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Primary and Nursery School

Modern Foreign Language

"Every language is like an open window that shows a new view of the world and expands your attitude towards life”.

Frank Harris

Intent- Why we teach a second language?

There are many good reasons for learning a second language; research has proven the cognitive benefits, such as memory improvement and longer attention span. The world is changing quickly and learning a second language could potentially improve an individual's employment prospects. More companies than ever are managing business in several, often dozens of countries around the world, but they are unable to do this without hiring globally-minded people able to speak at least one foreign language. If an individual makes the effort to learn another language, rather than expecting the world to accommodate their own language, then it shows the ability of that individual to adapt and cope to different situations as well as to have a wider interest about things. At Downsview, children from Reception to Year 2 are taught Italian, by a native Italian teacher, and children from Year 2 to Year 6 are taught Spanish by a native Spanish teacher. Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world which makes it extremely relevant in today’s context and will give them the skills to progress more quickly in Secondary School.

Implementation- What we teach?

The Modern Foreign Languages taught at Downsview are Spanish, delivered by a specialist teacher in KS2, and Italian in KS1, delivered by specialist teachers provided by the Italian Consulate as part of a programme to promote the Italian language. Languages at Downsview are taught covering the 5 main language skills: Speaking, Reading, Comprehension, Writing and Grammar.

Students have an early introduction to Italian to prepare them for KS2 through songs, games and story reading. Students will start learning Italian phonics, basic vocabulary and syntactical structures, which will give them a head start in KS2 and will develop the right attitude and frame of mind for languages. The similarities between Spanish and Italian make possible the combination of both languages, and Italian as an introduction to Spanish.


In KS2 the knowledge and understanding of this subject is taught in a way that engages children's imagination and curiosity about the Spanish and South American culture, and that allows them to use and develop all the 5 linguistic skills. 


Year 3


Spanish phonics / writing 

Gender and number

Talking about myself

Likes and dislikes

Numbers 1-100

Gender and number agreement

Year 4



Transport and going to places

Describing people

Numbers 100-1000

Telling the time

Daily routines

High frequency verbs

Year 5


Asking for permission (Can I? / I can)


W questions (Qué, cuándo, cómo, dónde, cómo?)

Conjugation of regular verbs


Reflexive verbs

House chores/ prepositions

Jobs / What do I want to be when I grow up?

Year 6



Following directions in a city


Reflexive verbs

Foods  / Conjugation of irregular verbs

Secondary transition:

Revision of all subjects

Impact- Our expectations 

Young children are very enthusiastic and love learning foreign languages. They find it fun and they enjoy discovering new worlds by increasing intercultural understanding and new ways of communicating.

Children will be critical thinkers, problem solvers, creative and open-minded.

By immersing our children in learning languages through purposeful and practical teaching, children become more curious, confident and it also enhances their knowledge of their own languages.

Children are prepared for Secondary School and become more employable. 

Children are able to use language in different contexts and use transferable skills.

Learning Spanish in Action!