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Website: Lancashire Education Award
Page Title: Case Studies : Archived from this section : Curriculum Development : Modern Foreign Languages
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Modern Foreign Languages
Enhancing excellence and enjoyment of MFL...
( 78 k)
Posted : 16th Jan 2014 school and the wider community

Shakespeare Primary School - Best Practice Award

  • 'A day in the life' of a French School was the theme for our KS2 French Day. Its aims were to increase the profile of MFL with reference to 2014, develop the use of French into daily school practice and promote MFL best practice to parents. A timetable incorporating the use of French in cross-curricular activities was set for each Year group. The whole school was labelled in French and images of France were displayed. Classroom commands were given in French by all staff. Staff dressed to a French theme. A French Café was set up and parents were invited to sample French food. Conversation was conducted in French, children and parents ordered from the menu. Prior to the day, all classes had had prepared French lessons which used the vocabulary needed for the activities.  A follow up assembly gave pupils the opportunity to share their work.
  • The impact on pupils was shown through the atmosphere experienced on the day. Children felt a valued sense of achievement through their engagement in set activities.

As a result of this day we are able to build on its success by incorporating French into cross curricular work including ICT, raise standards in children's achievement, and increase involvement in the learning of MFL with staff, non-teaching staff and parents to support practice excellence.

An effective and sustainable assessment model ....
( 91 k)
Posted : 7th Feb 2011

.... for Primary Modern Languages

 Walton - le- Dale Primary School ( Innovative Practice)

  • The aim of this project was to establish effective assessment of Primary Modern Languages.   After some years of successful teaching and learning in years 5 and 6, it was time for change, heading towards consistency for the impending entitlement in 2010.
  • In the first instance it was essential to look at our strengths and weaknesses as a whole school and areas for development specifically targeted at language learning. As a staff we discussed best practice, how we could modify our own practice and most importantly, agreed a shared vision for languages in our school. That vision was to be the one of confident in delivery to ensure pupil achievement, progression and above all, enjoyment.
  • To enable this to happen, we needed to achieve consistency of delivery, improved staff confidence and a sustainable model for assessment.
  • The impact on pupils has been their sense of achievement, effective progression, bridging gaps in knowledge and understanding and being aware of their next steps in learning.
  • As a result of finding a sustainable model for assessment we have learned how to apply our knowledge and skills from familiar areas of the curriculum such as literacy and numeracy to less familiar areas where staff, at times, lacked confidence. Staff are proud of their ability to build an individual profile of each child's achievements and areas of development through the use of effective assessment techniques.
Providing pupils with teaching and learning opportunities...
( 78 k)
Posted : 2nd Jun 2010

... in modern foreign languages in primary schools

Clitheroe Royal Grammar School (Best Practice)

Raising awareness of language and culture and providing students with the opportunity to research appropriate resources, prepare teaching materials and disseminate these to primary pupils.

Sustainability of Modern Foreign Languages across School
( 82 k)
Posted : 4th Jun 2009
Barton St Lawrence C.E. Primary School (Good Practice Award)

Further to the Government's target of PML in primary schools by 2010, our school wanted to build on the offering of languages that were already happening in school.  Over a period of time, we have developed a link with our local High School, who come in to deliver model lessons to Key Stage 2 children.  This link has not only enabled staff to tap into a bank of ideas and resources, but also increased the school's understanding of the progression of languages.  This was further enhanced by visiting our local high school to observe Year 7 lessons.
In September 2008, we recruited a member of staff who had French as a second language.  With her introduction, a whole-school development policy for languages was introduced.  This involved starting PML in Key Stage 1 as a phonic and practical-based approach and revising our provision of PML in Key Stage 2. 
As we have continued to monitor the development of languages during the course of the year, we have since revised our initial development policy and introduced German in Years 3/4.  This change happened as a direct result of internal assessment and as French was progressing extremely well, this change would facilitate children's transition to the high school, as they would study either of these languages. 
We now have languages firmly embedded in our curriculum and exploit any opportunities to develop them further: our Christmas Nativity was a French play and only recently we performed a cheerleading routine in French.
Professional Development of Support Staff to Successfully Introduce MFL
( 84 k)
Posted : 4th Jun 2009

Higher Walton C.E. Primary School (Good Practice Award)

  • In response to the Government initiative for children to learn a foreign language, the school identified a need to train staff.  Funding was secured from the Remodelling team to employ a specialist language teacher who would develop the skills of a teaching assistant within school through work shadowing.  Additional support was obtained by partnership with our local high school, with a specialist teacher peer-coaching the Y5/6 teacher.   Having developed her knowledge and confidence through shadowing the specialist teacher, the teaching assistant undertook a 4-day training course. 
  • In September 2007, the teaching assistant began planning and delivering French in both KS2 classes.  This practice continues and has been improved through the purchase of a scheme of work and further training.  Children are now sufficiently fluent and confident in French to be able to perform a Christmas nativity play for parents in French.
Introduction of Modern Foreign Languages
( 55 k)
Posted : 13th Aug 2008

Euxton Primrose Hill Primary School (Good Practice Award)

• With the advent of PPA and the emerging national requirement to deliver the teaching of a modern foreign language, our school set about successfully introducing French as a curriculum subject for all ages.

• Now in its second year of delivery, French is now delivered weekly in each class by a proficient French-speaking teacher and the Headteacher. It is well resourced and we enjoy super links with a language specialist college close by. The children's achievements are reported to parents in the annual summative report, using the QCA guidance, and we have created a scheme of work that is differentiated for all ages, delivered over a two year cycle.

• We have exciting projects in place within our current School Improvement Plan to assess our children's progress with a link member of staff from the specialist language college and video links are to be set up to enable the oldest junior children of our school to become even closer to our secondary friends.

• We decided that the oral element of the teaching was to be the main focus. Recently, we have been able to share much of good work with a local cluster for MFL.


Raising self-esteem and achievement through ...
( 102 k)
Posted : 6th Feb 2009

...the development of Primary Modern Languages at Leyland St. James' Primary School.

Leyland St James' C.E. Primary School (Good Practice)

The development of PML within St. James’ has ensured the advancement of self-esteem (both within pupils and staff) and has resulted in a rise in attainment.  The introduction of PML involved utilising the existing skills and confidences of staff whilst ensuring the development of others through a rigorous professional development programme.  Both county and feeder high schools were used in this capacity. Our PML leader extended her own knowledge through the 'Path finder' programme.

Children were introduced to several languages – French, German and eventually Spanish.  A structured but fun curriculum was devised, ensuring that children made effective use of reading, writing, speaking, listening and thinking skills.  It is this emphasis on skills that has raised the level of achievement within basic skills (see Raise on Line CVA 2006, 2007, ongoing brick walls, schools own data analysis) and impacted positively on the children’s self esteem (see Pupil Questionnaire analysis 2007, 2008)

Introducing Modem Foreign Languages across Key Stage 2
( 84 k)
Posted : 6th Feb 2009

Cathedral Catholic Primary School (Good Practice)

As MFL is to be offered in all primary schools across Key Stage 2 by 2010, we wanted to ensure that we would have the skills and resources to meet this target. Our partner secondary school had funding for a specialist MFL teacher to work with teachers in our school to deliver French once a week throughout an academic year. This resource was used to provide professional development for staff and learning partnerships were established.

We started in upper Key Stage 2, where the class teachers now have the confidence to plan and deliver French each week. The specialist teacher now provides support for teachers in years 3 and 4, working alternate weeks with each teacher so that the class teacher can then consolidate and practice the new learning the following week and so build up her own subject knowledge and confidence. 

The school also provided funding for a specialist French teacher to deliver an after school club for pupils in years 2, 3 and 4. Overall this work has had a great impact in developing teacher confidence and the necessary skills to deliver French and in all classes across Key Stage 2, teachers are able to offer French as part of the curriculum.

Developing Speaking and Listening ...
( 57 k)
Posted : 28th Feb 2007

... through the learning of a modern foreign language

Fylde Cluster Network

Six schools came together to form a Primary Strategy Learning Network in 2005 with the aim of improving speaking and listening through the learning of a modern foreign language. In September 05 a target group of Y3 children were identified across the network and a lead learner and lead teachers from each school were released monthly to work together on providing professional development support.

Headteachers met half termly to maintain a strategic overview of the project  and were fully supportive of the initiative.

At the end of the first year, nearly all children in the target group had reached at least Level 1 in Oracy from the Framework for MFL. The biggest impact was the 'buzz' that learning another language brought to the children. One school that was inspected by Ofsted was commended for its work in developing MFL, stating that the teaching of MFL had' lit up the learning' for pupils. The learning of a MFL was most effective where it was delivered as a cross-curricular subject combined with direct input of language learning. Pupils learned songs, made dual language dictionaries and counted and named shapes in the target language.

The highlight of the year was a Network Celebration Day held at one of the Network schools where all the target children enjoyed sampling food, made banners, played boules and learnt flamenco.

Networking has brought the six schools much closer together and the network is now looking to extend its work to include other schools in the locality.

French in the Primary Curriculum (Good Practice Award)
( 98 k)

St. Francis RC Primary School, Goosnargh.

The development of French language skills at St. Francis has  impacted on all the children from Reception right through the school. The level of enthusiasm to learn a language has remained high.  Recently, Year 6 children were invited to a French Play at a feeder High School and were able to hold their own in conversation. Back in school they took part in a French fashion show and introduced confidently .
Key Stage 1 children are developing their language skills through story telling, nursery and finger rhymes, poetry and songs. Role play and drama have become an integral part of the language lesson. It’s wonderful to see such involvement and excitement. As their teacher I feel very proud of their achievements.
Receiving the learning excellence award was really good news and confirmation that all the school’s efforts to develop a new curriculum area had been recognised. I feel positive that this is our first step on the language ladder. There is much more we can accomplish as a whole school community!

(Written by Carol Stringfellow)

Best Practice in Primary Language Learning (Best Practice Award)
( 99 k)

All Saints Catholic Language College

All Saints' target was to raise standards of attainment in MFL at Key Stage 2 and track transition across Key Stage 3.  As a small high school there were issues of splitting each cohort on entry into French and German.  The school made a fundamental decision and decided to bring each year group in with either French or German (Wave approach).  This enabled the school to offer Year 5 students in 2002 French as their target language and in 2003 German to Year 5.

Following the training of specialist staff to deliver the learning and the identification of funding to sustain staffing and provide resources (approximately £2000 per year), the work began in 2002. Children now enter All Saints with increased skill levels in Modern Languages and enjoy language learning and accessing the lunchtime language clubs (particularly boys). They also have a much broader cultural awareness of France and Germany as all new year 7 students have the opportunity to visit Lille (French) or Aachen (German) to use their language skills in a real context.

French in the Primary Curriculum
( 59 k)
Posted : 24th Jul 2008

St. Mary and St. Andrew’s Catholic Primary School (Good Practice Award)

St. Mary & St Andrews CP School

St. Marys & St.Andrew’s was one of the first small schools in Lancashire to develop French language skills as part of the Pathfinder Project. At the very outset, we saw languages as a way of developing the whole child, awakening an interest, developing enjoyment and positive attitude and motivating children to express themselves.

We challenged all the children, able and less able, to learn new skills and were amazed at the level of enthusiasm. Feeder High Schools have observed and commented on the level of confidence and competence that has continued through transition.

The children have been able to experience another culture, raising an awareness of their own and an ability to make comparisons. The Headteacher and myself have capitalised on cultural aspects, having both experienced British Council initiatives to Senegal and France.

There have been numerous opportunities for the children to celebrate their developing skills. The impact of the project has been acutely observable when the children have risen to the occasion to perform and present in assemblies, a French Nativity and Carol Concert, interviewing a native French footballer, a French Fashion Show and welcoming Secondary Languages teachers in games/activity sessions.

The curriculum throughout has been enriched, particularly with the younger children where their new language skills filter into morning registration, greetings, role play, singing, story telling, number and topic work. Car journeys have taken on a whole new French dimension!

Carol Stringfellow

Introducing Modern Foreign Languages (Innovative Practice Award)
( 74 k)

Ormskirk Asmall Primary School

Staff at Asmall School were delighted to be presented with the Learning Excellence award for the introduction of Modern Foreign Languages at the end of the first year of this innovative project.

In May 2004 we applied to the British Council to be included in a programme whereby Spanish Primary teachers are seconded to a British school on a part time basis for one year. With no foreign language expertise in the school this was seen as a fantastic opportunity to introduce a language. The teacher arrived in October to be met with great enthusiasm from children and staff. Each class in the school participated in weekly Spanish lessons, as did the staff and parents. The enthusiasm of the teacher and her approach to the subject was a real joy, bringing fun back into learning. Not only did the children learn a new language, they found out about life in Spain and other European countries. Citizenship assumed a high profile and ICT skills were honed as the Key Stage 2 classes communicated with pen friends by email and by snail mail. Meanwhile the Spanish teacher avidly participated in as many aspects of English life as possible, keeping everyone entertained with stories of weekend exploits. Our teacher has now returned to Spain but we are sure the friendships forged will continue. We eagerly look forward to the next arrival in October.

‘Modern Foreign Languages in Primary Schools’
( 95 k)
Posted : 16th Aug 2006

La Grande Six (Innovative Practice Award)

This network project developed the teaching of French by shared resources amongst a group of primary schools in Clitheroe. Particular features of the project include:

  • Teaching of MFL extended into early years.
  • Joint INSET arranged by all schools.
  • Staff attend all lessons taught and so extend MFL into the curriculum.
  • One fully qualified MFL teacher has been managed by one school while paid by another and trained by another.  This was partly funded from school’s own resources and partly by Beacon funding.
  • All schools are insistent that MFL be delivered free at the point of contact and that the entitlement be weekly.

The cluster has continued to research and learn from best practice elsewhere. All the evidence of impact suggests that children are making good progress in the acquisition of another language.

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