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French

At Beechwood, the French curriculum is rooted in the school’s underlying aims, ethos and values. Through the nurturing of a growth mindset, Beechwood pupils discover that language learning is interesting and fun.  The curriculum is carefully designed to equip our pupils with the knowledge, skills and vocabulary they need to understand a foreign language. 
The Beechwood curriculum for French aims to:

  • develop children’s language learning skills and create an awareness that all language has a structure and that this structure differs for different languages.  
  • develop pupils’ ability to communicate in French at a basic, practical level using short, simple phrases and language structures.
  • stimulate a continuous awareness of French through displays in the school environment and an integration of French expressions within the classrooms. 
  • foster pupils’ curiosity and a positive attitude to learning another language.
  • lay the foundations for further language learning at Key Stage 3 and equip pupils to study and work in other countries. 
     

We are French speakers are Beechwood Primary School.

French Displays

Year 1 and 2 

The children in KS1 took part in a fantastic French workshop with Stephanie today. They located France on a map and took a closer look at where Stephanie was from. We then learnt how to say hello, goodbye and thank you in French. The children enjoyed counting to 5 and learnt a French song called 'The little worm'. Afterwards, we got to try some traditional French food. 

Year 3

Year 3 children learning simple greetings in French.

Year 4

Year 4 learnt about the names of the parts of the body in French using the book Va'ten Grande Monstre Verte.  They were then asked to draw their own monsters using ICT based on a description given in French.

Year 5

Year 5 French Greetings

Still image for this video
Year 5 Children practise greeting each other in French.

Why your child should learn French

 

  • It is lots of fun and it will give your child such a great sense of achievement.
  • Young brains are like a sponge so they are capable of learning a new language much more quickly than later on in their school life. 
  • Being able to speak another language unlocks the possibility of deeper connections and understanding with people from different cultures and communities they might not otherwise have experienced. As a result, it helps develop their empathy skills, too.
  • Studies have also shown that learning a new language as a child has a direct impact on their academic achievements.
  • The French-speaking community is one of the largest in the world – it’s the 3rd most commonly spoken language across Europe and ranks 5th globally.  So, there’s no disputing the doors that can be opened for your child by learning this widespread language. 
     

Top tips to help your child become a brilliant French speaker

 

Whether you are bilingual or new to French, there is so much you can do to support your child at home. The key to helping your child learn French is to start with the basics and make it as fun as possible. Why not learn alongside your child? They will love teaching you their new French words and phrases. Repetition is also important when mastering another language so encourage your child to practise their French little and often, ideally a few minutes each day. There are many ways you can them -and you will have more ideas of your own– but here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  • Play ABC Bingo: prepare a 16-square grid and place a different letter in each square.  Pick out a letter from the envelope and cross off the letter if have it and can say it aloud. Listen to counting songs together. As your child becomes more confident play this game with other French words like colours, for example.
  • Devise simple counting games: count up in French as you climb the stairs at home or out and about; count the number of items (windows, chairs) in your house; on your way to school, count in French the number of cars, scooters, cats you see.
  • Say the colours of doors in French as you walk along your local streets. 
  • Use simple French greetings at home each day.
  • Label simple objects around the home with French words.
  • Make it a tradition to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ in French at your home. 
  • When you go to the supermarket, name as many foods as you can in French -make it a competition!
  • Use the links below to listen to French stories and rhymes together from the resources below. Try head, shoulders, knees and toes to start with -they will love it! Tete epaules genoux pieds
  • Try listening to an audible story or cartoon in French. You can change the language to French on Netflix.
  • Always encourage your child to ‘have a go’ and show them that it is ok to make mistakes and try again. 
     

Useful Links

There are a great number of online resources to help your child learn French. Here are a few. Click the pictures to follow the link.

 

Alain Le Lait has produced a great number of easy to watch, short videos with subtitles aimed at children about a range of topics in French: numbers, greetings, colours, family members, the weather, days of the week, months of the year, food etc.
BBC Bitesize as a large variety of resources aimed at primary school children, including topic-based games, stories and rhymes: 
The French experiment has stories to listen to.
BBC Teach has a few videos of French children talking about themselves.
Download the Duolingo App. It is a free online language-learning platform designed to feel like a game and scientifically proven to be effective. Try it with your child and you’ll see how they want to keep doing it!  
Sign up for Quizlet: a free online learning tool where you can practise your French vocab and create your own flashcards. 

 

The films mentioned on this page are suitable for children but please be aware that some content on the YouTube website may not be appropriate for all audiences; therefore, we recommend that you guide your children when they are using YouTube. 

“Wow” Experiences


At Beechwood, we are always looking for ways to enhance the MFL curriculum so we have booked French specialists to come into school and give pupils immersive French experiences.
During this term, a native French speaker, who is also a dance specialist, will introduce children across KS2 to traditional French dance and playground games.
Later in the year, another native French speaker will provide creative workshops for KS2, reinforcing learning that they have done in class. In addition, KS1 children will all attend a French taster workshop.
 

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