French Grade Ladders

Objective SpeakingListeningReadingWritingTranslation
Grade 9Consistently initiate, develop and sustain long conversations, with minimal hesitation using appropriate register, and fully justify a wide range of thoughts and opinions.


Use a very wide range of language including uncommon vocabulary and complex grammatical structures, and a range of tenses including less common ones.


Pronunciation and intonation would be understood by a native speaker.

Draw conclusions and interpret meaning in a range of extended passages (including authentic sources, adapted or abridged) covering a wide range of contemporary and cultural themes, including abstract material and different types of complex spoken language (containing multiple tenses).

Transcribe extended passages.
Demonstrate understanding of, and recognise implicit meaning in, a wide range of longer texts including literary extracts containing multiple tenses.


Translate longer passages containing a range of complex language into English with a high level of accuracy.
Produce coherent, fluent and extended texts, manipulating language and using a wide variety of tenses and complex grammatical structures.


Accurate throughout with isolated inaccuracies.


Translate longer passages containing a wide range of less common vocabulary and complex structures into TL.
Grade 8Initiate, develop and sustain longer conversations, with occasional hesitation and appropriate register, using language to justify a range of thoughts and opinions.

Use a wide range of language including less common vocabulary and more complex grammatical structures, and a range of tenses including less common ones.

Pronunciation and intonation requires only occasional clarification and/or repetition.



Extract information and start to draw conclusions and interpret meaning in a range of longer passages (including authentic sources, adapted or abridged) covering a range of contemporary and cultural themes, including abstract material (Infer meaning from a range of longer texts (including literary extracts and authentic texts), responding to key information, themes and ideas.

Translate longer passages containing a range of complex grammatical structures and less common vocabulary into English with isolated errors.
Produce long-sequences of mainly fluent text, manipulating language and using a wide range of language, including frequent use of complex structures and a range of tenses and less common vocabulary.

Mostly accurate with isolated minor errors.

Translate passages containing a range of less common vocabulary and less common structures into TL.
Grade 7Initiate, develop and sustain conversations, with little hesitation and appropriate register, using language to narrate events and express opinions and thoughts on a wide range of topics.

Use a range of language including less common vocabulary and more complex grammatical structures, and a range of tenses including less common ones.

Pronunciation and intonation requires some clarification and/or repetition.

Demonstrate recognition of themes and ideas in longer passages (including authentic sources, adapted or abridged) covering some contemporary and cultural themes, including some different types of complex spoken language.

Transcribe longer passages.
Infer meaning in and present relevant details from longer texts (including literary extracts and authentic texts), containing some unfamiliar language, complex tenses and grammatical structures.

Translate, with occasional errors, longer passages containing complex grammatical structures and less common vocabulary.
Produce coherent extended texts on a wide variety of topics to narrate, inform, interest and convince and to express individual thoughts, ideas and points of view, using a range of grammatical structures and a combination of tenses (including less common tenses).

Mostly accurate with only isolated minor errors and/or occasional errors with complex structures, meaning is clear.

Translate passage containing a range of complex structures into TL.
Grade 6Initiate and develop discussions on a wide variety of topics, using appropriate register, to narrate events.

Demonstrate spontaneity by asking unsolicited questions and responding to unexpected questions and points of view, developing coping strategies to deal with unknown words and phrases.

Use some less common vocabulary and more complex grammatical structures, referring to past, present and future.

Pronunciation and intonation are mostly accurate.
Deduce meaning and demonstrate understanding in longer passages (including authentic sources, adapted or abridged), of overall message and detail, justified opinions and some complex language, including at least three different tenses.

Transcribe short passages.
Deduce meaning in and demonstrate understanding of, in longer texts (including extracts from literary texts), overall message and detail, justified opinions and some complex language, including at least three different tenses.

Translate, with occasional errors, short passages containing more complex language and grammar.
Produce extended texts on a variety of topic areas, containing detailed descriptions, narrations and well-justified personal opinions, using a variety of grammatical structures (including some more complex forms) and referring to past, present and future.

Mostly accurate with only isolated minor errors and/or occasional errors with complex structures, meaning is clear.

Translate short passages containing more complex language structures into TL.
Grade 5Initiate and develop conversations coherently and confidently on a variety of topics to narrate events.

Demonstrate spontaneity by asking unsolicited questions and responding to unexpected questions, beginning to use coping strategies to deal with unknown words.

Occasionally use some less common vocabulary and some more complex grammatical structures, referring to past, present and future.

Pronunciation and intonation are mostly accurate.
Deduce meaning in and demonstrate understanding of spoken language, including some longer passages (including authentic sources, adapted or abridged), overall message, details, key points and opinions containing familiar and some less familiar language, and some more complex language.

Deduce meaning and demonstrate understanding in longer passages (including some authentic sources adapted or abridged) of overall message and detail, justified opinions and familiar and some less familiar language, and at least three different tenses.

Transcribe extended sentences.
Deduce meaning and demonstrate understanding in longer texts (including extracts from literary texts) of detail, (justified) opinions and familiar and some less familiar language, and at least three different tenses.

Translate, with occasional errors, short passages containing more complex structures and less common vocabulary.
Produce longer coherent texts on a variety of topics, containing descriptions, narrations and personal opinions with justification, using extended sentences, a variety of grammatical structures and referring to the past, present and future.

Mostly accurate with only isolated minor errors and/or occasional errors with complex structures, meaning is clear.

Translate short passages containing longer sentences and some complex language structures into TL.
Grade 4Begin to initiate and develop conversations and narrate events.

Demonstrate spontaneity by asking unsolicited questions, responding to unexpected questions and expanding answers where appropriate.

Use a wide range of common vocabulary and grammatical structures referring to the past, present and future.

Pronunciation and intonation is increasingly accurate.
Deduce meaning and demonstrate understanding of, in a range of passages, overall message, key points and justified opinions and familiar and some less familiar language, and at least three different tenses.

Transcribe longer sentences.
Deduce meaning in and demonstrate understanding of, in a range of texts (including extracts from literary texts), overall message, key points and justified opinions and familiar and some less familiar language, and at least three different tenses.

Translate with increasing accuracy into English short passages containing occasional complex grammar and less common vocabulary.
Produce longer texts for different purposes, giving descriptions, narrations and personal opinions with some justification and referring to past, present and future.

Mostly accurate with only isolated minor errors and/or occasional errors with complex structures, meaning is clear.

Translate longer sentences and a variety of vocabulary and grammatical structures into TL.
Grade 3Take part in short (and occasionally longer) conversations describing, informing, expressing and justifying opinions and giving reasons.

Demonstrate spontaneity by asking some unsolicited questions and expanding some answers.

Use a range of common vocabulary and common grammatical structures including verbs in two different tenses (e.g. past and present or present and future).

Pronunciation and intonation is increasingly accurate.
Demonstrate understanding of short (and occasionally longer) passages including verbs in two different tenses (e.g. past and present or present and future), and of main points, opinions and justification, spoken clearly.

Transcribe short sentences.
Demonstrate understanding of a range of short (and occasionally longer) texts which including verbs in two different tenses (e.g. past and present or present and future), and of main points, opinions and justification.

Translate into English short passages containing a variety of tenses, vocabulary and grammatical structures.
Produce short texts giving and seeking information and opinions, including verbs in two different tenses (e.g. past and present or present and future).

Mostly accurate with only isolated minor errors and/or occasional errors with complex structures, meaning is clear.

Translate longer sentences into TL.
Grade 2Take part in simple conversations, asking and answering simple questions, to describe, give information, exchange opinions and express simple reasons.

Begin to speak spontaneously.

Use familiar vocabulary and common grammatical structures referring to the present or future.

Pronunciation and intonation is mostly understandable.
Demonstrate understanding of familiar language, with references to either the present or future tense, and of main points and opinions and some details from short passages, spoken clearly.

Transcribe short phrases.
Demonstrate understanding of main points, opinions, overall message and some details in short written texts referring to the present or the future.

Translate simple sentences containing familiar vocabulary and grammar into English.
Produce short texts for different purposes to give information and express simple opinions referring to the present or future.

Generally accurate and meaning is clear but there may be major errors with verbs.

Translate short sentences into the TL.
Grade 1Take part in simple spoken exchanges by answering simple questions and giving basic information and opinions.

Use familiar vocabulary.

Begin to show awareness of sound patterns.
Demonstrate understanding of a range of familiar language, including common verbs in the present tense (or another single tense), and of main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Transcribe familiar words.
Demonstrate understanding of a range of familiar language [including common verbs in the present tense] (or another single tense), and of main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Translate familiar words and short phrases into English.
Produce a few short sentences, giving basic information using the present tense of high-frequency verbs.

May not be accurate but meaning clear.

Translate familiar words and short phrases into the TL.
GoldAttempts to:

Take part in simple spoken exchanges by answering simple questions and giving basic information and opinions.

Use familiar vocabulary.

Begin to show awareness of sound patterns.
Attempts to:

Demonstrate understanding of a range of familiar language, including common verbs in the present tense (or another single tense), and of main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Transcribe familiar words.
Attempts to:

Demonstrate understanding of a range of familiar language [including common verbs in the present tense] (or another single tense), and of main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Translate familiar words and short phrases into English.
Attempts to:

Produce a few short sentences, giving basic information using the present tense of high-frequency verbs.

May not be accurate but meaning clear.

Translate familiar words and short phrases into the TL.

SilverAttempts to:

Take part in simple spoken exchanges by answering simple questions and giving basic information.

Use a limited range familiar vocabulary.
Attempts to:

Demonstrate awareness of a limited range of familiar language, including common verbs in the present tense (or another single tense), and of some of the main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Transcribe a limited range of familiar words.
Attempts to:

Demonstrate awareness of a limited range of familiar language [including common verbs in the present tense] (or another single tense), and of main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Translate a limited range familiar words and short phrases into English.
Attempts to:

Produce a few short sentences, giving basic information using the present tense of a limited range of high-frequency verbs.

May not be accurate but meaning clear.

Translate a limited range of familiar words and short phrases into the TL.
BronzeWith support from the teacher, attempts to:

Take part in simple spoken exchanges by answering simple questions and giving basic information.

Use a very limited range of familiar vocabulary.
With support from the teacher, attempts to demonstrate awareness of a very limited range of familiar language, including common verbs in the present tense (or another single tense), and of some of the main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Transcribe a very limited range of familiar words.
With support from the teacher, attempts to demonstrate awareness of a very limited range of familiar language [including common verbs in the present tense] (or another single tense), and of main points and opinions from short passages, spoken clearly.

Translate a very limited range familiar words and short phrases into English.
With support from the teacher, attempts to:

Produce a few short sentences, giving basic information using the present tense of a very limited range of high-frequency verbs.

May not be accurate and meaning may not be clear.

Translate a very limited range of familiar words and short phrases into the TL.

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