Languages

O tāu reo, ko tāku reo, Te tuakiri tangata. Tīhei uriuri, tīhei nakonako, Tīhei mauri ora!
Your voice and my voice are expressions of identity. May our descendants live on and our hopes be fulfilled. Behold the breath of life!

“Languages take us places and languages open doors. With languages we understand others better, we experience other worlds, we cross borders, we broaden our horizons.”

The International Languages offered are French, Japanese, Chinese, and Samoan. Students are able to study a language right up to Year 13 level (NCEA Level 3 and Scholarship). Learning a Language is an essential learning area of the NZ Curriculum and students are encouraged to keep the learning of a language as part of their school education. Students gain linguistic skills, cultural understanding and the tolerance necessary in a modern world which has an increasingly international focus. These International Language abilities and skills offer wonderful opportunities for both future employment and personal pathways.

Students will be able to communicate about every day activities and express their feelings and opinions about issues. The course includes the use of music, films, magazines, videos, DVDs, websites as well as textbooks and MRGS course books. Students become confident in all language skills: speaking, listening, reading, writing. Each year the school uses native speakers of our Languages to further help and encourage our students in becoming confident and independent in the language.

We are fortunate to be able to offer our students of languages participation in a large number of outings, competitions and trips including a biennial Homestay Tour to Normandy, France and also one to Machida in Japan. They are extremely successful and popular and provide life changing experiences.

Students of languages can embark on a rewarding, exciting and challenging pathway as they look to gain lifetime skills and knowledge and also NCEA credits for their NZQA record of learning.

From the New Zealand Curriculum Framework:

“All students benefit from learning another language from the earliest practicable age. Such learning broadens students’ general language abilities and brings their own language into sharper focus. It enriches them intellectually, socially, and culturally, offers an understanding of the way in which other people think and behave, and furthers international relations and trade.”

HOD Languages – Alistair McAlpine

Qualifications: MA (Hons) from the University of Auckland

Experience: I started my teaching career as a Teacher of French at Auckland Grammar School. I have been Head of Languages at MRGS since 1995.

Why I teach my subject: I am passionate about teaching my subject in an enthusiastic and engaging way. I love seeing pupils speaking in their new language, becoming confident, having a can-do attitude, feeling positive and having fun in learning a new language. I also love seeing pupils really acquiring the language so that they are confident in asking questions, using expressions automatically and having natural conversations. I also love seeing pupils discover a whole new world which opens up to them so many personal and professional opportunities, both current and future. I love seeing pupils enter competitions, win prizes, go on trips and outings. I encourage pupils to be involved in School Homestay exchanges.

Why I teach at MRGS: I am extremely fortunate to work in a Languages Department with outstanding staff. Their enthusiasm and commitment to teaching languages are inspirational. I love teaching with my colleagues. They care for their pupils and are always updating their teaching material and methods ensuring that the language learning journey is both positive and robust so that our pupils are well-prepared to be successful. We also appreciate the support from the school leadership and Board of Trustees for the current two International Homestay Exchanges to France (Normandy) and Japan (Machida).

Alistair McAlpine – HOD Languages
Shelagh Cave – Teacher in charge Japanese, Teacher of French
Suzanne Robertson – Teacher of French
Yukiko Kojima – Teacher of Japanese
Margaret Va’aelua – Teacher of Samoan
Yu-Ping Wang – Teacher of Chinese

Courses and Pathways

Year 9 Chinese

Entry Requirements:

N/A

Junior Diploma Credits:

18 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website, Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

This course provides the opportunity to learn a new language, Chinese, giving students a global outlook and advantage in their education. There are lots of fun activities for students to enjoy as they learn to talk about themselves in Chinese and develop the confidence to have conversations about everyday situations. Students will be highly motivated to take part in the cultural activities, trips, games and competitions to do with their new language, including Education Perfect competition and drawing Chinese characters.

Year 9 French

Entry Requirements:

N/A

Junior Diploma Credits:

18 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website and Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

This course provides the opportunity to learn a new language, French, giving students a global outlook and advantage in their education. There are lots of fun activities for students to enjoy as they learn to talk about themselves in French and develop the confidence to have conversations about everyday situations. Students will be highly motivated to take part in the cultural activities, trips, games and competitions to do with their new language, including Education Perfect competitions, a French Breakfast and an established MRGS Homestay Exchange to France.

Year 9 Japanese

Entry Requirements:

N/A

Junior Diploma Credits:

18 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website, Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

This course provides the opportunity to learn a new language, Japanese, giving students a global outlook and advantage in their education. There are lots of fun activities for students to enjoy as they learn to talk about themselves in Japanese and develop the confidence to have conversations about everyday situations. Students will be highly motivated to take part in the cultural activities, trips, games and competitions to do with their new language, including Education Perfect competitions, Sushi making and an established MRGS Homestay Exchange to Japan. Students will learn the Japanese Hiragana script.

Year 9 Samoan

Entry Requirements:

N/A

Junior Diploma Credits:

18 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website and Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

This course provides the opportunity to learn a new language, Samoan, giving students a global outlook and advantage in their education. There are lots of fun activities for students to enjoy as they learn to talk about themselves in Samoan and develop the confidence to have conversations about everyday situations. Students will be highly motivated to take part in the cultural activities, trips, games and competitions to do with their new language, including Education Perfect competition and making traditional food such as ‘oka.

Year 10 Chinese

Entry Requirements:

Year 9 Chinese (or students with a prior knowledge of some Chinese)

Junior Diploma Credits:

24 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website, Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

The course continues on from the Year 9 programme and is an entry requirement for Year 11. Students move from basic communication to speaking about everyday situations in Chinese. Students who have not done Year 9 Chinese but who already speak some Chinese are welcome to join and extension work will be provided for those students. Students want to be able to talk about themselves in Chinese and have conversations in Chinese in normal everyday situations. Students who do this course want to gain skills in and a knowledge of another International language and culture so as to have a global outlook and an advantage in their education. They will also be able to experience the fun, enjoyment and opportunities of discovering another language and culture. There is a visit to a Chinese restaurant.

Year 10 French

Entry Requirements:

Year 9 French

Junior Diploma Credits:

24 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website and Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

The course continues on from the Year 9 programme and is an entry requirement for Year 11. Students move from basic communication to speaking about everyday situations in French. Students will be motivated to learn about cultural aspects including food, school, Paris metro travel, districts of Paris, holidays as well as take part in a French Café trip. Students will be able to talk about themselves in French and have conversations in French in normal everyday situations. Students who do this course will gain skills in and a knowledge of another International language and culture so as to have a global outlook and an advantage in their education. They will also be able to experience the fun, enjoyment and opportunities of discovering another language and culture. There is a MRGS Homestay exchange programme to France.

Year 10 Japanese

Entry Requirements:

Year 9 Japanese

Junior Diploma Credits:

24 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website, Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

The course continues on from the Year 9 programme and is an entry requirement for Year 11. Students move from basic communication to speaking about everyday situations in Japanese. Students will learn a new script, Katakana. They will also learn about cultural aspects, make booklets, watch Japanese anime, do origami folding and make Japanese food such as Okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake). Students can take part in a Trivia Quiz Championship and a Tea Ceremony. Students will be able to talk about themselves in Japanese and have conversations in Japanese in normal everyday situations. Students who do this course will gain skills in and a knowledge of another International language and culture so as to have a global outlook and an advantage in their education. They will also be able to experience the fun, enjoyment and opportunities of discovering another language and culture. There is a MRGS Homestay exchange programme to Japan.

Year 10 Te Reo Maori

Entry Requirements:

Year 9 Te Reo Māori/At the discretion of HOD

Credits:

N/A

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

This course is designed as an extension from the year 9 programme but, is open to any student who shows a passion in learning Te Reo Māori at this level. Students will learn a wide range of new structures to indicate tense, build on vocabulary and extend knowledge on Te Ao Māori the Māori world. Learn the importance and take part in important Māori culture aspects, calendar events and celebrations; Powhiri, Kapahaka, Matariki. Te Reo Māori and Tikanga go hand in hand, and the Year 10 course teaches students to understand the importance of both. This course is designed to build the sound foundation required to be successful in Level 1 NCEA and opens up a whole new world of opportunities.

Year 10 Samoan

Entry Requirements:

Year 9 Samoan (or students with a prior knowledge of some Samoan)

Junior Diploma Credits:

24 Credits

BYOD Recommendations:

Students need to be able to access the Education Perfect website and Google Classroom and have an internet and word-processing capable device, such as a Chromebook or better. We recommend the device has an external keyboard and at least a 10 inch screen.

Who is this course for?

The course continues on from the Year 9 programme where the values of Fa’aaloalo (Respect), Tautua (Service) and Alofa (Love) are incorporated into the programme throughout the year. Interested students at Year 10 who know some Samoan may also join the class even though that they have not taken the language at Year 9. Students who do this course want to gain skills in and a knowledge of another language and culture so as to have a global outlook and an advantage in their education. They also want to experience the fun, enjoyment and opportunities of discovering another language and culture. Students take part in the Samoan Language Week and its activities.

Year 11 Chinese

Entry Requirements:

Year 10 Chinese

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 1

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning Chinese, learning about the Chinese culture and who want an international language as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will become confident in the Chinese language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 90868 1.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of spoken Chinese texts. EXT
AS 90869 1.2 Give a spoken presentation in Chinese. INT
AS 90870 1.3 Interact using spoken Chinese to communicate personal information, ideas and opinions. INT
AS 90871 1.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of Chinese texts. EXT
AS 90872 1.5 Write a variety of text types in Chinese. INT

Year 11 French

Entry Requirements:

Year 10 French

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 1

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning French, learning about the French culture and who want an International Language as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will become confident in the French language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 90878 1.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of spoken French texts. EXT
AS 90879 1.2 Give a spoken presentation in French. INT
AS 90880 1.3 Interact using spoken French to communicate personal information, ideas and opinions. INT
AS 90881 1.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of French texts. EXT
AS 90882 1.5 Write a variety of text types in French. INT

Year 11 Japanese

Entry Requirements:

Year 10 Japanese

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 1

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning Japanese, learning about the Japanese culture and who want an International Language as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will become confident in the Japanese language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 90893 1.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of spoken Japanese texts EXT
AS 90894 1.2 Give a spoken presentation in Japanese.  INT
AS 90895 1.3 Interact using spoken Japanese to communicate personal information, ideas and opinions  INT
AS 90896 1.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of Japanese texts. EXT
AS 90897 1.5 Write a variety of text types in Japanese  INT

Year 11 Te Reo Maori

Entry Requirements:

Year 10 Maori

Credits:

30 Credits at Level 1

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who are genuinely passionate about learning the Māori language, culture and custom. Students who want to learn an official language of Aotearoa as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. There is a strong focus on Manaakitanga hospitality/caring for others and Whanaungatanaga, building and strengthening relationships and you will show your understanding of these Tikanga in everyday situations. There is an expectation that students are also a part of kapahaka which will in turn, assist with the practical side of this course.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91085 1.1 Whakarongo kia mohio ki te reo o tōna ao INT
AS 91086 1.2 Kōrero kia whakamahi i te reo o tōna ao INT
AS 91087 1.3 Pānui ki te mōhio ki te reo o tōna ao EXT
AS 91088 1.4 Tuhi i te reo o tōna ao EXT
AS 91089 1.5 Waihanga tuhinga i te reo o tōna ao INT

Year 11 Samoan

Entry Requirements:

Year 10 Samoan

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 1

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who are genuinely passionate about learning the Samoan Language, culture and customs. Students who want to learn a Pacific language and a community language of New Zealand as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. There will be a strong focus on Tu ma Aga Fa`asāsmoa which relates to having respect for self, respect for others and respect for the community as a whole in everday situations. A student’s understanding of this will be showcased in the way they talk, walk and stand.

Achievement Standards:

AS 90903 1.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of spoken Samoan texts EXT
AS 90904 1.2 Give a spoken presentation in Samoan INT
AS 90905 1.3 Interact using spoken Samoan to communicate personal information, ideas and opinions INT
AS 90906 1.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of Samoan texts EXT
AS 90907 1.5 Write a variety of text types in Samoan INT

Year 12 French

Entry Requirements:

14 credits at NCEA Level 1 French

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 2

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning French, learning about the French culture and who want an International Language as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will become very confident and independent in the French language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91118 2.1 Demonstrate understanding of variety of spoken French texts. EXT
AS 91120 2.2 Give a spoken presentation in French that communicates information, ideas and opinions. INT
AS 91119 2.3 Interact using spoken French to share information and justify ideas and opinions. INT
AS 91121 2.4 Demonstrate understanding of variety of written and/or visual French texts. EXT
AS 91122 2.5 Write a variety of text types in French to convey information, ideas and opinions. INT

Year 12 Japanese

Entry Requirements:

14 credits at NCEA Level 1 Japanese

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 2

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning Japanese, learning about the Japanese culture and who want an International Language as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will become very confident and independent in the Japanese language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91133 2.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of spoken Japanese texts. EXT
AS 91135 2.2 Give a spoken presentation in Japanese that communicates information, ideas and opinions. INT
AS 91134 2.3 Interact using spoken Japanese to share information and justify ideas and opinions. INT
AS 91136 2.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of written and/or visual Japanese texts. EXT
AS 91137 2.5 Write a variety of text types in Japanese to convey information, ideas and opinions. INT

Year 12 Te Reo Maori

Entry Requirements:

Year 11 Te Reo Maori 12 credits at Level 1

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 2

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who demonstrate passion for the Maori Language and want to build on the strong foundation thealready have. Students who want to extend their knowledge as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Manaakitanga hospitality/ caring for others and Whanaungatanaga, building and strengthening relationships are intertwined throughout this course and yowill show your understanding of these Tikanga in everyday situations . There is an expectation that students are also a part of kapa haka which will in turn, assist with the practical side of this course.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91285 2.2 Korero kia whakamahi i te reo o te ao torotoro INT
AS 91286 2.3 Panui kia mohio ki te reo o te ao torotoro EXT
AS 91287 2.4 Tuhi i te reo o te ao torotoro EXT
AS 91288 2.5 Waihanga tuhinga te reo o te ao torotoro INT

Year 12 Samoan

Entry Requirements:

Year 11 Samoan

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 2

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who are genuinely passionate about learning the Samoan Language, culture and customs. Students who want to learn a Pacific language and a community language of New Zealand as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. There will be a strong focus on Tu ma Aga Fa`asāsmoa which relates to having respect for self, respect for others and respect for the community as a whole in everday situations. A student’s understanding of this will be showcased in the way they talk, walk and stand. Students will become very confident and independent in the Samoan language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91143  2.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of spoken Samoan texts EXT
AS 91145  2.2 Give a spoken presentation in Samoan INT
AS 91144 2.3 Interact using spoken Samoan to communicate personal information, ideas and opinions INT
AS 91146  2.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of Samoan texts EXT
AS 91147  2.5 Write a variety of text types in Samoan INT

Year 13 French

Entry Requirements:

14 credits at NCEA Level 2 French

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 3

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning French, learning about the French culture and who want an International Language as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will accept the challenge of becoming extremely confident and independent in the French language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91543 3.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of extended spoken French texts EXT
AS 91544 3.2 Give a clear spoken presentation in French that communicates a critical response. INT
AS 91545 3.3 Interact clearly using spoken French to explore and Justify varied ideas and perspectives. INT
AS 91546 3.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of extended written and/or visual French texts EXT
AS 91547 3.5 Write a variety of text types in French to explore and justify varied ideas and perspectives. INT

Year 13 Japanese

Entry Requirements:

14 credi t s at NCEA Level 2 Japanese.

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 3

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who enjoy learning Japanese, learn ing about the Japanese culture and who want an InternationaLanguage as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Students will accept the challenge of becoming extremely confident and independent in the Japanese language and culture.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91553 3.1 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of extended spoken Japanese texts EXT
AS 91554 3.2 Give a clear spoken presentation in Japanese that communicates a critical response. INT
AS 91555 3.3 Interact clearly using spoken Japanese to explore and justify varied ideas and perspectives. INT
AS 915S6 3.4 Demonstrate understanding of a variety of extended written and/or visual Japanese texts EXT
AS 91557 3.5 Write a variety of text types in Japanese to explore and justify varied ideas and perspectives. INT

Year 13 Te Reo Maori

Entry Requirements:

Year 12 Te Reo Maori 12 credits at Level 2

Credits:

24 Credits at Level 3

BYOD Recommendations:

N/A

Who is this course for?

Students who are passionate about being immersed in the Maori Language, Culture and Tikanga. Students who demonstrate passion for the Maori Language and want to build on the strong foundation they already have. Students who want to extend their knowledge as part of their education and skills for both personal enjoyment and future employment opportunities. Manaakitanga and Whanaungatanaga are key components of this course and you will show your understanding of these Tikanga in everyday situations. There is an expectation that students are also a part of kapahaka which will in turn, assist with the practical side of this course.

Achievement Standards:

AS 91650 3.1 Whakarongo kia mohio ki te reo Maori o te ao whanui INT
AS 91651 3.2 Korero kia whakamahi i te reo Maori o te ao whanui INT
AS 91652 3.3 Panui kia mohio ki te reo Maori o te ao whanui EXT
AS 91653 3.4 Tuhi i te reo Maori o te ao whanui EXT
AS 91654 3.5 Waihanga tuhinga te reo Maori o te ao whanui INT

Sarah McKenzie, Graduating 2019

Subject I have taken: French 

Why I am studying this subject: I have always wanted to learn another language and exploring other cultures; it’s something I really enjoy and helps me better understand others.

What this subject offers me: Language subjects are very challenging but extremely rewarding in the long run. Learning a language expands your horizons and increases understanding of different cultures and how other people in the world live. Taking French at MRGS also allows students to go on exchanges, which is a once-in-lifetime-opportunity. I also have the opportunity to join a group of MRGS senior French students to travel to France on a homestay tour. We will be billeted with families of students at our sister school in Normandy, allowing us to experience French culture, be immersed in language and make new friends from a different country.

Why I love this subject: I love taking French because knowing another language is a unique and fulfilling skill that encourages me to learn for enjoyment, rather than just learning to get good grades. It’s also a very interactive subject that has helped me to develop communication and confidence skills because we often speak and share with our classmates.