Our French (MFL) Curriculum
What is French (MFL)?
MFL is the study of modern foreign languages so they can be spoken, written and understood. At Scarcliffe Primary School, we have elected to teach French as our modern foreign language.
Who leads French at Scarcliffe and what is their vision?
The French leader at our school is Sarah Wigley - who is also a higher level teaching assistant. For further information about the French curriculum, or for other support, she can be contacted via email. email@example.com
The subject leader's vision for French is that children enjoy the challenge of learning to speak, listen to and understand a new language. We want children to understand the importance of learning a second language and about other cultures. We hope to inspire children to want to learn languages beyond primary school and hope that many go on to learn languages beyond Key Stage 4. The leader would like lessons to be interactive, fun and engaging.
French Curriculum Intent
French was selected for two main reasons. Firstly, we know that the main secondary school we feed to (The Bolsover School) offers French at Key Stage 3 and 4. We also have staff expertise in French.
The curriculum intent for French is split in to four areas:
Learning is progressive across school in each of these areas. The progression of this learning is detailed below:
How French is implemented at Scarcliffe (including use of schemes)
At Scarcliffe, although French only needs to be taught at Key Stage 2, we make sure all classes get some exposure to learning some of the basics. We understand that young children can pick up foreign languages quickly and plan to take advantage of this. We also know that children are often very interested in learning a language and are proud when they are able to use simple greetings or learn numbers for example.
In Class 1, learning is based mainly around speaking and listening. Some reading activities also involve recognising some key vocabulary. There is no set lesson for French in Class 1. Instead, activities are built in to the school day - for example, children might be expected to respond the register in French or might be greeted in the morning using common greetings. Teachers model speaking the language and the children listen and respond.
In Class 2, a 30-minute lesson is built in to the timetable. In these lessons, children learn through songs and have flashcard activities. There are no books to record French learning. Instead, written activities are completed on mini-whiteboards so children feel more confident to have a go and make mistakes.
In upper school (Class 3 and 4), the subject leader deliver a weekly French lesson. Planning for a unit of work is adapted from the Salut scheme of work. A typical unit is structured in the following way:
- Introduction of new vocabulary (listening, reading and speaking)
- Games and activities to embed the learning through listening, reading, writing and speaking.
- Songs and stories to put the vocabulary in to contexts.
- Written activities - such as writing simple sentences and using vocabulary to add labels.
- Role play activities - such as shops or meeting someone.
- Conducting surveys in French.
- End of unit 'Can you Still?' retrieval activities.
In upper school, a typical French lesson would:
- Start with a retrieval activity (Can you Still?) to revisit prior learning (written or oral)
- Introduction of new vocabulary for the week.
- Activity to embed the vocabulary in context.
- Question and answer activity with peers.
- An activity to apply their learning - such as a written activity or survey.
- Interactive games and reflection.
Our Curriculum Overview for French
Below are the topics that are covered each term. Short and medium term planning is held in school for each unit.
Links to our core abilities
We have identified seven core abilities that we hope to develop through our curriculum offer.
- Questioning and curiosity
- Critical thinking and open-mindedness
- Perseverance and resilience
- Team work
We can develop many of these core abilities through effective French teaching, but we particularly focus on developing communication and independence.
Knowledge Organisers and Learning Journeys
Knowledge organisers are in place in Class 3 and 4. They are shared at the start of a unit and highlight the key learning children are expected to retain from the unit. Can you Still? activities provide opportunities for the key information on previous and current knowledge organisers to be revisited. Children are expected to retain more and more as they move through school. Children have explained that these retrieval activities 'make them think hard to remember their learning'.
Monitoring the impact of teaching in French
We understand the importance of teaching high quality French lessons to all children and leaders monitor the impact of teaching in a variety of ways.
Children's responses to retrieval activities give a clear indication about how effective teaching has been. Pupil-led book studies are completed in order to allow the subject leader to understand children's views about French. It also provides a chance for leaders to monitor how frequently lessons are delivered and how much children are able to remember. Informal discussions with teachers also provides the leader with important information about the delivery of their subject.
All monitoring activities provide information about how closely teachers are following the intent document and the curriculum overview.
Assessment information is gathered by class teachers in line with the assessment policy. Teachers record which children are working very securely within the subject and which children are not secure. All other children are assumed to be working at the expected level. This assessment information means that staff can support and challenge groups as necessary.
Here are some great websites to support learning in French:
- BBC Bitesize - French
- French Games (Please be aware of ads)
French at home
We don't set homework for French, however a number of children choose to continue their learning at home. Typically, this is done through websites - such as BBC Bitesize and Duolingo.
Examples of pupil work