At Bournes Green School in French we have a very clear aim: we want to ensure that every child has a real opportunity to learn a foreign language, producing future linguists. We want to build solid language learning foundations at a primary level so a passion for languages and subsequent linguistic success will follow.
In speaking, pupils will build up a bank of core vocabulary that they can relate to and re-use in French, thus helping develop their memory and retention skills so pupils can retain and recall the vocabulary taught in the long term. We begin to move from single words to short, simple phrases. Pupils further their knowledge by learning how to create longer and more complex spoken sentences within a topic. Pupils learn how to use scaffolds and reference materials to improve their range of spoken vocabulary. Pupils speak with improved fluency and ease using full sentences (from memory) on a wider variety of topics. Pupils learn to manipulate the French language and learn that language is transferable from topic to topic. This, in turn, enables them to express more personalised ideas and meaning. Pupils will also start to be able to move from speaking in the 1st person singular (speaking about themselves) to 3rd person singular.
In listening, pupils are taught to understand very short passages of French. This begins by matching the language that they hear to images and/or words that they have been taught in their lessons. As pupils’ linguistical ability develops, they are taught to understand longer, more complex passages of spoken language that is based on taught language with much more new and unfamiliar language weaved in. As pupils progress, they become increasingly able to use and understand the language they hear. Pupils are exposed to much more authentic foreign language material to listen to. This material is delivered at near native speed and covers a much wider range of topics; many of which will link to their learning in other subjects thus deepening their knowledge.
In reading, pupils learn to identify cognates (words that are similar in English and French) and start to learn how to decode written text they are presented with. Pupils will be reading short passages of text based on the units they are studying. Pupils will become more confident in their ability to decode text they read, using a dictionary for language they are less familiar with if necessary.
In writing, pupils are encouraged to attempt to spell and write some simple words and vocabulary from memory. As pupils continue their linguistical journey, they will be able to start writing full sentences with increased ease and improved accuracy. Pupils will progress to be able to write longer passages of foreign language text including nouns, articles and verbs and make their written work more interesting through use of a greater variety of conjunctions, opinions and justifications. Alongside their own written work, pupils will develop their translations skills, translating from French into English with increasing accuracy.
Grammar will underpin all facets of French. Pupils will be expected to understand the concept of; gender, nouns and articles, conjunctions, verb conjugation including use of the negative form.