Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Student of the Month - December 2011

Our Christmas student of the month is a very special individual:

Chiara Giovanni in year 13 has been nominated by Frau Brown. 

Chiara is certainly one of the most talented linguists Tomlinscote has ever seen and easily one of the most enthusiastic, too. She has been one of our German language ambassadors and has recently participated in a three week intensive language course in Germany through our PASCH partnership.

We are pleased and very proud to reveal that Chiara has been offered a place at Magdalen College, Oxford
to read German and Spanish.

We hope that she will enjoy the course and are certain that she will continue to do exceptionally well!

Mit herzlichen Glückwünschen,
MFL Tomlinscote

Monday, 19 December 2011

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Joyeux Noël et Bonne Année!
Fröhliche Weihnachten und ein glückliches Neues Jahr!
¡Feliz Navidad y Próspero Año Nuevo!
Kung His Hsin Nien bing Chu Shen Tan!
Shinnen omedeto! Kurisumasu Omedeto!

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Christmas in France - Petit Papa Noël

Here is another version of 'Petit Papa Noël'. Which one do you prefer?

Watch out for the cute dog in the video!

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Christmas in Germany - Frohe Weihnachten!

DID you know? Here are some German Christmas traditions:

In Germany, children get a little surprise to make the long wait till Christmas a bit easier. On the 6th of December is Nikolaus (St. Nicholas day). The night before, children put out their shoes and in the morning they find some sweets or a little present in them.
...but only if they have been good! If they were bad, they might find a piece of coal or some sticks...

The main Christmas celebrations happen in Germany already on the 24th of December. On Heiligabend (holy evening) people have a big festive dinner with their immediate family and afterwards they open their presents!
On the 25th of December, they meet up with more family members for lunch and have yet another feast!

Christmas Traditions in Spain - ¡Feliz Navidad!

  DID you know? Spain has some interesting traditions at this time of year:

Children in Spain don't really get presents at Christmas, but they have to wait until the 6th of January, when Three Kings Day (el dia de los Reyes Magos) is celebrated. It's the day the three kings arrived in Bethlehem to see the new born Christ. 

On the night of the 5th of January, children put out shoes filled with straw for the kings' donkeys and camels, as well as some sweets for the kings themselves. The next morning, they wake to find that the hay and sweets have been eaten and that presents are waiting for them next to their shoes.

Later in the day, there are parades in the streets called the Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos. Accompanied by festive lights and music, nativity scenes are acted out. The three kings ride on horses, camels or elaborate floats and throw goodies and sweets down to the children lining the streets.

In recent years, some children have been very lucky and have also received presents from Santa but mostly, Santa has left this job to the Kings on the 6th January!

Another interesting tradition is celebrated at midnight on New Year's Eve:  
You eat  12 grapes, one on every stroke of the clock of Midnight. 
This is believed to bring good luck for the next year!
Apparently, you can even buy special little tins of 12 grapes in the shops for this purpose!

some vocabulary for you:

Christmas eve is called Nochebuena (good/lovely night)

NewYear's Eve is called Nochevieja (old night)

Gracias to Ms Burford for providing the information.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Joyeux Noël - two Christmas songs in French

Here's a French Christmas song to get you into the merry mood! Do you recognise the melody? 
It's called 'Vive le vent'.

Here are the lyrics, if you want to sing along:

Vive le vent, vive le vent,
vive le vent d'hiver
qui s'en va sifflant, soufflant
dans les grands sapins verts.

Vive le temps, vive le temps,
vive le temps d'hiver
boules de neige et jour de l'an
et bonne année grand-mère.

Sur le long chemin
tout blanc de neige blanche
un vieux monsieur s'avance avec
sa canne dans la main
et tout là-haut le vent qui siffle
dans les branches puis souffle
la romance qu'il chantait petit enfant

Et le vieux monsieur descend
vers le village
C'est l'heure où tout est sage
et l'ombre danse au coin du feu
Mais dans chaque maison
il flotte un air de fête
partout la table est prête
et l'on entend
la même chanson

and here's another one, called 'Petit Papa Noël' - do you know what that means?

here are the lyrics for this one:  Use a dictionary to look up new words!

1. C'est la belle nuit de Noël
La neige étend son manteau blanc
Et les yeux levés vers le ciel
A genoux les petits enfants
Avant de fermer les paupières
Font une dernière prière


Petit Papa Noël
Quand tu descendras du ciel
Avec tes jouets par milliers
N'oublie pas mon petit soulier

2. Mais avant de partir,
Il faudra bien te couvrir
Dehors, tu vas avoir si froid
C'est un peu à cause de moi.

Il me tarde tant que le jour se lève
Pour voir si tu m'as apporté
Tous les beaux joujoux
Que je vois en rêve
Et que je t'ai commandés

3. Le marchand de sable est passé
Les enfants vont faire dodo
Et tu vas pouvoir commencer
Avec ta hotte sur le dos
Au son des cloches des églises
Ta distribution de surprises

4. Et quand tu seras sur ton beau nuage
Viens d'abord sur notre maison
Je n'ai pas été tous les jours très sage
Mais j'en t'en demande le pardon
Ho-ho-ho! Enjoy!

Friday, 9 December 2011

Fröhliche Weihnacht Überall - Michelle

Year 7s who went to Ravenscote last year will remember this song from their Christmas assembly.
Do you remember the lyrics? Sing along!

'Fröhliche Weihnacht überall' tönet durch die Lüfte froher Schall!
Weihnachtston, Weihnachtsbaum, Weihnachtsduft in jedem Raum.
'Fröhliche Weihnacht überall' töntet durch die Lüfte froher Schall!

1.  Darum alle stimmet in den Jubelton,
     denn es kommt das Licht der Welt von des Vaters Thron.

2. Licht auf dunklem Wege, unser Licht bist du,denn du führst,
    die dir vertrau'n, ein zu sel'ger Ruh'.

Feliz Navidad by Enrique Iglesias

Something for our Spanish learning students....Enrique, how do you spend your Christmas?


Saturday, 3 December 2011

Weihnachtsmarkt in London

If you are heading to London these days, make sure you have a look at the Weihnachtsmarkt at the South Bank. It's probably the best German Christmas market experience you can get outside of Germany, with authentic sausages and mulled wine (and non-alcoholic punch) in ceramic mugs to take away. You can even buy a Weihnachtspyramide and Räuchermännchen.
Otherwise, there's the Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park, also based on German Christmas markets. If anyone has been to one of these or to the real thing in Germany, send us your pictures!

almost like in Germany
typical German Christmas decorations

eine Bratwurst, bitte

Last Christmas - auf deutsch!

'Tis that time of year again when you can't escape the merry mood. Here is our first contribution to get you into the Christmas spirit. Frau Mahler's favourite Alexi Bexi has produced Wham's classic seasonal hit in German. Put on your reindeer antlers and sing along!
"Letzte Weihnacht gab ich dir mein Herz, doch am nächsten Tag hast du es verschenkt.
Dieses Jahr, um mich vor Tränen zu wahr'n, bekommt es jemand Besonderes!"

Danke schön an Chiara Giovanni for finding Alexi Bexi for me last Christmas!

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Student of the Month November 2011 - 2

Here are more Students of the Month 
from the French department: 

Madame Rinjonneau would like to nominate  
Jack Phillips in 9P for excellent behaviour and consistent hard work, as well as Jackson Keen in 10K for really good work! Keep going!! Well done to both of you!

Monsieur Daniel is presenting three year 9 students particularly worthy of our attention.
Marta Mungai, Andrew Lacey and Katherine Rowett have produced these fantasic texts as part of their assessments, which means that they were completed under exam conditions, with no dictionaries, books or other reference material for help! What a very impressive level of communication, complexity and accuracy. Some year 11s could learn from this.... Congratulations!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Student of the Month - November 2011

This month, we are celebrating the following students:

For Japanese, Ms Yamanouchi has declared Rianna Waren in 9Q as her student of the month for November. Well done to Rianna!

Madame Boniface, one of our MFL outreach teachers, is nominating a whole class for a special mention here: Year 6 studying French at Lakeside Primary School have done amazing work on the song 'Sur sous dans devant derriere' and have produced excellent written work about their homes and bedrooms. Also their attitude towards learning French is superb and it is a pleasure to teach them!

For Spanish, our student of the month is Halle Fowler in 9Q. She is working exceptionally hard in Spanish this year and has produced this beautiful weather forecast for Mrs Metcalfe. Very impressive work!

Friday, 25 November 2011

Meine Haustiere - primary pets

Frau Mahler's Year 6 German classes at Ravenscote Junior School have been describing their pets. Here are some examples: These are Sophie B's cats!

...and here is Max B's dog!

and here is Rebecca R -with Calum's guinea pig!

Sind sie nicht wunderbar!?

Transition Project KS2-3

All year 7 classes have taken part in a KS2 -3 transition project in which children had to produce a video about their school. Building on language learned in primary school and extending it with new structues and vocabulary, pupils had to write a script in French or German and film it using flipcams or the webcams on their laptops. Each class then chose the best videos and these were shown to other classes on the 23 of November.

Here is the fabulous result of one of the groups!

They are Funmi, Hannah, Caroline, Charlotte, Lucy L, Lucy M all in 7Y. Magnifique!

(It might take a while for the video to load - please be patient -it is worth the wait!)

German video - Improve your English!

Have a look at this hilarious video. It's not just other languages which are difficult to learn. Foreigners struggle with English, too....


Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Primary Languages: Laternen

As part of their outreach MFL lessons provided by Tomlinscote, children in year 5 at Ravenscote Junior School have enjoyed a visit by a teacher from Germany telling them about the German tradition of Laternelaufen and showing them how to make lanterns.
Here are some of them:

Saturday, 19 November 2011

German exchange 2011 - reports

 Here are some accounts by students who took part in this year's exchange programme to Germany. They stayed for ten days with a German host family, went to school in Wendlingen and enjoyed day trips to the surrounding areas, like the Schwäbische Alb and Stuttgart. They had a great time!

die Schwäbische Alb, seen from the castle
das Schloss

in der Höhle

im Zoo

die Seehunde
If you are thinking of going next year, ask any of these lovely people if they enjoyed their time in Germany...

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

French video: Cette année là

Here's another slightly cheesy but very catchy French video recommended by Madame Merle! Enjoy!

Saturday, 12 November 2011


We didn't quite make it in the first month of the reinvigoration of the blog, but a few days later here we are:
1000 pageviews! Frau Mahler is happy! Danke schön, merci, gracias and thank you!

Any ideas, video, songs you'd like to see here, write a comment or a mail to

Monday, 7 November 2011

Student of the Month - October 2011 (2)

We have more students of the month from the French department: Madame Rinjonneau has nominated
Phoebe Johnson in 8C and Victoria Ormston in 7K
as the students standing out for great work and effort! Fantastique!

The German department has declared Tia Giovanni in 8G student of the month.
Here is her very impressive writing assignment! Wunderbar!

Year 8 Writing Assesssment

Hallo! Ich heiße Tia und ich bin zwölf Jahre alt.  Mein Geburtstag ist am fünfundzwanzigsten Oktober. Am Wochenende fahre ich Rad. Zusätzlich spiele ich Fußball. Ich lese gern, weil es interresant ist. Am Samstag spiele ich Computerspielen, obwohl es langweilig ist. Mein Lieblingshobby ist Tanzen, weil es Spaß macht. Außerdem liebe ich Lesen. Dreimal pro Woche sehe ich Fern. Am Wochenende gehe ich gern mit meinen Freuden, Amy und Daniella, in die Stadt. Ich spiele gern Fußball mit meinen Freuden, Michelle, weil es Spaß macht. Samstags laufe ich, weil es friedlich ist. Ich fahre gern Rad mit meinen Freuden, obwohl es ziemlich langweilig ist. Sonntags, spiele ich Rugby, weil es toll ist. Letztes Wochenende bin ich in die Stadt gegangen, weil ich Apfelsaft kaufen musste. Außerdem habe ich Rugby mit meinen Freuden gespielt. Am Samstag bin ich Rad gefahren, weil es Spaß machte. Am Sonntag, bin ich ins Kino mit meinen Freunden, Sven und Michelle, gegangen. Zusätzlich habe ich Fisch und Chips gegessen. Ich habe Cola getrunken. Ich habe es sehr gut gefunden. Außerdem habe ich toll gefunden, weil es gern Rad gefahren. Schließlich habe ich es fantastich gefunden.
Tia Giovanni 8G

the Wonders of the German Language (Outnumbered)

James Smith from 6M/S in Ravenscote has brought this lovely clip to my attention.
It's from the BBC series 'Outnumbered' and features a German exchange student and some wise explanations on German compounds. "It's cool being German! It's like being Yoda." Couldn't agree more.
A big Danke schön to James!

Friday, 4 November 2011


We've had 10.000 visitors to our blog since it first came into existence (back in December 2007).

Since its refurbishment, we've had lots of people popping in and looking at what's happening at Tomlinscote and on our trips, and reading who's done wonderful work!

Scroll down to the revolving globe at the bottom to see where in the world people have looked at our blog (each click leaves a red dot). Tell your uncle in New Zealand that you're our student of the month and watch his dot appear. You can also see how many visitors we've had since the 7 October 2011. Currently 888!
Can we make it one thousand in the first month??

Tell all your friends the blog is back! 

Leave your comments and suggestions: What do you think of the blog? What do you want to see here?

Mr Daniel's Favourite Song

Here is Mr Daniel's current favourite French song:  
Help myself (Nous ne faisons que passer) by Gaëtan Roussel.
The album (Ginger) reached number 7 in the French charts and became platinum album (more than 100,000 copies sold). It also got the Rock Album of the Year award in 2011.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Student of the Month - Chinese comments

謝謝大大無私分享 感恩(>o<)

Have a look at our cool Chinese comments on the student of the month from May last year. They were waiting in the blog's spam folder, but I've been assured they are all genuine comments probably remarking on Katie Hammond's wonderful work! Check out the other comments as well by following the link!

你的努力我們都看見了--支持你    on Students of the Month, May 2010
PS Can someone translate them for me???

Student of the Month - October 2011

Our fantastic students of the month for October are:

For Japanese it's Georgina Rawlings from 11 X!
Well done to you! It's amazing how many of our students give up their free time to learn Japanese and Chinese early in the mornings or in the afternoons. Respect to you all!  You're all stars!!

For the French department, we have Jacob Davenport, Patrick Lynch, Lewis Reid, Ryan Taylor, Alfie Ashley  and  Scott Simpkin, all from 7Y.

The boys produced this lovely and very accurate piece of work together as part of their KS2 to KS3 transition project. We're looking forward to seeing the videos our year seven classes are currently filming about their new school! All in French and German! Watch this space!

German and Spanish to follow soon! Check the blog next week!

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

French video: Lalalele

Here is another suggestion by Madame Merle: the la le song -a bit of brainwashing about the articles in French.
Listen to the whole song and see if you can resist singing along! Lalalalalalalalala -feminine....

Do leave a comment!

Have YOU come across any great or silly videos in another language? Sends us the link via the comments!
Maybe we can feature it on the blog for everyone to see!

Friday, 21 October 2011

German Video: Nur noch kurz die Welt retten

A little German song for you for the holidays. Tim Bendzko from Berlin might well be the 'Newcomer des Jahres' in Germany. It's called "Nur noch kurz die Welt retten" (just have to save the world). Enjoy!

Here is the song with the German lyrics and a decent (if not perfect) attempt at an English translation....(under 'show more')

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Student of the Month - September 2011

The sudent of the month for the French department is Caroline Hackney in 7Y, who has written this very convincing piece of homework. Fantastique!

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

French exchange - we're back!

Despite industrial action that caused traffic chaos around Lille and delayed our departure, we were back to Tomlinscote only 20 minutes later than expected.

Miss Barnes, Miss Menon, Matthieu Fontaine, Mr Daullet and I would like to congratulate the student party for their behaviour throughout the trip, as well as their general approach to all aspects of the exchange.


Monday, 17 October 2011

French exchange - 6th Form Work Experience

Our 6th Formers were given the opportunity to work as classroom assistants on the primary school site. Not only did they impress staff and students with their enthusiasm, but also with the 'incredible level of French they display' (quote from a French primary school teacher).

Looking at these shots, who would have thought they are normally on the other side of the desk?-

Sophie with the Year 2 class
Sarah with the Year 4 class
Rosie with the Year 5 and 6 students

Unfortunately, we didn't manage to see all our 6th Formers in action but the French teachers were full of praise for Jade and George too. Apologies for not being able to show pictures of them on the blog.

French exchange - in and around Lille

Just a few snaps of the area.

How can you resist?
Ellie, Jess, Halle and Cherie can't!
And neither can Kieran and Ryan...
A typical French Sunday in Lille - drinks with friends and shopping at the market
Queuing up for their bread