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St Mary’s Catholic Primary School ‘Faith in Education’


MFL at St Mary's                                                                                                                                                  


The French scheme of work aims to instil a love of language learning and an awareness of other cultures. We want pupils to develop the confidence to communicate in French for practical purposes, using both written and spoken French. Through our scheme of work, we aim to give pupils a foundation for language learning that encourages and enables them to apply their skills to learning further languages, developing a strong understanding of the English language, facilitating future study and opening opportunities to study and work in other countries in the future. The French scheme of work supports pupils to meet the National curriculum end of Key stage 2 attainment targets (there are no Key stage 1 attainment targets for Languages).

As a school, we aim to inspire an enthusiasm for learning other languages and develop an interest in foreign cultures and life-styles. Although non-statutory, we begin by introducing children to French at KS1 and develop their French speaking, listening and reading skills though stories and songs. We believe teaching another language through a range of practical activities helps to break down any barriers to success. We want children to have a ‘can do’ attitude, develop their confidence and be enthusiastic about learning a new language. We want them to have fun through games, songs, stories and to develop vocabulary acquisition, speaking and listening, reading and writing skills.

Pupils learn French though speaking, listening, reading and writing as well as creatively through art, crafts, experiences, drama and music. We aim to build curiosity and understanding of the French culture though enrichment activities and bringing French into whole school weeks where appropriate, such as looking at French artists during Big Art Week or learning about sports popular in France, French foods and French sports people as part of Healthy Week.

We seek to prepare our children for further successful study of foreign languages at high school and hope to inspire a love of languages as part of their life-long learning and to provide them with the confidence and desire to converse, study and even work in other countries in the future.




In EYFS pupils are given the opportunity by their class teachers to develop awareness of other languages by singing songs and learning simple greetings in other languages, such as responding to the register using greetings from other languages.


In Key Stage One, pupils are taught French by their class teachers using the North Tyneside Scheme “French Through Stories”. Pupils are encouraged to develop enjoyment, confidence and familiarity with speaking and listening in French, as well as developing basic vocabulary such as greetings and classroom commands that lay the foundations for learning French in Key Stage 2.

In Key Stage 2, French is taught by one member of staff who specialises in French, using the scheme from Kapow Primary. The French scheme of work is designed with three knowledge strands that run throughout our units with knowledge building cumulatively.

These knowledge strands are:

● Phonics

● Vocabulary

● Grammar

This knowledge can then be applied within our skills strands, which also run throughout each unit in the scheme:

● Language comprehension (Listening and reading)

● Language production (Speaking and writing)


The Kapow Primary scheme’s National curriculum coverage shows which units cover each of the National curriculum attainment targets as well as each of the strands.  There is also a Progression of skills and knowledge document which shows the skills and knowledge that are taught within each year group and how these skills develop to ensure that attainment targets are securely met by the end of Key Stage 2.

Through the French scheme, pupils are given opportunities to communicate for practical purposes around familiar subjects and routines. The scheme provides balanced opportunities for communication in both spoken and written French, although in Year 3 the focus is on developing oral skills, before incorporating written French in Year 4 and beyond. The scheme is a spiral curriculum, with key skills and vocabulary revisited repeatedly with increasing complexity, allowing pupils to revise and build on their previous learning. Cross-curricular links are included throughout our French units, allowing children to make connections and apply their language skills to other areas of their learning. Lessons incorporate a range of teaching strategies from independent tasks, paired and group work including role-play, language games and language detective work. Our scheme of work focuses on developing what we term ‘language detective skills’ and developing an understanding of French grammar, and key vocabulary rather than on committing to memory vast amounts of French vocabulary. Pronunciation is emphasised early on using our Mouth mechanics videos to support pupils with phoneme pronunciation in French. Differentiated guidance is available for every lesson to ensure that lessons can be accessed and enjoyed by all. In order to help pupils, retain their French learning, we provide information about how to incorporate French into the classroom environment every day in our ‘During the week’ sections. Strong subject knowledge is vital for staff to be able to deliver a highly effective languages curriculum. Each unit of lessons includes multiple teacher videos to develop subject knowledge and support ongoing CPD.

In key stage 1, pupils focus on French through stories in the second half term of each term. Revisiting key vocabulary regularly in the half term when French is not taught weekly.

In key stage two, pupils are taught French in Autumn 1 and Autumn 2, then again in Spring 2 and Summer 2. Revisiting key vocabulary and structures in between.




French learning is monitored continuously through both formative and summative assessment. Each lesson provides assessment opportunities to assist teachers in assessing pupils against the learning objectives.


 Our French curriculum will enable children to:

  • Be able to engage in purposeful dialogue in practical situations (e.g., ordering in a cafe, following directions) and express an opinion.
  • Demonstrate understanding of spoken language by listening and responding appropriately.
  • Make increasingly accurate attempts to read unfamiliar words, phrases, and short texts.
  • Speak and read aloud with confidence and accuracy in pronunciation.
  • Use a bilingual dictionary to support their language learning.
  • Be able to identify word classes in a sentence and apply grammatical rules they have learnt.
  • Have developed an awareness of cognates and near-cognates and be able to use them to tackle unfamiliar words in French, English, and other languages.
  • Be able to construct short texts on familiar topics.
  • Meet the end of Key Stage 2 stage expectations outlined in the National curriculum for Languages.
  • Ensure that pupils leave school equipped with a range of language-learning skills to enable them to study French, or any other language, with confidence at Key Stage 3.