is a choice from two questions. Higher Tier:
  • Question 1 – structured writing task (pupil responds to four compulsory detailed bullet points) – there is a choice from two questions.
  • Question 2 – open-ended writing task (pupil responds to two compulsory detailed bullet points, producing approximately 125 characters in total) – there is a choice from two questions
  • Question 3 – translation from English into Chinese (Mandarin)

How do staff and pupils within the department use KPIs?

Once pupils have completed assessments in Term 2, 4 and 6 we assess the pupil’s progress against their individual KPIs which are kept in the back of their exercise books.  KPIs are also referred to at the start of lessons in relation to the WALT and WILF.

Where are the KPIs located?

Pupil’s KPIs are found in the back of their exercise books (Spanish/French) and folders (Mandarin). There are enlarged copies displayed at the back of the classroom.

Where will assessed work be found?

Assessed pieces of work will be found in their exercise books or folders. 

How often will pupils complete an assessed piece of work?


What measures does the department complete to ensure the assessment outcomes are accurate?

As a part of whole school CPD we take part in the termly Moderation Monday process which allows us to share good practise and jointly moderate allowing for us to practice the moderation process. External validation took place with the MFL HOD of CWS last year and we attempt to moderate together when possible. The SL and Mandarin teacher have both attended exam board training based on the new specification in Spanish and Mandarin. All staff are aware of the flight paths for their subjects. 

Any department specific information regarding assessment.

Spanish and Mandarin grades are now following grades 1-9 in all year groups.