‘A high-quality languages education should foster pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable pupils to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing.’ (National Curriculum 2014 – Appendix A)
Learning a language enriches the curriculum helping to create enthusiastic learners and to develop positive attitudes to language learning throughout life. The skills, knowledge and understanding gained contribute to the development of children’s oracy and literacy and to their understanding of their own culture and those of others.
At Shakespeare Primary School, we feel that the earlier a child is exposed to a foreign language, the faster the language in question is acquired. We believe that the early acquisition of French will facilitate the learning of other foreign languages later in life. We aim to prepare children for the KS3 language curriculum to enable them to transfer confidently and successfully.
A variety of the following techniques to encourage children to have an active engagement with French are employed:
• Games – in order to develop vocabulary through repetition, reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.
• Role-play – these should relate to the situations the children may find themselves in the future.
• Action songs and rhymes – to develop phonetic skills, memory skills and to further vocabulary.
• Reading and writing quality materials.
• ICT programs and websites; the use of ICT to develop communication skills.
• We build children’s confidence through praise for any contribution they make in the foreign language, however tentative.
Through the high quality first teaching of French taking place we will see the impact of the subject in the following ways:
- Children will be able to communicate with each other in French.
- Children will become aware that a language has a structure, and that the structure differs from one language to another.
- Children will develop their language through development of the four key skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing.
- Children will enrich their language learning by developing an understanding of the French culture.
- Children will learn how language skills can be applied to a range of languages.
- Children will transfer to KS3 effectively and successfully and will be well prepared to continue and develop their language skills.
In year 3 we have just started to learn French for the first time. We are learning to greet each other and to ask each other, 'how are you?' (Ca va?). Have a look at our video to see the song we have learned.