"One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way." - Frank Smith
Subject Leader: Victoria Robinson
Link Governor: Mike Sainsbury
At Christ Church, Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) is delivered throughout KS2 by a MFL specialist, ensuring a constantly evolving, high-quality languages education which aims to ‘foster pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world.’ (DfE Sept 2013).
The programme is designed by the language specialist and draws on a range of resources. The language studied is French and pupils are taught for an hour each week.
Throughout KS2, pupils will:
- be encouraged to foster a positive, enthusiastic attitude to learning foreign languages
- develop listening skills
- develop understanding of and the ability to respond to spoken and written language from a variety of sources
- increase confidence in spoken language, through discussion and questions and continually improve accuracy of pronunciation and intonation
- develop ability to write using the grammatical structures learnt (N.B the emphasis on written work is minimal in LKS2)
- recognise the importance of language learning in a global community
- develop a positive attitude towards people who speak languages different from their own
The emphasis is always on fun and, as the programme progresses, drawing on skills previously learnt. Successful language students are those who use their knowledge of language and apply it in a range of contexts; they are prepared to ‘have a go’ and not fear making mistakes, thus increasing resilience. There are a variety of games and songs to consolidate language learning. As confidence grows, the pupils enjoy inter-class challenges and are sometimes seen around the school initiating simple conversations in the target language. E-cards are sent home to inform parents/carers of excellent work and effort each week.
What Children Learn
We ensure that French lessons are accessible to all children through a multi-sensory approach. Every child will have the opportunity to speak some French in every lesson; they will also hear native or fluent speakers throughout KS2. Pupils learn through repetition and songs both indoors and outdoors, taking the opportunity to use different environments in which to practise their newly acquired language. The curriculum is topic based with aspects of grammar being introduced at appropriate stages. Writing and reading activities are differentiated in order that all learners feel supported and challenged in equal measure. Pupils are given the opportunity to generate genuine conversations with each other in the target language, either in mixed-ability or matched-ability groups and, where possible, the support of an adult in the class.
Autumn Children start the year developing their understanding of why it is important to learn languages. This year the context for French language is France and children learn some general facts about the country including its capital city, currency and some famous landmarks. Through the ‘Je me présente’ topic, they learn greetings and how to say their name, age and where they live. They also learn numbers up to 12 and the alphabet as well as some French phonics.
Spring Children have ample opportunity to practise previously learnt language in order to build confidence. In addition, they will learn the following largely with songs and games: Des couleurs et les formes - colours and shapes; des objets dans la salle de classe - classroom objects. The concept of gender of nouns is introduced and simple classroom instructions are practised.
Summer Children are taught ‘est’, ‘c’est’ and ‘ce n'est pas’ (‘is’, ‘it is’ and ‘it is not’). They are then taught some simple prepositions and can practise them whilst revising classroom objects. In the second half of term, children learn a variety of pets as well as some adjectives to describe them. In the final weeks, they will write and illustrate a poem about a made up animal which is a mix of two of the animals they have learned.
Autumn We start the year revising numbers, the alphabet and the questions and answers from the ‘Je me présente’ topic in order to refamiliarise the children with the sounds of the language. Whilst revising numbers, there is a focus on the phonics ‘oi’, ‘in’, ‘eu’ ‘an’ and we revise different words with those phonemes which have appeared in previous topics (eg ‘poisson/’oiseau’). Children revise colours whilst learning about different francophone countries, specifically their flags. They then learn an extended range of classroom objects and are introduced to ‘il y a’ as well as revising ‘dans’ in order to facilitate sentence building. As we approach Christmas, we learn a variety of associated words and a Christmas carol which is performed in the final week.
Spring Children learn and use vocabulary to describe the calendar, including the numbers 1-31, the months of the year (Les mois de l'année) and the days of the week. Children learn to ask and respond to “When is your birthday?” (Quelle est la date de ton anniversaire?) and revise telling people how old they are (Quel âge as-tu?). After half term, children learn different school subjects and how to say which their favourite one is. They also learn the names of different areas of the school and produce a simple written guide to our school. Finally, children make cards for Mothering Sunday (La fête des mères) and have the concept of adjectival agreement introduced to them.
Summer In the first half of term, children learn different rooms of the house. They revise ‘dans’ and ‘il y a’ as well as learning terms to locate rooms on different floors, in order to design and label their ‘maison idéale’ and write a simple passage about it. Finally, they learn different parts of the body using songs including the classic, ‘Jean Petit qui Danse’.
Autumn Children start the year learning a wider range of classroom language - either instructions they will need to understand or language they may need to use within the class, in order to promote use of the target language. They then learn about the geography of France with a focus on its position within Europe. Whilst revising the ‘je me présente’ topic, there is a greater emphasis on children asking questions, rather than just answering them. Around half-term, children revise parts of the body and learn how to say if they have a pain somewhere. They learn how to conjugate parts of ‘avoir’ in order to do this. As Christmas approaches, they start to learn a new Christmas carol and words associated with the Nativity. They make a Christmas card, labelling the Nativity scene, for a person of their choice. In the course of the term, numbers up to 59 will be learnt and practised.
Spring Children learn how to introduce members of their family, developing their knowledge and use of adjectives to describe them and revising concepts of gender of noun and adjectival agreement as we do so. They produce a mini-book describing their families. We learn parts of ‘Etre’ and continue to build understanding of conjugation of verbs. Children learn a greater range of animals and practise using adjectives to describe them as well as categorising them into farm, domestic or zoo animals.
Summer In the final term, children learn a range of food and drink. They also learn how to express whether they like or dislike certain foods. They carry out a survey of their classmates in order to practise asking about their likes and dislikes before learning how to order food in a café. Children then produce a menu for a French café which they will use later in the term as they perform a French play that is set in a café before travelling back in time and telling the audience a bit about the history of the French Revolution. In the middle of the term, we invite parents/carers in to join our French Breakfast which is served by the pupils, giving them an opportunity to use the French that they have learned.
Autumn We start the year revising ‘Je me Présente’. Children then learn numbers up to 999; they will be given the opportunity to practise this throughout the year. We move onto learning various places around town and in the countryside (en ville/à la campagne). Children will also learn to ask and give directions and use the singular parts of the verb ‘aller’ (to go), having revised the concept of conjugation. Children develop their knowledge of France - especially northern France. Finally, they research a non-European Francophone country and present it - making reference to particular customs and traditions.
Spring We start the term learning how to tell the time (o’clock and half past). Children revise food and drink and learn how to say what they eat at different meals and at what time! We introduce ‘je mange’ (I eat) to facilitate sentence building. In the second half of term, children learn a greater range of family members and are given the opportunity to develop their reading and listening skills with this topic. In addition, they will revise the verb ‘avoir’ (to have) and practise using it in the singular form.
Summer Children learn to understand and use different weathers and seasons and will present a weather forecast to their class - revising and incorporating time. They will move onto learning a variety of hobbies and leisure activities and write down what they like doing in different types of weather. In the course of the term they will learn to recognise and use the present tense, singular forms of the verbs ‘faire’ (to do/make) and ‘aimer’ (to like/love) and be introduced to the world of regular ‘-er verbs.’