At St Patrick’s, our aim is to provide a high quality MfL Curriculum which encourages all pupils to succeed in speaking French, through attentive listening, verbal exploration and high quality teaching. We endeavour to provide opportunities for our children to become confident in speaking a language that is different to both the language of school and home, and to enable our children to embrace the wider world of language, in order to develop a deeper understanding of the world beyond their hometown.
The National Curriculum for MfL aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Listen, join in, and respond to spoken language.
- Explore patterns and sounds within language through various mediums, eg stories, songs, poetry.
- Speak in sentences, use familiar vocabulary/ phrases, describing people, objects, and actions orally.
- Engage in basic conversation, and present ideas or information orally.
- Develop correct pronunciation and intonation
- Read carefully, and show understanding of words, phrases, and simple writing.
- Broaden their vocabulary, and understand new words in familiar material, including through using a dictionary.
- Write phrases from memory.
- Understand basic grammar rules such as masculine and feminine,
- Explore how all the above elements differ from, or are similar to English.
The staff at St. Patrick’s are committed to delivering the National Curriculum for MfL, but we also recognise and consider the unique nature of our school context in doing so.
- We are aware that the majority of our children are EAL, and are exposed to another language other than English within the home.
- We know that a significant proportion of our children attend Mosque after school where they are exposed to another language in both reading and writing, which is different again to both home and school language.
- Our highly diverse school context means that children who only experience the English language at home are a minority.
- A barrier to learning within the school is a lack of life experience outside of school. This hinders children trying to hook new learning/ vocabulary onto other experiences they already have.
- Vocabulary and its meaning is a barrier to learning for our children.
- Many of our children do not experience rich language structures outside of school in which to attach new language experiences onto.
We take our context into consideration when planning the MfL Curriculum by:
- Giving the children as many opportunities as possible verbally explore and ‘play with’ French in an environment where they feel confident to do so, via games and rhymes.
- Ensuring that new vocabulary is emphasised and regularly revisited and embedded outside of the French lesson.
- Demonstrating a model of ‘everyone a learner’ to children – showing children that staff are also learners of new language, by being role models for good MfL learning, and exploring new language and sentence structures in the lesson alongside the children.
- Provide stimulating, multisensory lessons that the children can actively participate in, which takes into account the children’s exposure to more than one language structure already.
- Encourage children to make links between new French vocabulary and sentence structures not just in English, but also in their home language.
- Provide informative classroom displays or working walls to help embed the children’s new learning.
- Utilising our French speaking parents, and also inviting bi-lingual French speakers into school to chat to the children informally, for example, some of the professional players from The Oldham Athletic Football team.