Children learn best when they can make sense of
their learning. Embedding language learning into school life brings
benefits on many levels. It helps children to realise that there
are many languages in the world (and in their school) and that
speaking another language is normal, natural and valuable.
Experiencing language every day helps children to
memorise new words and structures, giving children the confidence
to respond to what they hear and to use the new language for real
purposes. Integrating language learning into the school day makes
best use of the time available and provides coherent links between
different subjects of the curriculum.
Children are learning all the time. They make connections
between their learning consciously and unconsciously. Often they
make connections that we cannot plan or predict. Integrating
language learning into the primary curriculum can lead to
significant gains in children’s understanding as they interpret and
reinterpret their knowledge in a fresh and challenging context.
There are natural links between languages and many subjects of the
curriculum. Effective integration of language learning into the
curriculum can motivate teachers and learners and makes the best
use of the curriculum time available. There are examples in these
pages of links to literacy in English, numeracy, history and many