Head of Department: Corinne James -

At Saint Ronan’s we believe that learning a foreign language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience for all pupils. The learning of a foreign language provides a medium for cross-curricular links and for the reinforcement of knowledge, skills and understanding developed in other subjects.

As a school we have chosen to study French as our Modern Language and French is studied all the way through the Pre-Prep and the Prep School, from Year 1 to Year 8.

Five specialist teachers are used to teach French to ensure an excellent model of the spoken language, as well as to facilitate learning about French culture.

In Years 3 -5, French learning focuses on developing oracy skills (listening and speaking), with literacy skills (reading and writing) gradually added.

Intercultural Understanding is also incorporated into lessons when relevant. Knowledge About Language and Language Learning Strategies are addressed as appropriate during MFL teaching.

IT resources are used to support and reinforce teaching in class and provide an opportunity for independent learning at home. In Years 6 – 8, the teaching and learning focuses on preparing the pupils for the 13+ Common Entrance French exam. An important aim of the CE French course is to encourage positive attitudes towards the use of foreign languages and an interest in the French speaking world.

Learning French offers many opportunities for links with other curriculum areas, for example Literacy (speaking and listening skills, knowledge and understanding of grammatical structures and sentence construction), Numeracy (counting, money, the time, the date) and PSHE (international work, celebration of festivals, storytelling).

Saint Ronan’s is working with a school in Le Touquet to set up a school exchange programme enabling all Year 7 pupils to have French pen friends. This incorporates a visit to a French school as part of the annual school trip to France in Year 7.

A number of other school trips are arranged throughout the year to provide further opportunities for enrichment and intercultural understanding. These include a Year 5 trip to the BFI in London, to take part in a film workshop, and a Year 6 day trip to Boulogne. (New for 2022).

The French department also organizes French days at school and celebrates the European Day of Languages every year.

Watch one of our French videos below