Shirley Language Tuition

French classes for adults in Shirley, Southampton

Latest news: The next block of lessons begins on 24th April. Please email me for details

The photo shows the Intermediate class in action. Below are some of the comments the students made in their feedback:

"This last session was great!"

" the different activities. The pace is good. I need the repetition you often give because the work is challenging."

"Toutes les exercises sont excellentes"

"I like the balance of activities".

Latest news: The next block of lessons begins on 24th April. Please email me for details

About Me

About Me
I am a recently-retired teacher of French and Italian. I have worked in several local schools and colleges, including periods as Head of Department in two of them. I have taught French and Italian from Year 7 to sixth form, including GCSE and A level. When my own children were young, I also taught adult education classes. As I really enjoyed these, and because there are far fewer of them available nowadays, I thought I would harness my enduring passion for language teaching and offer some classes locally. Do come along!

Alison Spottiswoode

Classes offered

Class 1 - False beginners (CEFR A2)

This class is for you if you have done two or three years study in the past, but you feel you have forgotten most of your French. You may know a fair number of words, and can pick some of them out in a conversation at slow speed, but your speaking and writing skills are very rusty. This class is not currently running. Individual and small-group lessons are available at this level. Contact

Class 2 - Intermediate/post GCSE 'O' level (CEFR B1)

This class will cater for those who have studied French for around 200-250 hours. You may have taken 'O' level or GCSE at school. You should be able to express yourself simply in everyday situations, and to take part (perhaps haltingly) in a simple conversation on a familiar topic.

Lesson content (general)

The focus will be on speaking and communication, but I am a firm believer that a good grasp of grammar is essential to oral fluency. There will be regular written activities to consolidate learning. Most of the class time will be spent on speaking activities using pair work, group work and language games. We will listen to a wide variety of French, using songs, videos and films.The idea is to have some fun as we learn!

Clearly you will be undertaking this course for your own pleasure and satisfaction, but there is no doubt that your progress will be faster if you consolidate what you have learned between lessons. For this reason homework will be set each week, and it will be marked when appropriate, but there will be no consequences if the dog eats it!
Lesson content (general)


Location and Timings
All classes will be held at the community room of the Saint James Park café in Shirley (St. James' Park St. James' Road
Southampton, SO15 5SD). Classes will be held on Wednesday mornings, starting on September 12th. Class 1 (False Beginniers) will run from 9.30 - 11 am. Class 2 (Intermediate) will run from 11.30 - 1.00 .

Dates and Payment
Classes will be organised into 6-week blocks, and payment will be required in advance for each block. The blocks will run as follows:
Block 1: 12th September - 17th October
Block 2: 31st October - 5th December
Block 3: 9th January - 13th February 2019
Block 4: 20th February - 27th March 2019
Block 5:  24th April - 12th June (no lesson on 29th May)

Payment and registration

The classes will need a minimum of 8 participants to be viable. There will be a maximum of 15 students in each class. The charge for each block of 6 lessons will be £58. The final block of lessons (24th April to 12th June) will consist of 7 lessons. For students who were not registered for block 3 (February 2019) the cost of this block will be £67.

To reserve your place in the class, please email Payment can be made in advance, or at the first class. Payments are accepted in cash, by cheque or bank transfer.

Private tuition

Private tuition Private tuition
I am also available for private language tuition in French and Italian. I have a huge amount of experience from beginner level up to Advanced level. I am happy to teach individuals or groups and offer the first lesson at half price to enable you to decide whether my style of teaching is for you.