At St. Patrick’s Primary School, we believe that the learning of a modern foreign language (MFL) provides significant educational, social and cultural benefits for our pupils. MFL lessons play an important role in developing children’s speaking, listening and literacy skills, boosting self-esteem and self-confidence, and providing opportunities for enriching cross-curricular learning. Learning another language also promotes intercultural understanding, giving children a new perspective on the world, encouraging them to understand their own cultures and those of others.
Through the delivery of MFL, we aim to improve pupils’ skills in these four areas:
- Listening and responding
- Reading and responding
We recognise that language learning in its broadest sense has three core strands – oracy, literacy and intercultural understanding. We also recognise that children should be encouraged to apply their knowledge and that we should equip them, not just with knowledge about language, but also with strategies for language learning that they can use in the future when studying another foreign language. The language offered at St. Patrick’s is Spanish and we provide age-appropriate learning opportunities for all children from Nursery to Year 6.
The aims and objectives of learning a modern foreign language in primary school are:
- to foster an interest in learning other languages;
- to introduce children to another language in a way that is enjoyable, fun and accessible to all;
- to make children aware that language has structure, and that the structure differs from one language to another;
- to help children develop their awareness of cultural similarities and differences;
- to support oracy and literacy, and in particular develop speaking and listening skills;
- to lay the foundations for future study, helping children to develop positive attitudes to language learning throughout life;
- to give an extra dimension to teaching and learning across the curriculum.
In January 2023, St Patrick’s was awarded the Liverpool Primary Languages Quality Mark Gold Award for our exceptional level of MFL provision throughout the school.
❝If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.❞ ‒Nelson Mandela
❝One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.❞ ‒Frank Smith, US civil rights activist & politician