In our school we teach a foreign language to all children in key stage two as part of the normal school curriculum. There are also opportunities for children in Foundation and KS1 to learn some basic words in a range of different languages. We do this for several reasons.
Firstly, we believe that many children really enjoy learning to speak another language. Secondly, we also believe that the earlier a child is exposed to a foreign language, the faster the language in question is acquired. We also believe that it is a good
idea to introduce a new language to children when they are at primary school
as they tend to be less self-conscious about speaking aloud at this stage of their
development. It is widely believed that the early acquisition of a foreign
language facilitates the learning of other foreign languages later in life.
Aims and Objectives
The aims and objectives of learning a modern foreign language in primary
to foster an interest in learning other languages:
to introduce young children to another language in a way that is
enjoyable and fun;
to make young children aware that language has structure, and that
the structure differs from one language to another;
to help children develop their awareness of cultural differences in
to develop their speaking and listening skills;
to lay the foundations for future study.
French is the main modern foreign language that we teach in our school. However, we do currently run a Spanish Club led by Mrs Perez.
The curriculum that we follow is based on the guidance given in the
new National Curriculum 2014. We teach the children to know and understand
ask and answer questions;
use correct pronunciation and intonation;
understand basic grammar;
We base the teaching on the guidance material in the QCA scheme of work for modern foreign languages ,the context of our school and the abilities of our children.
We use a variety of techniques to encourage the children to have an active engagement in the modern foreign language: these include games, role-play and songs (particularly action songs). We often use puppets and soft toys to demonstrate the language, and we also invite native speakers into the classroom whenever possible, in order to expose the children to more than one voice in the foreign language. We frequently use mime to accompany new vocabulary in the foreign language, as this serves to demonstrate the language without the need for translation. We emphasise the listening and speaking skills over the reading and writing skills. We also use a multi-sensory and kinaesthetic approach to teaching, i.e. we try to introduce a physical element into some of the games, as we believe that this serves to reinforce memory. We make the lessons as entertaining and enjoyable as possible, as we realise that this approach serves to develop a positive attitude in the children to the learning of MFL. We build children’s confidence through constant praise for any contribution they make in the foreign language, however tentative.
We assess the children in order to ensure that they make good progress in this subject. We do this informally during the lessons. The school uses the four national attainment targets to evaluate the progress of each child in:
listening and responding;
reading and responding;
Primary Languages teaching at Marlborough is fully inclusive. No child is excluded by reason of a learning difficulty, or because they have English as an additional language. Experience has indeed shown that such children can derive particular benefit from taking part in Primary Languages learning activities in which they may be less disadvantaged than in other areas of the curriculum.
Language learning activities are planned in such a way as to encourage the full and active participation of all pupils. Work is differentiated as appropriate to the needs of individual children. Pairs and groups for collaborative work may be made up in different ways, depending on the task.