The core of the Saint Denis’ Triennial Educational Plan is the School Curriculum, which outlines language-oriented teaching objectives for Primary School (Italian, English and French).

The Board of Teachers aims to promote the learning of each pupil based on their own strengths and potential, in order to gradually acquire the key skills of an active world citizen. These include:

1. communication using Italian
2. communication using foreign languages
3. development of maths, science and technology-based skills
4. digital skills
5. learning how to learn
6. social and civic skills
7. self-initiative and the development of entrepeneurial skills
8. cultural awareness and expression


The teaching of foreign languages provides an expansion to the Educational Offer and works alongside and in sync with the curricular disciplines outlined in the Italian program.

On one hand, Saint Denis School offers the full curriculum as outlined by the Italian Ministry of Education.

Primary school subjects (e.g. Italian, history, geography, maths…) are taught in Italian for the total number of hours established by the Ministry of Education.

In studying these core curriculum subjects, pupils gain knowledge, ability and skills, as well as a solid all-round preparation and study method which, at the end of the five years of primary school, will be essential in their positive and successful transition to middle school.

On the other hand, here at Saint Denis School we give great importance to the practical study of the English language

The School deems it essential for pupils to have the key skills they need in order to become “citizens of the world”, while of course never neglecting their own native language and cultural heritage. 

To this end, is it fundamental that, alongside the study of Italian grammar and lexicon, students also learn to speak and write correctly in English and understand its key role in global communication. 

How do pupils study English in Saint Denis?

Pupils study English for a total of 13-15 hours per week, following these criteria:

  • English is taught as a curriculum subject (phonics, grammar, conversation, heritage and culture of the English-speaking world etc.)
  • learning in English is taught via the CLIL method (Content Language Integrated Learning). This learning strategy has been used at the School for many years, and, as outlined by the School Board, proposes the teaching of one or more key subjects exclusively in English. The CLIL method doesn’t simply teach a language or a subject, but rather merges these two concepts together. Saint Denis School uses this method and adapts it to different age groups, allowing each child to become the protagonist of their learning experience. Certain subject lessons, for example in ICT and Music, are also held exclusively in English.
  • Exam preparation for Cambridge Certifications beginning at the Starters level and finishing with the KET exam.

Pupils are encouraged to test the skills and knowledge gained in English through the annual exam sessions held by the University of Cambridge, starting at the Young Learning Starters certificate all the way to the K.E.T. certificate.

School textbooks for English are selected based on those used in Primary Schools in England. Children are also encouraged by teachers to read books written in English as often as possible.

French as a third language

Throughout the primary school, French is taught as a third language in Saint Denis.

The language is part of the Curriculum for 1 hour per week in first and second year, and 2 hours per week in third, fourth and fifth year.

Considering the Curriculum time dedicated to the study of this language, results are significant: in fact, pupils are on track achieve an A1 level (Delf Prim) by the end of primary school, based on the CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference).

Further to the hours of formal lessons in English and French, we also encourage the use of these languages in the daily life of pupils during their time before lessons, during break time, at lunch, and during various afterschool activities or optional course and clubs.

We offer sport clubs and activities such as swimming lessons and physical education sessions, which are run by qualified teachers and instructors.

We also encourage the study of ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) in order to help students understand and learn new technologies and means of communication, as well as explore their uses and potential. These lessons are taught exclusively in English by teachers with a focus on this subject.

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