Languages

Languages are taught as a vibrant and rigorous program that begins with extension classes in our primary schools and progresses to the end of Year 12 where our students achieve outstanding results in their final WACE examinations.

The program prepares students for life and careers where a sound knowledge of languages is advantageous and for tertiary studies in languages.

English as an Additional Language

English as an Additional Language or Dialect (EALD) has strict eligibility requirements. The course is administered by the School Curriculum and Standards Authority. Please consult teaching staff about this.

Specialist teachers of standard Australian English teach language and culture in this program which is a parallel English program for students whose first langauge is not English.

In Years 7 to 10, students follow a rigorous assessment program and receive an A-E grade at the end of each semester. Teachers act as guides and mentors in a range of areas including both school environment, relationships, mental and physical health, study/career options and Australian social issues.

Class sizes are smaller than regular classes and students may move between the EALD program and mainstream English, based on teacher recommendation. There is a range of text types and language contexts that students are exposed to, in both written and spoken form.

In Years 11 and 12, ATAR and General courses are available. Students are able to gain English competence for WACE graduation and university entrance.

Languages Extension Program

Willetton Senior High School students have the opportunity to be part of an innovative and modern languages program which provides a number of unique prospects in a challenging learning environment.

Students choose from French, Italian, Japanese or Korean in Year 7 and study that language until the end of Year 9. The exciting opportunity to continue this language study to university entrance level in Year 12 is taken up by many of our students.

The Languages Learning Area promotes academic extension through the energy, enthusiasm and expertise of a talented team of teachers supported by the work of a number of native speaker assistants who also support student language acquisition.

Achieving personal excellence is fostered through a range of extra-curricular opportunities. These include:

  • Student exchange programs to sister schools in France and Japan
  • The Italy Language and Life Tour
  • Links with the Japan Foundation, Hyogo Prefectural Government Cultural Centre and Consul-General of Japan in Perth
  • Gaining formal recognition of language competence through Dante Alighieri Society and Alliance Francaise examinations, and the Australian Language Certificates
  • Participation in a variety of contests and competitions
  • Additional support for students through clubs which operate at the school during recess and after school for French, Japanese and Italian
  • Links with the Korean Education Centre of Consulate-General of the Republic of Korea

Students at Willetton SHS are enthusiastic about their language learning experiences, and in recent years have won a range of prizes in external competitions and WACE examinations.

Languages Hub

Willetton SHS is one of 24 Languages Hubs across Western Australian public schools and as such it has become a centre of excellence in French, Italian, Japanese and Korean language education. In partnership with Burrendah, Rostrata and Willetton Primary Schools, Willetton SHS is implementing a range of innovative strategies with the explicit goal of increasing the participation rates of students of Japanese in Years 10, 11 and 12 and raising the level of language achievement of all students from primary to senior secondary.

One of the strategies is the Japanese Academic Extension Program for upper primary school students in addition to their language studies at their primary schools. Students from the Hub partner schools are selected on academic merit to participate in the extension program conducted at the secondary school campus. Through this program, students can access specialist facilities and the expertise of the Japanese language teachers and tutors. These students may be enrolled into the Japanese specialist program operating through Years 7, 8 and 9, on satisfying usual enrolment requirements to the school. 

The benefits of this accelerated pathway include higher levels of achievement and therefore greater motivation to continue learning Japanese through to Year 12. This is a unique opportunity made possible through the collaborative partnership of the four schools. 

Other Hub initiatives include collaboration with Murdoch University to support and mentor trainee teachers of languages, targeted professional learning in gifted and talented education for all teachers of languages, after-hours extension classes and extended exchange programs.

Exchange Programs and Opportunities

Course

Program

Group

Timing

Cost
(Approx)

FRENCH

WSHS France Study Tour – 3 week program

Students experience a cultural and linguistic tour of France, including Paris and a visit to Lycée du Caousou high school in Toulouse. Here, students will stay with a host family in a French immersion environment.

View the video of the 2015 French Tour!

Years 10 to 12

Biannually

April holidays – 2015/2017

 

$4500

FRENCH

 

La Reunion Exchange – 4 week program

Students stay with a French family on the island of La Reunion, south west of Mauritius, for one month. Around 40 students from WA take part each year in this linguistic program which is run through the WA/La Reunion Student Exchange (Inc.) group - walrse.org. This is a reciprocal program so students who participate are then required to host a student from La Reunion for a four week stay in late December/January. 

Years
10 to 12

Annually

June/July holidays

$2750

ITALIAN

WSHS Italy Study Tour – 3 week program

This is a student study tour to Italy which includes a 10 day stay with families from our sister school, Istituto Statale d’Istruzione Superiore ‘Algeri Marino’ in Casoli (Chieti). Students stay with host families in a total Italian immersion environment and participate in excursions and in-school experiences. The remaining part of the Study Tour involves visiting Italian cities such as Rome, Venice, Milan and Florence. Students who participate will then usually host a student from Casoli for a three week stay in August/ September of the following year. 

Years 10 to 12

Biannually

 April holidays – 2015/2017

 

$5000

ITALIAN

 

Intercultura Exchange – 6/8 week program

This reciprocal exchange is run through the Western Australian Association of Teachers of Italian and involves both hosting and sending. Students host an Italian exchange student for a two month period (usually early July - end of August).  The Italian student will attend high school with their host brother/sister and participate in the general way of life of the family and community in WA. Our students will then travel to Italy and stay with a host family for approximately two months. They will attend an Italian high school with their host brother/sister and participate in the general way of life of the Italian family. Applications to host close in November and applications to send close in August. 

Years
10 to 11

Annually

$3500

JAPANESE

WSHS Japan Study Tour – 2 week program

This is a student study tour of major cities in Japan and to visit our sister school, The High School of the University of Hyogo. Students stay with host families in a total Japanese immersion experience and a full itinerary is developed by the sister school. This involves both excursions and in-school experiences. 2015 is the 20th year of this sister school exchange program.

Year 11

Annually

October holidays

$4000

 

Second Language Courses

Language courses are aimed at students for whom the language is a second (or subsequent) language. These students have not been exposed to or interacted in the language outside the language classroom. They have typically learnt everything they know about the language and its culture through classroom teaching in an Australian school or similar environment, where English is the language of school instruction. These students may have experienced some short stays or exchanges (less than two years in total) in a country where the language is a medium of communication. Students who have a background in a particular language should not enrol in that language.

In 2015 the following subjects and courses are offered:

Years 7 and 8

  • French
  • Japanese
  • Japanese Extension
  • Italian
  • Korean

Year 9

  • French
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Japanese Extension
  • Korean

Years 10 to 12

  • French
  • Italian
  • Japanese

Extension classes in French and Italian extension run in Year 9. In Year 10, all classes are delivered in extension mode. Language students are encouraged to participate in an enrichment program which presents opportunities to converse with native speakers and explores the culture behind each language. They are also invited to participate in exchanges and tours abroad and host international visitors.

The language teachers and assistants encourage and support our students to enter competitions and to take external examinations which are offered at all year levels. We have many highly successful candidates and the enrichment that derives to the individual student extends across the whole languages program.