June 26, 2008 – ¡Vámonos!

Day: June 26, 2008

Today I had the pleasure of speaking at Coventry’s Primary Language Conference. After a morning at WCPS teaching Year 6 who were rewriting The Snack Song (more of that later in the week when I blog Unit23 of QCA Spanish SOW), I raced over to Coventry to deliver two sessions entitled Languages i my classroom. Sian James, the Primary Languages Strategy Consultant for Coventry had asked me to split each session into three sections – my top tips, some of my favourite games and then to teach something as I would in the classroom. Phew – lots to fit into an hour!

So, speaking in hyperdrive (what’s new? exactly!), I launched into a shorter version of the presentation I did at Tile Hill Wood last week (see my blog post for the notes) before highlighting some of favourite games – see below for notes.

I showed how to play some of the games as I endeavoured to teach Unit 11 of QCA SOW – El Carnaval de los animales in 20 minutes (it took 6-7hours with Yr4- and we might’ve done so much more!). La orquesta went down well as did my attempts to draw animals in Pictionary and the delegates also proved to be excellent lipreaders. (all resources can be downloaded from a previous blog post!)

The conference was really well attended and had a real buzz about it. Coventry is the home of the Language Investigators model of PLL, and the updated version will be launched in September. Sian has also been working on a brilliant resource called Living Languages, featuring six Coventry children whose first language is not English, celebrating languages, the children who speak them, and the similarities and differences we can see through their eyes. The official launch of this will be Sept 25th – more news nearer the time. Well done, Sian for a really successful day!

According to the Euro 08 blog, Spain have been reported to be using voodoo in their pursuit of that elusive championship win.

Originally reported in Russia Today (bit suspicious that, eh?),

Someone in Spain has been making and selling football player voodoo dolls, which come with a pack of flags. La Furia Roja fans can simply fix the flag of whoever Spain are playing onto the doll, and write a name and number on the back, then perform some amateur voodoo on whichever player they want.

The article seeks to give credence to this by citing the example of Luca toni who spent the quarter final inexplicably rolling around in pain, and suggests that..

.. if you see a certain Russian playmaker inexplicably holding his sides in agony or his legs doing things he clearly doesn’t intend tomorrow, you’ll know it’s due to an army of Spain fans poking a “10 Arshavin” doll with sharp sticks.

To be honest, I think the dolls are quite cute and remind me of Cobi, the Barcelona 1992 mascot. And if Spain win, well…..

I’m finally sat in my lounge, clad in my Spain shirt with a glass of wine in hand watching the big match. When José Picardo enquired via Twitter ¿estás lista? whilst I was at music group practice, I tweeted in response that ‘La Furia Roja marcha adelante‘.

As José pointed out for me, tonight it’s La Furia Amarilla. Doesn’t sound as scary I’m afraid. And what’s more, I predicted that the best team would win – and they’d be wearing red when my mate Nick (who supports Russia) asked me yesterday.

Oh dear!

Let’s hope that’s the end of my woes for the night!

STOP PRESS – Xavi has just scored!!!!

On Monday, Comenius West Midlands held its Primary Languages Conference at the Novotel in Wolverhampton. Sandwiched between keynotes by Joe Brown from CILT that involved song rhyme and lots of action, and Steven Fawkes from ALL who thrilled us with his ‘Banane‘, delegates had to choose sessions from a range including :

  • It’s magic!
  • International Perspective
  • Let’s play – Language games and activities for the playground.
  • Numeracy through Languages
  • Animation
  • Italian for the Primary classroom – a cross curricular approach.
  • Music and songs in the Primary classroom
  • Animation in the languages classroom (double session)
  • Creative use of ICT

A tricky choice for many, judging from the feedback at the end of the day! I for one will be emailing presenters for notes from their sessions as I was presenting and missed out on all of the sessions!

Actually, I didn’t completely miss out as I was able to attend the plenaries and also began the day by acting as ‘roadie’ for Oscar Stringer as he presented a whistle stop double session on animation from idea through planning, modelling, filming, adding finishing touches and publishing. Phew! In a very short time (less that two hours), the participants made short films in French and Spanish which can be viewed below and on his NING network. Just shows what you can do in a short time with good instruction, imagination and a bit of plasticine. ;o)

Find more videos like this on Animation For Education

Definitely inspired me! So much so that, after a quick chat with Oscar, I decided to have a go with my Year 4 class this week. More of that in a later post!

My session was entitled Creative use of ICT and centred on the use of some tools that i thnk are useful to enhance and enable PLL.

The idea had been to introduce delegates to Voki, Voicethread, Audacity and Photostory, explain how I’ve used them in my classroom, and then let delegates have a go at using one of the tools. I’d prepared notes for people that went into everyone’s pack so those who couldn’t attend were able to benefit too, and these pointed to online tutorials for the tools as well as examples from my experience and research. I’d also requested a laptop between two to be provided with a microphone and Internet access, and Audacity and Photostory3 uploaded ready. I’d prepared a Voicethread and Voki account for the day so all outcomes could be saved together for future reference, and I’d also added some examples to get people started.

Best laid plans and all! There were three laptops provided, the speakers didn’t work, and Internet access was at best infuriatingly slow and at worst non-existent (at 20€ per laptop, I hope the orgnisers got a refund!) Anyhow, it left me rather embarrassed as my examples took an age to load (Voki) or didn’t play sound (Voicethread AND Voki at times) – next tie I’ll save them for offline access using Camtasia or similar – and I’ve found that there is a facility on Voicethread now to save for offline access.

However, I did manage to highlight the use of del.icio.us which i hadn’t intended to mention but proved to be one of the most popular ideas with delegates. My account of how I use Audacity led to lots of smiles and there was a general hum of interest as I made a Photostory in three minutes.

I must say was a little disheartened by the first session, especially as I had to repeat it after lunch, but several people came up to me and seemed to be buzzing about something I’d shared, so I went into the repeat feeling a little more confident, especially as I was prepared for the problems this time! The make up of the group was different this time and they asked lots of questions – I think they were the G&T group ;o)

At the end of the afternoon when the evaluations were returned, I was rather surprised, and very pleased as well!- to read several who said things like

“The ICT session was the best bit!’
“Brilliant session on ICT – can you do a whole session on Voicethread and podcasting next time please?”
“the notes were so useful – I’m going to check them out on del.icio.us – and I’m going to tell my staff about it too”

If you want to have the notes, see below. and all the sites / references can be found on my del.icio.us account – http:del.icio.us/lisibo/june22

Creative uses of ICT in the PLL classroom – Get more College Essays

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