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Modern Foreign Languages

Intent

The vision for Modern Foreign languages at Old Clee Primary Academy is to ensure all Key Stage Two students are able to access language teaching on a regular basis. Our students will learn a variety of different skills, based around core elements of language learning. We intend for students to read, write, speak and listen in French to immerse them in the subject. We aim to help children develop their awareness of cultural differences in other countries . Within our Academy, we hope to foster an enjoyment of language and to teach French in a way that is enjoyable and fun. The knowledge of these four areas will prepare them for the transition to secondary school language learning.

 

Implementation

French is taught by a specialist language teacher at OCPA. Each class has a 90 minute lesson fortnightly, where they are taught a variety of different skills. The focus of language learning can be split in to four main sections, each of these are covered in our classrooms using a range of methods.

  • Speaking – students are taught how to speak the language through repetition and listening to a subject specialist. Alongside this, students are given the opportunity to listen to native speakers in order to improve their own pronunciation.
  • Listening – as well as listening to an MFL specialist, students hear French from videos and clips online. They are encouraged to make notes and answer questions when listening to different passages.
  • Reading – written passages are used to encourage students to decipher new vocabulary. As students progress in their language learning, they start to look at grammar elements which can be identified in written passages.
  • Writing – as students progress through each topic, they build up vocabulary and grammar skills in order for them to complete an extended written piece at the end of each term. These range from writing about their dream homes, to talking about family and friends.

 

Impact

It is my aim that when the children talk about “Being a Linguist”, they understand not only that they are learning a second language, but also that they are learning about a different culture. The children will be able to discuss the differences between French and English culture, as well as identifying similarities in the language itself.

In lessons, I am able to assess students’ knowledge through questioning and the students’ ability to complete classwork independently. I am also able to assess through marking their books, this allows me to pick up on areas we may need to cover again, as well as individual children who may need more support.

The majority of the children at OCPA are able to recall the information learnt in their lessons in the following weeks to come. Language learning is fluid, students expand on prior knowledge as weeks progress, therefore the student base knowledge is fundamental especially when starting to cover more complex elements of grammar. Students in Years 3 and 4 focus primarily on building a firm bank of vocabulary and many of these are able to recount in detail what they have learnt. This links to the retrieval practice as students are constantly returning to vocabulary they have learnt in prior lessons.

Year upon year the language curriculum is planned to extend students understanding of vocabulary and grammar. Topics covered become more detailed including more complex aspects of language, such as understanding how verbs are manipulated into different tenses. This is the first year of progression for students at OCPA and I am already seeing a positive impact of this particularly in Years 4 and 5.

In regards to subject specific vocabulary, students understand the grammatical terms well. These are similar to those used in their SPAG lessons so they are used to this terminology. One of my main focuses for the subject this year is to ensure we use target language as often as possible in the classroom. Students are already used to this and follow instructions given with ease. 

Throughout the course of the year, students will be able to discuss what being a linguist involves. They will understand that a linguist is a person who learns one or more languages and will be able to identify areas where this would be useful to them in future career plans. Children will be able to tell me about the 4 main skills that help them learn a language, discussing why each of them are important.

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