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Newstead Wood School

Newstead Wood School

Year 9 French

Guidance for parents

What will students be studying in French this year?

Building on the foundations laid in years 7 and 8, students will broaden their vocabulary and learn a wider range of structures, so that they can build extended sentences, refer confidently to past events and future plans and ask and answer questions. Specific topics covered include descriptions of people and relationships, Paris, describing past outings, future plans and healthy lining. Whatever the topic, the aim is to equip students with the tools to confidently form language of their own now and in the future. We will be also learning about cultural aspects such as French films, French music and French speaking countries across the world.

Expectations of Students in French

There are 2 one hour lessons and one homework per week, which may be a reading comprehension, written exercise, preparation for an oral, learning vocabulary or grammar, or practice of a grammar point. It is important to see learning homeworks as just as important as written ones. Students should be prepared to 'have a go' in lessons and not worry about making mistakes, as that is an important step in the learning process. Written work is marked with the department's marking codes, which indicate to students how to improve it rather than the teacher simply writing in the correction, and students are expected to redraft their work using these. They will normally be given the opportunity to do this and to ask any questions in lesson time.

What are the major assessments this year?

There will be an assessed piece of speaking or writing every half term which will help to chart your daughter's progress. Regular vocabulary and grammar test specific points, following a learning homework. The end of year exam includes listening and reading comprehension and writing and speaking tests which are each worth 25% of the total mark.

What should my daughter do if she feels she is struggling in the subject?

She should not be afraid to speak about any concerns to her class teacher, who will give targeted support and advice and may suggest extra resources and strategies. Remember it is a normal part of the learning process to experience difficulties sometimes. Above all, don't give up!

How can I support my daughter in Year 9?

Taking an interest in what she is doing and showing that you value what she is learning makes a tremendous difference. It is not necessary for you to know any French yourself, although obviously it's great if you do. Otherwise asking her to explain what she has been doing in class, testing her on the vocabulary she has learnt, and looking through her book with her will help her consolidate her learning. Do encourage and praise her for her efforts.

What kind of independent work should my daughter be completing?

It is good practice to spend a few minutes looking through the lesson notes as soon as possible after the class, and then again a few days later, rather than forgetting all about it till the next lesson! This is particularly true when it comes to learning new vocabulary. It does not need to take a long time but will help to keep the language fresh in the mind. We recommend a range of websites which your daughter can use to help with grammar and vocabulary, and she will have access to the online version of the text book Tricolore 5e édition. 

Whom can I contact for further advice and information ?

Please  feel free to contact the Head of French, Mrs Casey, on ecasey@newsteadwood.bromley.sch.uk