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Pupils are 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
  • 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.

Learning French

St. Mary’s believe that the learning of a foreign language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience for the pupils. Pupils develop communication and literacy skills that lay the foundation for future language learning. 

French is introduced for children in Reception to familiarise pupils with language learning and to encourage enjoyment and knowledge of a language other than their own. Learning another language raises awareness of the multilingual and multicultural world and introduces an international dimension to pupils’ learning, giving them an insight into their own culture and those of others. The learning of a foreign language provides a medium for cross-curricular links and for reinforcement of knowledge, skills and understanding developed in other subjects.

At St. Mary’s, each phase aims to combine language learning with cultural awareness through a variety of activities and contexts, such as games, interactive learning programs and songs.

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European Day of languages

Once a year the whole school celebrates the European day of languages, this is though each class choosing a particular country and providing all the children will cultural activities, food and learning. The children thoroughly enjoy this day and are seen going home speaking words from a new language. A French KS1 club is also available each term at the school. This aims to develop language skills from a young age and to engage them with exciting French activities.  The activities cover a range of topics from Food, Myself, Clothes and Animals. French playground games are being introduced to the children as well as a pen pal system with a future link school in France.

The primary National Curriculum documents and policy for Languages