Modern Foreign Languages
Statement of Intent
Through the study of French, we aim to allow access to children’s learning of other cultures in order to broaden their understanding and appreciation of life, language and culture outside and beyond Goole. Teaching includes spoken and written language, focusing on increasing confidence, improving fluency and refining accuracy of pronunciation. We aim to give pupils firm foundations for subsequent learning of other languages in later life.
The national curriculum for languages aims to ensure that all pupils:
- understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic
- 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
Have a look at the 'What are we learning?' section on each year group's page to see what they are covering in French.
Foreign Languages in Primary Schools
Foreign language is a compulsory part of the National Curriculum in Key Stage 2 (KS2) and helps to “lay the foundations” for the foreign language learning at KS3. French is the foreign language studied at Parkside Primary School (in keeping with all local secondary schools) and we focus on supporting children’s progress in all four areas of speaking, listening, reading and writing. While not mandatory, French is also taught in Key Stage 1 beginning with simple greetings, songs and stories as this helps the transition into KS2.
French at Parkside Primary School
Our foreign language is incorporated into topic lessons (for example learning about the planets in a topic about Space), in specific French lessons and throughout daily tasks for example, responding to the register, naming classroom objects etc.
But why learn a foreign language at all?
“There is convincing evidence which suggests that children who learn a second language at an early age have a greater chance of succeeding with reading, vocabulary and writing, throughout their academic and professional career. In addition, such children are more likely to develop better critical thinking and social skills; both have significant advantages in life.” (British Council, n.d.)
So, French helps our learning in many ways but there are so many more reasons to learn.
- It’s fun!
- English is not enough! It's really important that you learn to speak and understand other people no matter where they are from.
- You can travel to new places around the world.
- It’s the perfect way to meet new people and discover new cultures.
- Speaking another language makes you stand out from the crowd.
- Learning a foreign language can help you understand your own language and make it easier to learn others (especially the spelling and grammar sessions – see the last newsletter)
- You fall in love with the subject.
- You'll discover a wide range of topics from shopping, to sport, to food and entertainment.
- Speaking more than one language increases your brain capacity and you have better memory too.
- It’s an impressive achievement to speak a foreign language and you'll have better options for your future!
How can you help (especially if you don’t know French)?
While there are many ways you can support your child’s progress in French, a few ideas are noted below.
- Learn with your child. Try picking up a few words of French yourself and use them in daily conversations. Beware…they will love to correct your pronunciation!
- Practise vocabulary of everyday objects by asking your child to label items around the home with their French equivalent.
- Explore the library for books and audiobooks in French.
- Download an app. Most will enable your child to practise the use of new vocabulary by playing games, completing artwork, solving puzzles and singing.
- Watch episodes of familiar programmes in French (Peppa Pig is very popular…even in KS2).
- Make an at-home scrapbook together and include new vocabulary, illustrations etc.
- Use simple vocabulary in a note tucked into your child’s bag or lunch box.
Why not have a look at these websites at home for games to play, songs to learn and to see short clips of native French speakers.