At Ballard we have a specialist teacher for each of the key European languages: German, Spanish and French. These specialist teachers teach through School with French being taught from Year 1.
French is taught from Year 1 on a weekly basis with a trip to the Pre-Prep library to meet Camembear and his owner, Mrs Prout, Ballard’s Head of Languages.
Quite complex vocabulary is taught in fun and engaging ways with pupils naming parts of the body before launching into a rendition of head, shoulders knees and toes – in French, of course!
Each week our star pupil is allowed to wear the beret at celebration assembly – the children love it.
Pupils are introduced to French through stories, rhymes, songs, games, crafts and role plays. Again, emphasis is placed on enjoying the language learning process, whilst still providing the solid grounding which pupils require as they get older.
Pupils continue to progress as confident language learners and are able to put their language skills to the test during a 4-day visit to Normandy at the end of Year 6. In Year 7, having experienced taster sessions in German and Spanish, pupils begin to learn a second foreign language of their choice, alongside French.
In Year 9 pupils are prepared thoroughly for the challenges of studying an MFL at GCSE. Although language learning is optional beyond Year 9, our high uptake and impressive exam results are testament to the quality of teaching and learning taking place within the department. To complement the curriculum, the School runs exchanges to France, Germany and Spain, giving pupils the opportunity to immerse themselves in the language and culture of the language they are studying.