Please note, courses will be held online if they are not possible to run in venues.


This course will equip you with a sound understanding of approaches to adding stretch and challenge to tasks for your most able learners in AQA GCSE, those aiming at grades 8 and 9. The day focuses on practical strategies to add demand and challenge as well as looking at the academic need of the most able students. The course will demonstrate teaching and learning ideas for both all four assessment areas which will stretch and challenge able students and develop their higher level skills. Using feedback from the examinations, the course will explore what is expected of high ability students and outline ways to build your teaching practice around this. This course is appropriate particularly for AQA and Edexcel teachers of Languages.


  • Understand the cognitive processes of the most able
  • Take away a set of practical ideas for immediate use
  • Develop your ability to differentiate without adding to your workload
  • Focus on Grade 9 and what extra your most able students may need to do
COURSE DATE London | Tuesday 02 July 2020
  • All teachers of French / Spanish / German who teach GCSE AQA or Edexcel
  • Heads of Languages
  • Faculty leaders in Languages
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of 50+ pages full of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance
  • Two course restaurant lunch
  • Refreshments throughout the day
  • Guaranteed high quality venues


10.00 – 11.15am
What we now know about performance at grades 8 and 9 

  • Analysing the Examiners’ reports in depth to establish the key differences which make for Grades 8 and 9 students
  • What do we really mean by ‘challenge’ and how to deliver it in a mix ability classroom
  • Grades 8-9: what are the differences between these?
  • Key attributes of Grade 8-9 students in the classroom
  • How can we turn a 7 into an 8 and 8 into a 9

11.15 – 11.30am
Discussion: coffee break

11.30 – 12.30pm
Gaining top marks in listening and reading

  • Teaching inference skills to help develop students confidence, understanding and produceprecise answers
  • Quick and simple adaptations of materials that stretch students aiming for Grades 8 and 9
  • Ensuring students can use complex vocabulary appropriately
  • Practical tools to support students in multi-skill tasks
  • Approaching the longer texts: reading and listening beyond the scope of GCSE

12.30 – 1.30pm
Lunch & informal discussion

1.30 – 2.15pm
Maximising performance in speaking and writing 

  • What examiners are expecting from the highest quality answers in speaking and writing
  • Effective strategies for developing spontaneous speaking
  • How to incorporate and develop higher order thinking in writing tasks
  • Practical ways to approach complex vocabulary and expressions
  • Effective and structured ways to improve students’ writing accuracy
  • Strategies to develop key independent skills for improved writing
  • Planning for progress – identifying weaknesses and planning for success

2.15 – 2.30pm
Afternoon tea

2.30 – 3.45pm
Translation, grammar and literature to turn GCSE students into real linguists

  • Translation as a pedagogic tool
  • Using literary texts and film to widen linguistic and cultural horizons
  • The value of context – using who?/what?/when?/why? questions to get students thinking
  • Grammar beyond gap-fill
  • Are they now A Level ready?

3.45 – 4.00pm
Passing the exams with flying colours 

  • Teaching students effective study skills
  • Answering the different question types – quick tips
  • Encouraging students to take ownership of their own learning
  • Creative approaches to learning, testing and revising vocabulary

Tim Guilford

Tim Guilford is an author, former GCSE examiner and consultant in modern languages, with many years’ experience as a trainer. Tim’s courses focus on practical strategies, ideas and discussion and he is mindful of the workload of teachers, so he teaches delegates to work smarter, not harder!