Stuart Taberner from Leeds University recently led a workshop for A level pupils
from Oundle, Stamford and Bedford Schools’ German Departments about The Reader by
Bernhard Schlink. Professor Taberner is widely considered to be the UK expert
on this novel.
took place in The Raymond Lee International Suite of Oundle’s newly refurbished
Modern Languages Adamson Centre.
pupil, Helen Rider (16) commented, “After
establishing the context of the novel in post-war Germany, we looked more
closely at the literary elements. We discussed issues of guilt, motivations for
killing, judgement in the context of prison as well as betrayal.”
School German teacher, Charlotte Thompson commented, “The afternoon's collaborative, group discussion, led by Prof
Taberner, was an invaluable session, deepening pupils’ understanding and
appreciation of this key text.”
New Languages Centre
The opening of
Oundle School’s Adamson Centre in October 2013 marked a new and exciting phase
for the Modern Languages Department and is the latest completed project in
Oundle’s comprehensive and ongoing development plan. A stunning blend of traditional
architecture and contemporary glass features, the Adamson Centre, formerly the
Sir Peter Scott Building, has been redesigned specifically with the teaching of
foreign languages in mind. In addition to welcoming over 900 pupils a week, the
Centre will also provide a hub of excellence within the wider community of
teaching, with staff hosting conferences and lectures to promote the
development of languages.
Foreign Languages Department is one of the largest in the School, with seven
languages being timetabled: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Russian
and Spanish. More pupils than ever are learning two or more languages, with
many more taking advantage of the breadth of clubs, societies and lectures on
offer outside the curriculum. A Level and Pre-U results continue to rise; last
summer saw pupils gain 45 A* and A grades at A2, with 20 Oundelians going on to
read one or more languages at university.
The building is named after major benefactor and
former pupil David
Frederic Dobell Adamson who left the School in 1937. He requested that “this bequest be used to improve facilities for and
give opportunities to students to learn to speak and communicate in foreign
The Adamson Centre facilities include:
14 Teaching Rooms: Each classroom focuses on a single language and culture and is equipped
with high quality audio speakers, an interactive whiteboard and projector.
2 Sony Language Laboratories: Two dedicated PC suites
combine all the features of a traditional laboratory with the latest multimedia
technology, including Sony Virtuoso language software.
6 Language Assistant Pods: Fully equipped with touch screen computers, these modern glass fronted
rooms are designated specifically for conversation classes and oral
The Raymond Lee International
Suite: The centre-piece and ‘hub’ of the Department, this Suite provides a
perfect venue for language conferences, films, lectures from visiting speakers
and competitions. It is equipped with the latest Skype technology, blu-ray
cinema system, projector and blackout blinds.
Former pupil, George Hammon commented, “Oundle has always been a pioneer in
modern languages. As I look back on working in Paris for many years, on
graduating from France's top business school, and on my life now in Geneva, I
am very grateful for the excellent grounding I was given, and with it, access
to the global world of today.”
Publicity and Press Relations Officer
Background Information on Oundle School
School is situated in the quintessentially English Market town from which it
takes its name. The School's buildings, dating from the seventeenth to the
twenty-first century, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large
extent, its campus.
School's history goes back to 1556 when Sir William Laxton, Master of the
Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded
the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876,
the Grocers' Company decided to divide the School into two parts: Laxton
Grammar School, mainly for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School,
mainly for pupils from further afield. However, to mark the new millennium, the
Governing Body decided to reunite the two schools under the common name of
Oundle School, with Laxton as a House for day-pupils.
School is now able to offer a range of educational possibilities to meet
contemporary needs: co-educational day or boarding education, with Laxton
Junior as a 4-11 day school, and Oundle School as a boarding and day school,
with entry at 11, 13 or into the Sixth Form.