French and International Learning
Welcome to our page on language learning, international links and the learning of global issues
The Mead School believes that the learning of a foreign language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience for our pupils. Our main language is French, although we do provide opportunities to celebrate a great variety of languages and culture.
We strongly believe that learning a language through a direct link with another country enriches and improves our knowledge by making the learning purposeful and engaging. We have a strong link with Ecole François Albert, Adriers, who are supporting our French learning in Year 4 this year. We aim to continue this link into Year 5 and extend the link to include next year’s Year 4 classes. Click on the image below to find out more about the exciting learning that has been happening through this link this year.
Traditionally at the Mead, we begin the school year with our own “International Day of Languages” to coincide with European Languages Day which has been celebrated throughout Europe on 26th September, since 2001. Each class chooses a country to celebrate, and the children learn some of the language through songs and games, as well as exploring the culture through research, art and food tasting!
Through our French sessions with the children, we aim:
· To give children a positive, enthusiastic attitude to MFL learning within a secure and supportive environment.
· To foster an interest in learning other languages.
· To introduce young children to another language in a way that is enjoyable and fun.
We are fortunate to have been supported in our language learning by the Clarendon Academy. A specialist teacher has taught year 5 and 6 classes this year, as well as providing a resource bank of lesson plans and games. Class teachers now feel equipped and confident to continue teaching the children using ideas from this scheme of work, and from our own Mead Primary Scheme of work for French teaching. Teaching at Key Stage 2 includes games, role-play, singing, reading and writing French. We teach stories using the ‘Story Making’ approach, in which children learn a simple story by heart, internalising the new vocabulary and language patterns, and making small changes to create their own French stories. Watch out for our very own ‘Hungry Caterpillar’ stories being published soon in Years 5 and 6!
Class teachers teach our younger Key Stage 2 pupils, using both material from the “Niveau Bleu” scheme of work, and activities from The Mead Academy Trust’s own scheme of work. The children are taught basic structures and vocabulary through practical and visual games and activities. This instils confidence and knowledge to try out new vocabulary in role play situations, giving the children a real feel and purpose for the language.
In order to give this a purpose, Year 6 have exchanged French greeting cards with North Bradley Primary School.
Further International Links:
We also run a club in school called “Culture Club”. We are excited to be linked up with The Delhi Public School Gaziabad, (DPSG) http://www.dpsghaziabad.com/ with whom we have exchanged information about breakfasts in our respective countries. We are currently exchanging ideas and recipes for typical UK and Indian breakfasts and hope to try out some of the ideas we receive! This year we have taken part in an art exchange with DPSG to enrich our art provision through a comparative study of English and Indian artists. Click on the picture below to find out more!
This year the Ladybirds have extended our link with Runnymede College in Madrid to exchange ideas on play, number and the learning environment. Through this link we have started to learn numbers in Spanish, taught to us by Reception C class in Spain!
We have sent and received photos, emails and had many Skype calls with Reception C this year. Please click on the photo of Reception C below to find out just how much we have enjoyed this link!
Global issues and themes:
We are involved in several exciting activities this year, with learning centred on several Global themes.
To develop our awareness of climate change, flooding and climate change, Year 5 are taking part in a weather project supported and funded by the Royal Society. The whole school is part of the “Wild Weather Project” to track the progress of explorer David Hempleman-Adams who is currently circumnavigating the North Pole. This trip is only possible due to global warming causing the ice caps to melt. Click on the picture below to find out just how much we have been up to this year.
Identity and Belonging:
To celebrate the Olympics this year, we have focused on a year of Olympic Celebration. We believe that “The Olympics is more than just sport, it is about participation and coming together, which is a key part of being an International environment, and that fits in brilliantly with what we are doing.” The children have researched the games, sports and sportsmen and women. We have considered the Olympic and Paralympic values and celebrated with our whole school Rio Dance event and Olympic Community Day. Click on the photo below to find out more.
The Good Life Project!
We had lots of fun taking part in many activities to encourage self sufficiency and creativity. Year 6 made bread “from seed to loaf”. Years 2 and 4 planted and harvested their own vegetables to make soup. Year 3 used seeds from pumpkins they had planted to create mythical creatures and Ladybirds grew beans in their own Jack and the beanstalk outdoor story telling. The older children also used school elder to make whistles. All from our own gardens!
Click here to see the fun we had.
We are always looking for ways in which to engage the support of the school and wider community in our language learning. If you are a native speaker from another country, we would welcome your expertise, through story-telling, discussion, the sharing of pictures, photos and songs and the setting up of new International school to school links. Please call into the school to express any interest.