Offering French in MYP

Offering French in MYP

Dear Parents,

This is to inform you that we will NOT be offering French as a second language in the Middle Years Program to the students in the academic year 2016 – 17 and thereafter.

We intended to offer French  in the MYP earlier, but we have changed the decision for now, due to the following reasons. We will continue to offer French Ab Initio in the DP for students who would like to learn a new language.

Reasons:

  1. French is more challenging than Hindi for our students.
  2. Getting  French B in Diploma Program is beyond reach for most students.
  3. Finding proficient French faculty is a challenge in our region.

French is more challenging than Hindi

We have been offering French in the Middle Years for the past two years. It has been noticed that there is initial excitement and enthusiasm to learn a new language and hence a large number of students take up French. But as the year progresses, the interest starts dwindling, and many students start dropping French and shift to Hindi.

Students and parents also realise that it is easier to get better grades in Hindi as compared to French.

Hindi listening, speaking, reading and writing – is something that our students have been doing for years and they have immense exposure to the language. In case of French, it is a completely new language with exposure limited to their French classes.  Development of a foreign language in a short period requires immersion for 8-10 years, which is not possible for French.

Getting  French B in Diploma Program is beyond reach for most students

In the Diploma Program – subjects are offered French at SL (Standard level) and HL (Higher Level).

French is offered as French Ab Initio (which is at a basic level; i.e. SL) , French SL and French HL. When a student chooses French in the Middle Years Program, then h/she will be expected to do French HL or SL. The level of difficulty for French B is very high. In most cases only students who have exposure to the French for 8-9 years are likely to get good grades.  Secondly, shifting to Hindi, will be equally difficult after a gap of four years.

The table below gives a clear comparison between the requirements of French Ab initio, Language B SL and Language B HL.

Aspects French Ab initio Language B
SL HL
Syllabus content Three major themes with around 6 – 7 topics under each theme:

1. Leisure and Work

2. Rural and Urban Environment

3. Individual and Society

Core topics :

Communication and media

Global issues

Social relationships
In addition, at both SL and HL, teachers select two from the following five options.

Cultural diversity

Customs and traditions

Health

Leisure

Science and technology

Core topics :

Communication and media

Global issues

Social relationships
In addition, at both SL and HL, teachers select two from the following five options.

Cultural diversity

Customs and traditions

Health

Leisure

Science and technology
Also, at HL, students read two works of literature.

Assessment objectives 1. demonstrate an awareness and understanding of the intercultural elements related to the

prescribed topics

2. communicate clearly and effectively in a range of situations

3. understand and use accurately the basic structures of the language

4. understand and use an appropriate range of vocabulary

5. use a register and a format that are appropriate to the situation.

1. communicate clearly and effectively in a range of situations, demonstrating linguistic competence and intercultural understanding

2. use language appropriate to a range of interpersonal and/or cultural contexts

3. understand and use language to express and respond to a range of ideas with accuracy and fluency

4. organize ideas on a range of topics, in a clear, coherent and convincing manner

5. understand, analyse and respond to a range of written and spoken texts

1. communicate clearly and effectively in a range of situations, demonstrating linguistic competence and intercultural understanding

2. use language appropriate to a range of interpersonal and/or cultural contexts

3. understand and use language to express and respond to a range of ideas with accuracy and fluency

4. organize ideas on a range of topics, in a clear, coherent and convincing manner

5. understand, analyse and respond to a range of written and spoken texts

6. understand and use works of literature written in the target language of study (HL only).

Proficiency in language Moderate proficiency would secure around grades 5 – 6 High proficiency required for grades above 3. High proficiency mandatory for grades above 3
Past papers if possible Past papers- French Past papers- Language B SL Past papers- Language B HL
Samples of oral communication. None available on OCC Samples of oral communication-Language B SL Samples of oral communication.Language B HL
Written task Sample Written task French Written task Language B SL Written task Language B HL

Finding proficient French faculty is a challenge in our region

It is very difficult to find proficient French faculties in our region. We have appointed two French teachers who are competent, but they will not be cater to sufficient to cater to a large number of students taking French.

Secondly, we might have taken the challenge of preparing students for French B if we saw significant value in the language; we do not see that that for French specifically in the world economy. French is not as widely spoken as some of the other international languages.  It is at best a cultural addition but will not add any value in the long term to the students other than knowing a foreign language.

If you have any further queries regarding French offering in school, please feel free to write to bhumika.parmar@fountainheadschools.org

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