The study of French is designed to prepare our children to have the capability and confidence to understand and use French for effective communication.  French is taught by specialist language teachers from when children first enter the School in Nursery until Year 6.

In Pre-Prep we aim to provide children with an enjoyable and positive experience of language learning through songs, games, stories and fun activities.  We help the children develop an understanding of different cultures and foster an awareness and interest in lifestyles and customs other than their own.

"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart."  Nelson Mandela

In the Prep School, the emphasis continues to be on a fun approach to early language learning whilst ensuring linguistic progression. In addition to their French lessons, the children take part in a number of related activities including a French Festivals and Customs Day and a popular session where the Year 1 children from the Senior School teach French to the younger pupils for an afternoon.  Our Year 5 children have the opportunity to spend three days in the Normandy and Picardie Regions of France and enjoy a long list of activities from visiting a Boulangerie and snail farm or sweet factory to buying and preparing their own lunch on a ‘Market Mission’ in Forge les Eaux.  The trip also includes a visit to their penfriends at our partner school in Beauvais, and in turn, these children then visit us in the UK the following Lent term.  We arrange a number of activities which, in addition to an exchange of letters throughout the year, enable all the children from both schools to get to know each other better and to practise their language skills.

We also run a weekly Pre-Prep French club.  This year the children have participated in a number of activities including, finding out about key French festivals, discovering well-known French children’s book and cartoon characters, traditional French dancing and during the summer months, some super Pétanque playing.

Our aim is for children to leave the Prep School with a solid grounding in spoken and written French and an enjoyment of and curiosity for language learning and other cultures that they can take with them to their next schools.

Contact Us

Sutton Valence School

North Street, Sutton Valence, Kent, ME17 3HL


Tel: 01622 845200


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