My philosophy of teaching French draws from my learning through my education and practice. I believe that making the subject relevant for the students is of utmost importance, and that constant communication is the best way for students to learn the language. I have drawn on the following sources to support my beliefs.
The Newfoundland and Labrador Intermediate French Immersion curriculum guide gives the following as the beginning of their Philosophy of Instruction (2010):
"Students learn French by using it to communicate, to solve problems and to learn. The language is learned as a whole; the skills of speaking/listening, reading/viewing and writing/representing overlap and interweave. Instruction should, consequently, be guided by the following principles:
• Language is an instrument for thinking, communicating, problem solving and learning.
• Language is learned from whole to part, in meaningful chunks.
• Language development is enhanced when students use it:
- to value, appreciate, entertain or engage the imagination;
- to inquire and inform;
- to express feelings or opinions;
- to convince or incite people to do something;
- to learn concepts and skills.
• Instruction is learner-centered, drawing upon the interests, knowledge, skills and experiences of students." (p.5)
Making French relevant to students is a challenge that must be met and we can do this by educating our students about employment opportunities (CPF, 2004, p.2). There are ways that a school can help to make French learning more relevant to their students. In an inclusive school there are supports within the school for FSL learners such as French in newsletters, during morning announcements and on display. It is important that the French language play an integral role in the school culture (CASLT, 2003, p.1).
CASLT/ACPLS. Requirements for Quality FSL Programs - Supporting the FSL Program in my School - What an 'Inclusive' School Looks Like. Status of Language Teachers and their Programs. (2003/2004). Retrieved from: http://www.caslt.org/resources/general/research-articles-quality-l2-progs_en.php
CPF Provincial and National French Second-Language Education Stakeholder Consultations. St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. (2004). Retrieved from: http://www.caslt.org/resources/french-sl/research-articles-core-french_rapports_en.php
Gouvernment de Terre-Neuve et du Labrador. Ministère de l’Éducation. (2010). Arts langagiers 7e, 8e, 9e: Programme d’études. Retrieved from: http://www.ed.gov.nl.ca/edu/k12/french/immersion/francais/index.html