March 2021 – ¡Vámonos!
 

Month: March 2021

Also available – 50 English Phrases

When bsmall contacted me to say that they were updating their 50 Phrases series and would I like a sneak peek, of course I said yes!

bsmall are a “small but mighty” (love that description!) award-winning independent children’s publishing company that creates and publishes children’s books for sale in the UK and around the world. “We’re on a mission to empower all readers with critical literacy skills, and our books are creative, educational and encourage children to think for themselves.” I’ve written about some of their books before. You can find out about their Hello Languages series here, one of their UKS2 parallel text books Los Mellizos del Tiempo here and their I can read series of books here (update – there are a couple of Spanish ones and more French available now £1.99 each from Apple Books)

The 50 Phrases series are currently available in French, Spanish and English, and aim to give children ‘a head start’ with a new language. Over 32 pages, they introduce some common phrases and useful vocabulary for beginner learners including how to introduce yourself, talk about your family and express opinions as well as asking questions about where and what things are, inviting others to play and requesting things. Each double page spread has between 2 and 5 key phrases that are highlighted, adding up to 50 over the whole book, as well as boxes of vocabulary that can be used with those phrases. There is also the suggestion of a game or activity to rehearse those phrases, and also a little bit of grammar is explained throughout. You can see an example below.

Each phrase is written in Spanish and English, and is also written ‘phonetically.’ I’m not a great fan of this ‘how to pronounce it’ guide as it can lead to very odd pronunciation, but I understand that some people find it helpful, particularly as this is intended to be used at home/independently. And that’s where the update comes in about which I am very pleased.

The book now comes with a QR code that gives the reader access to audio files of the 50 Spanish Phrases (and the same for English and French if you purchase those books.) that give a clear native speaker model of the pronunciation. You can see how it works with the sample below.

Links to the English book.

By giving the pronunciation of the key phrases, learners now have access to what they actually sound like which will facilitate more educated understanding of the pronunciation guide and more accurate Spanish pronunciation. So this is a great resource that can be used at home without need for a Spanish speaker to be present!

As I said, I was given a sneak peek as the updated versions are not released until May 3rd but you can preorder the Spanish French and English books via the bsmall website.

While you’re on the site, check out some of the other books they publish. My eye was caught by the Hide and Speak books with flaps to lift and the Mix and Match flashcards for practising questions and answers. Or download the Language Learning brochure to browse at your leisure! And make sure you check out the Activity Hub where you can download a copy of the Rights of the Language Learner as well as a beach picture labelled in French and Spanish – perfect for Y2s summer topic.

The Bitmojis were a clue…

I once more had the pleasure of presenting at Language World, the annual conference of Association for Language Learning (ALL).
My presentation was entitled Take One Book and was the sequel to the presentation I did at PHOrum in November (you can read about it here) this time choosing a book that was originally written in Italian and has no English translation.

I really enjoyed sharing my ideas of how to use ¡Ojo Oso! and was pleasantly surprised that I managed to finish in time and have time for questions. I experimented with using subtitles/captions during my presentation after comments by Helen Simpson on LiPS made me think about accessibility. I need to watch back the recording of my session (which has just been made available for those who registered for the conference but missed the session) to see exactly how accurate they were but I know that when I spoke Spanish they definitely had trouble as they were set to English! For example un agujero became ‘all alcohol’ and una madriguera became ‘mother together.’

Below you can find a PDF of my presentation. I’ve removed the story slides due to copyright but you can find links to versions of the story read online, as well as to where you can purchase a copy.

At the end there is a link to my Pinterest where I collected together materials for the talk, some of which I didn’t use! You can also access it via this QR code.

http://bit.ly/OjoOso

Perhaps you have ideas that spring to mind? Or you have a book that you could use in a similar way? If you have any comments or questions, do leave a comment below.

Postscript – you can watch the ‘standby/rehearsal’ recording of the session here.

Here are my sketchnotes from Language World 2021. All done live so please excuse the slight untidiness at times as I tried to get everything written down!
I tweeted most of them after the sessions and was really glad to see many tweets saying how helpful people found them.

There are more to come as I have several sessions that I want to catch when all the recordings are posted later in the week. If you want to see sketchnotes of some different sessions (and many of the same ones!) have a look at Clare’s blog.

Opening keynote – A rich curriculum for all: the pressured yet pivotal position of languages
Michael Wardle, HMI, Ofsted
What Languages can learn from Coding
Mark Pallis
——-
Stimulating curiosity and developing students’ investigative skills also leads to greater international thinking. If this is important how can we develop this? By sharing intercultural understanding using authentic materials?

Liz Black
Multilingualism, Language Learning and Social Cognition
Professor Li Wei, UCL Institute of Education, University College London
An introduction to Language Teaching: Learning from the Past
Prof Nicola McLelland, Dr Simon Coffey & Dr Lina Fisher, History of Modern Language Learning and Teaching in Britain (HoLLT)
International partnerships and exchanges – the latest on what programmes exist and on travel advice for teachers and pupils
Vicky Gough and Brian Stobie https://twitter.com/schools_british
British Council Language Trends England 2021 – Interim Results
Vicky Gough, British Council and Ian Collen, NCILT
Engaging, enriching, inclusive: ensuring a primary MFL curriculum which delivers for SEND pupilsEleanor Chettle Cully
Day 2 Opening Keynote – Challenges and Rewards in the CLIL unit design process
Dr Marie Petersen, Coburg West Primary School, Melbourne
Making connections between languages with translation skills: for easier transition between KS2 and 3
Helen Stokes
——-
The Missing Link – transition between KS2 and KS3
Suzanne O’Farrell
Transition toolkit
Keynote – Using CLIL and MFL strategies to maximise the curriculum for EAL learners
Jane Driver, Queen Katharine Academy
Consolidating Knowledge with Meaningful Practice: An Introduction to NCELP Resources
Professor Emma Marsden, National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy (NCELP)
The 20 Keys: giving grammar a new lease of lifeElena Díaz
Curriculum-making for language teachers: the power of (pluri)literacies
Professor Do Coyle, University of Edinburgh

If you’d like to see my notes from previous years, check out these links:
Language World 2019 – The Sketchnotes
Language World 2018 in sketchnotes
Language World 2017 in sketchnotes
Language World 2016 in sketchnotes  Session on Sketchnoting
Language World 2015 in sketchnotes

Share a story!

I’ve just made a quiz for the class I have on Thursday, based on well known children’s books.

All the covers are in languages other than English but are easy to identify thanks to the visuals.

There are 10 books ranging from picture books to chapter books, and after the first 10 slides that show just the covers, the next 10 slides reveal the titles in English as well as the language in which the book is written. You could use this as an extra part of the quiz, awarding bonus points for successfully identifying the language.

All the books are available from Little Linguist.

I’ve made another quiz of Roald Dahl book covers in Spanish as well.

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