L’enseignement des langues étrangères constitue le point fort des établissements français de l’étranger. D’une part, les familles françaises sont soucieuses de profiter d’un séjour à l’étranger pour que leurs enfants aient une excellente maîtrise d’une langue étrangère, d’autre part, les familles australiennes choisissent notre établissement pour une immersion complète en français.
Lycée Condorcet, the International French School of Sydney, is a unique school in that it follows both the French and Australian Curriculums. While the program at Lycee Condorcet is not bilingual, we have the goal of producing confident, well-rounded bilingual students, and are quite successful at it. This is because many strategies have been put into place in order to respect the French programs, all the while giving students maximum opportunity to develop their English competencies.
Beginning from pre-school, students are explicitly instructed in English for 2 ½ hours a week. Then, from Kindergarten through to Year 5, this increases to 5 hours a week. This instruction follows the K-6 NSW English Syllabus (insert link here http://k6.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/go/english) and the K-6 NSW Human Society and its Environment (HSIE) (insert link http://k6.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/go/hsie).
English teachers focus on improving the students’ oral and aural skills, reading comprehension and writing through a variety of mediums (including art, drama, music and ICT). All classroom resources and programs used are comparable to those used in Australian schools. While the method of instruction varies from teacher to teacher, the content is the same. A typical week of English includes: grammar, spelling, reading, writing and library.
The International French School of Sydney is also able to offer streamed English classes to the students. There are three levels available to cater to the varying abilities of our students: ESL, Consolidation and Mainstream. Movement between classes is very fluid and there is always potential for students to change levels depending on their needs and developments.
The English team at The International French School of Sydney is comprised of Anglophone speakers, many of whom are bilingual. We work as a team to provide the best possible educational outcomes for the students.
Overall, the English program at The International French School of Sydney is very strong and provides a quality level of instruction that leads to well balanced bilingual and bicultural students.
What is the reading pouch?
The reading pouch is the main form of communication in the primary school. Students are given a pouch at the beginning of the year. It is used for homework, for readers and as a form of communication between parents and teachers, though teachers are accessible via email as well. Parents are asked to check the pouches everyday and remove any corrected homework or finished projects.
What about homework?
Homework is given on a weekly basis in the English pouch and generally consists of a spelling worksheet and vocabulary words to learn for that week’s spelling test. Homework is used as reinforcement for students and never used as a method to teach new material. At times homework can include learning song lyrics for concerts, parts for plays and other tasks.
General reminders for homework can be found here. (insert link to homework)
What are readers?
In the reading pouch you will find small readers and a reading log that is sent home nearly every day (some teachers will select certain days to change readers. Any schedule changes will be notified through letters sent home in the pouches.). Readers are meant to be read at home, and are used to help a student’s reading proficiency and build their vocabulary. When a book has been read the title should be logged in the reading log, at which point teachers will provide a new reader.
What about NAPLAN?
Students participate in the NAPLAN (National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy). Our school’s NAPLAN results are consistently above Australian schools’ averages even though many of our students come from a non English speaking background.
What about reports?
There are three Term reports sent home every year. The classroom grade reflects the standards achieved regarding the level in the class, while the NSW grade reflects the grade students would have received if they had been attending an Australian school.
How does the program here compare to those in Australian schools?
When it comes to content, teachers follow the NSW curriculum. Students learn the same English skills that they would in an Australian school.
What is Support Teacher Learning?
The Support Teacher Learning program allows for students at risk to be provided extra help in a small group setting. Students are evaluated by teachers, and those who are deemed to need the extra help are pulled out once a week during the English hour.
The teaching of English in the secondary school focuses on the continued development of students’ skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing from the primary school. These skills are fundamental to students’ literacy. In particular, English classes in the secondary focus on the study and use of the English language in its various textual forms. These encompass spoken, written and visual texts of varying complexity through which meaning is shaped, conveyed, interpreted and reflected.
In acknowledgement of its role as the national language, English is a mandatory subject in the NSW curriculum and therefore is also mandatory at the International French School of Sydney. Developing proficiency in English enables students to take their place as confident, bilingual communicators, critical and imaginative thinkers, lifelong learners and active participants in Australian society.
English in the secondary school aims to be both challenging and enjoyable. It develops skills to enable students to experiment with ideas and expression, to become active, independent learners, to work with each other and to reflect on their learning. Students learn English through explicit teaching of language and through their immersion in a diverse range of purposeful language experiences. Through responding to and composing texts, students learn about the English language for communication, knowledge and pleasure. They engage with and explore texts that include classic literature (such as Shakespeare) and the literature of contemporary societies. Through this study of literature, students broaden their cultural understanding by examining the contexts of language usage to understand how meaning is shaped by a variety of social factors.
As students’ command of English grows in the secondary school, they are able to question, assess, challenge and reformulate information and use creative and analytical language to clarify and solve problems. These skills allow them to develop their control of language in ways that will help them in their senior study of English for the French Baccalaureate or for the IB.
As in the primary school, there are three levels of English according to student’s abilities and needs: ESL, Consolidation and Mainstream. The school also offers Learning Support and Conversation classes for students with specific needs.
The English teachers prepare quite comprehensive reports for each student. Reports are issued three times per year and three grades appear for each student. The first grade is a classroom grade which reflects the standards achieved in the French curriculum at the school. The second grade is the NSW grade which reflects the descriptors of the NSW syllabus and the third grade is based on the descriptors for the Common European Framework.
In keeping with the school’s homework policy, Homework is a supplement to, never a replacement of, classroom learning and it is the prerogative of the teacher to set homework. Homework is set with the following aims/objectives:
- to consolidate a skill acquired in class
- to explore a topic relevant to the teaching program and dealt with in class in more depth
- to practise skills that are very difficult to learn in class, e.g. individual learning, researching and writing up of results, making decisions and taking responsibility for them, and time-management skills
Teachers will always check that homework has been completed, as well as assess the quality of the work done at home. Homework will therefore be part of the summative assessment.
Teachers will explain to the student prior to setting homework the consequences of non-compliance. Students must understand that these consequences may include disciplinary action, including detentions.
Students unable to complete a homework task must bring a valid excuse in writing, signed by a parent/guardian.
Some homework will be due the next school day, some may require a longer period of time for completion.
Students participate in the NAPLAN test. Our school’s NAPLAN results are consistently above Australian schools’ averages even though many of our students come from a non English speaking background.
Langue de travail et langue d’enseignement, il n’est cependant pas la langue maternelle d’un certain nombre d’élèves. Le Lycée Condorcet de Sydney séduit les familles anglophones jusqu’en grande section, sixième ou troisième, classes après lesquelles elles s’orientent parfois vers le système local.
Les élèves anglophones bénéficient d’une sorte de bain linguistique intensif depuis les classes de maternelle. Cependant, pour un certain nombre d’entre eux, cette exposition au français n’est pas suffisante et un renforcement en français est nécessaire. C’est ainsi que des cours spécifiques de français à destination des non francophones sont proposés en primaire. Nous avons aussi mis en place un renforcement hebdomadaire d’une heure de FLE dans toutes les classes de collège, inscrite à l’emploi du temps, pour les élèves qui en ont besoin. Nous leur proposons les examens du DELF, en collaboration avec l’Alliance française de Sydney.
Il est indispensable que les familles non francophones soient fortement impliquées lorsqu’elles font le choix d’une éducation en français pour leurs enfants. C’est pourquoi, au niveau primaire, nous leur faisons signer une charte dans laquelle elles s’engagent sur un certain nombre de points pour favoriser l’apprentissage du français par leurs enfants.
Les autres langues
L’espagnol et l’allemand sont enseignés en tant que deuxième langue vivante depuis de nombreuses années, à partir de la classe de quatrième.
Nous avons introduit l’enseignement du mandarin en tant qu’option en 2006.
Le latin est enseigné à partir de la cinquième. Il devient optionnel à partir de la quatrième.