Introduction and benefits

Russian is spoken by over 215 million people throughout the former USSR and much of Eastern Europe. The dynamic state of Russia is of vital economic, political and cultural significance and the rich, diverse culture and landscape makes it a fascinating tourist destination. Few people however speak English so in order to get the most out of Russia, an understanding of the Russian language is essential.

A knowledge of Russian is highly regarded in many fields including journalism, industry, commerce, tourism and media. It is a language increasingly in demand by employers.

The results for Russian at Colston’s Girls’ School are excellent and students have been extremely successful in finding employment or securing a place in higher education. Many students have gone on to study it at University.

Studying Russian will give you the opportunities to access all these very exciting opportunities.

You can find below an outline of how Russian is taught at CGS.

Curriculum outline

From day one in Year 7 students are starting to prepare for their Languages GCSE exams and follow a GCSE mastery curriculum. We aim to teach the following from the start of Year 7 so as to ensure all students become confident and enthusiastic linguists and master the skills required for GCSE:

  • Literacy
  • Numeracy
  • Phonics
  • Dictionary and verb table skills
  • Vocabulary
  • Spontaneous Speaking
  • Grammar
  • Extended Writing
  • Authentic Listening
  • Authentic Reading
  • Memory skills
  • Culture


  • Internal Asset Languages assessments
  • Assessment at the end of each term
  • External Asset Languages examination

Year 11 – Legacy – 2016-17 only

AS Course content:

  • Youth culture and concerns
  • Lifestyle: health and fitness
  • The world around us: travel, tourism, environmental issues and the Russian speaking world
  • Education and employment.

AS Assessment

Unit 1: Speaking

  • Conducted by teacher, 8−10 minutes and based on candidate choice, in advance, of one of four general topic areas.
  • Discussion of a short text on the chosen topic – prepared for fifteen minutes before test – and this discussion is then extended.

Unit 2: Listening, Reading and Writing

  • non-verbal responses, questions and answers in Russian and English and writing in Russian (160 words).
  • The Reading and Writing sections last 2 h 30.

A2 Course content:

  • the four AS topics in greater depth
  • Customs, traditions, beliefs and religions
  • National and international events: past, present and future
  • Literature and the arts

A2 Assessment

Unit 3: a Speaking test with debate topic

Unit 4: a writing exam with a research based assignment

Resources and Websites

  • Kometa
  • Iskra
  • Ruslan

Extra curricular

  • Trips to Russia for all pupils
  • Annual Russian Day
  • Cinema visits to the Watershed to see Russian films
  • Participation in the annual Russian essay writing competition
  • Trips to the theatre to see Russian ballets and trips to the Russian circus in the UK
  • Public speaking and music video competitions

Staff contacts

  • Ms A Phillips, Teacher of Russian