Lesson 1: Musical instruments in French

Children learn to ask and respond to the question whether or not they play a musical instrument, and learn the names and sounds of instruments.

Learning objective

  • To be able to say which musical instrument you play or that you don’t play an instrument.

National curriculum

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Listen attentively to spoken language and show understanding by joining in and responding
  • Engage in conversations
  • Ask and answer questions
  • Broaden their vocabulary and develop their ability to understand new words
  • Read carefully and show understanding of words, phrases and simple writing


KS2 Framework:

  • 2 Listen for specific words and phrases
  • 4 Ask and answer questions on several topics
  • Yr 3 KAL Recognise question forms and negatives
  • L4.1 match phrases and short sentences to pictures

Success criteria

Cross-curricular links

Before the lesson

Download classroom resources

Teacher knowledge - language points

Attention grabber

Main event

Wrapping up

During the week

  • Practise asking the question, Tu joues d’un instrument? and get the children to conduct a survey in the class or amongst members of staff.
  • Listen to the Link: ‘Teacher’s TV: Primary French – La musique et les instruments’ on VideoLink and see if the children can pick out any more words.
  • Play Pictionary  – the children work in small groups of three or four. One draws a musical instrument and the rest of the group must guess the name of the instrument by asking, ‘Tu joues du/de la…?’   – ‘You play the ….’.  The children take it in turns to ensure everyone gets to practise their new vocabulary.  Alternatively, the children could play a ‘Charades’ version of the game, where they mime the instrument they are pretending to play.
  • If possible, tie the learning into a music lesson. Listen to a piece of music and ask the children to listen and try to pick out individual instruments that they hear and give the name in French.

Assessing pupils' progress and understanding


Created by:
Simone Haughey,  
Languages specialist
Previously a generalist Primary teacher for 12 years, Simone now specialises in Languages. She is MFL Consultant and Languages Teacher at Robin Hood Primary. Her work with Mandarin Chinese led to the IoE Confucius Institute for Schools awarding her school with Confucius…
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