At Rowde we believe that the learning of a foreign language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience for our pupils. Understanding of, and engagement with, other languages and cultures is a vital part of our core value of Respect. It helps them to develop communication skills including key skills of speaking and listening and extends their knowledge of how language works. Learning another language gives the children a new perspective on the world encouraging them to understand their own cultures and those of others. There is also extensive evidence to show that children who struggle with literacy often benefit from understanding the mechanics of languages. Crucially, languages are a statutory part of learning at Secondary school in Key Stage 3 and the learning of a language at Rowde is part of our focus on Year 7- readiness.
There is a statutory requirement for children in KS2 to learn a foreign language. There is no statutory requirement for children in EYFS or KS1 to learn a foreign language. However, we believe at Rowde that, the younger the child learns another language, the more confident they will become in speaking it, so we are looking to introduce greater language teaching in KS1 from September 2021. We also believe that leaning another language has beneficial effects on the learning of one’s own language as children start to see patterns and spot similarities/differences between their native tongue and the foreign language they are learning. The focus language taught at Rowde is French. The children learn about other cultures and languages in other areas of the curriculum, and through event days. We also enjoy taking part in the cluster languages day in the summer where we participate in language activities with children from other primary schools in the cluster (subject to Covid-safety). At Rowde we use the Southend Scheme for delivery of languages from Year 3 to Year 6.
Children at Rowde are encouraged to understand the relevance of what they are learning in languages and how it relates to everyday life, work and travel. It is emphasised how the language could help them in another country or to talk to a French speaker, both now and in their future careers. Teachers foster an enjoyment of languages through a variety of lessons including interactive, singing (dependent upon Covid safety regulations) and outdoor lessons. Progression through a topic should be evident in the development of key skills and acquisition of main vocabulary. Evidence is kept of children’s work in books/knowledge organisers, through recordings (Seesaw) and photos (also Seesaw). French is monitored by the subject leader throughout all year groups in Key Stage 2 using a variety of strategies such as book scrutinises, ‘Seesaw’ scrutinises, lesson observations, staff discussions and pupil questionnaires. Feedback is then given to teachers at staff meetings. Subject Leadership for Languages in 2020/21 is shared among the Senior Leadership Team.