What does Modern Foreign Languages look like at Highweek?
Our Modern Foreign Languages Curriculum
At Highweek we aim to instill a love of language learning and an awareness of other cultures: learning a foreign language is a liberation from insularity and provides an opening to other cultures. We have chosen to study the French language in Key Stage 2 (there are no Key Stage 1 attainment targets for Languages). We want our pupils to develop the confidence to communicate in French for practical purposes, using both written and spoken French. We use the Kapow Primary’s French scheme of work across Key Stage 2 which aims to give our pupils the foundation for language learning. The scheme of work encourages and enables them to apply their skills to learning further languages, developing a strong understanding of the English language, facilitating future study and opening opportunities to study and work in other countries in the future.
Each unit of work comprises the strands of language learning which correspond with the National curriculum for Foreign Languages at Key Stage 2: speaking and pronunciation, listening, reading and writing, grammar, intercultural understanding and language detective skills. The units of work ensure that each of the National curriculum attainment targets, as well as each of the strands, are covered and the progression of skills taught within each year group ensure the development of these skills so that the attainment targets are securely met by the end of Key Stage 2. Identifying gaps in pupil’s knowledge is essential to their mastery and teaching the content they have missed is essential. Throughout our work, the children are given opportunities to communicate for practical purposes around familiar subjects and routines: French Greetings, French playground games, in the classroom. The scheme provides balanced opportunities for communication in both spoken and written French, although in Year 3 the focus is on developing oral skills, before incorporating written French in Year 4 and beyond. The spiral curriculum, with key skills and vocabulary revisited repeatedly with increasing complexity, allows pupils to revise and builds on their previous learning. Cross-curricular links within the units, give our pupils the opportunity to make connections and apply their language skills to other areas of learning. Lessons incorporate a range of teaching strategies from independent tasks, paired and group work including role-play, language games and language detective work. Our work focuses on developing ‘language detective skills’ and developing an understanding of French grammar, rather than on committing to memory vast amounts of French vocabulary.
The impact of using a spiral curriculum will be seen across Key Stage 2. Pupils will meet the end of Key Stage 2 expectations outlined in the National curriculum for Languages. After completing their language learning journey through to Year 6, children will be equipped with a range of language-learning skills to enable them to study French, or any other language, with confidence at Key Stage 3. They will be able to engage in purposeful dialogue in practical situations (e.g. ordering in a café, following directions) and express an opinion. They will be able to make increasingly accurate attempts to read unfamiliar words, phrases and short texts. They will speak aloud with confidence and accuracy in pronunciation. They will demonstrate understanding of spoken language by listening and responding appropriately and use a bilingual dictionary to support their language learning. The children will be able to identify word classes in sentences and apply grammatical rules they have learnt, they will also have developed an awareness of cognates and near-cognates and be able to use them to tackle unfamiliar words in French, English and other languages. Over time the children will be able to construct short texts on familiar topics. The impact of our French curriculum can be monitored continuously through formative and summative assessment. Impact can also be measured through key questioning skills built into lessons, child-led assessment using the ASK model and Solo Taxonomy and the use of high quality teacher feedback.