Category Archives: Resources

KS2 French workshops: Alliance Française, Manchester

Published 23rd October 2013

Rusty French? Lacking in confidence?  These workshops might help …
A Green Mouse has been asked to pass on the following information from the Alliance française:

“In partnership with the French Institute in London, the Alliance française de Manchester is organising a series of 6 workshops to support any practitioners involved in teaching French in Key Stage 2, especially class teachers and teaching assistants, who would like to get started with French or to use it more regularly in the classroom, from 14th January 2014 onwards.

These workshops are aimed at practitioners who have little or no knowledge of French, including those who feel rusty and lack the confidence to use their French in the classroom and will be led by Catherine Cheater, renowned trainer both nationally and internationally, and author of Catherine Cheater Schemes of Work for French.

With a maximum of 20 participants, these sessions of 3 hours each aim to be friendly, supportive and fun. As such, participants need not feel anxious about their level of French. Handouts with key language will be provided at each session.

For further information on dates and times, please refer to the following link on our website:
KS2 French Workshops ”

– – – – – – –

Singing helps with Language Learning

Published 22nd July 2013

Read the following article, published 18/07/13, to consider how helpful it can be to sing in a foreign language:

Daily Telegraph/science-news

Hopefully research like this will encourage more families to search out interesting songs and nursery rhymes in other languages to sing with their young children.  Of course there is far more to learning a language, but singing really can help to loosen those vocal chords!

French songs for children

Spanish songs for children

Thought for the day!

Published 24th January 2013

Broadcast on the BBC Today Programme, 24th January 2013:
“Music and singing should be central to education and children’s lives” …

Image for A Green Mouse Blog

We all want our little guys to fly …!

Music and singing are excellent for introducing sounds in other languages.
A Green Mouse is creating and sharing free French and Spanish listening practice for any child:
Songs for young children, and many video resources to link sound to words in accessible visual contexts for early listening and speaking practice.
Here is an example of one of the songs:

Mis Manitas



¡Pipas! Traditional Spanish Snack

Published 18th September 2012

August/September, the season for sunflowers!
Think of French countryside with its fields and fields of sunflowers all turning their heads to the sun as it moves across the sky:

Sunflower seeds are full of nutrients.
They are a traditional and very popular playground snack for children in Spain in South America:
¡Pipas! –  Pipas are sunflower seeds.
Small bags of salted sunflower seeds (Pipas) are a traditional sight in school playgrounds, where they are allowed:
A very messy business because each ‘pipa’ has to be cracked open to get the sunflower heart inside, usually done using the front teeth, and then there’s the problem of what to do with the discarded shells ….
Piles of slightly damp ‘pipa’ shells ..?!


A little too salty and messy, but otherwise a great idea …
And today ‘pipas’ are also sold without their shells!

Free listening practice in French and Spanish:
French and Spanish for Children


Bagpipes in Buenos Aires

Published 21st August 2012

Tango and Bagpipes in Buenos Aires …

Buenos Aires is a melting pot of many cultures and traditions.
There is even a small Scottish Dancing group! –  It is a tradition handed down by those who moved to Argentina to help build the railways perhaps.
Walk through one of the parks and you might just come across somebody practising the bagpipes!

Buenos Aires has several bilingual schools which offer Scottish dancing lessons!  Eg:

Scottish Dancing in Buenos Aires

Of course TANGO is the dance which Buenos Aires is best known for.  It originated in the area of the city known as La Boca – an old and very colourful area near the port:

Image for La Boca, Buenos Aires
La Boca, Buenos Aires


‘El Viejo Almacén’ is an example of a well-known tango venue.  It is also most enjoyable to stroll through the streets of San Telmo where, at weekends, there are often people dancing the tango in the street.  Here is a picture taken of people enjoying themselves in San Telmo on a normal weekend:

For free Spanish and French listening resources go to:
French for Children
Spanish for Children


¡Vale la pena! It’s worth it …!

Published 19th July 2012

The image of the goldfinch chick below, beak open, hopeful and enthusiastic, symbolises the carefree energy and enthusiasm of children, and all that A Green Mouse stands for.

Children can develop very good pronunciation in a second language if they are exposed to it early enough.
It is a question of opportunity, not one available to all children, so this website is accessible and free to try to reach out and provide it for any child.

Accessible French & Spanish Practice for anyone … 

We all want to help our little guys to fly …!

Image for A Green Mouse Blog

Having a second language feels good, it makes life more interesting, it is good for the brain.
By starting young we give our children a better chance of success.

For quick access to all the free resources go to:
French for Children
Spanish for Children