July 15, 2011 – ¡Vámonos! The musings of Lisibo
 

Day: July 15, 2011

ALL Presidential team

Cynthia Martin – Past president

Karl Pfeiffer – President

Bernadette Holmes – President elect – absent so we had a ‘supply president’ in the form of Steven Fawkes

Looking back to look forward

Whilst KS2 entitlement still stands, it’s uncertain and as yet there are no clear messages from the coalition about whether they will or won’t be statutory. We’re also in the middle of a huge curriculum review of both secondary and primary education. But change can provide us with opportunities to reassess and reflect.

Change often happens simultaneously, sometimes across sectors too.

Many issues that arose with Nuffield are seen replicated now – developing languages vertically down from KS3 but also horizontally across ability range at time when languages were elitist. At the same time, comprehensive education began.

National curriculum – Languages for all September 1992 with all children 11-16 studying languages led to questions about approaches to teaching all abilities. This had an impact on dual linguists as FL2 got squashed out (although people studying language and …business / development etc increased)

National Language Strategy brought some coherence to languages in England – many success stories especially in primary phase, widening of choice post-14 etc.

KS2 Framework has been a key document in bringing coherence to primary provision. In 2009 92% primaries offering language in KS2 and 70%+ offered throughout the school.

MFL KS3 Framework arrived with an emphasis on understanding pattern, structure and grammar, but lessened target language in the classroom.

 

Building for the future – what do we need?

  • contact time – more needed across the board – not adding at one end and taking away at the other
  • coherent language learning experience – a continuum across KS2 – KS4 and beyond
  • consistency of teaching approach, again across the phases
  • content – creativity – cognitive challenge even in years 5 and 6
  • continuing professional development
  • cultural dimension
  • NSC/CLIL4Ts/LinkedUp
  • collaboration at local regional and national level –  cutbacks but still the need for support

 

 

Resetting the foundations

A policy for the future

“Languages are vital for the personal professional and economic growth of all UK citizens”

“Language learning and teaching must take their rightful place in Britain as educational and social priorities”

“All British pupils must have full open and equal access to language learning to ensure a level playing with their peers abroad”

“The professional status of language teachers must be of equal standing compared to teachers of other subjects.”

We believe that language learning and teaching are an essential part of rounded education for all UK citizens.

“languages are not about labels, they’re about people” ECML Graz

We believe that all learners should have the opportunity to learn their first language and at least one other language, including English, if this is not their first language.

Our education system should provide:

  • access to the range of languages existing in the UK including recognition for the languages of new communities
  • coherent learning programmes from primary to secondary

We believe that languages teachers should have access to high quality initial teacher training and continuing professional development.

Policy makers should ensure that

  • languages have a settled curriculum with a favourable time allocation in comparison to other successful jurisdictions
  • decisions relating to how children are taught should remain as close to the point of learning as possible

We advocate statutory status for languages from 7-16.

Opportunities through the Curriculum Review

  • the position of languages at primary needs urgent clarification
  • there should be continued language training for primary class teachers
  • adequate time allocation should be provided  in the curriculum to allow pupils to elarn to a similar standard to their peers in other major jurisdictions.

(At this point my RSA Typing1 couldn’t keep up with the note taking so I took pictures instead)

Why do we need language skills? 

 

Languages employability and entrepreneurship

Tolerance and challenge

Changing hearts and minds

  • All human beings can enjoy a language learning experience
  • All pupils should learn languages
  • Language learning has significant educational benefits
  • Language learning brings invaluable personal benefits
  • ALL pupils from KS2-4 should have the right to learn languages in the school curriculum
  • All citizens should have access to lifelong language learning

Languages MiniOlympics packs – Bringing together the two threads of KS2 teaching and languages and the International Dimension   –   presented by Michaela Howard and Jo Darley

Jo and Michaela – having marvellously overcome technical issues- presented their ideas for how to use the Olympics as the inspiration for language learning activities that  are clearly linked to the KS2 Framework and specifically for the class teacher to deliver.

1. GETTING TO KNOW YOU

Take 6 athletes from around the world –

  • look at their photographs
  • looking at names and have a go at pronouncing the names,
  • are they male or female? which country?
  • present countries in original language – can you decide which country it is?
  • look at different script
  • pause for thought – what was hard / easy?
  • greetings in their own language – which is which?
  • flags of countries – research?
  • sports on each day – who will be doing which sport? by process of deduction, decide!
  • customs and cultures to finish – which fact belongs with which athlete?

 

 

2. SPORTS

  • short activities that fit well into the school day
  • adapt the sports chart (containing all the sports in 5 languages) to individual needs – use one column or all five columns but just six sports to group etc
  • perhaps cut up into chunks to match up, compare languages, describe their decisoon making
  • then look for the symbols for sports
  • tailor it to the interests of your learners
  • make links – ask partner schools to tell you about their sports

 

3. DESIGN AN OLYMPIC EVENT

Michaela suggested challenging pupils to come up with their own Olympic event by posing the following questions –

  • what would YOUR Olympic event be?
  • who is it for?
  • team vs individual
  • equipment?
  • feelings?
  • why should it be in the games?
  • enjoyable?
  • where will it be held?
  • training?
  • values?
  • judging?
  • skills?
  • children be involved?

*excellent activity with a partner school*

*engaging learning – collaborating*

 

4.MASCOTS

http://www.mapsoftheworld.com/olympic-trivia/olympic-mascot.html

Design a mascot with 2 places to look for inspiration – info on Beijing mascots and how they were conceived, what they represent etc and from London Olympic mascots – very visual labelled diagrams. (Didn’t manage to note the URL but found the picture!)

A mascot for YOUR area – black cabs are specific to London perhaps – what would eg Lincoln have?

(there’s a mascot maker on the 2012 site!)

5.PUBLICITY

How might you use the job of promoting the Olympic games as a task?

In Y3 with the objective “to copy words” you might

  • design a ticket
  • label a map of the event
  • simple bilingual dictionary to find your favourite sport
  • make a welcome flag

In  y4 with the objective “to write some simple words and phrases using model and some from memory” you might make

  • programme cover
  • logo and label it
  • whole class poster advertising all sports
  • simple menu for food stand (healthy lunchbox)

In y5 with the objective “to write words, phrases and short sentences using references” you might design a cartoon strip

In y6 with the objective ” to write sentences on a range of topics” you might

  • write a paragraph to describe how you feel about games
  • discuss where the games should be in 2020 – make your case
  • produce tourist information for another country

 

6. ON YOUR MARKS

Going back to the 6 athletes and using these two sites, find out the distance the athletes have to travel to London (assuming they live in the capital city of their country!) How long will it take to travel? what time is it in their city when it’s  x o’clock in London?

http://www.silkysteps.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1118

http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/distance.html

 

7. NATIONAL ANTHEMS

There are 216 countries competing. Each one has a national anthem. What a lot of music to exploit!

  • What’s ours?
  • Listen to the national anthems – which country is it? You might need to give some clues too!
  • Look at lyrics in English and in the language of the country
  • Match up original to the English
A really great session, and can’t wait for the materials that Jo and Michaela kindly said they’d send!

Reframing languages  – presented by Dr Shirley Lawes , subject leader PGCE languages at Institute of Education; Mark Reid, Head of Education, British Film Institute and Muriel Huet, Lampton School

This talk reported on project funded by Esmee Fairburn Foundation carried out with 4 schools in conjunction with Institute of Education and the British Film Foundation

Why use short films?

  • short (5-6 minutes)
  • subject matter often wacky, outside learners experience
  • introduces to film technique

Why do the project?

  • revitalise the KS3 curriculum
  • optionality means we need to attract learners in Y9 onwards
  • what it means to learn another language
  • PGCE MFL experience proved it a great way of learning

Aims

  • to improve motivation/attainment
  • develop interest in film as a cultural form
  • develop cultural knowledge

 

Learners experienced 3 sequences of 5 lessons over 3 terms.

The project marks a development of work done by the BFI on using film in literacy, moulding it to the needs MFL teachers in mind – Cine-minis a DVD of short French films is the result.

One of the techniques used was “Tell me” grids with boxes for story / mood / character / setting – en français, qu’est-ce qui se passe? / ambience / qui? / où? ou quand? The soundtrack of the start of the film is played and learners fill it in with their ideas.

This encourages learners to build up pictures from sounds in their head, drawing on their  knowledge of the world and of film / narrative / text.

Once the first part of the film is shown, another grid considers surprises – is it as you expected? And what’s going to happen next?

I’m not going to spoil it, but we watched Les crayons and it was very unexpected!

Muriel was one of the four teachers involved and she shared the outcomes for her and her pupils.

It motivated her pupils greatly, leaving them more willing to take risks without necessarily realising it. It took them out of their comfort zone  whilst easily linking to curriculum, using the lack of prescribed content to an advantage.

For teachers, Muriel reported that the project gave an opportunity to

  • develop new pedagogical knowledge / approaches
  • develop their knowledge / confidence in exploring film as a cultural medium
  • change of their expectations in terms of attainment
  • integrate more ICU into teaching

Muriel reported that you need to have confidence to take risks professionally, to try out new ideas, be original and develop yourself professionally -and that this was an opportunity that she was given and took.

Cine-minis is available from http://filmstore.bfi.org.uk

 

 

And here are some free downloadable PDFs of information about film and languages.

Can’t wait for them to do some short Spanish films (hint hint!)

The third of a trio of presentations that I should have posted earlier (and I’ve still got a day of Language World to finish blogging too!)

My presentation at Language World this year took it’s theme from the fact that Primary language learning is an entitlement rather than statutory as we had expected a year ago. In it I explored what an entitlement meant and shared some ideas of how it might look and what it should include. Thanks to the people who attended on a hot Friday afternoon in the 6th session of a long and exciting day. I’ll put the audio with the Slideshare once I have time to edit it!

 

Sorpresas y sonrisas – tips and ideas on how to keep everyone enthused and engaged in the Primary Languages classroom was th title of my contribution to the ALL NE Spanish day at Gosforth High School in Newcastle.

I had the daunting task of starting the day, and if that wasn’t enough, I was sharing the bill with Rachel Hawkes, Neil Jones, Joaquín Moreno and John Connor. No pressure then ;o)

Having got everyone moving with Uno de enero from Take ten en español as it was the last day of San Fermín, I launched into my presentation (see below) punctuated by a quick game of puntos de contacto and el Baile Olímpico (hope the Youtube link works in Slideshare!)

Hope it was useful to everyone, even if they weren’t primary teachers. I certainly enjoyed presenting and the rest of the day was awesome – more of that later!

And thanks to ALL NE for the wonderful book. I am SO excited about it!

 

I am so behind with posting things – rather a lot going on at the moment!

Apologies to those who have been patiently waiting for my presentation at the Comenius Conference at Newman College on June 29th – here it is!

It was a really great day and it was a wonderful way to finish this phase of the project.

 

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