We strongly believe that the learning of a foreign language provides valuable educational, social and cultural experiences. It prepares children for participation in a rapidly changing world, and learning a language at a young age lays a firm foundation for future learning. It is also the best age to learn a new language. Our aim is to develop the children’s confidence to communicate, firstly through repetition and then progressively through active and spontaneous participation from the children. This creative thinking process enables the children to acquire sound verbal and written skills. We want learning French to be fun and playful, and for it to have a real context, such as being able to visit France and communicate.
Our method of learning French is total immersion and mainly oral: comprehension and repetition are the keys to building a language foundation. In a similar way that bilingual children learn, the basics of the language are taught through listening and speaking. The learning process is led without any translation – verbal or written, as this allows children to make a direct connection between the experience, action, or image and the associated word or sentence. Once a well-developed foundation has been established, children in years 4,5 & 6 are introduced to the written word through storytelling. In years 5&6, we introduce children to pen friends in France and other French-speaking countries, and this gives them a valuable opportunity to practice their written French. Children are encouraged to read comics, watch movies and cartoons in French, and sing and chat to their friends. The structured lessons include a wide variety of activities to encourage children to think and communicate in French.