Learning a foreign language is liberation from insularity and provides an opening to other cultures. A high-quality languages education should foster pupils' curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world and, in particular, of France and its wonderful language and culture.
Our teaching is undertaken by a specialist and enables the boys to express their ideas and thoughts in French and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing.
French teaching provides the foundation for learning further languages, equipping pupils to study and work in other countries.
The boys understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources. They speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say through discussion and asking questions, and continually improve the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation. They develop the skill to write at varying lengths, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learned.
Varied teaching methods
We recognise that our pupils have a range of personalities, interests, abilities and learning methods. Our aim is to cater for all of them by using visual, audio and kinaesthetic activities. Acting, singing, drawing, playing games, using IT, and watching videos and films contribute to the joy of learning and keep the motivation high even when pupils are learning difficult French grammar.
Years 4 and 5
The boys have one-and-a-half hours of teaching each week. Although the emphasis is set upon verbal and listening skills we recognise the importance of developing reading and writing skills too. Homework is set on a weekly basis.
Years 6, 7 and 8
In the senior part of the school the four main skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing are practised regularly and equally to prepare the boys for the Common Entrance and scholarship examinations. They have two-and-a-half hours of teaching time alongside set homework.
Year 6 residential trip
The Year 6 boys have a residential trip to a French activity centre in Normandy called the Château de la Baudonnière.