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PFL Subject Leadership

At Gilded Hollins, we aim to offer a relevant and ambitious foreign languages curriculum that will inspire and excite our children using a variety of topics and themes. The children will develop a better awareness of self, others and cultural similarities and differences. We intend to give children the language foundations to become life-long language learners.


Curriculum Intent


Our intent is to continue to use and embed the Language Angels scheme of work and resources to ensure we offer a relevant, broad, vibrant and ambitious foreign languages curriculum that will inspire and excite our pupils using a wide variety of topics and themes. All pupils will be expected to achieve their full potential by encouraging high expectations and excellent standards in their foreign language learning - the ultimate aim being that pupils will feel willing and able to continue studying languages beyond key stage 2. Pupil voice this year regarding French learning was positive with children being able to explain their learning; for example, in Year 3 they were delighted to have learnt about the Stone Age/ Iron Age/ Bronze Age in History and then have it reinforced in French. Teachers have spoken about how the new scheme has made them feel more confident in teaching PFL.


The intent is that all content will be continuously updated and reviewed annually, creating a dynamic programme of study that will be clearly outlined in both long-term and short-term planning. This will ensure that the foreign language knowledge of our pupils progresses within each academic year and is extended year upon year throughout the primary phase and, in so doing, will always be relevant and in line with meeting or exceeding national DfE requirements. 


The four key language learning skills; listening, speaking, reading and writing will be taught and all necessary grammar will be covered in an age-appropriate way across the primary phase. This will enable pupils to use and apply their learning in a variety of contexts, laying down solid foundations for future language learning and also helping the children improve overall attainment in other subject areas. In addition, the children will be taught how to look up and research language they are unsure of and they will have a bank of reference materials to help them with their spoken and written tasks going forward. This bank of reference materials will develop into a reference library to help pupils recall and build on previous knowledge throughout their primary school language learning journey.

The intent is that all pupils will develop a genuine interest and positive curiosity about foreign languages, finding them enjoyable and stimulating. Learning a second language will also offer pupils the opportunity to explore relationships between language and identity, develop a deeper understanding of other cultures and the world around them with a better awareness of self, others and cultural differences. The intention is that they will be working towards becoming life-long language learners.


Curriculum Implementation


All KS2 classes will have access to a very high-quality foreign languages curriculum using the Language Angels scheme of work and resources (see appendix 1 for overview). All KS2 teachers have been provided with updated key documents for teaching languages including an updated much more user friendly Knowledge Organiser, vocabulary sheets, an end of unit assessment in Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing and a scaffold support sheet for each unit (see appendix 4).  This will progressively develop pupil skills in foreign languages through regularly taught and well-planned weekly lessons in which will be taught by class teachers or PPA teachers.  


Children will progressively acquire, use and apply a growing bank of vocabulary, language skills and grammatical knowledge organised around age-appropriate topics and themes - building blocks of language into more complex, fluent and authentic language.


The planning of different levels of challenge and which units to teach at each stage of the academic year will be addressed dynamically and will be reviewed in detail annually as units are updated and added to the scheme. Lessons offering appropriate levels of challenge and stretch will be taught at all times to ensure pupils learn effectively, continuously building their knowledge of and enthusiasm for the language they are learning.


Units are categorised by ‘Teaching Type’ to make it easier for teachers to choose units that will offer the appropriate level of challenge and stretch for the classes they are teaching. Early Language units are entry level units are most appropriate Year 3 pupils. Intermediate units increase the level of challenge by increasing the amount and complexity (including foreign language grammar concepts) of the foreign language presented to pupils. Intermediate units are suitable for Year 4-5 pupils or pupils with embedded basic knowledge of the foreign language. Progressive units are the most challenging units and are suitable for Year 6 pupils or pupils with a good understanding of the basics of the language they are learning. Grouping units into these Teaching Type categories ensures that the language taught is appropriate to the level of the class and introduced when the children are ready. Children will be taught how to listen and read longer pieces of text gradually in the foreign language and they will have ample opportunities to speak, listen to, read and write the language being taught with and without scaffolds, frames and varying levels of support.


Early Language Units (entry level) and Core Vocabulary lessons are designed to run for approximately 30 minutes. Intermediate, Progressive and Creative Curriculum units are designed to run for approximately 45 minutes.


Children will build on previous knowledge gradually as their foreign language lessons continue to recycle, revise and consolidate previously learnt language whilst building on all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Knowledge and awareness of required and appropriate grammar concepts will be taught throughout all units at all levels of challenge. Teachers are provided with a Progression Map (appendix 2 ) to ensure all children are progressing their foreign language learning skills and are taught the appropriate grammar at the right time in their foreign language learning journey.


Units are progressive within themselves as subsequent lessons within a unit build on the language and knowledge taught in previous lessons. As pupils progress though the lessons in a unit they will build their knowledge and develop the complexity of the language they use. We think of the progression within the 6 lessons in a unit as ‘language Lego’. We provide blocks of language knowledge and, over the course of a 6-week unit, encourage pupils to build more complex and sophisticated language structures with their blocks of language knowledge.

Language provision has also been enhanced this year by a Spanish club ran by an external provider for a term for years 1-6.


Curriculum Impact


As well as each subsequent lesson within a unit being progressive, the teaching type organisation of units also directs, drives and guarantees progressive learning and challenge. Units increase in level of challenge, stretch and linguistic and grammatical complexity as pupils move from Early Learning units through Intermediate units and into the most challenging Progressive units. Units in each subsequent level of the teaching type categories require more knowledge and application of skills than the previous teaching type. Activities contain progressively more text (both in English and the foreign language being studied) and lessons will have more content as the children become more confident and ambitious with the foreign language they are learning.


Early Learning units will start at basic noun and article level and will teach pupils how to formulate short phrases. By the time pupils reach Progressive units they will be exposed to much longer text and will be encouraged to formulate their own, more personalised responses based on a much wider bank of vocabulary, linguistic structures and grammatical knowledge. They will be able to create longer pieces of spoken and written language and are encouraged to use a variety of conjunctions, adverbs, adjectives, opinions and justifications.


Pupils will continuously build on their previous knowledge as they progress in their foreign language learning journey through the primary phase. Previous language will be recycled, revised, recalled and consolidated whenever possible and appropriate.


Pupils will be aware of their own learning goals and progression as each unit offers a pupil friendly overview so that all pupils can review their own learning at the start and at the end of each unit. They will know and will be able to articulate if they have or have not met their learning objectives and can keep their unit learning intention sheets and unit core vocabulary sheets as a record of what they have learnt from unit to unit and from year to year.


The opportunity to assess pupil learning and progression in the key language skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing) and against the 12 DfE Languages Programme of Study for Key Stage 2 attainment targets is provided at the end of each 6-week teaching unit. Pupils will also be offered self-assessment grids to ensure they are also aware of their own progress which they can keep as a record of their progress.


This year we have provided opportunities for whole school French learning in our French Language Day in the autumn term where each class learnt some basic greetings and the song and in our Francophone Culture Day in the summer term where each class learnt about a French Speaking country and shared their learning with the whole school.


Children are expected to make good or better than good progress in their foreign language learning and are data reflects this. Their individual progress is tracked and reported to pupils and parents in their end of year reports. Assessment of PFL is recorded on insight please find summer term results at time of writing in appendix 3.


Our next steps are:

  • To ensure new staff are confident with PFL teaching through discussion, support and drop ins
  • Ensure that each PFL unit includes a Knowledge Organiser, glossary, end of unit assessment and scaffold support sheet for those who would benefit from it through support and book scrutinise.
  • To build a link with Baby Steps International School in the Republic of the Congo.  To learn about culture and give real purpose to our language learning. French Culture Day will focus explicitly on the Republic of the Congo this year.
  • To continue to embed French into school life providing staff and KS2 children with a crib sheet of classroom instructions in French to use in everyday classroom activity (not just during French lessons).


Francophone Culture Day

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All classes learnt about a different Francophone country and shared their findings in a whole school celebration assembly. We also all learnt a greetings song in class and sang it together to finish our assembly.

European Languages Day Assembly

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All children were involved in learning a little bit more French on our languages day this year. The younger year groups learning a poem about two birds Fifi and Paul and the older year groups learning the song ‘I am a rocket’.


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Year 6 à l'école

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In Year 6 our language learning is progressing and we have learnt to say the subjects we like and dislike and why.


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Year 5. La date.

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Year 5 have been building on their prior knowledge of numbers to say the date in French.

Year 4 La famille

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Year 4 have been building on their knowledge presenting themselves to answer the question: Do you have any brothers or sisters?


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A KS2 focus on La Phonetique (Phonics).

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All classes in KS2 should feel confident pronouncing the French alphabet.