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According to Primary languages, ‘An Insight into Ofsted's Research Review’ webinar, Phonics is one of the three pillars of language learning.

Teaching the principle of phonics to KS2, provides foundations for excellent pronunciation and develops confidence in the skill of speaking.

At Poplars Farm, we use Physical French Phonics which provides audio and video recordings by native speakers of 26 key French sounds with memorable cartoon pictures which link the sounds to the actions. The physical actions help our pupils to decode French words in an amusing way. It helps pupils acquire the sounds of the language (phonemes) before going on to link these to their written representations (graphemes).

The Poplars Curriculum: MFL- FRENCH



Learning a foreign language is a necessary part of being a member of a multi-cultural society and provides an opening to   other cultures  and is in keeping with our global outlook at Poplars Farm. A high-quality language education should foster   pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable children to express their ideas and thoughts in   another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It should also provide opportunities for   them to communicate for practical purposes, learn new ways of thinking and read great literature in the original language. The teaching of French at Primary level,  should provide the foundation for learning languages, equipping our pupils to future study and work in other parts of the world.


At Poplars Farm, we provide an ambitious French curriculum to foster a love of language learning and a solid base of understanding to enable our pupils to move on to the next stage of their education. Pupils will be expected to achieve their full potential by encouraging high expectations in their language learning – the ultimate aim being that pupils are taught to develop an interest in learning other languages in a way that is enjoyable and stimulating. We encourage pupils’ confidence; we strive to stimulate and encourage pupils’ curiosity about language and deepen their understanding of the world, opening up their knowledge experiences to other cultures by providing enriching opportunities in real life. We recognise around half of our pupils have already mastered the skills of learning another language, and are highly proficient in the way that they are able to code switch on a daily basis.


1. We want our pupils to establish a love of languages and develop linguistic curiosity.  

2. Learning a language is a life skill and a necessary part of being a member of a multi-cultural society and provides an opening to other cultures.  Language learning is underpinned by the values of appreciation and respect. Appreciation: pupils learn about different cultures and gain an understanding of how we are all different and can live together in a harmonious way. Respect: pupils learn respectful ways of communicating with different people and learn to accept other peoples’ languages and cultures. 

3. By providing the foundation for learning languages, we are equipping pupils for possible future study and work in other countries.We want our pupils to be open to these possibilities. 

4. Language learning allows pupils to develop transferable skills such as  communication, critical thinking, problem solving, leadership and listening skills. Poplars Farm belongs to a global network of schools for Deep Learning (NPDL), the only school in England at the time of writing, which develops the global competencies (the 6Cs, with communication and critical thinking being two of them) through the exciting Poplars Curriculum.


We strive to embed the four key skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing to  enable pupils to use and apply their French learning in a variety of contexts, including real life; through our links with schools in Europe and beyond . Our MFL curriculum is designed to progressively develop children skills in languages, through regular taught lessons. Pupils progressively acquire, use and apply a growing bank of vocabulary organised around topics. From Year 3, we follow the ‘La Jolie Ronde’ Scheme of work to ensure coverage, knowledge acquisition and progression across school (which is in line with the National curriculum). Opportunities to develop intercultural understanding are incorporated into the units of work. Younger year groups learn songs and rhymes and access language themed assemblies (GROW assemblies).

Please continue reading the full  French K&S progression document here


The French subject leader will continually monitor the impact of teaching  on pupils' learning, ensuring the knowledge taught is retained by the children and continually revisited.

Impact is measured through:

  • Key questioning  built into lessons, child-led assessment in the classroom

  • Observing children speaking and listening in another language.

  • Marking of written work.

  • Images and videos of children completing speaking and listening activities.

  • Interviews/reflection sheets about their learning (pupil voice).

  • Moderation staff meetings where pupil’s work is scrutinised and there is the opportunity for a dialogue between teachers

  • Annual reporting of standards across the curriculum to parents.

  • Feedback from international partner schools

  • Subject tracking on OTrack



French in the Early years and Key Stage 1

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