French at All Souls' CE
French Curriculum Rationale
At All Souls’ we are linguist! We want our children to love French. We want them to have no limits to what their ambitions are and grow up wanting to be a translator, interpreter, French teacher or work for in the travel industry. We want them to embody our core values. We all believe that our school is: “a place to grow”. The French curriculum has been carefully crafted so that our children develop their linguistic capital. We want our children to remember their French lessons in our school, to cherish these memories and embrace the language opportunities they are presented with! Reading and speaking French is part of our everyday school life. Bi-lingual signs around school engage our pupils in developing grapheme-phoneme correspondences alongside word meaning. Classroom instructions and aspects of whole school worship are spoken in French to immerse our pupils in spoken French on a daily basis.
Bringing French alive is important at All Souls’ CE Primary School.
The French curriculum promotes curiosity and a love and thirst for learning. It is ambitious and empowers our children to become independent and resilient – like all curriculum areas. We want to equip them with not only the minimum statutory requirements of the National Curriculum for French but to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life. We introduce the French language in Early Years through songs, rhymes and role play. Pupils locate France on a map and discuss its location in comparison to Rochdale. They share some French food in the café and begin to identify names of items alongside greetings and counting. We want our children to use the vibrancy of our great city to learn from other cultures, respect diversity, co-operate with one another and appreciate what they have. We achieve this by providing a strong SMSC curriculum, with British Values and our core values placed at the heart of everything we do. This often feeds into the French curriculum. Our Year 5/6 pupils write with pride about the place they live and their school in their letters to their pen pals in France and Dubai. They share ideas and opinions about growing up in the 21st century. We enrich their time in our school with the opportunity to hear and converse with native French speakers to develop their competency and passion for the language. We firmly believe that it is not just about what happens in the classroom, it is about the added value we offer to really inspire our children.
An annual audit of the French curriculum is conducted. Following the findings from this audit, the French curriculum has been carefully built and the learning opportunities and assessment milestones for each year group crafted to ensure progression and repetition in terms of embedding key learning, knowledge and skills.
French subject specific characteristics, which we expect the children to demonstrate, have been developed and shared with all stakeholders. These characteristics underpin all work in French and form a focal point for display areas and provide a common subject specific vocabulary for staff and pupils. These characteristics are to:
- listen attentively to spoken language in French and show understanding by joining in and responding
- explore the patterns and sounds of the French language through songs and rhymes and link the spelling, sound and meaning of words
- engage in conversations in French; ask and answer questions; express opinions and respond to those of others; seek clarification and help
- speak in sentences, using familiar French vocabulary, phrases and basic language structures
- develop accurate pronunciation and intonation in French so that others understand when they are reading aloud or using familiar words and phrases
- present ideas and information orally in French to a range of audiences
- read carefully and show understanding of words, phrases and simple writing in French
- appreciate stories, songs, poems and rhymes in the French language
- broaden their vocabulary of French and develop their ability to understand new words that are introduced into familiar written material, including through using a dictionary
- write phrases from memory in French , and adapt these to create new sentences, to express ideas clearly
- understand basic grammar appropriate to the French language being studied.
School staff and the SLT organise learning in year group curriculums under the guidance of our subject leaders. Teachers are best placed to make these informed judgements. Staff develop year group specific long-term curriculum maps which identify when the different subjects and topics will be taught across the academic year. All subjects are taught discretely but staff make meaningful links across subjects. They link prior knowledge to new learning to deepen children’s learning. For example, pupils’ knowledge of morphology and etymology in English is used to support the acquisition of new French vocabulary. Our children are taught the right, connected knowledge.
Our short-term plans are produced on a bi-weekly basis. We use these to set out the learning objectives for each lesson, identifying engaging activities and resources which will be used to achieve them. We encourage staff to teach a bi-weekly French lesson. This was a notable change after the French audit. This helps to ensure sufficient time is allocated to French and that subject matter can be revisited frequently. We believe that by crafting our curriculum this way, we improve the potential for our children to retain what they have been taught, to alter their long-term memory and thus improve the rates of progress they make.
We use both formative and summative assessment information in every French lesson. Staff use this information to inform their short-term planning and short-term interventions. This helps us provide the best possible support for all of our pupils, including the more able. The assessment milestones for each phase have been carefully mapped out and further broken down for each year group. This means that skills in French are progressive and build year on year.
Our staff use French formative assessment grids to systematically assess what the children know as the topic progresses and inform their future planning. These formative assessment grids then inform summative assessment judgements for each topic.
Assessment information is collected frequently and analysed as part of our monitoring cycle. This process provides an accurate and comprehensive understanding of the quality of education in history. A comprehensive monitoring cycle is developed at the beginning of each academic year. This identifies when monitoring is undertaken. Monitoring in French includes: book scrutinies, lesson observations and/or learning walks, pupil/parent and/or staff voice.
All of this information is gathered and reviewed. It is used to inform further curriculum developments and provision is adapted accordingly.
At All Souls' CE Primary School, we are
Languages programmes of study:
Key Stage 2
Purpose of study
Learning a foreign language is a liberation from insularity and provides an opening to other cultures. A high-quality languages education should foster pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable pupils to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It should also provide opportunities for them to communicate for practical purposes, learn new ways of thinking and read great literature in the original language. Language teaching should provide the foundation for learning further languages, equipping pupils to study and work in other countries.
The national curriculum for languages aims to ensure that all pupils:
- understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources
- 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.
By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the relevant programme of study.
Schools are not required by law to teach the example content in [square brackets]. Languages – key stage 2
Key stage 2: Foreign language
Teaching may be of any modern or ancient foreign language and should focus on enabling pupils to make substantial progress in one language. The teaching should provide an appropriate balance of spoken and written language and should lay the foundations for further foreign language teaching at key stage 3. It should enable pupils to understand and communicate ideas, facts and feelings in speech and writing, focused on familiar and routine matters, using their knowledge of phonology, grammatical structures and vocabulary.
The focus of study in modern languages will be on practical communication. If an ancient language is chosen the focus will be to provide a linguistic foundation for reading comprehension and an appreciation of classical civilisation. Pupils studying ancient languages may take part in simple oral exchanges, while discussion of what they read will be conducted in English. A linguistic foundation in ancient languages may support the study of modern languages at key stage 3.
Pupils should be taught to:
- listen attentively to spoken language and show understanding by joining in and responding
- explore the patterns and sounds of language through songs and rhymes and link the spelling, sound and meaning of words
- engage in conversations; ask and answer questions; express opinions and respond to those of others; seek clarification and help*
- speak in sentences, using familiar vocabulary, phrases and basic language structures
- develop accurate pronunciation and intonation so that others understand when they are reading aloud or using familiar words and phrases*
- present ideas and information orally to a range of audiences*
- read carefully and show understanding of words, phrases and simple writing
- appreciate stories, songs, poems and rhymes in the language
- broaden their vocabulary and develop their ability to understand new words that are introduced into familiar written material, including through using a dictionary
- write phrases from memory, and adapt these to create new sentences, to express ideas clearly
- describe people, places, things and actions orally* and in writing
Languages – key stage 2
- understand basic grammar appropriate to the language being studied, including (where relevant): feminine, masculine and neuter forms and the conjugation of high-frequency verbs; key features and patterns of the language; how to apply these, for instance, to build sentences; and how these differ from or are similar to English.
The starred (*) content above will not be applicable to ancient languages.