In the Diploma and throughout GCSE, pupils focus on reaching a basic proficiency level that will allow them to communicate in a wide range of situations, from being a tourist to attending a school exchange to being able to comment on current events around the world. To reach this lofty goal, we start in the Diploma years focusing on pronunciation, vocabulary and grammar structures in order to communicate spontaneously in the language. These skills lead into the GCSE curriculum which examines pupils on their ability to read, write, listen, speak and translate in Spanish across three major themes: identity and culture, local, national and global areas of interest, and current and future employment and study.
The A Level Spanish course builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills gained at GCSE. It is an integrated programme focusing on language, culture and society, and it evaluates how the Spanish-speaking world has been shaped and how it continues to change. It fosters a range of transferable skills including communication, critical thinking, research skills and creativity. The specification is studied over two years. Students will develop their knowledge and understanding of themes relating to the culture and society of countries where Spanish is spoken and improve their language skills
In addition to the cultural and political material covered, pupils hone their critical and analytical skills by evaluating great literature and film from the Hispanic World. This year the literature studied includes Como agua para chocolate by Isabel Allende and Crónica de una muerte anunciada by Gabriel García Márquez, as well as the film El laberinto del fauno by director Guillermo del Toro. Enrichment opportunities include a trip to Cadiz, trips into London to see Spanish plays and art exhibitions, and on-site events such as movie nights and social activities in Spanish.
Head of Department
Dr Ann Befroy
Dr Befroy was previously teaching Spanish at Miss Porter's School in the USA where she also served as a coach, advisor, dormitory assistant and dean. She joined Benenden in 2015. Ann lives on site with her family and serves as DHm of Beeches.