MFL (Modern Foreign Language)
“Learning another language is not only learning different words for the same things, but learning another way to think about things.” Flora Lewis, American journalist - International Affairs
MFL - Statement of Intent
To enable our children to celebrate and welcome differences in our world, it is vital they have an understanding of different languages and countries. By introducing and exposing our children to a foreign language, our aim is that they will have a deepened ability to show respect and play a valuable part in our global society. To achieve this we aim, through our Modern Foreign Languages curriculum, to inspire a love of language as part of their lifelong journey of learning. At Peel Common Junior School, we aim to give the children in our care as wide a range of opportunities and experiences as possible. We acknowledge the influence that Europe has on our lives and as the UK is becoming an increasingly multicultural society, we have a duty to provide our children with an understanding of other cultures and languages.
Learning a language enriches the curriculum, providing excitement, enjoyment and challenge for children and teachers, helping to create enthusiastic learners and to develop positive attitudes to language learning throughout life. The natural links between languages and other areas of the curriculum can enhance the overall teaching and learning experience. The skills, knowledge and understanding gained make a major contribution to the development of children’s oracy and literacy and to their understanding of their own culture and those of others. Language also lies at the heart of ideas about individual identity and community, and learning another language can do a great deal to shape children’s ideas in this critical area as well as giving them a new perspective on their own language
The National Curriculum for Modern Foreign Languages aims to ensure that all pupils:
· understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources
· speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation
· can write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learnt
· discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in the language studied.
Our aims here at Peel Common Juniors in teaching a language are:
· to develop an interest in learning other languages
· to introduce young children to another language in a way that is enjoyable and stimulating
· to encourage children’s confidence and creative skills through the exploration of another language
· to stimulate and encourage children’s curiosity about language
· to help children develop their awareness of cultural differences in other countries
· to develop listening, speaking, reading and writing skills
· to lay the foundations for future language learning.
A high-quality languages education should foster pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable pupils to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing.’ (National Curriculum 2014 – Appendix A)
We teach a foreign language (Spanish) to children from Year 3, up to Year 6. Teaching staff deliver lessons, introduce new vocabulary and work as a good model of pronunciation and intonation. They use a variety of the following techniques to encourage children to have an active engagement with languages:
· Games – in order to develop vocabulary through repetition, reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.
· Role-play – these should relate to the situations the children may find themselves in the future.
· Action songs and rhymes – to develop phonetic skills, memory skills and to further vocabulary.
· Mime - to associate vocabulary with kinaesthetic learning.
· Reading and writing quality materials.
· ICT programs and websites; the use of ICT to develop communication skills.
· We make the lessons as entertaining and enjoyable as possible, as we realise that this approach serves to develop a positive attitude in the children to the learning of modern foreign languages.
· We build children’s confidence through praise for any contribution they make in the foreign language, however tentative.
We use the online Language Angels programme to teach our units.
Through the high quality first teaching of Modern Foreign Languages taking place we will see the impact of the subject in different ways:
· Children will be provided with opportunities to communicate with each other in Spanish.
· Children will be given the opportunity to look at other languages – particularly if children are bi-lingual.
· Children will learn how language skills can be applied to a range of languages.
· Children will become aware that language has structure, and that the structure differs from one language to another.
· Children will develop their language through development of the four key skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing.
· Children will enrich their language learning by developing an understanding of the Spanish culture
“A different language is a different vision of life.” Federico Fellini, Italian film director and screenwriter