‘You live a new life for every language you speak. If you only know one language you only live once’ Czech Proverb
The intention of the French curriculum at St Francis CE Primary School is that pupils develop an interest in learning other languages. We encourage pupils’ confidence and curiosity about language. In planning, we actively ensure there are links to develop their awareness of cultural differences in other countries, through our school and British values. Through embedding the skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing, we enable pupils to use and apply their French learning in a variety of contexts; and lay the foundations for future learning of languages.
Our MFL curriculum is designed to progressively develop pupils’ skills in languages, through regularly taught lessons in KS2. These involve ensuring the pupils are exposed to enjoyable and stimulating experiences. We provide the pupils with curriculum enrichment opportunities such as encounter days, too. Pupils progressively acquire, use and apply a growing bank of vocabulary organised around topics. Pupils are encouraged and supported to develop their speaking and listening skills through conversational work, singing activities and games.
The national curriculum for languages aims to ensure that all pupils:
- understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources
- speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation
- can write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learnt
- discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in the language studied.
As confidence and skill grows, pupils record their work through pictures, captions and sentences.
- displays are used to remind pupils of key vocabulary
- practical activities, songs and games are used to help improve memory and recall.
- In the classroom, wherever possible, instructions are given in French to expose pupils to the language as much as possible in day to day contexts.
- Visual prompts are used to support pupils in translating new vocabulary.
- Word mats/ Knowledge organisers are available for pupils to have out on desks to support their learning and recap previous learning.
Progression through the Year groups:
- In early years and KS1, pupils begin to be exposed to simple words and phrases in different languages eg good morning
- In lower KS2, new French vocabulary is learned and pupils begin to write simple phrases and sentences with support of visual prompts, key words and their verbal skills.
- In upper KS2, pupils begin to develop confidence with more complex vocabulary and begin to translate short paragraphs in French.
We strive to ensure that our pupils’ attainment is in line or exceeds their potential when we consider the varied starting points of all our pupils. The teaching and learning of MFL ensures that pupils are accessing work at age related expectations, with regular opportunities to be challenged through higher-level objectives.
At St Francis CE Primary school, French is monitored by subject leaders throughout KS2 using a variety of strategies such as book looks, learning walks, staff discussions and pupil voice. Feedback is given to teachers in order to continue to ensure that we have an engaging and effective curriculum. Leaders use the information gathered to assess whether the pupils retain and can apply key French vocabulary.
When pupils reach the end of KS2 they will have developed confidence, skills and enjoyment in learning of new languages which will enable them to be ready for transition to secondary school where they will be learning languages at a higher level.