First language is the language which a child is initially exposed to during early development and one which the child continues to use in the home and community.
When a child subsequently learns English, English is considered as an additional language to the child (EAL).
At St George’s CE Primary School we believe that English is best learnt through an active and stimulating curriculum and EAL pupils are encouraged to play a full part in class activities so that they become confident speakers and writers of English in all areas of the curriculum.
As with all pupils, EAL pupils’ achievement is linked to a welcoming environment in which they feel valued and confident and we ensure that they have access to the full Curriculum. Our curriculum recognises that cultural and linguistic diversity is a rich and valuable resource for the whole school. It helps us to build pupils’ knowledge of other cultures and languages.
Class teachers are responsible for maintaining accurate information on pupils’ needs, attainment and progress and for building strategies into planning to support the language development of EAL pupils and structure lessons appropriately. Learning an additional language may present challenge to curriculum access but this is not confused with learning difficulties. For pupils who continue to need support with specific subject and academic language for longer than two years (this is the normal amount of time it takes to become proficient in the social forms of English) will be supported through an individual programme of support.