Each class from Year 1 to Year 6 has a one hour French lesson each week. Lessons are delivered by an experienced French specialist and are interactive in nature. Pupils are encouraged to participate fully and to practise all their language skills – speaking, listening, reading and writing. This work is supported by printed materials which help to further develop pupils’ reading and writing skills. The children are encouraged to use their exercise books as a resource to which they can refer at any time as well as a work book in which they can practise and demonstrate their skills. Lessons are visual and kinaesthetic in nature and use a variety of resources such as DVDs, music, interactive activities and internet games. The children are also encouraged to create their own games which further help them to practise their skills.
Our Programme of Study has been developed in line with County guidelines for initial language learning and QCA schemes. It links well with the MFL Framework for Key Stage Three and we continue to assess the children in line with the Making and Marking Progress in MFL document. Foundation work in Key Stage 1 is designed to cover Level 1 and throughout Key Stage 2 children are provided with a series of assessment opportunities in each of the key language skills at Levels 2 and 3. They are encouraged to plot their progress in their exercise books on their Progress Tracker and to add their written work to their Learning Logs. All other evidence will be dated in their exercise books.
We operate what might be called a "spiral curriculum" which involves returning to topics as the children become more confident and more aware of the language in order to reinforce vocab, to introduce new vocab or to introduce an aspect of grammar. For example, we introduce Les animaux in Year One. We return to the topic in Year Five in order to reinforce J’ai/Je n’ai pas and to introduce les animaux sauvages re-enforcing vowel sounds (i and é). This allows the children to understand how our use of language develops and helps them to recognise that our learning never ends. It is also a useful tool to integrate those children who join us from various schools at the beginning of Year 3.
In line with the School’s target of developing writing skills children in KS2 are given the challenge of creating a piece of independent written work according to the following schedule:
Year 3: Ce que j’aime à l’école
Year 4: Les prépositions, En ville, La météo et les vêtements
Year 5: Ma famille, Les descriptions physiques
Year 6: Ce que j’aime faire, On Recherche, La bonne santé
In Year 6 we encourage greater independence in learning by giving the children the opportunity to prepare oral presentations which will be recorded and assessed and the use of individual tablet computers throughout KS2 will allow the children to access on line MFL sites independently in order to practise their skills and develop their understanding.
In Year 6 we also prepare the children for their end of year visit to France and welcome Language Leaders, students from Challoners High School, who help to develop our children’s confidence and who are, we hope, aspirational role models. We also invite students from The Misbourne to help us to enjoy un petit déjeuner français in Year 1.
It is envisaged that as the children progress through the school they will discover that language learning is fun. They will develop their understanding and confidence in French and will become more aware of cultural diversity. We aim to provide a positive attitude and a broad foundation upon which they can successfully build in the secondary phase.