The MFL Department at Fakenham Academy’s vision is based upon the belief that learning a language opens a world of new possibilities and opportunities to our students. Through languages we foster students’ curiosity and deepen their understanding, not only of their own identity and culture, but also of other countries. We encourage students to become curious and interested in the world and to respect other cultures and people, as well as building their communication and literacy skills. There are many clear personal, cultural, social and career benefits in being able to communicate in another language. Our curriculum is designed to develop transferable language skills in listening, reading, writing and speaking.
Yearly Intent Statements
What are the aims of specific stages of the curriculum?
Students come to us at Fakenham Academy with a mixed experience of language learning in KS2. The depth of learning varies from one feeder-school to another as does the language that has been studied. As a result, the curriculum in KS3 has been carefully considered to ensure that it provides all students with a foundation for further learning. Students develop an understanding of key vocabulary, while focussing on building fluency and communication skills with regular guided practice and scaffolded tasks, throughout which, basic structure and grammar is embedded.
It is a spiral curriculum, in which themes are revisited throughout KS3 & 4 in order to deepen understanding, building on previous learning with each successive encounter.
Year 9: By the end of the year students can describe in detail where they live and use a range of adjectives, subject pronouns and prepositions to describe where others live. They can describe their location, house and bedroom. Students understand and use a range of verbs to describe what they do in their free-time and are also able to use the future tense to describe plans and future career choices.
The work in year 9 builds on work that was done in years 7 and 8.
Year 10: By the end of the year students have developed their skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing within the topics of my family and friends, free-time and technology and customs and festivals in French-speaking countries. They can give personal and factual information about themselves and others and start to discuss different opinions – for example about the use of technology. They understand and respond to a wider variety of authentic texts. Tenses that were encountered in KS3 are consolidated and students become more confident using 3 key tenses together with a wider range of vocabulary.
Year 11: By the end of the year students progress from studying topics about themselves to their immediate environment where they live and then to the wider world around them and their future aspirations. They encounter an increasingly complex range of vocabulary and grammatical structures to discuss holidays, their studies, career choices and social and global issues such as the environment and homelessness. Skills are honed so that students are prepared for tasks in their exams in listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Rationale behind sequencing:
The French curriculum has been carefully sequenced to ensure that it builds upon prior knowledge.
Topics in the current year 9 curriculum build on skills and content from year 8 when the language was introduced. Students learned to introduce and describe themselves in year 8, but now use a wider range of verbs to describe what they do in their free-time and to give opinions. More depth is added to year 8 work on where they live and students talk in greater detail about their town and house and use a wider variety of subject pronouns to understand and describe where others live. Work on using adjectives in year 8 is extended to include adjectives and agreements as well as prepositions to describe a home. Comprehension and productive skills are developed and texts include more complexity with connectives, modifiers, sequencers and tenses.
The curriculum is designed so that topics that are taught in KS4 build on previous learning in KS3. Year 10 topics from Theme 1 “Identity and Culture” include: me, my family and friends, free-time and technology in everyday life and customs and festivals and build on foundations laid in years 7, 8 and 9, but are studied in much more detail with more extensive and more complex vocabulary. Students can give personal and factual information about themselves and others, but also use more complex structures to discuss the benefits of sport and the advantages and disadvantages of technology. They understand and respond to a wider variety of authentic texts. Three tenses that were introduced in years 7, 8 & 9 are consolidated and students become more confident using 3 key tenses together with a wider range of vocabulary.
The topics that are taught in year 11 build on previous learning in years 7, 8, 9 and 10. This comprises: Theme 2 “local, national, international and global areas of study” and Theme 3 “ current and future study and employment”. Students progress from studying topics about their immediate environment to the wider world around them and then to discussing their future plans and aspirations. They continue to develop their skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing, applying vocabulary and structures learned in a wider range of different contexts. Key grammatical structures are revisited, extended and then consolidated in preparation for exams.