Modern Foreign Languages
Mrs Hardwick, a secondary school MFL teacher, teaches French (and occasionally German) to all children in Year 3 to Year 6 in Wessington and Lea Primary Schools. We have chosen French as the language to be taught as this is the language which is taught at all our secondary feeder schools.
We use a variety of techniques to encourage the children to engage actively in their learning. These include games, role-plays and songs (particularly action songs). We often use videos featuring native speakers and sample foods from different countries. We have established a link with a school is Laon, France, allowing the children to exchange letters and conversations via Skype. This exposes the children to more than one voice in the foreign language and gives them real-life experience using it.
We emphasise listening and speaking skills over reading and writing skills, although the children do record the language they have learnt in their exercise book. We also use multi-sensory and kinaesthetic approach to teaching, in that we try to introduce a physical element into some of the games and songs, as this serves to reinforce memory. We make the lessons as entertaining and enjoyable as possible, as we realise that this approach serves to develop a positive attitude in the children to the learning of modern foreign languages. We build children's confidence through praise for any contribution they make in the foreign language, however tentative.