Copley Junior School

International Links

Please view the information below to find out about our links with the school Saint Joseph in Carquefou and our links with Malawi, as well as our recent 'Global Community' project.

As part of our carefully designed Copley curriculum, we plan links to international study. You can find out more by viewing our long term plans for each year group by clicking here.

To see our Scheme of Work for Modern Foreign Languages please click here.

International School Award

We are very proud to share that Copley Junior has been awarded a national accreditation, the Foundation Level of the International School Award.

Our application against the national criteria for the International School Award was externally assessed by the British Council. Our assessor commented:

“Copley Junior School is clearly committed to developing an international dimension in its curriculum, as is demonstrated on its excellent international page on its website. You have demonstrated an excellent start in promoting the international dimension across your school and highlighting the benefits of learning in a global context. Your commitment to extending and embedding internationalism in your curriculum is a valuable aspect of your school ethos. A pen pal exchange will have given your pupils a real purpose to their French learning. Congratulations, and good luck in your continuing international journey!”

We look forward to continuing to develop our international links and our valued link with St Joseph.

Saint Joseph - Copley Junior

During the last five years, we have developed a close link with St Joseph in Carquefou. Madame Le Normand has visited Copley Junior School for two weeks to find out about our approach to teaching and learning. She has led presentations about her school, Saint Joseph, and the local area of Carquefou, near Nantes. Year 5 enjoyed workshops led by Madame Le Normand that included finding out the story behind traditional Nantes biscuits (this involved tasting them of course!)

We have developed a strong link between our two schools to enable our children to find out about the experience of pupils living in a different country. In the picture below, you can see children from Madame Le Normand's classes learning about our school by visiting our school website! 


Saint Joseph School has 22 classes, for pupils aged 3-10 years. Children in Year 5 write letters and postcards to children of the same age at Saint Joseph and we always look forward to reading the letters and postcards that we receive in return!

Saint Joseph School in Carquefou, near Nantes


You can visit Saint Joseph's website by clicking here. You can click on 'google translate' to translate the text into English if you wish! We created PowerPoint presentations to share information about our local area with each other. You can read the information about Carquefou's history, culture and key features by clicking here.

Pen Friends

We are always very excited to receive a big envelope with all the letters from our French pen friends!

Our French pen friends open their letters at St Joseph, Carquefou.

Please click on the first image below to view the photographs.

Copley children open their letters from their pen friends in Carquefou.

Copley Junior has a valued link with St Joseph in Carquefou, near Nantes. Madame Le Normand and Year 5 teachers are keen to maintain and develop the link between our two schools as it enables children to practise their foreign language skills in context and helps children to learn about the culture of a different country.

Children at Copley and St Joseph completed a shield to provide information about their family, favourite foods, pets etc. As children read the information on each other's shields, they had opportunity to consolidate their knowledge of the vocabulary for family, foods, pets and hobbies. We then shared our work via Skype. We could even compare how both classrooms and schools are coping with coronavirus!

Our French penfriends sent us some photos so we could see how the Skyping looked in their classroom too.

Madame Le Normand shared the learning from this project on their school website. You can visit Saint Joseph's website by clicking here. You can click on 'google translate' to translate the text into English if you wish!

Madame Le Normand writes, "Les CM1A et les CM1C vont mener plusieurs activités autour de l'enseignement de l'anglais avec des correspondants de l'école de Sprotbrough dans le Yorkshire. (Copley Junior School)
Avant les vacances, sur Skype, ils ont fait connaissance avec leur correspondants anglais, en se présentant chacun leur tour, en français puis en anglais.
Les élèves ont réalisé chacun un blason pour mieux se présenter, dire leur "hobby" et aussi écrire ce qui leur tenait à coeur.
Ainsi, les élèves vont aussi pouvoir essayer de comprendre une langue étrangère à l'écrit en participant à une même activité.
Les élèves ont vécu de fortes émotions en communiquant, pour la première fois, avec des élèves anglais de leur âge."

Joyeux Noel

We were delighted to receive beautiful Christmas cards from our French pen pals and we sent cards back to wish our French friends 'un Joyeux Noel'.

In the photos below you can see our French penfriends holding cards they have received from Copley, the Christmas cards they have made for us and a photo of us sharing them via Skype.

Christmas activities at St Joseph

We learned two songs, 'Toc…toc…toc…Père Noël frappe à la porte’ in French and 'Santa Claus is coming to town'. We used Skype to perform 'Toc…toc…toc…Père Noël frappe à la porte’ and watched our penfriends performing it so we could further improve our pronunciation of the French vocabulary.

Displays of our work on British Values and our link with St Joseph in Carquefou

Bonne Annee!

In the photographs below you can see our French pen friends receiving their 'Happy New Year' cards from Copley.

Remembrance Day

We shared how we commemorate Remembrance Day in our two schools. At St Joseph, Elouen prepared a presentation about Remembrance Day and made poppies to give to everyone in class.

We shared information about our fund raising for the British Legion and our Remembrance Day displays.

Happy Valentine's Day

Year 5 were delighted to find that a card from their French pen friend in Carquefou was waiting for them on their return to school on March 8th after the period of school closure owing to COVID-19. Our friends in France had learned about St Valentine, they made cards to send their love and best wishes to children at Copley and they shared the poem 'Comme il est bon d'aimer' by Jean-Pierre Simeon. Thank you to our kind friends in Carquefou!

'Comme il est bon d'aimer' by Jean-Pierre Simeon

Joyeuses Pâques

We have kept in touch with our French penfriends by sending them an Easter card and we enjoyed receiving cards in return. Our pen friends write to us in French so this helps us to develop our French language skills. Our French penfriends received our cards just before Saint Joseph School closed for their Easter holiday.

Les 115 petits bonheurs - During the period of school closure owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, pupils at St Joseph in Carquefou reflected on the things that make them happy. We loved receiving this! To view the document, please click here.

The year before, as we attended St Mary's Church for our Easter service, our French friends attended Saint Pierre Church in Carquefou for their Easter service so we exchanged some photos.

Easter Service at St Mary's - We celebrated Easter at St Mary's Church with poetry, hymns and prayers. 'Easter Jubilation' is one of the children's favourite Easter hymns as you can see in the clip below.

Easter Service at Saint Pierre Church, Carquefou - We greatly enjoyed seeing the photos of our French friends celebrating their Easter service.

We skyped our French penfriends to share the Easter songs we have been learning. We had shared one of our favourite Easter hymns, 'We have a King who rides a donkey' and we watched a skype lesson to see how well our French friends could sing the hymn in English. We were very impressed!

Visit to St Joseph, Carquefou

During our exchange visit with St Joseph in Carquefou, Miss Blades-Baker and Miss Wright were fortunate to experience a wide range of lessons throughout the school including reading in French in the nursery, a hockey tournament with Year 3 and an English lesson in Year 7. It was fascinating to see the pupils’ work books and the classrooms. So many pieces of artwork to admire!

Our penfriends were very surprised to receive gifts of Cadbury’s chocolate, party ring biscuits and jelly babies accompanied by a nice, warm cup of tea. It went down a treat!

At the end of the school day (4.45pm), Marie-Emmanuelle took the teachers to the nearby city of Nantes where they were able to explore the castle, the church and even explored the skyline from 35 floors above the ground! The teachers have returned to school with LU biscuits (for the pupils) which were originally made in the building just behind them in the photograph.

What a wonderful experience and so many things to share with pupils back in the classroom. The visit even helped Miss Blades-Baker refine her French skills! Thank you to Marie-Emmanuelle and all of the staff at St Joseph for such a warm welcome. We look forward to skyping again soon!

Please click on the first image below to view the photo gallery of our visit to St Joseph in Carquefou.

Miss Blades-Baker and Miss Wright prepared and shared the powerpoint below with the pupils at St Joseph.

Miss Blades-Baker and Miss Wright created the powerpoint below during their visit to share with the pupils at Copley Junior to help them learn about the experience of pupils in a French school.

As part of our teachers' visit to St Joseph and our shared curriculum focus study, children at Copley and St Joseph compared what they like to eat - the results are  below!

What do we like to eat - Qu'aimons-nous manger?

As part of our teachers' visit to St Joseph and our shared curriculum focus study, children at Copley and St Joseph compared how they like to spend their free time - the results are  below!

How do we spend our free time - Comment passons-nous notre temps libre?

Miss Blades-Baker and Miss Wright had many questions from the children at Copley to ask the children at St Joseph, including:

  • Portes-tu un uniforme à l’école ? (Do you have to wear school uniform?)
  • Est-ce que vos classes ont un nom ? (Do your classes have names?)
  • A quels jeux aimes-tu jouer ? (What games do you like to play?)
  • Quelles matières apprends-tu à l’école ? Quelles sont celles que tu préfères ? (What subjects do you learn at school? What are your favourites?)
  • A quelle heure commence l’école et à quelle heure finit-elle ? (What time does school start and finish?)
  • Quels loisirs préféres-tu ? (What hobbies do you enjoy?)      

Our exchange visit has helped the children at Copley Junior and St Joseph to find out more about the experience of children living in a different country. Thank you so much to Madame Le Normand for looking after our teachers and hosting such a fantastic visit.

Back at school our teachers compared the results of the surveys undertaken by the children in France and our pupils at Copley, handed out the cards and art work sent by our French pen friends and sampled the famous LU biscuits from Nantes - very tasty!

Residential Visits

In 2019 our French penfriends went on an exciting residential visit to Normandy and Jersey and we enjoyed looking at all the photos on their website. When they were back at school the pupils at St Joseph wrote lovely letters to their Copley penfriends to share the details of their visit.  Copley children thoroughly enjoyed their visit to Robinwood and we sent postcards to our French penfriends.

Our French pen friends translated our postcards into French: "Nous sommes allés dans un lieu fantastique pendant trois jours. Nous sommes partis le 25 avril et sommes revenus le vendredi 27 avril. Nous étions au château de Dobroyd. Nous avons participé à des activités très intéressantes comme l’escalade, la balançoire géante, le tir à l’arc, le défi des caisses et la tyrolienne. Nous nous sommes beaucoup amusés!"

Pictured below are some of our French penfriends with the postcards we sent to them.

Madame Le Normand sent us information and photos from the summer fair at St Joseph, so we could compare the summer fair experience of pupils at Copley Junior with that of pupils at St Joseph. Both events were a lot of fun!

We closed the academic year with a final package of messages to our pen friends. Pictured below are our French pen friends with their book marks made by their friends from Copley.

'Through the Window'

We decided to take photographs from the windows of our two schools to share the different seasons with each other as children at both schools practised learning the vocabulary to talk about seasons and the weather.

St Joseph à l'automne

St Joseph en hiver

It is rare to see snow in Carquefou, so the pupils were very excited and Madame Le Normand was quick to reach for her camera!

St Joseph au printemps

St Joseph en été

Copley Junior School in the autumn

Copley Junior School in the winter

Copley Junior School in the spring

Copley Junior School in the summer

Malawi - Copley Junior

Our Eco Council has been active in developing a link with a school in Malawi. They consulted with Copley pupils to draw up a list of questions to find out about life and the schools in Malawi and we were delighted to receive the answers back from Mr Barnes who has spent a year supporting schools in Malawi. The Eco Council then prepared a PowerPoint and led an assembly to share the information with everyone. Well done and thank you to the Eco Council and Mrs Westerman!

Our Global Community

In order to learn more about the diversity within our school community, we set children across school the challenge of finding out more about their family tree. We hoped to make the children aware of their identity within our local community, the national community and the wider world around us. We asked children to find out about their family background including finding out if anyone from their family was born in another part of the UK or another country, and if they had lived anywhere else but the Doncaster area. The quality of work produced by the children is wonderful! Children shared their work in class and located the counties and countries involved.  The children's fantastic work will be celebrated in a new central display in school to allow us all to learn more about each other and celebrate the diversity in our identities.

We found that, within our school community, we have many links to the wider world. Our families have links to many countries, including: Mauritius, Lithuania, the Ukraine, Scotland, Bhusawal in India, Canada, Lushun Province in China, Guyana, the Philippines, Kerala in India, Ireland, Thailand, Hyderabad in India, California, Karachi in Pakistan, Vietnam, Belgium, Wales, Iran, Australia, Budapest in Hungary, New Zealand, Germany, Bosnia, the Falklands Islands and Spain!

Please click on the first image below to view the photo gallery of our global community work.

Children's names were entered in the year group draw for a geography prize to reward their efforts. Well done to our winners pictured below who were presented with a 'Planet Earth Encyclopedia' so they can find out even more about the diversity of planet Earth.

Harvest Traditions across the World

Our 'Harvest around the World' project gave each class opportunity to research the harvest traditions of their chosen country and then present their information, poems and songs (including using sign language) to over 300 children, parents, carers and relatives at our two Harvest Services at St Mary's Church. In our tour of harvest traditions around the World we learned about: Thanksgiving in America; Lammas in Scotland; the Holi Festival in India; Trung Thu in Vietnam; Harvest Moon in China; Oktoberfest in Germany; Chuseok in Korea and the Homowo Festival in Ghana.

We are so grateful for the amazing abundance of harvest gifts donated by families. We displayed the fresh fruit and vegetables, tinned and packaged goods as well as toiletries on every surface at St Mary's Church. After our services, all the items were taken to the Doncaster Foodbank. Our donations will help many local families in need so thank you very much for your generosity.

Our art piece depicting a Spanish flamenco dancer was created by using the fingerprint of everyone in school!