The Senior Learning Model – Masterclass for Languages

What does success in Language learning look like? The skillset is rigorous. Having acquired, practised and mastered vocabulary, script and grammatical structures in the second language, students need to be able to listen, read, speak and write on a wide range of topics. Reaching this level necessitates students who are self-directed and willing to immerse themselves in the spoken, written and visual texts. The most successful students of languages take their engagement beyond the classroom, by pursuing their interests and passions within the framework of the second language.

St Catherine’s innovation in launching the Masterclass concept is ideally suited to language learning. This year, students of Japanese are acquiring new Kanji during their Independent Learning Tutorial (ILT) times. A broad vocabulary is essential to build depth of linguistic expression. In Chinese, students have listened to lectures on different life experiences in China to enhance their intercultural understanding. Students of French have pursued independent research using tourist websites in preparation for a writing assessment.

All these activities offer opportunities for independent study and research, personal choice according to interest and extension to enable students to engage at their own language level. The Masterclass framework draws upon the panoply of online resources to engage and challenge all learners.

Ms Anna Pianezze, Head of Languages