French Curriculum Statement
At Verwood First School we believe that learning a language provides our pupils with an opening to another culture and serves to deepen their understanding of the wider world. We aim for our pupils to be confident in expressing their ideas and thoughts in another language and to respond to its speakers. It will provide a foundation for learning other languages and potentially support study or work in another country.
Learning French also helps pupils to develop communication skills including key skills of speaking and listening and extends their knowledge of how language works. The focus language in our school is French. Children in Ash and Willow base will receive weekly language lessons. The aims of these lessons are to foster an interest in language learning, encourage children’s curiosity about language and creativity and experimenting with it, support oracy and literacy and in particular develop speaking and listening skills, help children develop their awareness of cultural similarities and differences, lay the foundations for future language study by pupils and to give an extra dimension to teaching and learning across the curriculum. MFL is very important in developing children’s understanding of British values, in particular showing mutual respect and tolerance of different religions and cultures.
The children will learn French through speaking and listening, reading and writing, role play and by developing an intercultural understanding of the country.
The French curriculum at Verwood C of E First is carefully planned and structured to ensure that current learning is linked to previous learning and that the school’s approaches are informed by current pedagogy. We use a progression of skills document when we plan our topics and lessons to ensure that skills are covered and built upon year by year. These themes include speaking and listening, reading and writing, grammar, key vocabulary and intercultural understanding.
Children in key stage 2 have weekly lessons but are introduced to some French vocabulary in key stage 1 through greetings, songs and rhymes that they can join in with. The topics are carefully planned to ensure progression throughout year 3 and 4 with children starting by locating France and other countries where French is a dominant language. They then learn greetings, how to express likes and dislikes, appropriate pronouns, classroom instructions, colours and numbers. These are all through half termly topics in year 3; Getting to Know You, All About Me, Food Glorious Food, Family and Friends, Our School, Time. There are also cross curricular links with geography and English, as we communicate with a French school and learn about the similarities and differences between social conventions at home and in France. In year 4 the learning from Year 3 is built upon with half termly/termly topics again. These are people and animals, birthdays, home, clothes and school, sports and summer holidays.
Through the high quality first teaching of French taking place we will see the impact of the subject in different ways.
Pupil voice shows that children are confident and able to talk about what they have learnt in French using newly taught vocabulary. Dialogue with children also demonstrates that they enjoy French and are able to recall their learning over time. They will have a deeper understanding of the world and will show interest and enthusiasm when talking about the subject. It may also encourage them to learn other languages as they progress through school and potentially support their learning, travelling or working in different countries when older.