Learning a foreign language is an essential skill for many reasons and helps children to have a better understanding of their own language and culture and those of others. It is a skill that opens the door to infinite exciting opportunities; academic, professional and social.
French is taught from Reception to Year 6 by our specialist French teachers. There is a strong emphasis on cross-curricular work so that French is seen as relevant to other subject areas.
Throughout all year groups, there is a focus on oral work and children are taught in the same way as they would have learnt their native language. Lessons are lively and interactive and are conducted entirely in French. The four language skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing are developed throughout the French curriculum. For KS2, the Catherine Cheater Schemes of Work form the core of the learning, with CLIC for Year 6. A variety of activities are used such as games, songs, role play, DVDs and interactive computer tasks. Topics covered include: talking about oneself, colours, numbers, food and drink. Grammar, phrases and current vocabulary are taught as the children progress through the year groups. Language learning skills, knowledge about the language and intercultural understanding are also taught in French lessons. British Values are also regularly referred to when discussing cultural aspects.
Trip to France for Year 6
Year 6 are given the opportunity to attend a residential trip to France during the summer term. This is always a highlight of the year. The focus of the trip is ‘French Interaction’ with as much communication as possible being undertaken in French. The children have the opportunity to meet, chat and undertake activities with their French penpals, with whom they have been corresponding during the year. We visit the French children at their school, giving our pupils the chance to experience the French school environment. The trip provides an excellent experience for developing spontaneous communication skills, confidence, knowledge and hopefully some lasting friendships.
Extra-curricular Groups and Clubs
For those children who require some extra support in French, be it because they are new to the school or for other reasons, there is a Year 5 and 6 Booster Group session. This takes place once a week during a lunchtime and is compulsory for those children who have been identified as needing extra help. The Year 6 group runs until the end of the Advent Term and the Year 5 begins at the beginning of the Lent term, once the LGS Entrance Examination is completed.
In the Trinity Term for children who would like to extend their French knowledge and skills, we run a fun and interactive lunch-time French club where children have the opportunity to use their language skills to communicate in French for a variety of purposes.
There is also a Key Stage 1 French Club held each lunchtime.
From Year 1, children have the opportunity to take part in our extra-curricular Mandarin club which is taught by a visiting Mandarin teacher. This is an excellent opportunity for children to learn a different language.