The learning of a foreign language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience. Pupils develop communication and literacy skills that lay the foundation for future language learning. They develop linguistic competence, extend their knowledge of how language works and explore differences and similarities between French and English. Learning another language raises awareness of the multilingual and multicultural world and introduces an international dimension to pupils’ learning, giving them an insight into their own culture and those of others. The learning of a foreign language provides a medium for cross-curricular links and for reinforcement of knowledge, skills and understanding developed in other subjects.
To promote and celebrate Bristol's twinning with Bordeaux, every year Ashton Gate Primary welcomes a French Mini-Assistant (a Bordeaux University Master's student training to become a teacher) in to our school for two weeks.
This partnership has a successful dual purpose. For our pupils, it fosters an interest in and celebration of language learning and respect for different countries and cultures. For the assistant, it provides a brilliant experience for them to learn more about the teaching profession and about English schools.
The assistant is fully immersed into school life, speaking to the children in all year groups about themselves and teaching some French lessons. The assistant stays with a host family and has the opportunity to explore Bristol outside of school time and meet the Mayor!