Implementation

Our French curriculum is divided into half termly units. These are carefully sequenced to ensure that key communication skills and grammatical concepts are built on year on year and that language learned can be used cumulatively. This ensures that content is embedded and creates a strong basis for pupils’ future language learning. The detail of this progression is set out in ‘Progression of Skills and Understanding in French’.

How each unit works:

At the start of each core language unit, pupils are introduced to the theme and key vocabulary. Through language rehearsal, games, raps and songs, pupils become more confident in listening to, saying, reading and writing these words with increasing independence. Each unit involves key vocabulary, language structures and questions which are revisited on a regular basis, gradually extending children’s ability to manipulate the language to express themselves to others, both in speaking and writing. As much as possible, native language speakers and key literature are used to further enhance pupils’ learning across the French curriculum.

Each unit plans to meet the criteria of the National Curriculum, extending children’s French language knowledge and grammatical understanding. As children move through year groups, prior learning is reinforced and language is ‘recycled’.

At the end of each unit, children become confident with the language that they have learnt and are able to communicate with each other orally. As children’s grammatical understanding progresses, increasing demands are placed upon pupils’ ability to read and write in the target language and to read aloud longer French texts.

In addition to the ‘core language units’ of the French curriculum, there are six additional units across Key Stage 2 which focus discretely on pupils’ understanding of French culture and age-appropriate literature. These units form a key part of pupils’ learning and serve as a vehicle through which both pupils’ linguistic and intercultural understanding can be further deepened and reinforced over time.

Grammatical Concepts

Alongside pupils’ English grammar lessons, children are also exposed to a number of key French grammatical concepts, including:

  • Word classes

Including: nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, definite and indefinite articles, prepositions and determiners (e.g. au/à la/aux), partitive articles (du/de la/des), possessive adjectives (mon, ma, mes), pronouns and connectives.

  • Gender

Identifying the gender of a noun through its definite or indefinite article.

  • Verb conjugation

Conjugation of high frequency verbs: avoir, être, aller, aimer, vouloir.

  • Agreement rules

Including: agreement of adjectives including colours, (blanc/ blanche), quantifiers (grand/petit/long/court) and mood/ feelings (je suis fatigué/fatiguée).

  • Syntax/word order

Including: position of adjectives in sentence, inversion for questioning, building a negative sentence.

  • Spelling & punctuation

Including: capitalisation (lower case letters for days of the week/months of the year), accents, singular and plural and contractions.

 

Key Skills

 

  • Speaking: individual words; key questions and responses; reading longer texts aloud independently.
  • Listening: both native and non-native speakers; individual words; key questions and responses; unfamiliar words within familiar contexts; longer texts and information; key literature.
  • Reading: individual phonemes and words; key questions and familiar language; unfamiliar vocabulary; longer texts and information.
  • Writing: individual words; key questions and responses; longer texts and information.

 

French Lessons

At Thomas Jones we ensure that our French lessons are planned around key language and grammatical concepts. French sessions are designed to give children ample opportunity to develop their communication skills across the breadth of the French curriculum, and to harness pupils’ natural curiosity and inclination to learn about new languages and cultures.

Sessions are designed to be interactive and multi-sensory, often involving opportunities for pupils to watch or listen to French speakers, manipulate key resources and play games or sing songs to enhance their learning. Communication is an active process in which pupils are fully engaged, and they are encouraged to use their developing language skills throughout the school day.

Key Stage 1

Although teaching a foreign language is not statutory within Key Stage 1, we have ran a successful French club at Thomas Jones for a number of years. This club runs on a termly basis for a small group of Key Stage 1 pupils; attendance is on a voluntary basis, with capacity for up to 12 pupils to participate per term. The club is taught by a visiting specialist, Tania Kieffer, and aims to introduce pupils to early French vocabulary and concepts, such as greetings, colours and numbers.

Key Stage 2

At Thomas Jones, French is taught by individual class teachers, with regular specialist support. At least once per term, French is modelled and taught by the MFL Leader, giving all class teachers an opportunity to observe and develop their own teaching practice in this subject.

Children are introduced to French in Year 3 and are given a solid grounding in common key language and grammar skills that they will need as they progress through the school. In Years 4 to 6, pupils are supported to build on the skills they have developed in Year 3 while regularly revisiting their prior learning to deepen its roots and ensure that language becomes embedded over time.

As children become more confident in their understanding of questions and responses, so the demands upon children’s grammatical knowledge increase. Children are supported to learn about concepts such as the conjugation of key verbs, adjectival agreements, and certain conjunctions.

Children also have opportunities to explore age-appropriate French literature and to develop their understanding of differences and similarities between French and British culture.

 

 

KS2 French Curriculum Map:

 

Autumn Term

Spring Term

Summer Term

Year Three

Greetings

 

Where in the World is French Spoken?

 

Revision / Catch up

 

 

 

Weather

Colours

 

Literature and Stories: La cuillette

 

Classroom Objects

 

End of Year Consolidation

Year Four

 

 

Numbers

 

 

 

Days, Months, Birthdays

 

 

Family

 

British vs French Schools

 

 

Fruit

 

Literature and Stories: Dix Petites Grains

 

 

Clothes

 

 

End of Year Consolidation

Year Five

 

 

 

School Subjects

 

Where do you live?

 

Intercultural Understanding: Paris and London

 

 

 

Hobbies

 

Alphabet and Vowels

 

Literature and Stories: La Chasse à l’ours

 

 

 

Body Parts and Descriptions

 

 

End of Year Consolidation

Year Six

 

Au Café

 

Illnesses

 

 

End of Year Consolidation

 

Seasons

 

Transport