French Department

“Celui qui ne connaît pas des langues étrangères ne connaît rien de sa propre langue”
Those who know nothing of foreign languages know nothing of their own

In the Modern Language department we believe that it is exciting and important to develop an interest in other languages and we encourage children to develop the confidence to use and experiment with language. There is plenty of opportunity to use the French language in real-life situations: Form 7 host the French Café in the summer term, as well as enjoying a cheese tasting day, and over the years we have had had many theatre visits and have collaborated with a French theatre group. We also try to make language learning as fun and interactive as possible, making regular use of the school’s iPads and using technology in other ways, such as filming the pupils making tourist board videos about Melrose. All senior pupils access Quizlet for fun vocabulary learning with a competitive element, and all pupils from Forms 3 – 8 use the Schoolshape online language laboratory for group and individual speaking practice. Pupils learn French through songs and poetry in the classroom, which can often make ‘boring’ grammar points a bit more interesting and more likely to stick!
We aim to:
• Give pupils the skills which will enable them to use the written and spoken language with confidence

• Give pupils the skills which will enable them to use the language effectively for purposes of practical communication

• Give pupils the opportunity to work with authentic materials in an authentic setting

• Encourage positive attitudes about other cultures

• Make language learning fun and inspiring, and instil a passion for language and travel in our pupils
Pupils are examined twice yearly in each of the four language skills: reading, writing, listening and speaking.  All Form 8 pupils are thoroughly prepared to sit the Common Entrance 13+ examination and some pupils also sit Scholarship papers for their chosen senior school.
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