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Modern Foreign Languages


“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” Nelson Mandela





Learning a foreign language is a necessary part of being a member of a multi-cultural society and provides an opening to other cultures. A high-quality language education should foster children’s curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable children to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It should also provide opportunities for them to communicate for practical purposes, learn new ways of thinking and read interesting literature in the original language.


It is widely recognised that the earlier a child is exposed to a foreign language, the faster the language is acquired. At Thomas A Becket Junior School, we believe that the early acquisition of French, together with a strong grasp on English grammar, will facilitate the learning of additional foreign languages later in life. 


Children have weekly lessons in French throughout Key Stage 2, using various resources to support learning. In years 3 and 4, children acquire basic skills and understanding of French, with a strong emphasis on their speaking and listening skills. These will be embedded and further developed in years 5 and 6, alongside reading and writing, gradually progressing onto more complex language concepts and greater learner autonomy.


It is intended that when children leave Thomas A Becket Junior School, they will have a natural curiosity and confidence to explore other countries, cultures and languages, accepting that, in a multi-lingual society, it is a valuable skill to be able to communicate effectively with others in another language. They will be prepared for the Key Stage 3 language curriculum to enable them to transfer confidently and successfully.






At Thomas A Becket Junior School, French is taught weekly by the class teacher. We follow a language learning scheme called Language Angels, interwoven with phonological and grammatical learning. This approach ensures a consistently high-quality offering across the school. We use a variety of techniques to encourage engagement and enjoyment in French learning:


  • Games - to allow children to develop vocabulary and phonological awareness through repetition, reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.
  • Songs and rhymes - to develop phonological awareness, memory and further vocabulary learning.
  • Role-play and conversational work - to allow children to use what they have learnt in a real-life context.
  • Reading quality and engaging materials.
  • Praise for contribution to build children’s confidence.


We base the teaching on the National Curriculum, which is adapted to the context of our school. This provides teachers with clear progression and content for teaching and learning:


  • Listen attentively to spoken language and show understanding by joining in and responding.
  • Explore the patterns and sounds of French through songs and rhymes and link the spelling, sound and meaning of words.
  • Engage in conversations; ask and answer questions; express opinions and respond to those of others; seek clarification and help.
  • Speak in sentences, using familiar vocabulary, phrases and basic language structures.
  • Develop accurate pronunciation and intonation so that others understand when they are reading aloud or using familiar words and phrases.
  • Present ideas and information orally to a range of audiences.
  • Read carefully and show understanding of words, phrases and simple writing.
  • Appreciate stories, songs, poems and rhymes in French.
  • Broaden their vocabulary and develop their ability to understand new words that are introduced into familiar written material, including through using a dictionary.
  • Write phrases from memory, and adapt these to create new sentences, to express ideas clearly.
  • Describe people, places, things and actions orally and in writing.​​​​​​​
  • Understand basic grammar appropriate to the language being studied, including the following: feminine and masculine forms and the conjugation of high-frequency verbs; key features and patterns of the language; how to apply these, for instance, to​​​​​​​ build sentences; and how these differ from or are similar to English.




Through the teaching of French, we will see the impact of the subject in the following ways:


  • Children will become aware that a language has a structure, and that the structure differs from one language to another.
  • Children will develop their language and communication through development of the four key skills: speaking, listening, reading and writing.
  • Children will enrich their language learning by developing an understanding of French culture.
  • Children will transfer to Key Stage 3 effectively and successfully and will be well-prepared to continue and develop their language skills.


We measure the impact of our curriculum through various methods: observing children speaking and listening in French; key questioning built into lessons to encourage the children to regularly retrieve and use previous learning ; assessments on Language Angels; marking of written work; capturing the children's views on their learning (pupil voice); communication between teachers; learning walks.


The MFL subject leader will continually monitor the impact that French teaching is having on the children’s learning to ensure the progress of knowledge and skills is being taught. Additionally, they will ensure the content taught is retained by the children and frequently revisited and that the learners are able to apply the skills they have been taught to a variety of settings. 





Resources to support the learning of French - colours - colours - what is your name? - birthday song - days of the week - months of the year - French alphabet - 30 mins of French songs for children