Our school vision is to encourage all to achieve their full potential and we are keen that all children regardless of their ability, background and needs are able to successfully access the French curriculum and to develop a real enjoyment and enthusiasm for this subject.
We follow the 2014 National Curriculum Programme of Study (see below) which specifies the content and skills to be taught. We have broken this down into year groups ensuring that there is clear progression in both the knowledge and skills taught.The language taught in our school is French. In Key Stage 1, children will learn some basic vocabulary and in Key Stage 2 the focus will be on practical communication (speaking, listening, reading) which will involve written language and an understanding of the basic grammar.
In KS2, we teach French weekly. Our Scheme of Work has been adapted from ‘Learn French with Luc et Sophie’, which is a story based scheme with engaging, comic-strip style stories based on real-life scenarios. Lessons are between 30 and 45 minutes long, with opportunities to reinforce language learning throughout the school week (for example, answering the register, singing a song, playing a game, re-reading a favourite story, following instructions in French). Every lesson starts with ‘Cinq minutes Français’ which is mostly conducted in French, with use of gestures to help to communicate understanding. This is speaking and listening time, and is used to recap and recall key questions and responses necessary to hold a conversation in French. The rest of the lesson is taught in a combination of English and French to maximize learning time and avoid confusion. Teachers plan opportunities to teach in French, for example, familiar instructions may be given in French but the activity is explained in English.
Our Scheme of Work uses stories written in French to allow children to listen and read sentences with increasing complexity from the beginning of Year 3. These stories have audio support, which enables children to hear a native speaker and allows the modelling of correct pronunciation. Children use the language they have learnt to write their own sentences, manipulating the vocabulary and grammar appropriately. This is a progressive model, with the complexity of grammar increasing over the four years. The lesson activities are challenging, varied and interactive and develop listening, reading, speaking and writing skills.
Quizzes and other quick fire activities are used regularly to aid the recall of key knowledge, not just of the current subject, but of units taught in other year groups. A high level of importance is placed on the learning of high frequency words and phrases which can be used across a range of different topics. This allows children to be able to express themselves more freely, as nouns are easily looked up in a bilingual dictionary.
At our school we are keen that the children learn some Cornish language and we teach the children some basic vocabulary and phrases. We are also working towards the Go Cornish Bronze Award and much of our curriculum has Cornish links.
Key Stage 2
Pupils will be taught to:
- listen attentively to spoken language and show understanding by joining in and responding
- explore the patterns and sounds of language through songs and rhymes and link the spelling, sound and meaning of words
- engage in conversations; ask and answer questions; express opinions and respond to those of others; seek clarification and help*
- speak in sentences, using familiar vocabulary, phrases and basic language structures
- develop accurate pronunciation and intonation so that others understand when they are reading aloud or using familiar words and phrases*
- present ideas and information orally to a range of audiences*
- read carefully and show understanding of words, phrases and simple writing
- appreciate stories, songs, poems and rhymes in the language
- broaden their vocabulary and develop their ability to understand new words that are introduced into familiar written material, including through using a dictionary
- write phrases from memory, and adapt these to create new sentences, to express ideas clearly
- describe people, places, things and actions orally* and in writing.