In Context

Key Stage 2

Since the completion of the Coventry pathfinder, there has been  the development of a framework for languages in the primary schools in Key Stage 2. This includes advice on delivering the framework in a multilingual context.

Primary MFL consultant, Sian James has made links between the Coventry delivery model and the Key Stage Two framework.

Key Stage 3

Opportunities are now more freely available at KS3, allowing language departments can develop a stronger emphasis on culture.

Language teachers might consider the following responses:

  • A multilingual bridging unit at the beginning of year 7 which would enable pupils to showcase mother tongues and languages that they already know.
  • To encourage pupils to use investigative techniques to access more challenging texts in the target language.
  • For teachers to make links to other languages and encourage their pupils to do the same (especially if pupils have experience / knowledge of other languages)
  • For pupils to have opportunities to undertake an activity already undertaken in the target language in another language.
  • If a school runs a cross-curricular days, use the opportunity to provide a taster in a language which might relate to the theme.
  • To use key dates on the calendar such as Christmas and Easter or events such as the World Cup or the Olympics to undertake multilingual activities.
  • To put up multilingual displays in the department or around the schools which relate to other subjects or news stories. For example:

Theoretical background

Language investigation has strong links to the Language Awareness movement of the 1980s, as pioneered by Eric Hawkins. More recently, Michel Candelier has refined the approach though his work on Eveil aux Langues.

Here are some links to articles by academics and educationalists which explain more fully the background to such approaches:

© Nick Jones 2003-2008. Advisor for MFL Coventry LEA