Learning a foreign language is liberating from insularity and provides an opening to other cultures. A high-quality language education should foster pupils’ curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. At St John the Baptist, we open the door to enable pupils to express their ideas and thoughts in another language through the EuroStar Rising Stars scheme of work. Children build progressively on the skills of speaking, listening, reading, and writing to understand and respond in both verbal and written communication. Through language learning, children develop a tolerance and understanding of life in other countries but, more importantly, are exposed to the many similarities that also exist between us. Children are provided with opportunities to communicate for practical purposes, learn new ways of thinking, and read literature in the original language. Every year a whole school celebration of the European Day of Languages takes place which draws on the wealth of diversity within our school community. Our pupils experience a range of European languages and cultures; have a greater awareness of diversity within their class, across our school, and our wider school community; have an awareness of the positive impact difference and diversity have on our lives and have a greater understanding of why language learning is beneficial. In addition to this, although non-statutory, every half term the children in KS1 enjoy a French afternoon led by a visiting French linguist specialist.
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