Modern Foreign Languages Curriculum Intent
The MFL curriculum aims to make language learning an enjoyable, practical skill, equipping pupils with a sound knowledge of the French language and an understanding of its grammar at a level appropriate to their age group.
Skills: Through a study of French, we aim to teach pupils about how language works, and give them skills which they can apply to other languages which they may choose to study independently or in the future. French is taught through the four key skill areas or reading, writing, speaking and listening, with an understanding of the ways in which these skills are interrelated. Listening skills are seen as a key part of language acquisition, beyond simply listening for comprehension.
The curriculum aims to build pupils’ confidence, both in using the language and more broadly - having the courage to make mistakes, especially verbally, is seen as key to making progress. By balancing the four skill areas and applying the language in a broad range of contexts, we aim to allow pupils with diverse abilities to flourish in different areas, whether they are skilled in performance, creative writing, application of grammar, or careful, quiet written work. The topics covered in our curriculum are designed to be relevant and appealing to the age of children taught, as well as to provide a vehicle for delivering a growing understanding of key grammatical structures. The curriculum aims to be both achievable and aspirational, allowing pupils of all abilities to access the learning, particularly through the support of sentence builders, vocabulary lists and learning through sound to support the less able, and providing the more able with a ‘toolbox’ of skills for developing and extending their own writing, speaking and comprehension in an independent and creative way.
Context: Language learning takes place in a context of learning about France, the French speaking world or other international contexts, the idea of travel and the experience of being ‘foreign’. We aim to use the practice of language learning as a means of broadening children’s global understanding of the diversity of people and places globally and within the UK, as well as how languages develop and are related. In the UK context, we feel it is important for children to have an understanding of why we learn languages. Through the study of a foreign language, we also aim to deepen children’s understanding of how their own language works.
We aim to give pupils the opportunity to use and encounter languages outside of the classroom through guided access to online resources as well as a yearly French trip and the French Cafe Project.
After Year 8, some pupils will continue with languages at GCSE, while others will stop. Our curriculum aims to remain relevant to all pupils up to the end of year 8 whichever path they choose, either as a solid foundation for further study at GCSE or as a practical skill to use in the future.