From the moment a pupil joins us, whether it be in Peregrines Nursery or Falcons School for Girls, they start to learn a foreign language. Currently, Nursery to Year 3 pupils learn Spanish whereas pupils in Year 4 to Year 6 learn French. Going forward, we will roll over Spanish so that it becomes the main language our pupils learn.
The learning of the language is given context as the children study the different countries and cultures where the language is spoken.
In the Early Years our focus is to get the children used to the new sounds of the language using their listening skills. We then encourage them to try making the new sounds themselves using their speaking skills. We teach using a number of repetition games and songs, making the lessons fun and interactive.
In Key Stage 1, pupils start to use their writing skills to copy new vocabulary they have learnt and put those new words into short sentences. They continue learning through songs and games, to improve their listening and speaking skills. We also have great fun performing short role-plays so pupils can practise expressing their opinions and their pronunciation. At times we use iPads to complete interactive tasks to help cement new vocabulary or grammar rules.
In Key Stage 2, pupils practise the four skills: listening, reading, speaking and writing through a variety of tasks which include interactive games, songs, role plays and short texts. Pupils learn to express and justify opinions on different topics both verbally and in written communication. Their knowledge of grammar expands, enabling them to write short paragraphs using the present tense and a variety of vocabulary.
Through their years at Falcons school for Girls, pupils build up a range of vocabulary for a variety of topics including;
The school subscribes to Languagenut, an interactive learning platform which the pupils can access at school and also use at home to practise vocabulary and verbs.
A variety of co-curricular activities are arranged to allow the pupils to learn more about the language and culture of the countries where the language they are learning is spoken and in September the whole school celebrates the European Day of Languages.
Recently, for example, Reception and Year 1 had an interactive workshop on the story of Boucle D’Or (Goldilocks), Year 5 went to an ‘All about Astérix’ exhibition and Year 6 enjoyed a French musical, “Pinot” at Wimbledon Theatre. Older pupils joined the boys from Falcons Prep School for a Choir Tour in Belgium and our Year 6 girls spent a week at the Château de Warsy during which they visited a snail farm, a goat farm, a chocolate factory, a bakery and spent a day at Parc Astérix.