Senior Phase


Senior Phase

All Junior Cert pupils to study a foreign language under new plan

19 April 2017 (News Talk)

(Applies to Ireland) All pupils will study a foreign language for their Junior Cert by 2021 under ambitious new plans being announced by the Education Minister.

The strategy also aims to increase the number of Leaving Cert students studying a foreign language by 10%.

Chinese will be introduced as a Leaving Cert subject for the first time, while so-called 'heritage languages' such as Polish, Lithuanian and Portuguese will get a proper curriculum.

Speaking to Pat Kenny, Minister Richard Bruton explained: "We are going to have to, post-Brexit, realise that one of the common weaknesses of English speaking countries - that we disregard foreign languages - has to be addressed in Ireland.

"We need now to trade in the growth areas - and many of those speak Spanish, Portuguese and Mandarin. Those are the languages that we need to learn to continue to trade successfully."

On the subject of Eastern European languages, he observed: "We now have many Lithuanians and Polish here, and we can develop those languages.

"We also need to use programmes like Erasmus - we want to increase our participation there by 50%. Clearly it has to become more immersed in the language.

"At the moment if you look at Leaving Cert and Junior Cert, French dominates. French is a lovely language, but we need to recognise that we need to diversify into other languages."

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Education Scotland Modern Languages newsletter - April 2017

18 April 2017 (Education Scotland)

The latest edition of Education Scotland's Modern Languages newsletter is now available.

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Dingwall Academy's pioneering sign language work hailed at Holyrood

2 April 2017 (Ross-shire Journal)

Dingwall Academy’s leadership in promoting British Sign Language (BSL) has been applauded by the Scottish Parliament – after the school was highly praised by Strathpeffer-based MSP, Maree Todd.

She used the recent debate on the consultation on the Draft BSL National Plan to highlight the initiative of Dingwall Academy’s unit. During her speech, she used BSL to welcome former Dingwall Academy pupil, Caitlin Bogan, who was watching the debate from the viewing gallery.

The MSP later said: “We should all be proud of what is being done in the Highlands. Dingwall Academy is one of the few schools to deliver a BSL unit – all students in first year, including my son Gregor this year, take BSL classes as a taster along with other languages, including French, Gaelic and German.

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SQA National 5 Modern Languages webinars

31 March 2017 (SQA)

The SQA is running a series of subject-specific continuing professional development (CPD) webinars to help you prepare for the revised National 5 course assessments that are being introduced in session 2017-18. The Modern Languages webinars will take place on Thursday 20 April, Monday 24 April and Thursday 4 May, and will focus on the requirements of the revised assessments.

Further details of the webinars are provided on the SQA's NQ events page. Please note that places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Please note also that the content of Modern Languages webinars is the same, and colleagues need only attend one of the three scheduled.

For those unable to secure a place, recordings of the webinars will be published on the SQA website within six weeks of the webinar date. This will be accompanied by a transcript of any questions and answers discussed during the webinars.

Details of published webinars will be provided in SQA Centre News over the coming months.

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New job profile on the SCILT website

31 March 2017 (SCILT)

We have a selection of job profiles on our website demonstrating languages being used in a wide range of professions.

Our latest addition comes from Jane Robb, PhD student at the Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich. Jane has studied several languages, including French, German and Spanish and says her Spanish language skills enable her to conduct fieldwork and live and work in Guatemala.

Teachers use our profiles in the classroom to enhance learning about the world of work and how language skills can play a part.

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French at the Alliance Française in Glasgow

27 March 2017 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française has a number of upcoming opportunities for French language learners in Glasgow. Follow the relevant link below for more information:
  • Spring Break Revision Classes April 2017 (3-7 April) - preparation courses for pupils sitting Nat 5, Higher and Advanced Higher French this year and University students due to sit exams later this year.
  • Easter workshop for primary school pupils (3-7 April) - children will learn about French language and culture through fun Easter-themed activities.
  • Term D adult courses now enrolling - classes available at all levels from Beginner to Advanced, along with specialised courses such as Conversation, Current Affairs, Grammar and Phonetics. New term commences 18 April 2017.
  • New adult classes - Beginners, Lunchtime Conversation Class, Phonetics Class, Grammar Class commencing from 18 April 2017.

For further information about the Alliance Française and their full range of activities, visit their website.

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Jackie Kay celebrates pupils’ multilingual poetry success

24 March 2017 (SCILT)

The multilingual talents of budding young poets from across Scotland were celebrated at a prestigious award ceremony in Glasgow. Jackie Kay, Scotland's Makar, presented the prizes.

Primary and secondary students from Aberdeenshire, Edinburgh, Falkirk, Glasgow, North Lanarkshire, Renfrewshire, Stirling and West Lothian used their language skills to create and share poetry for this year’s Mother Tongue Other Tongue multilingual poetry competition. Winners received their prizes on the main Piazza stage at the SEC Glasgow on Saturday 11 March 2017 as part of the wider Languages Show Live Scotland event. Their work is published in an anthology.

Mother Tongue Other Tongue is an exciting project which celebrates linguistic and cultural diversity through creative writing and showcases the many languages which are used by children and young people across Scotland, in school and at home. The competition is organised by SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages, based at University of Strathclyde. Jackie Kay is the patron of the competition.

One teacher said of the event: “Taking part in the Mother Tongue Other Tongue poetry competition was a very worthwhile endeavour. Pupils really enjoyed creating poems in another language and interesting language based discussions were generated. The emphasis on celebrating all languages from across the globe was a great message to share with pupils and they especially enjoyed mixing their own language with the languages they are learning at school. We will definitely be taking part again next year.”

Whilst one of the pupils summed up their feelings: “I feel happy, proud and special.”

Fhiona Mackay, Director of SCILT, says: “Mother Tongue Other Tongue is a celebration of the many languages that are spoken and learned by children and young people across Scotland. The collection of their poems weaves a rich tapestry of voices that honours cultural diversity and pays testament to the wealth of Scotland’s many languages and cultures. We were delighted to see such a high calibre of entries this year, submitted in 35 different languages. Our congratulations go to the winners and to all who took part in the competition.”

Mother Tongue invites children who do not speak English as a first language to write a poem, rap or song in their mother tongue and share their inspiration. Other Tongue encourages children learning another language in school to use that language creatively with an original poem, rap or song in that other tongue. Prizes are awarded in both categories.

Mother Tongue Other Tongue supports the Scottish Government initiative, ‘Language Learning in Scotland: A 1+2 approach’ by allowing pupils to apply their language learning in a creative way. The competition provides children who do not have English as their first language an opportunity to celebrate their mother tongue.

The targets laid out in the Scottish Attainment Challenge are about achieving equity in educational outcomes, with a particular focus on closing the poverty-related attainment gap. One of the key drivers is improved literacy. Through reflecting on poetry in their mother tongue and creating poetry in another tongue, learners are developing their literacy skills.

Mother Tongue Other Tongue is supported by the University Council for Modern Languages Scotland, creative writer Juliette Lee and the Scottish Poetry Library.

Details of the winners and the anthology are published on the SCILT website.
MTOT 2016-17 winners with Jackie Kay

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Curriculum for Excellence Benchmarks

23 March 2017 (Education Scotland)

The Benchmarks in modern languages provide clarity on the national standards expected from first to fourth curricular level.

They draw together and streamline a wide range of previous assessment guidance (including significant aspects of learning, progression frameworks and annotated exemplars) into one key resource to support teachers’ and other practitioners’ professional judgement of children’s and young people’s progress.

The Benchmarks will also support consistency in teachers’ professional judgements and will help teachers to ensure that young people achieve the pace of progress they need right across the Broad General Education.

The Benchmarks can be accessed on Education Scotland's National Improvement Hub along with Benchmarks exemplification to support practitioners to use the Benchmarks.

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Summary of SQA Course Reports for National 5 Modern Languages

23 March 2017 (SCILT)

We have summarised the Course Reports for National 5 Modern Languages and Gàidhlig. These reports highlight areas where candidates performed well in the 2016 exam and areas where they encountered difficulty.

They contain sound advice for both teachers and pupils in the run up to this year's exam diet.

The full report for each language can be accessed on the SQA website under the Verification and Course Reports tab.

The summary reports are attached below and can also be found on the Senior Phase, Essentials for Planning page on the SCILT website under the SQA Qualifications tab.

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New job profile on SCILT's website

17 March 2017 (SCILT)

For relevant, labour-market focused career advice on languages, direct from the workplace, read our latest Job Profile from Lynn Sheppard, Masters Student and travel writer, former English teacher, diplomat and civil servant.

Lynn tells how languages have not only helped in all her diverse job roles, but in developing and maintaining personal and professional relationships around the globe. Language skills have given her a cultural insight into how others think and behave.

Teachers, use this resource in your classroom to enhance learning about the world of work.

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Gaelic e-bulletin

17 March 2017 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland's March e-bulletin for Gaelic education is now available online.

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Summary of SQA Course Reports for Higher and AH Modern Languages 2016

16 March 2017 (SCILT)

We have summarised the Course Reports for Higher and Advanced Higher Modern Languages and Gàidhlig. These reports highlight areas where candidates performed well in the 2016 exam and areas where they encountered difficulty.

They contain sound advice for both teachers and pupils in the run up to this year's exam diet.

The full report for each language can be accessed on the SQA website under the Verification and Course Reports tab.

The summary reports are attached below and can also be found on the Senior Phase, Essentials for Planning page on the SCILT website under the SQA Qualifications tab.

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SALT schools competition 2017

11 March 2017 (SALT)

There are four categories in this years competition: Primary & BGE, National 5, Higher, and Advanced Higher.

The theme is I love Languages Because and students can submit their entries in any format (PowerPoint, poster, song, poem, etc).

Visit the SALT website for further information and to submit entries by 26 May 2017.

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New job profile on SCILT's website

10 March 2017 (SCILT)

We have a range of Job Profiles on our website designed for teachers to use in the classroom to enhance learning about the world of work and how language skills can play a part.

Our latest addition comes from Kirsten Matthews, a Distillery Tour Guide and Public Service Interpreter. Kirsten tells us her language skills make it possible for her to perform a service and to help people in her roles.

You can see Kirsten's profile on our website.

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Pupils celebrate success at multilingual poetry competition

9 March 2017 (Renfrewshire 24)

Six bilingual pupils from Renfrewshire have scooped up awards at a national poetry competition for their creative writing talents.

Of the 14 awards up for grabs through the ‘Mother Tongue Other Tongue’ competition run by SCILT – Scotland’s National Centre for Languages, six were awarded to pupils from St John Ogilvie Primary School, St James Primary School and Castlehead High School, who had written poetry in their native tongue in order to share their “other voices”.

Renfrewshire EAL (English as an additional language) teachers helped support bilingual pupils to create a collection of poems written in languages such as; Polish, Hungarian, Chinese, Punjabi, Catalan, Arabic, Greek, Filipino, Korean and Dutch.

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Mapping Chinese survey

9 March 2017 (SCEN)

At the meeting of Confucius Institute Directors last year, we all decided that it would be a great help if we shared information about the teaching and learning of Mandarin at all levels in Scotland. We want to map all the opportunities to learn Chinese accurately, and to share it with everyone to help with productive links between schools, colleges, universities and businesses.

We would like to invite primary and secondary school teachers to complete our online survey to help gather this data.

Visit the SCEN website for the survey link. Please complete by 31 March 2017.

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UK-German Connection initiatives for schools

7 March 2017 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German connection have the following opportunities they'd like teachers and schools to be aware of:
  1. What do you need now? Have your say.
    It’s now more important than ever to maintain connections with Europe. With this in mind, we’re reviewing the opportunities and support we offer schools and are asking teachers for their input on what schools currently need in order to keep links with Germany alive. We’ve put together a short questionnaire for you to have your say and would be grateful for your feedback. Complete the survey.

  2. Plastic Pirates
    There’s now another chance for UK and German partner schools to apply for funding to get together in Germany and undertake research on Germany’s rivers and oceans.

New Job Profile on the SCILT website

3 March 2017 (SCILT)

For relevant, labour-market focused career advice on languages, direct from the workplace, read our latest Job Profile from Sandie Robb, Senior Education Officer for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS).

Working on conservation projects around the globe, Sandie explains how knowing even a little of a language is respectable and polite when working with colleagues worldwide.

Teachers, use this resource in your classroom to enhance learning about the world of work.

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Articulate Language Camps 2017

1 March 2017 (Articulate Language Camps)

Articulate Language Camps run an International Camp (12-17 year olds) and Launch Camp (6-11 year olds) each summer in Scotland.

The International camp brings together young people aged 12-17 from across Europe and beyond to share their language and culture and provides the opportunity to learn French, Spanish, German, Italian or English.

The Launch camp gives young campers the chance to experience the same languages in a fun and interactive way, learning through digital media projects and outdoor activities.

Find out more in the Articulate Language Camps videos on YouTube where you will also find links to their online brochure and registration form. Follow the relevant link below for more information about each camp:
You can find out more about Articulate Language Camps by visiting their main website.

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Fairtrade Fortnight

28 February 2017 (SCILT / Traidcraft)

#mfltwitterati it’s Fairtrade Fortnight! Please tweet @scottishcilt and @FairtradeUKEd the lesson ideas and resources that you’re using with your learners as a meaningful context for language learning #Fairtrade.

We’ve already found these from @traidcraft, tell us what you think.
  • Explore the world of cocoa production in Côte d’Ivoire with a range of teaching resources for learners of French at 2nd level, 3rd level and in the Senior Phase.
  • Explore a range of resources relating to Apicoop - honey and blueberry producers in Chile. Aimed at 2nd level learners of Spanish materials include a poster, an advert and a game.

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Languages Teacher Training Scholarships

23 February 2017 (British Council)

Are you passionate about French, German or Spanish? If so, you could receive a languages scholarship of £27,500 to train as a secondary school teacher in England.

Visit the British Council website for more information and to apply by 31 July 2017.

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Do we need modern language graduates in a globalised world?

23 February 2017 (THE)

Six academics offer their views on the state of language learning in a populist climate.

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UK-German Connection latest news

21 February 2017 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German Connection offers a number of opportunities for schools in the UK and Germany to develop and maintain partnerships. In their latest Spring 2017 newsletter they highlight the following:
  • With the changing landscape of international relations, we want to make sure we're still offering you the right kind of support to keep your connections with Germany alive.We're currently reviewing the opportunities and services we offer and would like to invite you to tell us what you need now for your schools and pupils. Complete the short survey.
  • Deadline reminder of 1 March for applications for the following summer courses in Germany:

For upcoming deadlines for the rest of the school year, download our calendar of opportunities for 2016-17.

For further information about UK-German Connection and their activities, visit their website.

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Time to listen to teens on language learning

21 February 2017 (Scholastic blog)

For far too long it seems that media columns have been filled with reports of declining interest of British teenagers in modern foreign languages (MFL).

Take the figures published last summer. The number of children studying French to A-level has fallen by around 50 per cent in eight years to fewer than 10,000. Only around 3,800 youngsters took German. There was also a fall in those studying Spanish, which had previously bucked the anti-languages drift.

The government replied that it has been encouraging pupils to take languages, mainly through the English Baccalaureate – the wrap-around qualification which requires pupils to sit a range of certain GCSEs including a language.

But the problems don’t end there. More university language departments are facing closure if student recruitment continues to decline, and the key problem facing language courses is the drop in the number of students sitting the relevant A-levels that are required for entry. And there is a shortage of MFL teachers.

This ought to worry us – even more so as we head towards Brexit. It has been estimated by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Modern Languages that our failure to communicate in anything other than English costs Britain up to £50 billion a year in lost trade. Declining numbers of MFL students have led to calls for a joined up strategy where the full contribution of languages to the economy and society is realised, with the National Association of Head Teachers particularly vocal.

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Learn French at the Institut français d'Ecosse

17 February 2017 (Institut français d'Ecosse)

The Institut français offers classes and workshops for all ages (toddlers to adults), from complete beginners to fluent speakers.

Enrolment is open for Spring term classes beginning in April.

Students undertaking National 5, Highers and Advanced Highers can also register for a preparation course running 3-7 April.

Visit the website for full details and to enrol.

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Agenda: So much to be gained from young people learning modern languages

12 February 2017 (Sunday Herald)

Does language learning have a place in the Scottish curriculum? Yes. Are modern languages and their teachers under pressure in secondary schools? Yes. Has there been a better opportunity for promoting language learning in our schools ? No.

Language learning has a vital place in Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) on a learner journey from 3-18 but in a manner that does not see it as the preserve of the secondary school.

It has always baffled me that traditionally in Scotland, given its place in Europe, we started language learning so late in a child’s development.

The earlier we expose children to learning languages, the better their chance is of seeing this as something that is just part of their culture.

From a child development point of view, there’s much research to confirm that children are more receptive educationally and emotionally to language learning from an early age.

They soak it up and acquire language skills at a great pace. We know that bilingualism not only helps the cognitive development of the child but also that children who are in bilingual education such as Gaelic Medium Education also attain and achieve at least as well as, in many cases better, than their monoglot peers. They are fluent in two languages and are learning a third by the age of 11. In addition, there is another plus to early exposure to acquiring additional languages; most parents like it, understand it and support schools that promote it.

The Scottish Government-led 1+2 languages programme is a long-term policy commitment started in 2011 due to run until 2021, aimed at making it normal for all children and young people in Scotland to learn languages from primary one.

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Gaelic Translation Competition!

10 February 2017 (Education Scotland)

This translation competition is open to all children and young people in both Gaelic Learner and Gaelic Medium Education.

There are nine English and eight Gaelic posters of Scotland’s scientists available on the National Improvement Hub. One of the Gaelic posters is missing- Alexander Graham Bell.

Children and young people are invited to translate a short biography on Alexander Graham Bell into Gaelic. This is an exciting opportunity to have your work shared nationally and to feature alongside the other eight scientist biographies available on the National Improvement Hub. Your work could support learners of Gaelic across Scotland.

For more information visit the Education Scotland Learning Blog. Entries should be submitted by 3 March 2017.

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MTOT 2016-17 winners announced!

10 February 2017 (SCILT)

We'd like to take this opportunity to thank and congratulate everyone who took part in this year's Mother Tongue Other Tongue multilingual poetry competition for schools in Scotland. We had a wonderful variety of entries and appreciated the creative effort that went into the submissions.

Selecting the finalists for this year's anthology was incredibly difficult for the judges. However, after considerable deliberation, we're pleased to now be able to announce the winners in each category along with highly commended entries which will also feature in the MTOT anthology of poems.

Mother Tongue

Category

Award

Name

School

P1 – P3

Winner

Jan Piwowarczyk (Polish)

St Benedict’s Primary

 

Highly commended

Kacper Jodelka (Polish)

St John Ogilvie Primary

P4 – P6

Winner

Laith Kabour (Arabic)

St John Ogilvie Primary

 

Highly commended

Ashley Li (Mandarin)

St James’ Primary

 

Highly commended

Amira Shaaban and Aidah Abubaker (Swahili)

St Rose of Lima Primary

 

Highly commended

Caroline Rotimi and Joolade Adekoya (Yoruba)

St Maria Goretti Primary

P7 – S1

Winner

Miriam Espinosa (Catalan)

St James’ Renfrew

 

 

Highly commended

Lemuel Pascual (Filipino)

 

St James’ Renfrew

 

Highly commended

Noemi Dzurjanikova (Slovak)

St Rose of Lima

S2 – S3

Winner

Stefan Benyak (Hungarian)

Castlehead High

 

Highly commended

Éva Tallaron (French)

Royal High

Senior Phase

Winner

Boglarka Balla (Hungarian)

Graeme High

 

Highly commended

Ayesha Mujeb (Urdu)

George Heriot’s

 

Highly commended

Nadya Clarkson (Russian)

George Heriot’s

 

Other Tongue

Category

Award

Name

School

P1 – P3

Winner

Julia Gawel (Scots)

Our Lady of Good Aid Cathedral Primary

P4 – P6

Winner(s)

Nathan Watson and Aiden Wardrop (French)

Johnshaven Primary

 

 

Highly commended

Jack Shaw (German)

Gartcosh Primary

 

 

Eva Campbell (German)

Gartcosh Primary

P7 – S1

Winner

Rosalind Turnbull (French)

Doune Primary

 

Highly commended

Samuel Kassm, Theo Wilson, Emma Cullen and Darren Campbell (French, Spanish, Italian, Urdu, Scots)

Battlefield  Primary

S2 – S3

Winner

Simi Singh (French)

Graeme High

 

Highly commended

Ciara Wilkie (French)

St Margaret’s Academy

Senior Phase

Winner

Jordanna Bashir (French)

Shawlands Academy

 

Highly commended

Holly Mincher (Spanish)

St Andrew’s

 

Highly commended

Rachel Cairns (French)

Graeme High

Well done to everyone who took part in the competition. It's been a marvellous celebration of the various languages spoken in our communities. You should all be very proud of your work.

To mark participation in the competition, registered schools will shortly be sent a certificate which can be printed out and presented to pupils who took part. The finalists above will be invited in due course to receive theirs at the MTOT celebration event on 11 March.

Thank you all once again and keep writing!

Boost language attainment with a Modern Language Assistant

8 February 2017 (British Council)

Modern Language Assistants bring authentic language and culture to the classroom. In a recent survey of host schools, Heads of Languages reported improved exam results – raising standards in under-performing students and motivating talented students to achieve more. The support of an Assistant is particularly valuable with the on-going focus on languages in the 1+2 initiative, and can particularly help to complement the development of language teaching in primary schools.

The British Council Language Assistants programme draws on over 100 years of experience with overseas education authorities to provide a trusted, high quality service.

Applications are now open! For more information visit the British Council website.

In 2016 the Erasmus+ UK National Agency awarded nearly €1.2m+ to Scotland’s schools and colleges for Key Action 2 (KA2) Strategic Partnerships, and 70% of Scottish applications for school-only partnerships were successful. The next Erasmus+ funding deadline is 29 March. If you are planning to apply, access our tailored guidance for school-only applications and school education applications; pre-recorded videos; and telephone support sessions.

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Josh Martin, student of Psychology & German and part-time racing driver

3 February 2017 (SCILT)

Our Job Profiles are designed for teachers to use in the classroom to enhance learning about the world of work and how language skills can play a part.

Our latest addition comes from student and part-time racing driver, Josh Martin, who appreciates how languages are key in helping him communicate with fans around the world and in negotiating sponsorship deals.

Read his profile and others on our website now.

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eTwinning Workshops

3 February 2017 (British Council eTwinning)

Interested in eTwinning and partnering with schools across Europe on collaborative projects? Check out the professional development opportunities in the UK and overseas for both primary and secondary sectors.

Visit the British Council eTwinning website for more information.

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Summer courses in Germany: Deadline 1 March 2017

1 February 2017 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German Connection has the following summer courses in Germany, which are currently open for applications:
Both programmes combine language learning with cultural trips and excursions, as well as staying with host families.

Not sure about applying? Our mentors are happy to answer your questions. Pupils can contact us to be put in touch.
The application deadline for all programmes is 1 March 2017.

For more information about the courses in Germany and other activities undertaken by UK-German Connection, visit their website.

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New Job Profile on SCILT's website

27 January 2017 (SCILT)

Inspire the future generation with relevant career advice on languages direct from the workplace via the Job Profiles on our website. These resources are designed for teachers to use in the classroom to enhance learning about the world of work and how language skills can play a part.

Our latest addition comes from modern languages teacher, Olivia Ingleby, who tells how language skills helped her discover new places, cultures and the varied opportunities that brought prior to becoming a languages teacher.

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UK-German Connection Funding

26 January 2017 (UK-German Connection)

A reminder that the next deadline for grants for UK-German activities is 31 January 2017.

For an 'at a glance' overview of our grants and details about each programme, please visit the UK-German Connection website.

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Refugee Exhibition

26 January 2017 (University of Edinburgh)

Let your senior phase students see a meaningful context in which German is spoken and meet the students who ran the integration project working with refugees in Germany.

The principal aim of the exhibition is to raise awareness, hopefully inspire similar projects and increase learner motivation for those who often don´t see the relevance of learning a language.

The photo exhibition will be open from March until the end of May. Interested schools can arrange to either:
  1. come and see the exhibition at the University of Edinburgh and meet some of the students involved
  2. see the exhibition and have some workshops about the refugee crisis
  3. request photos of the exhibition, the power point presentation and the film clip for those who are too remote to come to Edinburgh

Please email Annette Gotzkes in the first instance to discuss your preferred option.

Further information about the project can also be found on the University of Edinburgh website.

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Language Show Scotland – Free event + 20% discount on language classes!

24 January 2017 (Language Show Live)

Scotland’s biggest and most prestigious event dedicated to all things language is back at the SECC in Glasgow on the 10th – 11th of March 2017. Officially sponsored by Education Scotland and the Scottish Government this free to attend event is a must for anyone interested in learning or advancing their languages, exploring job opportunities in the language industry, considering teaching or working abroad, enjoying a fantastic range of international cultural performances and much, much more!

10TH MARCH – 9:00AM – 6:00PM GLASGOW SECC
11TH MARCH – 9:00AM – 5:30PM GLASGOW SECC

Sample our extensive free seminar programme, meet over 100 top exhibitors like the European Commission, the Chartered Institute of Linguists and the British Council, meet language professional recruiters, enjoy our fantastic array of cultural performances, free language classes and more.

Find out more and register for free today.

Our trademark intensive 2 hour Language Plus classes are also now available online at a heavily discounted early bird rate (over 20% off the standard price!) of just £18. These optional add-ons can be purchased at the end of the free registration process and are certain to add a productive language experience to your day!

Language Show Live Scotland 2017 logo

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Principal Assessor and Deputy Principal Assessor - Higher Chinese languages

23 January 2017 (SQA)

SQA is inviting applications for a Principal Assessor in Higher Chinese Languages to lead the team as well as a Deputy Principal Assessor (DPA) in Higher Chinese Languages. The DPA is a new role in a slightly altered structure which will become operational for Diet 2017. The primary role of the Deputy Principal Assessor is to support the Principal Assessor.

Details of both roles can be found by following the relevant link below to the SQA website:

Training and support will be provided for both roles.

Inspiring Scotland’s future global workforce - Business Brunch launch

23 January 2017 (SCILT)

Young people from thirteen schools across the west of Scotland had the opportunity to engage with local businesses in the first of a series of Business Brunch events, held at University of Strathclyde on 13 January 2017. 130 learners from S3-S6 heard from a range of business leaders who view language skills as key to the growth and success of their company. The event demonstrated the relevance of language skills in a work context and aimed to encourage pupils to continue with their language studies into the senior phase of their secondary education, and beyond school.

A teacher attending the event said: “Today’s event was a fantastic opportunity. It has given my pupils a deeper appreciation that language learning is not just about the words but that being able to speak a language can break down so many barriers in so many different ways, including our own perceptions of people and countries.”

One of the young people added to this and commented: “I learned that cultural awareness and language skills are an important aspect of day-to-day business and also important to bigger companies. Language and cultural awareness is important in helping understand foreign business partners and in earning their trust.”

Eric Balish, Director of Trade Finance Scotland and Ireland at Bank ABC and one of the workshop leaders told the learners: “Life is a competition. Most of your competitors speak at least two and perhaps multiple languages. Speaking English is simply not enough to thrive and prosper now, far less in the future. Our business is anchored in financing international trade. We have a particular focus on trade into the Middle East and North Africa and also Brazil. However, we operate throughout Europe. As a consequence it is vital that we can communicate in a broad range of languages.”

The event was organised by SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages in partnership with the University Council for Modern Languages Scotland. Companies attending included Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, Radio Lingua, Keppie Design, Bank ABC and Russian Centre ‘Haven’. Schools represented were St Luke's High School, Caldervale High School, Marr College, Duncanrig Secondary School, Shawlands Academy, Holyrood RC Secondary School, Hyndland Secondary School, Largs Academy, Kirkintilloch High School, Trinity High School, St Margaret Mary’s Secondary, Williamwood High School and Clydebank High School.

Fhiona Mackay, Director of SCILT said: “Events such as these are a really important way of providing young people with high quality careers advice delivered by the business people themselves and of demonstrating to them the value of language skills in our increasingly globalised world”.

Meaningful employer engagement and providing relevant careers advice are both key recommendations of Scotland’s Youth Employment Strategy, “Developing the young workforce”. This Business Brunch supported these aims by giving young people the opportunity to ask questions and find out more about the role of languages in the business world. The targets laid out in the Scottish Attainment Challenge are about achieving equity in educational outcomes, with a particular focus on closing the poverty-related attainment gap. Through hearing from a range of business leaders and interacting with employees, the aspirations of the young people who attended were raised.

This collaboration between schools and businesses supported Scotland’s International Policy to equip young people with international communication and employability skills that they will need in our increasingly globalised society and economy. The event is the first of a series of Business Brunches being held across Scotland in January and February 2017.

Read more...

Glasgow Film Festival 2017

18 January 2017 (Glasgow Film)

The programme for Glasgow Film Festival 2017 has just been announced!

More than 310 separate events and screenings of films from 38 countries will show across the city from 15 – 26 February in one of the UK’s biggest film festivals. The event offers several special screenings for schools, which this year includes the following foreign language options:

  • Asterix: The Mansions of the Gods (PG) - 6-8 February (French, English subtitles)
  • Ma Revolution (N/C 15+) - 3-8 February (French, English subtitles)
  • The Olive Tree (N/C 15+) - 7 February (Spanish/German with English subtitles)
  • Shorts for Wee Ones (N/C 3+) - 9 February (English, French or dialogue free)
  • The Golden Dream (N/C 12+) - 9 February (Spanish & Tzotzil with English subtitles)
  • Zip Zap & The Captain's Island (N/C 8+) - 9 February (Spanish)

There are also CPD opportunities for teachers and workshops for pupils. Visit the 'What's on for Schools' page of the GFT website for full details and to book.

Tickets go on sale to Glasgow Film Festival Members at noon on Thursday 19 January and on general sale at 10am on Monday 23 January.

Visit the GFT website for more information.

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United Kingdom Linguistics Olympiad 2017

17 January 2017 (UKLO)

UKLO is a competition for students who are still at school (or equivalent college) – any age, any ability level – in which they have to solve linguistic data problems. Thanks to our generous academic supporters, it’s completely free to both competitors and schools.

The UK Olympiad also enters at least one team in the International Linguistics Olympiad.

The United Kingdom Linguistics Olympiad (UKLO) for 2017 will soon get underway with round 1 taking place from 6-10 February.

If you are interested in finding out more about the competition and registering your school to take part, visit the UKLO website.

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CISS professional learning menu update

16 January 2017 (CISS)

The CISS CLPL menu for 2016-17 'Making Chinese work for you!' has been updated.

Visit the CISS website to view the brochure and for information on booking a professional learning session.

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SQA update to AH Modern Languages guidance on past paper usage

16 January 2017 (SQA)

The SQA has produced updated guidance documents on the use of past paper questions for Advanced Higher Modern Languages (Chinese, Italian, French, Spanish, German and Gaelic learners).

These can be found on the SQA Advanced Higher Modern Languages webpage under the 'Specimen Question Papers and Marking Instructions' section.

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Refreshed and ready for anything in 2017!

13 January 2017 (SCILT)

Here at SCILT, our New Year’s Resolution has been to review and refresh the CLPL menu. With your feedback in mind, we have made a few strategic changes that we hope will make a big difference. New on the SCILT website from today – the new and improved CLPL menu.

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SQA Marker Opportunities

12 January 2017 (SQA)

SQA currently has Marker vacancies in the following areas:

  • AH French Paper 1 and Paper 2 (Reading and Translation and Listening and Discursive Writing) - this is a MFI Central Marking event which takes place from Thursday 1 June - Sunday 4 June 2017 inclusive
  • AH French Portfolio - this is traditionally marked and the Marker meeting take place on Wednesday 10 May 2017.

If you would like to be considered for AH French marking please complete the online application form stating which components you would like to mark confirming your availability to attend either the marking meeting and or the central marking event.

Details can be found in the marker advert on the SQA website.

Current markers who wish to be considered for a change of level should also complete an application form confirming current delivery of AH French for at least 2 years.

Read more...

Gaelic writing competition

9 January 2017 (Acair Books)

Acair Books, an Lanntair and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar have created a new award to encourage original writing in Gaelic for children.

The aim of the award is to:

  • Actively support original writing in Gaelic for children
  • Encourage and nurture new writers in Gaelic

In 2017, the award is for a book for 5 to 8 year-olds and must be between 1000 and 2000 words.

The work must be written in Gaelic by a writer aged 16-years or over, and who has never had a Gaelic book published for children before.

Visit the website for further information and submit your entry by 31 January 2017.

Read more...

SQA updates January 2017

9 January 2017 (SQA)

The SQA has updated the Course Assessment Specification document and several Specimen Question Papers on the Advanced Higher Modern Languages page of their website.

Read more...

Erasmus+ application support

9 January 2017 (Erasmus+)

The next Erasmus+ funding deadline for Key Action 1 School Staff Mobility is 2 February. For UK schools and colleges, the UK National Agency has guidance documentation, and videos on an introduction to Schools Key Action 1 and completing the eForm.

There is also a Q&A webinar at 4-5pm on 19 January.

Read more...

Nihongo Cup - Japanese speech contest for UK secondary schools

6 January 2017 (Japan Foundation)

The Nihongo Cup Japanese Speech Contest for Secondary School Students in the UK is open for applications!

This contest is open to students in the UK studying Japanese language.

Visit the Japan Foundation website for more information and to download the application pack.

Closing date for entries: 24 March 2017.

Read more...

Oxford German Olympiad 2017

6 January 2017 (Oxford University)

The Oxford German Olympiad 2017 is open to UK pupils aged from 9 to 18 with a range of different tasks to suit different age groups. There is also an open competition for groups or classes of 4+ participants.

This year's theme is Deutsch(e) jenseits von Deutschland - German(s) beyond Germany.

Visit the Oxford German Olympiad website for more information and to enter by 17 March 2017.

Read more...

Oxford University Spanish Flash Fiction Competition

6 January 2017 (ALL)

A new competition from the Modern Languages Department at Oxford University invites secondary students to write a story in Spanish of not more than 100 words, and send it to schools.liaison@mod-langs.ox.ac.uk by noon on Friday 31 March 2017 with your name, age and year group, and the name and address of your school.

The judges will be looking for creativity and imagination as well as good Spanish!

Read more...

The Languages Challenge

6 January 2017 (ALL / SOAS)

Run by SOAS, University of London, the Languages Challenge is now in its third year.

The Languages Challenge is a collaborative project aimed at students in year 8, 9 & 10 (S2-S4). Students have a choice of task and a choice of which languages they use in each of them. The aim of the challenge is to:

  • provide students with opportunities to actively engage with languages
  • encourage independent study and a range of soft skills like team-work, planning, leadership and negotiation skills
  • raise awareness of the cross-curricular opportunities in language studies

Students are encouraged to use oral as well as written skills, to plan each task, conduct research and produce multiple drafts. They must take different roles and complete a short reflective report for each task.

Attached is a Teacher Information Pack, which is also available to download on the ALL website along with further information about how to take part.

Read more...

Mathématiques sans frontières

6 January 2017 (North Lanarkshire Council)

North Lanarkshire Council and Heriot Watt University are once again jointly organising the world-wide Maths and Language competition “Mathématiques sans Frontières” in Scotland.

Schools are invited to participate in this stimulating and light-hearted competition for S4 and S5 which combines Maths and Modern Languages and aims to motivate pupils.

The competition itself will be held on Tuesday 7 March 2017 and schools wishing to participate should complete the proforma attached and return by 27 January 2017. There is also a training test available for download.

See the attachments for more information and to register your school.

French writing competition launched from space!

2 January 2017 (Culturethèque)

An exciting French writing competition has just been launched by French astronaut, Thomas Pesquet, from the International Space Station.

Young people, up to the age of 25, are invited to write a short piece in French based on le Petit Prince and submit their entries by 28 February 2017.

See Thomas speaking about the competition on the launch video and find out how to enter on the Culturethèque website.

Read more...

Eilidh’s next year of study is full of Eastern Promise

1 January 2017 (Milngavie Herald)

Eilidh McConnell, a sixth year pupil at Douglas Academy in Milngavie, has won a scholarship to study and work in China next year.

Eilidh, who will defer her University place for a year, competed with other Scottish pupils and was interviewed in Strathclyde University for the place. The opportunity is offered by the Confucious Institute of Scotland which seeks to promote Chinese language and culture in Scotland.

Read more...

Calderglen 1+2 Case Study

15 December 2016 (SCILT)

Calderglen is a six-year non-denominational, comprehensive school in East Kilbride, established after the merger of Hunter and Claremont High Schools. It serves approximately 1,600 pupils and shares a campus with Sanderson High School for young people with additional support needs.

The school uses an innovative and dynamic approach to the curriculum. Read how pupils benefit from creative language learning strategies and for interesting ideas for the implementation of 1+2.

Read more...

SQA Course Reports

15 December 2016 (SQA)

SQA has now published the Modern Languages course reports for National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher.

These contain helpful information on candidate performance in the 2017 examinations as well as providing invaluable advice to centres. Teachers may find the information particularly useful in the run up to prelims.

To access the reports for all Modern Languages visit the SQA website and choose National 5, Higher or Advanced Higher.

The course reports can be found under the tab Verification and Course Reports at the bottom of the page.

SCILT will summarise the key messages and publish them on the website early in the New Year.

Read more...

Generation UK – China Scholarship programme

14 December 2016 (British Council)

Through Generation UK, the British Council have opened up a range of opportunities in China, giving students the chance to experience the country, language and culture while gaining valuable skills for the future.

One student from the University of St Andrews shares her experience of taking part in the Generation UK - China Scholarship programme.

Read Victoria's story and find out more about the opportunities available on the British Council website.

Read more...

Heriot-Watt Multilingual Debate 2017

12 December 2016 (Heriot-Watt University)

Heriot-Watt University's Multilingual Debate is an annual event showcasing the interpreting skills of undergraduate and postgraduate students.

The 2017 Debates will take place on Wednesday 22 March with two multilingual teams arguing for and against a motion of topical interest in a range of languages. There are two Debates; one in the morning, one in the afternoon.

The Multilingual Debates are open to schools, colleges and universities and aim to stimulate interest and dialogue among young people in the international politics and social issues of the modern world whilst also setting language acquisition in a realistic context.

The topics for the 2017 Debates have just been announced and can be viewed on the YouTube video.

Visit the Heriot-Watt website for further information.

Read more...

Media Release: Two weeks to go! Last chance to enter this year’s FilmG competition

29 November 2016 (All Media Scotland)

The closing date for entries in FilmG 2017 is fast approaching. However, if anyone is yet to complete their film there are still two weeks left, before the competition closes on Wednesday 14 December.

Whether it be a comedy, drama, documentary or even a music video, one of the simplest ways to make a short film, is to use mobile technology.

The FilmG team are hopeful that the increasing availability of technology along with a broader range of prizes than ever before will see a record number of entries this year.

The theme for this year’s FilmG competition is ‘Strì’ meaning to strive or endeavour. All films must be in Scottish Gaelic and can be up to five minutes long for youth category entrants or up to eight minutes in length for open category entrants.

Read more...

What's Your Story Development Programme 2017

29 November 2016 (Scottish Book Trust)

If you're 14-17 years old, living in Scotland, and care about creative writing and illustration then read on!

What's Your Story? is a Scotland-wide programme of support for teenage writers & illustrators – led by teens, for teens.

Seven teenagers from around Scotland will be selected to join the What’s Your Story? Development Programme for 2017. Thanks to our friends at The Gaelic Books Council there will be one place especially for a Gaelic language applicant, but no matter what language you work in you are welcome to apply.

Visit the website to find out more about the programme and to apply by 3 January 2017.

Read more...

School Partnership Bursaries

29 November 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Do you have a link with a German school? Have your schools engaged in any joint activities in 2016?

Keeping up connections between the UK and Germany is now more important than ever. To help you to keep your school partnership alive, UK-German Connection is offering schools special partnership bursaries of £1,000.

It's easy to apply. Just complete a short online questionnaire by 7 December 2016.

Visit the UK-German Connection website for more information.

Read more...

Quebec student exchange proposal

28 November 2016 (SALT)

Éducation Internationale (EI), a non-profit cooperative in education founded by Québec Local Education authorities (or school boards), would like to develop student exchanges between Québec and the UK, with a particular focus on Scotland and Wales. If you think this might be of interest to your authority, there is more detailed information, including contact details, in the document on the SALT website.

Read more...

SEET update

28 November 2016 (SEET)

Find out the latest about the Our Europe and Euroquiz competitions for Scottish schools in SEET's November 2016 newsletter.

Read more...

Pedagogy review offers help to revitalise languages education

23 November 2016 (SecEd)

Modern foreign languages are “at risk” and face becoming the domain of “certain types of school and certain sections of the pupil population”.

The warning has come from Ian Bauckham, chair of the Modern Foreign Languages Pedagogy Review, which published its report into MFL teaching at key stages 3 and 4 this week.

The Teaching Schools Council, which set-up the Review, is now encouraging schools to use the findings, alongside related evaluation documentation, to review and improve their MFL provision.

Read more...

Concours de la Francophonie 2017

23 November 2016 (Alliance Française)

L’Institut Français d’Écosse and the Alliance Française de Glasgow, in partnership with SCILT, are delighted to launch the 2nd edition of the Concours de la Francophonie which encourages young French learners and their teachers across Scotland to celebrate French language and the international Journée mondiale de la francophonie taking place in March each year..

To participate, you need to submit a short video (max 5mins) in French such as a dialogue, a song a short drama piece, etc. There are four categories:

  • P1-P4,
  • P5-P7,
  • S1-S3
  • S4-S6.

The four winning teams will be invited to the University of Edinburgh on Friday 17 March 2017 to take part in a special day of workshops in French and the awards ceremony.

For more information and to enter the competition by 14 December visit the Alliance Française or Institut Français website.

Read more...

French oral revision courses: Higher and Advanced Higher

23 November 2016 (Alliance Française)

As in previous years, the Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running Higher and Advanced Higher Oral Preparation courses for pupils who will be sitting their French oral examinations in 2017.

The sessions will take place during February 2017.

Visit the Alliance Française website for further information and to enrol.

Read more...

Capable linguists put off by ‘ridiculous’ grade boundary

18 November 2016 (TESS)

Grade boundaries set at “ridiculous” levels are driving pupils away from languages and leaving talented linguists with lower results than they deserve, it has been claimed.

Languages teachers fear their subjects – which are already suffering from falling numbers – will be sidelined further as they gain a reputation among pupils as “hard” options that could put their university places at risk.

Of the 30 most popular Highers, German and French set the bar highest for an A grade (78 per cent and 77 per cent, respectively); Spanish is also above most subjects, with 73 per cent required for an A.

Gillian Campbell-Thow, chair of the Scottish Association for Language Teaching (Salt), said: “Learners who were expecting to get an A, having had high marks all year, were of course disappointed. For some, it impacted on their access to further and higher education.”

As TESS has reported, the situation for modern languages has already been described as “near critical” this year because of a decrease in pupils taking the subjects at S4.

Ms Campbell-Thow said that, at Higher, “we are now seeing learners opting for subjects where they feel they are more likely to get an A”.

Languages teachers are also reportedly narrowing their focus. Ms Campbell-Thow said that one Salt member “felt she had to take out a lot of the creative content…in favour of teaching to a test, which flies in the face of Curriculum for Excellence”.

She added: “We don’t want to find ourselves teaching to an exam, using rote learning and effectively putting a ceiling on skills development and language acquisition, but the worry of letting down learners and parents…has left our practitioners feeling both vulnerable and under pressure.”

The full article can be accessed on TESS online, 18 November 2016 (subscription required).

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Oxford German Olympiad 2017

16 November 2016 (Oxford German Network)

The Oxford German Olympiad 2017 is now open! This year's theme is Deutsch(e) jenseits von Deutschland - German(s) beyond Germany.

The competition is open to UK pupils aged from 9 to 18 with a range of different tasks to suit different age groups. There is also an open competition for groups or classes of 4+ participants.

Visit the Oxford German Olympiad website for more information. Entry deadline is 17 March 2017.

Read more...

UK-German Connection news

9 November 2016 (UK-German Connection)

The latest funded opportunities from UK-German Connection can be found on their website via the appropriate links below:

For more information about UK-German Connection and their full range of activities, visit their website.

Read more...

Make Time for Languages! - International Education Week 2016

8 November 2016 (British Council)

A reminder that this year's International Education Week (IEW), taking place from 14-18 November, has a focus on languages.

Find out how you can get involved by visiting the British Council's IEW website.

Read more...

LFEE Europe immersion courses 2017-2018 in France and Spain for primary and secondary teachers

8 November 2016 (LFEE)

The dates for our immersion courses 2017-2018 have just been released. Please visit the LFEE website to find out new dates and further information or see the attached brochure.

Successful applicants receive a grant from the British Council that covers all costs, including flights, accommodation and subsistence, as well as the course fee.

NEW: Immersion follow up

If you have already attended our immersion course in France in the past and wish to attend another course with us, we have created a follow up immersion which will take place in the beautiful city of Avignon in Provence. Please contact us for further information.

Should you wish to participate in our immersion courses in France or Spain from July 2017 to April 2018, please pre-register at immersions@lfee.net and we will send you further information on how to apply to the Erasmus+ European funding for schools.

Do not hesitate to visit our website and blog for more information and to see what your colleagues have said about their course last summer.

A bientôt!

Read more...

SALT 2016 Schools Poster Competition winners

7 November 2016 (SALT)

After a fantastic response to the 2016 Schools Poster Competition, the winning entries can now be seen on the SALT website.

Read more...

First Chinese classroom to open for Moray school pupils

4 November 2016 (Press and Journal)

School pupils in Moray will be transported from the north-east to the Far East with the opening of the region’s first Chinese classroom.

The Confucius base is scheduled to open at Elgin Academy at the end of the month with language and culture lessons for students. Two Chinese-speaking teachers will be based in the classroom, but will take lessons at five other secondary schools and eight primary schools in the region.

The initiative will also open up the opportunity for pupils and staff to take part in courses in the Asian country.

Read more...

By the numbers: the decline of specialist subjects

4 November 2016 (TESS)

Although archaeology is going to be withdrawn as an A-level option, there are other subjects that attract far fewer students.

[..] In Scotland, the lowest number of entries for a subject at Higher was for Gaelic as a foreign language, with 84, while 92 students took Urdu.

The full list of lowest entry A Levels / Highers is available in TESS online, 4 November 2016 (subscription required).

Read more...

Scots Makar, Jackie Kay, supports MTOT

4 November 2016 (SCILT)

We are delighted to have Jackie Kay, the national laureate, as patron for this year's Mother Tongue Other Tongue multilingual poetry competition for schools in Scotland.

Hear Jackie's message supporting the aims and values of the competition in the video on our MTOT webpage.

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Fokus: Films from Germany 2016/17

3 November 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Returning to Scottish screens from 25 November 2016 to 28 January 2017, is this nation-wide event featuring 12 innovative, inspiring and challenging films by Germany-based directors. We have selected a wide array of topics and cinematic styles that shed light on current debates and discourses in Germany.

The following screenings are specifically for school groups:

For full programme details visit the Goethe-Institut website.

Read more...

Shakespeare Lives in Schools Day

3 November 2016 (British Council)

Shakespeare Lives in Schools Day will be marked in schools all over the world by children of all ages on Friday 2 December 2016. We are inviting you and your school to join in a global celebration of Shakespeare in this special 400th anniversary year.

Visit the British Council Schools Online website to discover how you can get involved. Many of the suggested activities could be adapted to the languages classroom or worked on with an overseas partner school.

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Spanish Immersion Days for secondary students

2 November 2016 (Consejería de Educación)

The Consejería de Educación and the Spanish Academy of Language and Translation (SALT) offer Spanish Immersion Days for pupils studying at Higher and Advanced Higher level.

Trained MLAs are ready to visit schools and spend a day with students giving them the opportunity to practise Spanish meaningfully with native speakers through oral communication activities, workshops and games.

Visit the website or see the attached flyer for more information and the procedure to book.

Read more...

Related Files

European Charlemagne Youth Prize 2017

28 October 2016 (European Parliament)

Since 2008, the European Parliament together with the ‘Foundation of the International Charlemagne Prize of Aachen’ have each year been inviting young people from all EU Member States to submit projects run by and for youth showing an active participation in the development of Europe.

Young people aged between 16 and 30 from any EU Member States can submit projects for the European Charlemagne Youth Prize. Projects can be submitted individually or, preferably, in groups.

This year's competition is now open and invites projects on EU development, integration and European identity issues which must be submitted by 30 January 2017.

Visit the website for more information.

Read more...

Business Brunches 2017

28 October 2016 (SCILT)

For the third year in succession SCILT, in partnership with University Council for Modern Languages (UCMLS) will be hosting a series of Business Brunch events across Scotland in January and February 2017. These will take place in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness.

Aimed specifically at S3 - S6 pupils, these events will demonstrate the relevance of language skills in a work context with the intention of encouraging pupils to continue with their language studies into the senior phase of their secondary education.

Registration is now open for the Glasgow, Dundee and Aberdeen events. (Edinburgh and Inverness will open soon).

To find out more and to register by 21 November, visit our Business Brunch 2017 webpage.

Read more...

DAAD writing competition

25 October 2016 (DAAD)

The DAAD and the IMLR, together with the Goethe-Institut and the Swiss and German Embassies in London, are calling all learners and lovers of German to take part in a writing competition! This time, the task is to write a story in German.

Two German-speaking authors, Anja Tuckermann (Berlin) and Ulrike Ulrich (Zurich), have provided beginnings of stories of migration. Now it’s your turn to take one of these beginnings and continue spinning the yarn. You are free to develop your text in any direction you choose: to write a story of flight or refuge, of identities and self-images, of encounters or new beginnings … . Your story can be set in the past, the present or the future - and in any geographical setting you wish. The only rule: it must not be longer than 250 words.

The competition is open to students at secondary schools, Sixth-Formers, undergraduates, postgraduates and anybody else who feels up to the challenge!

Visit the DAAD website to find out more and submit your entry by 6 January 2017.

Read more...

Digital Days competition for schools

21 October 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut London invites German teachers and their pupils to take part in this competition series requiring language and computer skills alike! The topic this year is Digital D.

Several categories for different levels of language skills are provided. Primary teachers and secondary teachers can choose which competition they think suits their students’ best.

To take part in the competition, visit the website and submit the registration form by 10 November 2016.

Read more...

Erasmus+ 2017 deadlines announced

21 October 2016 (Erasmus+)

All the deadlines and information on the types of activities you can apply for are contained in the 2017 Call for Proposals document and the 2017 Programme Guide both of which you can download from the Key Resources page of our website. The Call for Proposals is an overview document containing all the deadlines for 2017, while the Programme Guide contains all the detailed information on how to apply for Erasmus+ funding. You will need to read both documents when planning an application.

Read more...

Concours de la francophonie 2017

21 October 2016 (Institut français)

The Institut français d'Écosse is pleased to announce the launch of the second edition of our new Concours de la francophonie to encourage all young French learners and their teachers across Scotland.

The competition is open to primary and secondary pupils and involves producing a short video in French which should be submitted by 14 December 2016.

See the attached flyer for more information about the competition and how to take part. You can also see pictures from the first edition competition on the Institut français website.

Read more...

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French Film Festival school screenings

17 October 2016 (Institut français)

This year's French Film Festival takes place from 4 November - 1 December and is the only festival of francophone films in the UK.

There are screenings for primary and secondary school pupils taking place around Scotland during this time.

See the attached flyer for details of the school screenings and contact information for bookings.

Visit the French Film Festival website for the full programme.

Read more...

Related Files

Films for language learning

13 October 2016 (ALL)

The Association for Language Learning (ALL) has a focus on film this fortnight. Visit the website for links to useful film resources and the upcoming film festivals taking place this autumn around the UK. Each festival offers a selection of foreign language film screenings.

  • Discovery Film Festival (22 October - 6 November 2016) - Scotland's international film festival for young audiences.
  • Into Film Festival (9 - 25 November 2016) - a free nationwide celebration of film and education for 5-19 year olds.
  • French Film Festival (4 November - 1 December 2016) - the only festival of francophone films in the UK.
Visit the ALL website for more information.

Read more...

Our Europe - film competition for schools

12 October 2016 (SEET)

Our Europe 2016-17 is now open for registration!

The film-making competition for S3-S6 pupils is an annual competition run by the Scottish European Educational Trust. Teams of 4 design a storyboard outlining the film they propose to make based on the competition theme. This year the topic is global citizenship, specifically addressing one of the following themes:

  • Travel and Leisure
  • Migration and welcome
  • Trade

As always, films must include the use of at least one language other than English. This year any and all languages will be accepted in entries. All teams have to do is put their ideas into a storyboard and send them to SEET by 8 December 2016.

For more information, visit SEET's Our Europe competition website.

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ALL Language Teacher of the Year Awards 2017

11 October 2016 (ALL)

Calling all head teachers, heads of department, language coordinators and ALL primary hub leaders! Do you know a very special primary or secondary language teacher?

If you know a teacher who inspires pupils through superb teaching and supports colleagues by sharing their expertise and ideas, then why not nominate them for an Association for Language Learning (ALL) Language Teacher of the Year Award 2017?

Open to teachers throughout the UK.

Visit the ALL website for full details and submit your nomination by Friday 21 October 2016.

Read more...

SCHOLAR support for Advanced Higher modern languages

11 October 2016 (SCHOLAR / Heriot-Watt)

SCHOLAR would like to bring to your attention their support for learners at Advanced Higher French, German and Spanish tackling the Specialist Study and Portfolio. Within the ‘Culture’ area, there is an extensive set of activities taking learners through every aspect of these areas. There is also a record, downloadable as a word document in both French and German, to help learners keep a record in the target language. This has the aim of helping them both prepare for the visit of the external examiner, and collect information to allow them to present their evidence for the Specialist Study Unit in the target language.

Search for Scholar HW, or use the login link.

Log in with your ID and password, which your school has!

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Brexit: Scheme extended to encourage foreign language take up

8 October 2016 (BBC News)

Addressing a serious decline in the number of Welsh pupils learning foreign languages is "urgent" following the Brexit vote, an academic has warned.

There were 700 A-level language entries in 2015 compared with 1,152 in 2009.

A scheme, which sees university students mentoring secondary school pupils, is being extended after making a "clear impact" on class numbers.

Professor Claire Gorrara said the scheme was more important than ever after the Brexit vote.

The Cardiff University professor, who leads the project, said it had led to improvements to the 28 schools involved in the pilot across Wales.

Read more...

How a deaf teenager from Congo found her voice in poetry

6 October 2016 (STV News)

For most of her life, it seemed as though Keren Mingole would never have a place to call home.

Forced to escape war-torn country of DR Congo, the 16-year-old has been brought up in Scotland from a very early age. Not only faced with the difficulty of communicating with strangers, Keren also had to learn British Sign Language.

[..] In 2015, an opportunity arose for Keren to explore and draw from her difficult experiences as a child through a multilingual poetry contest.

The Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition explores cultural identity, and allows pupils from P1-S6 to enter creative pieces of work and celebrate the many different languages used in schools throughout the UK.

Pupils from across Scotland are currently participating in the multi-cultural competition, which is officially endorsed by Nobel Peace prize winner Malala Yousafzai. Scottish Makar Jackie Kay is also the official patron.

Keren won the 2015 Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition with her poem 'Who am I?' - a composition of her journey from her native home to her current home, Scotland.

Read more...

Related Links

National Poetry Day (STV News, 6 October 2016) See Jackie Kay and one of last year's MTOT winners, Keren Mingole, talk about poetry in their lives (the programme is available on iPlayer until 13/09/16 - watch from 28:50).

Language Ambassadors Programme

6 October 2016 (University of Strathclyde)

Now in its 5th year, the Language Ambassadors Programme is offering visits to Secondary or Primary schools (and other formats too). As Language Ambassadors we will talk about our varied experiences as language learners and do our best to encourage your pupils to follow in our footsteps…

Motivation, experiences abroad, transition to First year at university, job prospects, university courses… This is what we can tell them about.

Boost your young learners’ motivation, invite us in!

For more information see the Language Ambassadors website and to organise a visit, simply contact: Cédric Moreau, c.moreau@strath.ac.uk.

Language Ambassadors at Strathclyde photo

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Celebrate National Poetry Day!

6 October 2016 (SCILT)

Today is National Poetry Day and the theme this year is 'Messages'. To mark the occasion we've created our own triolet poem in French on this theme.

You can see the poem on the National Poetry Day webpage of our MTOT website. We hope it will provide some inspiration for those taking part in the Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition in Scotland! There are lots of other poetry resources on our website too. So take a look and get creative!

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How mentoring can improve modern languages uptake in schools

6 October 2016 (The Conversation)

For some time, there have been many stories told of the “crisis” in modern languages in secondary schools and universities. There is hard evidence to support this. Even though there have been upsurges in modern languages provision – following the introduction of the English Baccalaureate for example – pupil numbers continue to fall.

In Wales, where modern languages are still an optional choice at GCSE, research shows that the number of pupils studying a foreign language declined by 44% between 2002 and 2015. The number of pupils taking French in 2015 was less than half those who took it in 2002.

But why are pupils put off taking a language at GCSE level, and how can we improve attitudes to the subjects? As a bilingual country, it seems counter-intuitive that Welsh pupils cannot see the benefits of studying languages. However, research from an engagement project we have recently been running suggests a range of things are influencing pupils’ decisions not to study a language.

The mentoring project saw undergraduate modern language students from four Welsh universities trained to work with year eight and nine pupils (aged 13 and 14) in 28 schools. The students helped the pupils to practice their language, build confidence and knowledge, and teach them how modern languages can aid personal and professional development.

Our work was part of a push by the Welsh government, to arrest and reverse the decline in modern languages study by 2020.

Read more...

Harsh grading blamed for decline in students sitting modern foreign languages

4 October 2016 (AOL)

Harsh grading is resulting in a decline in the number of students sitting modern foreign languages, with native speakers performing less well than those whose mother tongue is English, it has been claimed.

Independent school headteachers said students sitting Spanish, French and German from GCSE through to A-level had been marked more heavily for the last decade, compared with other subjects.

Members of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference (HMC) said poor exam results were "sapping (students') confidence", while entries in A-level Spanish, German and French are all down on the previous year, by 2.7%, 4.2% and 6.4%, respectively.

James Priory, headteacher at Portsmouth Grammar School, said: "We have seen unpredictable language results this year. A number of students predicted B grades, for instance, have received grades below expectation, with the result that they are no longer set on studying languages at university.

Read more...

Euroscola 2017

30 September 2016 (European Parliament)

Euroscola brings together about 600 students from all over the European Union for a day in Strasbourg discussing aspects of European integration, in multilingual working groups of 100 students. It is open to students aged 16-18 and the European Parliament offers a subsidy towards the costs of the journey to Strasbourg.

As working groups consist of students from several member states it is essential that participants have a sound knowledge of at least one other European Union language. For practical purposes knowledge of French is necessary as during the "committee" meetings in the afternoon, students are expected to think and speak in a language other than their mother tongue. The debates are held mainly in French and English.

Applications are now open for dates between January and May 2017.

To find out more and to apply, visit the Euroscola website.

Read more...

SQA news

29 September 2016 (SQA)

The following news items from the SQA may be of interest to language teachers:

Removal of Higher exemplar question papers

Exemplar question papers (EQPs) were created as a revision resource for learners during implementation of the new Higher and Advanced Higher National Qualifications. As we now have two years' worth of past papers for new Higher as well as a specimen question paper for each subject with an exam, the EQPs will be removed from SQA's open website in the week commencing 24 October 2016. Associated guidance documents and guidance on the use of past papers documents will also be removed at this time.

The Advanced Higher EQPs and associated guidance will remain for session 2016-17 and will be removed from the website in July 2017.

Marker opportunities 2017

Are you an enthusiastic and committed teaching professional looking for a new challenge? Do you want to gain valuable insight that will benefit your students? SQA markers are at the heart of our examination operations, gaining valuable insight into assessment and quality assurance processes.

We are currently recruiting markers across all subjects and levels for the 2017 examinations.

Please note that applicants must have at least two years of teaching experience at the level they wish to mark.  Find out more about becoming an SQA marker.

Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival - Screenings for schools

22 September 2016 (Consejería de Educación)

The University of Edinburgh, in collaboration with Consejería de Educación, will launch the third Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival (ESFF) from 6-20 October 2016 and would like to invite schools to bring their senior phase students along to one of the screenings at the Filmhouse Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Inverness or Glasgow.

See the attached letter of invitation for details of the programme and booking information.

For more information about the Festival, visit the ESFF website.

Read more...

Related Files

UK-German FLA/ELA Ambassadors

21 September 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Applications for the UK-German Connection's FLA/ELA Ambassador network 2016-17 are now open.

The FLA/ELA Ambassadors are a network of language assistants who are working in schools in the UK and Germany. They run small projects, activities, events or clubs in order to inspire and motivate young people in their schools for the language and culture of the other country.

FLA/ELA Ambassadors run at least one project within their school or in conjunction with other schools in the area. The project is bilateral, run either with a partner Ambassador from the other country, or with an existing partner school. The aims are to enable young people to have direct, meaningful contact with young people in the other country and to make lessons come to life through active involvement in a UK-German partnership.

To find out more about the scheme and previous Ambassador projects which have taken place, visit the UK-German Connection website and apply by 14 October 2016.

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Language Immersion Days for Higher and Advanced Higher

20 September 2016 (UWS)

The Languages for All team at University of the West of Scotland (UWS) are offering language immersion classes in French, German, Mandarin or Spanish to support Higher and Advanced Higher students.

The half-day classes are designed to suit the academic needs of students who wish to enhance essential skills in language such as reading, writing, speaking and listening. These classes will prepare students for their SQA final exams.

The classes can either be held in one of the UWS campuses - Ayr, Dumfries, Hamilton or Paisley. Alternatively UWS lecturers can travel to your local authority facilities.

To find out more and how to arrange a session, visit the UWS website.

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eTwinning Professional Development Workshops - Autumn 2016

19 September 2016 (eTwinning)

Secondary school teachers and school leaders interested in embedding international practices in their classrooms are invited to apply for one of the professional development workshops taking place this November.

Each workshop aims to share good practice, meet project partners and set up high quality eTwinning projects on the themes below. The selected teachers and school leaders will have the opportunity to meet like-minded educators from Europe, learn innovative approaches and practice new skills.

  • Workshop 1 - Immigration and tolerance (17-19 November, Greece)
  • Workshop 2 - Storytelling (18-20 November, Iceland)
  • Workshop 3 - Strategic Leadership for high quality eTwinning and Erasmus+ projects (24-26 November, UK - Cardiff)

For more information about each workshop and to apply, visit the eTwinning website.

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Chryston HS part of the Smart Choice: German Network

19 September 2016 (Chryston High School)

Chryston High School has now been named as the first Scottish school on the Goethe Institut’s Smart Choice: German network.

The network recognises the school’s commitment to German as a foreign language and the support that the school offers to our feeder primary schools.

Part of the project involves setting up a digital network which will allow us to strengthen our partnership with our feeder primary schools while promoting the benefits of learning German.

Read more...

Related Links

The Smart Choice: German - Schools' Network - Goethe-Institut website containing information about the network and how schools can get involved.

MTOT - Free creative poetry workshops for teachers

9 September 2016 (SCILT)

Once again, we are delighted to be able to offer FREE poetry workshops for primary and secondary teachers at four different venues across Scotland.

Teachers will work with Juliette Lee, a poet and creative writer, for a half-day workshop to develop their own creativity, explore poetry and the impact of language we use. We hope that teachers will leave inspired and able to take back some ideas and examples to work with their own pupils who will then submit their poems/rhymes/raps/songs into the MTOT competition.

Teachers do not have to attend one of the workshops to register their school for the MTOT competition although the workshops are a fantastic opportunity to develop your skills in teaching poetry, languages and to gather ideas to take back into the classroom. Due to the creative and interactive nature of these workshops, places are limited to 15 teachers at each venue, therefore we advise you to book your place early.

Details of the workshops are as follows. Click on the appropriate workshop link below to register for the event.

  • Saturday 24 September, 10.00 – 12.30; Dundee University, Dundee (deadline for registration Friday 16 September)
  • Friday 30 September, 13.30 – 16.00; The Open University in Scotland, Edinburgh (deadline for registration 6pm Monday 26 September)
  • Saturday 1 October, 10.00 – 12.30; Inverness College - UHI, Inverness (deadline for registration 6pm Monday 26 September)
  • Saturday 8 October, 12.00 – 14.30; University of Strathclyde, Glasgow (deadline for registration Friday 30 September) PLEASE NOTE EVENT NOW FULL!
For more information about the competition visit the MTOT page on our website and register your school to take part!

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HSBC/British Council Mandarin Chinese speaking competition

8 September 2016 (British Council)

The competition, organised by HSBC and the British Council, offers a fun opportunity for secondary students to practise and improve their Mandarin Chinese language skills.

Participating students have the chance to win a week in Beijing, visiting historical sites, interacting with Chinese students and experiencing Chinese culture.

Visit the British Council website to find out more and to apply by 7 October.

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SCHOLAR live online sessions

5 September 2016 (SCHOLAR)

Need help with Computing Science, Maths or Modern Languages? SCHOLAR online homework sessions are back!

The first for Higher and Advanced Higher Modern Languages is 'Using SCHOLAR to help you succeed' on Tuesday 27 September at 6pm.

Visit the website for the full schedule of upcoming sessions this term.

Read more...

ALL Language Teacher of the Year Awards 2017

5 September 2016 (ALL)

Calling all head teachers, heads of department, language coordinators and ALL primary hub leaders!

Do you know a very special primary or secondary language teacher?

If you know a teacher who inspires pupils through superb teaching and supports colleagues by sharing their expertise and ideas, then why not nominate them for an Association for Language Learning (ALL) Language Teacher of the Year Award 2017?

Now open to teachers throughout the UK.

Visit the ALL website for full details and submit your nomination by Friday 21 October 2016.

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Travel grants for UK schools with partnerships in Germany

5 September 2016 (British Council)

The UK is the partner country for this year’s Oceans and Seas focussed Year of Science organised by the German Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). Together with our UK partners the British Council Germany, the UK Science & Innovation Network and UK-German Connection, we invite you to take part in a collaborative Citizen Science Project working on the “Plastic Pirates” project together with your German partner school.

The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research has agreed to bear the travel and accommodation costs incurred by British partner schools who take part in the project.

Would you and your pupils like to become Plastic Pirates? If so, get in touch with your German partner school if they are also taking part in the programme. They should then let the Editorial Office of the Science Year know who will help you organise your research trip to Germany.

Visit the British Council or UK-German Connection websites for more information.

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MTOT 2016-17 launch!

2 September 2016 (SCILT)

We're delighted to announce the launch of this year's Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) multilingual poetry competition and are thrilled to welcome the new Scots Makar, Jackie Kay, as the competition's patron.

Whether pupils are learning a language at school, or whether they speak a native language at home, everyone can get involved in celebrating their linguistic and cultural diversity through creative poetry writing as there are options to enter in either the Mother Tongue or Other Tongue category.

We are in the process of finalising poetry workshops for teachers, which will take place towards the end of September/beginning of October. Further details will follow soon.

In the meantime, you can find out more about this year's competition and previous events on our MTOT website and register your school to take part!

Read more...

Vocab Express League of Champions 2016

1 September 2016 (Vocab Express)

Share in the excitement and energy generated by the Vocab Express League of Champions. The championship will run from Wednesday 28 September until Tuesday 4 October 2016. It's a fantastic way to engage students in vocabulary building by challenging them to compete against other schools across the UK and from around the world.

The challenge is free to all schools subscribing to Vocab Express. In addition, there are 150 free school places available to non-subscribers, each for up to 150 students.

There are currently 84 free non-subscriber school places left. Visit the website for more information and to register now!

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Juvenes Translatores 2016

1 September 2016 (European Commission)

Juvenes Translatores is our annual translation contest for 17-year old students. The 2016 contest will take place on 24 November — it will be for students born in 1999.

To participate, schools must register first — between 1 September and 20 October 2016.

Visit the website for full details.

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Funding for Japanese Language Education Projects held in the UK

1 September 2016 (Japan Foundation)

Institutions can apply for up to £3000 for non-profit-making projects or activities which promote Japanese language education in the UK. We prioritise projects that fit into one of the three following categories:

  • Introducing Japanese into the school curriculum
  • Supporting formal Japanese courses and qualifications
  • Japanese clubs
The next funding application deadline is 16 September 2016.

For more information about the programme and how to apply, visit the Japan Foundation website.

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Private schools uneasy over A-level languages grades, despite rise in top performers

30 August 2016 (TES)

Some schools say they are still struggling to make sense of their pupils’ grades in this year’s modern foreign languages A levels, despite reforms designed to improve the accuracy of grading, leading independent schools have warned.

Reforms introduced by exams regulator Ofqual this year have resulted in a significant increase in the proportion of A* grades awarded in French, German and Spanish, after years of complaints from schools that excessively harsh grading was deterring pupils from studying languages.

This year, the proportion of students receiving A* grades rose by 0.7 percentage points in French, 1.3 percentage points in German and 0.3 percentage points in Spanish.

But research for the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference (HMC) and the Independent Schools' Modern Languages Association (ISMLA) found some schools still did not believe pupils’ grades in the subjects were a fair reflection of their ability.

They said that pupils who had performed well throughout the year were scoring lower-than-expected grades while lower-performing pupils did well.

Read more...

Film screenings for schools at Edinburgh Filmhouse

25 August 2016 (Edinburgh Filmhouse)

The Edinburgh Filmhouse invites primary and secondary teachers to an informal meeting and introduction to their autumn schools programme on Monday 29 August 2016.

On Monday 5 September there will also be a free screening for teachers to watch one of the films from the forthcoming French Film Festival and discuss practical ways it can be used with pupils.

Visit the Filmhouse website for full details of these events and film screenings for schools during the autumn term.

Read more...

GCSE results: Computing entries rocket 76 per cent as languages and creative subjects plummet

25 August 2016 (TES)

The number of pupils taking GCSEs in computing rose by 76 per cent this year, in the wake of the government’s decision to count it towards the crucial Progress 8 accountability measure.

[..] Meanwhile, languages entries are declining despite the government’s decision to include modern foreign languages in the EBacc performance measure. Entries in Spanish rose slightly but those in French fell by 8.1 per cent.

Read more...

Related Links

GCSE results day 2016: Girls' grades predicted to be 'a long way ahead' of boys (The Independent, 25 August 2016)

GCSEs 2016 - a user's guide (BBC News, 25 August 2016)

What subjects did students do best and worst in on GCSE Results Day? (The Telegraph, 25 August 2016)

GCSE results: Why have grades dropped? (TES, 25 August 2016) - item contains graphic on languages decline.

GCSE results 2016: German (Schools Week, 25 August 2016) - German GCSE results for 2016 compared to previous years.

Bilingualism workshops

25 August 2016 (SCILT)

SCILT is delighted to be able to offer a series of national workshops in collaboration with Bilingualism Matters and Glasgow City Council’s EAL Service which will showcase the benefits of bilingualism and consider practical strategies teachers can use to promote bilingualism in their classrooms. We will offer ideas on how to engage bilingual learners more and support literacy skills across both languages.

These free workshops are aimed at general class practitioners across Early Years, Primary and Secondary, not specifically for the MFL and languages community so please feel free to distribute to all teachers across your network or Local Authority.

Attached is a flyer with further information about dates, venues and how to book.

Please note there are only a few remaining places on the Aberdeen workshop - all other venues are now full.

Related Files

Funding for French exchange opportunities

24 August 2016 (British Council)

Secondary schools, sixth form and further education colleges that already have a partnership with a school in France can apply for funding for reciprocal student visits.

Both Charles de Gaulle and Lefèvre trust funding is available, each offering £5000 for reciprocal visits and extended project work.

Visit British Council's Schools Online website for more information and apply by 10 November 2016.

Read more...

Foreign languages A-level slump blamed on cuts

18 August 2016 (BBC News)

A sharp decline in entries to modern foreign language A-levels has been blamed by head teachers on severe funding pressures.

Entries to A-levels in French have dropped by 6.4% from last year, in German by 4.2% and in Spanish by 2.7%.

Malcolm Trobe of the ASCL heads' union said schools and colleges were finding it hard to run courses with small pupil numbers, due to funding shortages.

The government replied that it had been encouraging pupils to take languages.

This is mainly through the English Baccalaureate - the wrap-around qualification which requires pupils to sit a range of certain GCSES including a language.

Read more...

Related Links

A level results 2016: Which subjects did students do the best and worst in? (The Telegraph, 18 August 2016) - despite a decline in numbers taking foreign languages, more than a third of students taking German and French achieved an A or A* this year.

A-level results: Squeezed budgets cutting AS-level choice and language entries, heads warn (TES, 18 August 2016)

Pupils shun English and physics A-levels as numbers with highest grades fall (The Guardian, 19 August 2016) [..] But it was the steep decline in entries for French, down by 6.5% on the year, as well as German and Spanish, that set off alarm bells over the poor state of language teaching and take-up in Britain’s schools.

A-level results show that standards remain high, but languages are a cause for concern (The Independent, 18 August 2016)

Number of pupils taking languages at record low (The Times, 19 August 2016)

ALL Statement on A Level results 2016 (ALL, 18 August 2016)

British Academy responds to A-Level results (British Academy, 18 August 2016)

University language departments 'at risk' as recruitment slumps (THE, 19 August 2016)

Calendar of UK-German opportunities 2016-17

18 August 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Plan ahead for the new school year with this at-a-glance overview of UK-German opportunities and deadlines, now available on the UK-German Connection website.

Read more...

1+2 Case Study - Renfrew High School

16 August 2016 (SCILT)

Renfrew High School is a six-year, non-denominational comprehensive school which serves the burgh of Renfrew. It is situated on the south side of the River Clyde several miles to the west of Glasgow. Its associated primaries are Arkleston Primary School, Kirklandneuk Primary School and Newmains Primary School The school was opened in 1975 and has a capacity of 1287.

In addition to the current provision of French as L2, find out how Renfrew High and its associated primaries are taking a cluster approach to delivering Spanish as an L3.

Read more...

Calls to axe SNP’s flagship Baccalaureate after snub by pupils

15 August 2016 (The Scotsman)

John Swinney is being urged to ditch the SNP’s flagship Scottish Baccalaureate qualification after it emerged that ­only 103 pupils achieved the award this year.

The qualification was introduced seven years ago with the aim of raising the profile of sciences and languages in schools.

But it has suffered from a lack of interest among pupils more focussed on Highers, which are traditionally seen as the route to university and employment.

Labour now say it should be replaced with a new Scottish Graduation Certificate for the senior phase of secondary school, which would involve vocational courses, work experience, voluntary work and traditional exams.

Read more...

Related Links

Fresh call for scrapping of unpopular Scottish Baccalaureate (The Herald, 15 August 2016)

Beyond the Panda

1 August 2016 (RZSS)

The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland's 'Beyond the Panda' programme for schools has been designed to enable learners to explore a variety of topics within the overall context of giant pandas and China. The programme offers different activities to cater for primary and secondary pupils.

See the attached flyer for more information and how to get involved. Or visit the RZSS website for more information about the organisation and their work.

Read more...

Related Files

SCHOLympics competition

24 June 2016 (Heriot-Watt University)

The SCHOLympics is a multi-disciplinary, scholarly competition that is open to all students who have access to SCHOLAR via their individual username and password. It features an extensive range of questions from the subjects that are currently available in the SCHOLAR programme, including a Mandarin listening comprehension which requires speakers or headphones, and questions from our brand new, soon to be published, English courses. The questions are set at Higher level or below.

The competition will be open between Monday 25 July until Wednesday 28 August 2016.

Visit the SCHOLAR website to find out more.

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Enquire Connect Engage - leading learning through practitioner enquiry

24 June 2016 (SCEL)

Have you completed a practice-based enquiry project recently? If so, you’re probably looking for a chance to share your findings. In which case, you’ll definitely want to sign up to participate in the Enquire Connect Engage events that SCEL is hosting this autumn.

SCEL supported Pedagoo’s EnquiryMeet last November. Inspired by its success, we have taken the concept of a teacher-led forum to connect over practitioner enquiry and we are running with it!

Enquire Connect Engage, or #scelenquire if you prefer, will provide opportunities for practitioners to share:
  • the findings from their own small scale practice-based enquiry projects, and
  • practical advice on how to go about investigating classroom practice
Visit the SCEL website for information on how to submit your proposal or to register interest in attending.

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SQA Understanding Standards events 2016/17

21 June 2016 (SQA)

The SQA will be running a programme of subject-specific Understanding Standards events from October 2016 to January 2017 to help teachers understand the standards required for course assessment in National Qualifications. The majority of these events will focus on course assessment at Advanced Higher, although there will also be a number of additional events for other qualifications where a specific need has been identified.

The events will be led by our Qualifications Development staff and are intended for subject specialists from SQA centres. There will be a maximum of one delegate place per centre, per subject.

Attendance at any of these events can be used to contribute to Continued Professional Development (CPD). CPD certificates will be available on the Events Booking System shortly after each event.

Find out more about the programme of events and how to book your place on the SQA website.

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Vocab Express League of Champions 2016

20 June 2016 (Vocab Express)

Create a languages buzz around your school to kick-start the new academic year!

Share in the excitement and energy generated by the Vocab Express League of Champions. The championship will run from Wednesday 28 September until Tuesday 4 October 2016. It's a fantastic way to engage students in vocabulary building by challenging them to compete against other schools across the UK and from around the world.

The challenge will feature French, Spanish, German, Greek, Italian, Mandarin, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Urdu, Arabic, Hebrew and Latin competitions.

The challenge is free to all schools subscribing to Vocab Express. In addition, there are 100 free school places available to non-subscribers.

Visit the League of Champions website to find out more and to register for one of the free school places. 

Read more...

Mathematiques sans Frontieres 2016

20 June 2016 (North Lanarkshire Council)

North Lanarkshire Council in association with Heriot Watt University once again organised winners at mathematiques sans frontieresthe “Mathematiques sans Frontieres” competition across Scotland this year.

63 teams took part from 39 schools and 18 schools entered an S5 team.

The competition requires one question to be answered using a foreign language.winners at mathematiques sans frontieres

The winners in S4 were Renfrew High and the S5 winners and overall winners were St Aloysius College.

The prize giving was held on Friday 17 June at Heriot Watt University. Gavin Reid gave an informative talk on probability which resulted in one lucky pupil winning an Amazon gift voucher!

LanguageStrathclyde: A conversation about Language Learning

17 June 2016 (SCILT)

SCILT, Scotland's National Centre for Languages and the School of Education, University of Strathclyde hosted an afternoon of seminars led by language practitioners, students and academics on various strands of language learning including bilingualism, motivation and translanguaging.

SCILT has used Storify to summarise the discussions from the day. Visit our Storify page for a flavour of the event.

Read more...

The Smart Choice: German schools' network

15 June 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

This opportunity is currently not available.

Host a Teacher from Germany 2016-17 - deadline approaching

13 June 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Add an international dimension to your classroom by hosting a teacher from Germany. Schools can now apply to host a teacher from Germany for two or three weeks. Application deadline: 21 September 2016*

* Please note: If you're planning to host a teacher in the autumn term, please make sure that your application reaches UK-German Connection before the end of the summer term.

For more information about the scheme and to apply, visit the UK-German Connection website.

Read more...

SQA update - AH Spanish Verification

13 June 2016 (SQA)

The SQA has just published Spanish Verification Key Messages Round 2.  The document can be accessed on the Advanced Higher Modern Languages page of the SQA website, under the Verification and Course Reports section.

Read more...

Native speakers ‘put rest at disadvantage' in languages exams

10 June 2016 (The Telegraph)

Native speakers of foreign languages could be putting others at a disadvantage when taking A-levels, it has emerged, as the exams regulator launched an investigation into the issue.

It is understood that a larger number of pupils who speak French, German, Spanish, Italian and Russian as their native language are taking A-levels in those subjects.

Some claim this is leaving those who study them as a second language at a disadvantage.

And now Ofqual has requested details on the number of native speakers who are taking this subjects, the Times Educational Supplement reported.

In a letter to schools, Ofqual said it would use the information to determine “whether any action needs to be taken”.

Read more...

Edinburgh International Film Festival modern languages screenings for schools

10 June 2016 (EIFF)

The following modern language screenings are being offered for schools in Scotland:

  • French language primary screening (P4-P7) - The Canterville Ghost
    21 June 2016, 10.00 am, Cineworld Fountain Park
  • Spanish language secondary screening - The Olive Tree
    22 June 2016, 10:00 am, Cineworld Fountain Park
Visit the Edinburgh International Film Festival website for more information and to make a booking.

Read more...

New SCILT/CISS Professional Learning Menus for 2016-17

10 June 2016 (SCILT / CISS)

It’s Launch Day! The brand new professional learning menus for SCILT and CISS are out now!

The focus of both CLPL menus is on supporting teachers and making connections between languages and other high profile aspects of Scottish education such as the Developing Young Workforce, raising attainment and parental engagement agendas.

As always, our CLPL comes to local authorities for no charge. Nada, zilch, gratis!

There are both sector specific and cross-sector workshop options to choose from. In addition, we are also happy to develop bespoke inputs to match your particular professional learning needs, just get in touch.

Don’t hang about though! Bookings have already started coming in and calendars at SCILT and CISS are filling up fast. Please contact scilt@strath.ac.uk with your request in writing.

P.S. Remember to keep a look out on the bulletin for other professional learning opportunities that will be taking place at SCILT HQ and on Glow during the year. If you don't already receive our weekly e-bulletin, make sure you don't miss out on updates and subscribe now!

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Articulate Language Camps

9 June 2016 (Articulate Language Camps)

Articulate Language Camps are based in Scotland and offer a variety of programmes from school day camps to residential summer camps as well as exam revision and CPD for teachers.

Tuition is offered in English, French, Spanish, Italian and German to learners aged 3-17, with a unique method of teaching through digital media projects, such as animation and podcasting, and adventure activities which take learning into the great outdoors. So, whether campers are taking an archery class in German, singing campfire songs in French or making a film in Spanish, they are having fun while learning in a meaningful way.

New this year is the International Camp in Italian. Find out more from camp leader, Lisa, in this short video 'Una breve introduzione ai nostri programmi' and for further information about Articulate Language Camps and all their programmes, visit the website.

Read more...

Scottish Education Award Winners 2016

9 June 2016 (SCILT / Education Scotland)

The Scottish Education Awards took place on 8 June in the Glasgow City Hotel. Congratulations to the winning schools in the language categories!

  • St Michael's Primary, Dumfries & Galloway - Making Languages Come Alive
  • Abercorn School, Glasgow - Gaelic Education
For more information about the awards and the finalists in each category, visit the Scottish Education Awards website.

Read more...

Funded International Learning Experience

8 June 2016 (Education Scotland)

The European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education has forwarded on this invite from the Italian Ministry for a Scottish secondary school to participate in a learning experience focused on global interdependence, rights, migration, asylum seekers and refugees.

The successful school would engage pupils in preparatory learning experiences in their own school during September to prepare for a conference in Lampedusa, Italy, in October.

Visit Education Scotland's Learning Blog for more information about the opportunity.  Schools should apply by 16 June 2016.

Read more...

An effective way to kick start primary languages

7 June 2016 (ilanguages)

In September 2014 KS2 modern language teaching became compulsory in English primaries for children from the age of 7. Given that the vast majority of primary teachers are not trained or confident linguists this has been a challenge for many schools; especially as the new curriculum requires considerable learner progress in the four years leading up to secondary school.

Juliet Park and Wendy Adeniji, practising teachers and nationally renowned trainers and authors of creative resources decided to develop a scheme of work which would support teachers of all linguistic abilities. Additionally, they wanted to ensure that teachers had a comprehensive set of integrated resources which would work in harmony and be easy to follow.

The resources include pedagogical approaches which were presented at the language show in Glasgow in March such as Kagan co operative learner and Talk4Writing. These approaches raise engagement and also literacy levels and are equally useful to other areas of the curriculum.

The packs also include two effective approaches to teaching French and Spanish phonics, a key element for improving learner confidence in pronunciation and making the sound spelling link. Songs have also been embedded into the scheme from the Aberdeen based company The Language Factory.

To ensure children can get further practice between lessons, an app to support the scheme is being launched in the autumn.

The reaction from teachers using the ilanguages resources has been overwhelming and it is fast becoming the scheme of choice in England.

Helen Walker from Hursthead school says ‘my learners have made double the progress than in the past and I am an experienced teacher’

Richard Williams from High Lane school commented that he is a complete beginner in French but he ‘can rely on the resources do the talking because it’s such a user friendly scheme’.

Teachers can download free starter packs from the ilanguages website.

Juliet and Wendy are now looking to set up regional hubs in Scotland to support teachers in the 1+2 initiative. This will include expert training on the delivery of French and Spanish to regional networks and access to free resources.

If you would like to become a regional hub to support your local network please contact Juliet on julietpark@icloud.com. First come first served! 

Find out more about ilanguages and what they can offer to primary and secondary schools on their website.

Read more...

Mock Council 2016

3 June 2016 (British Council eTwinning)

Do your students want to learn to negotiate in an international environment?

Don't forget you can now apply to be one of 30 schools from across England and Scotland to take part in the annual Mock Council of the European Union, to be held at the Foreign Office in London on Thursday 17 November.

In the Mock Council, 30 schools are each assigned the role of an EU member state or an EU institution and simulate a meeting of the EU's Council of Ministers on two topical EU policy proposals. Two students from each school must research these policy areas and represent their adopted country or institution at the Council meeting.

Students are encouraged to use foreign languages where possible in the discussions to reflect the multilingual nature of the EU; interpretation into English is provided.

This year there will be an additional role for one school to represent 'the media'. The aim of this role will be to generate interest before, during and after the event, through interviewing participating schools.

Applications are welcome from secondary and further education colleges across England and Scotland. The application deadline has been extended to 12 noon on 9 June 2016.

Further information and application forms can be found on the Mock Council 2016 website, along with highlights from the 2015 event.

Read more...

The UK-German Bears project - apply now to host Alex and Ben

3 June 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Alex and Ben, our UK-German bears, are preparing for their travels again and can't wait to find out who they'll visit next! We can match you up with a German partner school to work with on this fun, interactive three-week project for primary children, which helps them learn about each other's language and culture.

Find out more about the project and available hosting dates on the UK-German Bears website.

UK-German Connection offers a variety of funded activities including professional development opportunities for teachers to visit Germany, the chance to host a German teacher at your school, as well as a Youth Ambassadors programme for young people interested in German language and culture.  See the calendar of opportunities available on the UK-German Connection website for full details.

Read more...

Funding for Japanese Language Education Projects held in the UK

1 June 2016 (Japan Foundation)

Institutions can apply for up to £3000 for non-profit-making projects or activities which promote Japanese language education in the UK. We prioritise projects that fit into one of the three following categories:

  • Introducing Japanese into the school curriculum
  • Supporting formal Japanese courses and qualifications
  • Japanese clubs

The next funding application deadline is 17 June 2016.

For more information about the programme and how to apply, visit the Japan Foundation website.

Read more...

SQA Modern Languages update - May 2016

31 May 2016 (SQA)

The SQA has recently published their National Qualification update for Modern Languages.

Read more...

Mock Council of the European Union 2016

16 May 2016 (British Council eTwinning)

Do your students want to learn to negotiate in an international environment?

Don't forget you can now apply to be one of 30 schools from across England and Scotland to take part in the annual Mock Council of the European Union, to be held at the Foreign Office in London on Thursday 17 November.

In the Mock Council, 30 schools are each assigned the role of an EU member state or an EU institution and simulate a meeting of the EU's Council of Ministers on two topical EU policy proposals. Two students from each school must research these policy areas and represent their adopted country or institution at the Council meeting.

Students are encouraged to use foreign languages where possible in the discussions to reflect the multilingual nature of the EU; interpretation into English is provided.

This year there will be an additional role for one school to represent 'the media'. The aim of this role will be to generate interest before, during and after the event, through interviewing participating schools. 

Applications are welcome from secondary and further education colleges across England and Scotland. The application deadline is 29 May 2016.

Further information and application forms can be found on the Mock Council 2016 website, along with highlights from the 2015 event.

Read more...

Business Brunch 2016 events webpage now live!

6 May 2016 (SCILT)

SCILT, in partnership with the University Council for Modern Languages Scotland (UCMLS), held a series of Business Brunch events (formerly Business Breakfast) across Scotland, during January and February this year where pupils from S3-S6 heard from a range of business leaders who view language skills as key to the growth and success of their company.

Find out more about the events on our new webpage.

Read more...

S@S Accelerate Languages Challenge 2016

3 May 2016 (University of Strathclyde)

S@S Accelerate is a one-week programme in July, held at the University of Strathclyde, for pupils at the end of S4, S5 and S6. It aims to provide a targeted focus on the pupils’ chosen area of academic interest, giving them a head start on the road to their chosen career.

One of the ten challenges on offer is the Languages Challenge. A team of academic experts has put together a week-long ‘Giga Challenge’ in the area of languages that will allow pupils to find out all about the area and the career opportunities open to them.

Enabling students to participate in group challenges that use their language skills, and see the role that languages play in the world, will make them feel much more enthusiastic about languages in the school classroom and going on to study them at University.

Further information about the Languages Challenge is available on the attached flyer.

For full details of all the challenges available under the S@S Accelerate programme and information on how to apply, visit the University of Strathclyde Accelerate webpage.

Read more...

eTwinning webinar training May 2016

3 May 2016 (eTwinning)

Want to get started on your eTwinning journey? The following two webinar sessions will help you find out all you need to know.

  • Step 1 - Finding your eTwinning partner (17 May, 4.30-5.30pm)
  • Step 2 - Starting your eTwinning project (19 May, 4.30-5.30pm)

Visit the webinar website to find out more and sign up for one or both of the sessions.

For more information about eTwinning generally and see example projects, visit the British Council's eTwinning website.

Read more...

SALT schools modern languages competition 2016

30 April 2016 (SALT)

The SALT schools competition 2016 is open to all students studying a modern language in a Scottish primary or secondary school.

This year’s topic is Friendship and Solidarity and pupils are invited to submit a poster, Powerpoint presentation, or a short video (maximum 3 mins) containing foreign language expressions related to the topic.

Entry deadline is 2 September 2016.

Visit the SALT website for more information and a poster to download for your classroom.

Read more...

By the numbers: Modern languages

29 April 2016 (TESS)

TESS infographic on modern languages uptake in England and Scotland comparing 2012-13 and 2014-15 academic sessions.

Access the article in TESS online, 29 April 2016, page 11. (Subscription required).

Read more...

MTOT 2015-16 Celebration Event held at Language Show Live

29 April 2016 (SCILT)

The celebration event for MTOT 2015-16 saw 20 award winners receive their prizes on the main Piazza stage at the SECC on Saturday 12 March 2016 as part of the wider Language Show Live Scotland event.

Pupils took the opportunity to perform their poems and rhymes to the audience, showcasing the many languages used by children and young people both in school and at home. The event drew in a huge crowd, with passers-by stopping to also see and hear their work.

Find out more about the day on our MTOT Celebration Event webpage, where you can also find links to the list of winners, pupil videos and recitals, the anthology, press articles and photos from the event.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone again for their support and participation, which helped make the competition and celebration such a success. We hope to run MTOT again next year, so make sure you sign up to our e-bulletin for updates, or follow us on our social media sites Twitter or Facebook.

Read more...

Community languages saved to ensure diverse curriculum continues

22 April 2016 (UK Government)

Government action means GCSEs and A levels in a range of community languages such as Panjabi, Portuguese and Japanese are to continue to ensure young people can carry on studying a diverse range of foreign languages.

The news, announced today (22 April 2016) by Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, marks a significant step for the government in its efforts to extend opportunity to young people and equip them with the skills they need in what is an increasingly global economy.

It follows a government commitment in 2015 to protect a number of language GCSEs and A levels after the exam boards announced that from 2017 they would be withdrawing several courses. In May 2015, the Secretary of State for Education wrote to the exam boards during the pre-election period to convey her concern about their decisions to stop offering GCSEs and A levels in certain languages.

Read more...

Related Links

Community languages continue as vital part of our curriculum (Speak to the Future, 22 April 2016)

SQA National 5 Modern Languages Course Reports Summary

19 April 2016 (SCILT)

We have summarised the SQA National 5 Course Reports for all languages. These reports contain important information on how candidates performed in last year's exams. Teachers may find it useful to share some of the key messages of these reports with candidates in advance of this year's exams.

The summary document can be found on the Essentials for Planning in the Senior Phase section of our website.

Read more...

Advanced Higher French resource: Silence de la mer

19 April 2016 (SCILT)

We have developed a pack of resources on Silence de la Mer which are suitable for Advanced Higher French pupils who have limited teaching input.

The pack includes information on the Specialist Study Unit; suggested timescales; character analysis; themes; suggested portfolio titles and a glossary of vocabulary.

The resource can be accessed on the Senior Phase French AH resources section of our website.

Read more...

A poetry competition has showcased the language skills of primary pupils who speak English as a second language

8 April 2016 (TESS)

Entries to Mother Tongue Other Tongue were submitted in 36 languages.

(Read the item in TESS online, page 8, under the 'a week in primary' feature - subscription required)

Read more...

SQA Modern Languages Audio Presentations

31 March 2016 (SQA)

SQA has published Modern Languages Audio Presentations providing additional support for centres and practitioners. The presentations provide a detailed overview of the standards and assessment for both Unit and Course assessment.

The presentations can be downloaded from the SQA website.

Read more...

Gaelic Drama Summer School

28 March 2016 (Fèisean nan Gàidheal)

This year's theatre summer school for Scots Gaelic students aged 14-18 will take place from 4-16 July at Portree in Skye.

Participants receive training and guidance in a wide range of skills - acting, voice, movement, dance, creative skills and props in general. The topics are taught by experienced team of excellent actors and other artists. No prior knowledge of drama or theatre is necessary to take part.

For further information about the summer school, visit the website.

Read more...

Scottish island authority explores teaching Japanese in primary schools

25 March 2016 (TESS)

Orkney has already started trial projects on Japanese culture and language in its two secondaries, Kirkwall Grammar and Stromness Academy with plans now to extend provision to its primaries.

Read the item in TESS, page 8, under 'A week in primary'. (Subscription required).

Read more...

French Easter revision courses

24 March 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running semi-intensive revision courses between Monday 11 and Friday 15 April for Secondary School pupils and University students who are due to sit their French examinations later this year.

These revision courses will concentrate on the following skills: reading, listening and writing.

Full details are available on the Alliance Française website.

Read more...

Win a summer school place in Hong Kong

23 March 2016 (Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office)

UK secondary school students in the senior phase are offered the chance to win a place at a university summer school in Hong Kong.

The Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in London has launched for the fifth time the Student Competition this year with the title “Hong Kong: A Smart City in the World!”. The objective of the Competition is to enable British students to experience Hong Kong’s vibrancy, innovation and creativity; and to consider pursuing tertiary education in Hong Kong.

To enter, students are invited to conduct research on the strengths of Hong Kong to develop itself as a Smart City, and to come up with a proposed project for Hong Kong to further integrate technology to improve the quality of living. . Entries can be through any means – an essay or through social media, for example a video clip on YouTube, a post in a blog. Five winners will be selected and entries will be judged based on content, creativity and presentation. Entries to be submitted by 15 April 2016.

Full details are available on the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office website.

Read more...

Volunteering opportunity for French speaking students

21 March 2016 (Xchange Scotland)

Xchange Scotland, a Glasgow-based youth-led charity, has a brand-new unique volunteering opportunity for French-speaking students.

Due to our strong partnership with French organisation, Solidarites Jeunesses, we will be running a 4-week long Glasgow-based volunteering project for 6 young French volunteers which aims to develop their skills and intercultural understanding and also benefit local communities of Glasgow.

We are looking for local French-speaking volunteers/students who would like to join the group of French volunteers and practise their language skills/help us with project organisation. The level of French language of local volunteers should be preferably between A2-C2 level. We will also be looking for a translator for the project.

We believe this is a great opportunity to practise French language with native speakers here in Glasgow and also to develop organisation and communication skills of young people.

Please see the attached PDF for more details about the project and to register interest by 11 April.

Related Files

Mother Tongue Other Tongue 2015-16 finale!

15 March 2016 (SCILT)

Our Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) multilingual poetry competition came to its finale at the Languages Show Live at the SECC, Glasgow on Saturday 12 March. Pupils, parents and teachers celebrated the children’s creativity at the event which gave the opportunity for the children and young people to perform their poems to the audience.

The event drew in a huge audience, with passers-by stopping to also hear their poetry and see them being presented with trophies and prizes from Atta Yaqub, SFA Equity Officer and actor, and Juana Adcock, bilingual poet and translator. The MTOT 2015/16 anthology was also launched, with children and teachers taking home copies containing their wonderful poems.

With over 400 children participating, the hardest task was to decide upon our winners and highly commended entries from each category. Our award winners are as follows:

Category

Name

School

Mother Tongue

 

 

P1 - 3 (Winner)

Simon Paulicek (Czech)

St Paul’s, Shettleston

P1 - 3  (Highly Commended)

Emili Harris (German)

Preston Street Primary

P4 – 6 (Winner)

Daniel Homstol (Norwegian)   

Bishopton  Primary

P4 – 6  (Highly Commended)

Milmante Dzisevic (Russian)

St Fergus  Primary

P4 – 6 (Highly Commended)

Andras Poszmik (Hungarian)

St Anne’s  Primary

P7 – S1 (Winner)

Weronika Jargielo (Polish)

Douglas Academy

P7 – S1 (Highly Commended)

Blanka Szopa (Polish)

St Paul’s  Primary

P7 – S1 (Highly Commended)

Nina Bourdarias (French)

Inveralmond Community High

S2 – 3 (Winner)

Keren Mingole  (BSL)

St Roch’s Secondary

S2 – 3 (Highly Commended)

Solange Becquart (French)

Ellon Academy

Senior (Winner)

Lin Meng  (Mandarin)

Ellon Academy

 

 

 

Other Tongue

 

 

P1 – 3 (Winner)

Freya Mole (BSL)

Preston Street Primary

P4 - 6 (Winner)

Khadidja Chaher (French)

Netherlee Primary

P4 - 6 (Highly Commended

Avelon Mungersdorf (French)

St Ninian’s Primary

P7 – S1 (Winner)

Ailbhe Murphy (Gaelic) 

Glasgow Gaelic School

P7 – S1 (Highly Commended)

Maggie Lawson (French)

Douglas Academy

S2 – 3 (Winner)

Gregor Murray (Spanish)

St Margaret’s Academy

S2 – 3 (Highly Commended)

Aimee Campbell (French)

Inveralmond CHS

Senior (Winner)

Ronan McCart (Spanish)

St Margaret’s Academy

Senior (Highly Commended)

Eleanor Pain (Italian)

George Heriot’s School

 

Once we have published photographs from the day and the on-line version of the anthology, we will post via the weekly e-bulletin.  If you don't already receive the news bulletin you can sign-up to receive this each Friday during term time.

Summer courses in Germany

4 March 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Only a week to go until the application deadline for UK-German Connection's funded summer courses in Germany!

Visit the website to find out more about the options available, check eligibility criteria and to apply by 10 March 2016:

  • German Pupil Courses - two-week courses in Germany during July or August for UK secondary pupils studying German.  Find out what one pupil has to say about the German Pupil Courses in the video 'Rachel's experiences'.
  • German Pupil Courses Group Leaders - 3 posts available for qualified UK teachers with experience of teaching German up to GCSE/S5 or A Level/S6 to lead groups on the GPC.
  • German Scholarships Programme - a four-week programme for senior pupils to spend in Germany during July or August to improve their language and learn more about the German culture.

Read more...

Concours de la francophonie 2016 - winners announced!

3 March 2016 (Institut français)

The Institut français d’Ecosse, in partnership with SCILT, launched in 2016 le concours de la francophonie, a new national competition to encourage all young French learners and their teachers around Scotland and to celebrate the international day of la francophonie.

Winners of this 2016 edition can be seen on the Institut français website.

Read more...

Related Links

Concours de la francophonie (East Lothian Council, 4 March 2016) - winning P1-4 video entry from Cockenzie Primary School.

International German Olympics Competition

29 February 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Goethe-Institut (London) are happy to welcome the German Olympics for schools worldwide to the United Kingdom in 2016 for the first time. The final will take place in Berlin, 17th to 30th of July 2016 - 65 countries from all around the world will take part. The United Kingdom are eligible to send two secondary school students born 1997 to 2002. The German Olympics - the biggest competition for the German language - promotes young people from all around the world to encounter one another thanks to the fact they all study German. They will become friends and build up an international network.

Read more...

Touring Exhibition - Erfinderland Deutschland

18 February 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Our new touring exhibition "Inventions from Germany" takes place from 21 March to 1 April 2016 and focuses on ground-breaking, German inventions which affect the daily lives of each of us and does so in an interactive way.

The exhibition promotes the concept of STEM teaching combined with German and is suitable for both, German-oriented and science-oriented school classes. We offer a guided programme (one-hour slots) with worksheet activities for school classes (group size up to 30, S4 to S6). Beginners are welcome too as English translations are provided.

Visit the Goethe-Institut Glasgow website for further information and to book a slot.

The exhibition is also accompanied by a dedicated website with more detailed information and resources:

Read more...

CPD - Task-based language teaching using ICT

16 February 2016 (UWS - PETALL)

This Continuing Professional Development course will allow language teachers to further develop their knowledge of a range of ICT applications and ICT mediated strategies.

This course is appropriate for teachers of modern foreign languages in primary and secondary
schools in Scotland. 

This course will introduce and explain the principles of Task-Based Language Teaching (TBLT)
with specific reference to the work of Ellis, Willis and Nunan. It will introduce participants to the
EU-funded PETALL project including its background, aims and objectives. Particular focus will be
placed on the samples of good practice that teachers can freely access, download and adapt from
the PETALL project website.

The course will be delivered via two face-to-face sessions on 27 February and 26 March as well as online.

More information is available on the attached flyer.

Maribel y la extraña familia- theatre play

10 February 2016 (Consejería de Educación)

The students from Hispanic Studies at Edinburgh University are putting on our annual play, 'Maribel y la extraña familia' an adapted comedy from Miguel Mihura.

I would like to invite you to bring your Spanish students, particularly 5th and 6th years, to see the performance we are putting together this year.

The play will run for three performances at 7pm on 9, 10 and 11 March at Assembly Roxy in Edinburgh.

For more information visit our Facebook page.

Read more...

Oxford German Olympiad

29 January 2016 (Oxford German Network)

The Oxford German Olympiad 2016 is open for submissions from primary and secondary pupils.

This year's theme is 'Deutscher Humor - nichts zum Lachen? You can find the full guidelines and instructions for taking part on the website along with a flyer for your school.

Entries should be submitted online before noon on Friday 4 March 2016.

Read more...

Partnership opportunity with a school in Germany

29 January 2016 (Berufliche Oberschule)

Berufliche Oberschule in Schwandorf, Germany, would like to establish a partnership with a school or college in Scotland.

The German college is located between the cities of Nuremberg and Regensburg, in a culturally and historically rich area in the heart of the European continent. Since all students have to do English as an A-level subject, the vast majority of them have achieved a very pleasing command of
the English language, enabling them to communicate with native speakers of English at ease.

A 'Berufliche Oberschule' is very similar to a British sixth form college and it also shares some features with a college of further education. Most students are aged between 16 and 19 years.

The German college has already gained some fruitful experience from cooperating with the sixth form of a high school and a college of further education in England, doing projects about science and health education, whereby the working language was English. Fortunately, the projects, which
were based on an exchange of the students, were supported financially by "UK-German Connection", an intergovernmental organisation.

Berufliche Oberschule Schwandorf has already prepared an application for funding a project about immigration and integration, but the German college is open to all fields of studies and to other forms of cooperation as well.

All Scottish teachers interested are very welcome to contact their Schwandorf colleagues Natalie Burkardt and Christian Eiblmeier via email natalie.burkardt@gmx.net<mailto:natalie.burkardt@gmx.net or c.eiblmeier@arcor.de<mailto:chris.eiblmeier@arcor.de or phone (0049 941 29
01 13 26 or 0049 941 38 38 76 0).

Glasgow Film Festival and Youth Film Festival 2016

26 January 2016 (Glasgow Film Festival)

This year's Film Festival takes place from 17-28 February, with the Youth Film Festival screenings being held from 12-15 February.  Both events include a number of foreign language film options.

Brochures detailing the screenings available can be accessed from the following Festival websites:

For more information about the Festival and to purchase tickets, visit the main Glasgow Film Festival 2016 website.

Read more...

AMOPA Parlons Français competition - deadline approaching

26 January 2016 (AMOPA)

The 'Parlons français' competition, run by AMOPA in collaboration with Total, is now five years old and is going from strength to strength.

To enter all that's required is a short recording of students as they prepare for their speaking test. This is then assessed and feedback given. Prizes and certificates will also be awarded.

The competition is so easy to enter now as the technology is readily available and it supports your own preparation with students, it's not an "extra" task.

To find out more about the competition and how to enter see the attached flyer.

Entries must be submitted by 15 February 2016.

Half of schools make big cuts to courses under CfE

22 January 2016 (TESS)

Almost half of Scottish secondaries have significantly narrowed their curriculum at S4, offering just six courses instead of the eight that was typical before the introduction of Curriculum for Excellence, according to figures released today.

Subjects disadvantaged by the new curriculum include languages, business studies, computing, some of the creative and aesthetic subjects, the sciences and social subjects.

See page 6-7 of TESS digital for the full article.  (TES subscription required).

Read more...

Multilingual Debate 2016

19 January 2016 (Heriot-Watt University)

Heriot-Watt University's Multilingual Debate is an annual event that showcases the interpreting skills of undergraduate students on our Languages (Interpreting and Translating) degree programme, as well as the developing professional skills of postgraduate students on our MSc Interpreting and Translating programmes. The event takes the form of a formal debate with two multilingual teams arguing for and against a motion of topical interest in a range of languages. The teams deliver their views in their various native languages (French, German, Spanish, English, Arabic, Chinese, British Sign Language (BSL)).

The audience is mainly made up of pupils coming from Scottish and English secondary schools, but also university undergraduate students considering entering the interpreting profession, as well as government and local authority representatives. The audiences participated in the debate by listening to the arguments, putting questions to the speakers in the languages represented and voting on the motion.

The Multilingual Debate 2016 takes place on Wednesday 23 March at Heriot-Watt University's Edinburgh campus.

To find out more about the debate topics and how to sign up to attend a session, see the video presentations in Arabic, BSL, Chinese, English, French and Spanish on the Heriot-Watt website.

Read more...

Pupil summer courses in Germany

19 January 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Applications for UK-German Connection's funded summer courses in Germany are now open.

Visit the website to find out more about the options available and to apply:

  • German Pupil Courses - two-week courses in Germany during July or August for UK secondary pupils studying German.  Find out what one pupil has to say about the German Pupil Courses in the video 'Rachel's experiences'.
  • German Pupil Courses Group Leaders - 3 posts available for qualified UK teachers with experience of teaching German up to GCSE/S5 or A Level/S6 to lead groups on the GPC.
  • German Scholarships Programme - a four-week programme for senior pupils to spend in Germany during July or August to improve their language and learn more about the German culture.

To check full criteria before applying, see the UK-German Connection website for full details.

Application deadline is 10 March 2016.

Read more...

1 + 2 approach to language learning 'PanTayside'

19 January 2016 (Education Scotland)

Pan Tayside has produced a video showcasing the 'PanTayside' approach to implementing the 1+2 languages policy. Dundee City Council, Angus Council and Perth and Kinross Council are working together and sharing expertise in order to create the sustainable delivery of language learning across the three authorities.

See the video on the Education Scotland website.

Read more...

Exclusive: language GCSEs at risk of being too easy and too dull, universities warn

15 January 2016 (TES)

New language GCSEs are at risk of being seen as too easy and too dull, universities have said, dubbing one draft exam question about grocery shopping as “Year 7 material”.

The reformed exams, which will be taught to Year 10 students from September, are being brought in as part of a government bid to make GCSEs more “rigorous”.

However, the University Council of Modern Languages (UCML), which represents departments at more than 100 universities, has written to exams watchdog Ofqual to warn that draft GCSE papers from exam boards suggest that they “may not be fully embracing the spirit of radical change proposed”.

Jocelyn Wyburd, chair of UCML and director of the University of Cambridge Language Centre, told TES: “Pupils complain that languages are boring and irrelevant, and the new GCSE is supposed to make them interesting. But I’ve heard from schools that are very worried that they won’t.”

She was particularly concerned about a French GCSE foundation paper. “The question was in English and it said, “You’re going to the shops, so write yourself a list of the items of fruit you’ve got to buy’,” she said. “Even for a foundation paper at GCSE, that’s ridiculous. It’s Year 7 material.”

Read more...

Weans’ Wurds

12 January 2016 (Education Scotland)

How many Scots words do you know? What about your friends and family? When and where do you use these words?

Have you noticed that some people in different parts of Scotland use different Scots words from you?

Here is a chance to share your words with those collected by classes from other parts of the country on the Scots Learners' site (Glow login required).

Find out more on Education Scotland's learning blog.

Read more...

'Pay for foreign exchange trips rather than a week in Majorca,' top headteacher tells parents

11 January 2016 (TES)

Parents should consider sending their child on a school foreign exchange rather than spending money on a week in Majorca, a headteacher has suggested.

Young people are likely to learn more on a cultural break in a city such as Madrid or Barcelona than they are sitting on a beach, according to Caroline Jordan, headmistress of Headington School in Oxford and the new president of the Girls' Schools Association.

Setting up a foreign exchange for students did not have to be expensive, Ms Jordan said.

"It's trying to convince the parents that that's good use of their finances as opposed to a foreign holiday to Majorca, where they may well be in a Spanish environment but they're less likely to be experiencing Spanish as they would be if they were in somewhere like Madrid or Barcelona on exchange," she said.

"Exchange is very important and we know that languages is a real area of concern in this country. The government is doing quite a lot about this by trying to encourage all children to take a language through the English Baccalaureate."

Figures show that last year, there was a drop in language GCSE entries, with French down 6.2 per cent on 2014, German down 9.8 per cent and Spanish down 2.4 per cent.

As well as ensuring that children learned a foreign language, Ms Jordan added that it was important that modern teenagers were given the opportunity to consider studying at a university overseas, arguing that it could be beneficial to them later on.

Read more...

International German Olympics Competition

11 January 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

The International German Olympics competition is coming to the UK for the first time in 2016! It's the biggest competition celebrating the German language and promotes the gathering of young people from around the globe who are united in their study of German and the forging of international friendships.

The final takes place in Berlin from 17-30 July 2016 with 65 countries taking part. Two secondary school students will be selected to attend and represent the UK. To take part in the preliminary selection process, students born between 1997 and 2002 are invited to produce a 2 minute video, upload to YouTube and submit the link to the Goethe-Institut by 31 March 2016.

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for full competition details and entry criteria.

Read more...

UK-German Connection programmes and funding

7 January 2016 (UK-German Connection)

The next deadline for grants to fund projects and partnerships between UK and German schools is 31 January 2016.

See the full programme of opportunities available and deadline dates for each.

Some programmes have rolling dates, such as the UK-German Bears Project, a free three-week bilateral programme, which puts pupils not only in touch with Alex, the teddy bear from Germany, but also with a German school class. The German class hosts Ben, the British teddy bear, at the same time as the UK school hosts Alex, making this a fun, interactive way for primary children to learn about each other’s language and culture! The bears come with a wide range of downloadable resources with ideas for short-term bilateral activities, which tie in with primary curriculum topics wherever possible.  There are still some hosting dates available for February 2016. If you're interested in taking part, find out more on the Bears Project webpage.

For more information about all the programmes offered by the UK-German Connection, visit their website.

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Gaelic Creative Writing Course

17 December 2015 (Moniack Mhor)

Are you aged 16-19 and live in Scotland? Do you like creative writing? Do you speak Gaelic? Join us for a residential course from 18-23 January 2016 that will help you start writing in Gaelic. Our tutors will guide you through tasters in poetry, prose, writing for performance and many other forms. You also get to design and create a hand printed poster for the course with help from an artist at the Highland Print Studio in Inverness.

There is no requirement other than an ability in Gaelic and an interest in writing.

There is no cost for the course, but bookings are taken on a first come first served basis.

Visit the Moniack Mhor website for more information and to book your place.

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A quarter of pupils taking A-level languages are privately educated, ISC figures show

17 December 2015 (TES)

Independent school pupils make up a quarter of all entries for A-levels in French, German and Spanish, new figures show.

In 2015, a total of just 10,328 pupils studied French at A-level across the UK, with 2,572 (24.9 per cent) attending independent schools, according to an analysis of exam board statistics published by the Independent Schools Council (ISC) today.

Both Spanish and German also had low entry numbers, with independent school pupils providing a quarter of both. Nationally, only 14 per cent of all A-level students are educated in independent schools.

At GCSE, where the ISC says 5 per cent of all students are independently educated, more than 60 per cent of all entries for Classics are from independent schools.

The news comes amid what many believe is a crisis in modern foreign languages at A-level. Experts have warned that up to 40 per cent of university departments could close over the next decade because of lack of demand and competition between institutions.

Read more...

Our Films:Our Europe

15 December 2015 (SEET)

We have now reached the end of the first stage in the Our Films:Our Europe project. We are delighted to announce that the following schools will be joining us in one of our three film-making workshops. During the workshop pupils will have all day to work with media professionals to shoot and edit their films, bringing their ideas to life.

  • Balfron High (Stirling)
  • Holyrood Secondary (Glasgow)
  • Lenzie Acadmey (East Dunbartonshire)
  • Drumchapel High School (Glasgow)
  • Harlaw Academy (Aberdeen City)
  • West Calder High School (West Lothian)
  • Larbert High School (Falkirk)
  • Kirkcaldy High (Fife)
  • St Mungos High School (Falkirk)
  • Falkirk Hgih School (Falkirk)
  • Bishopbriggs Academy (East Dunbartonshire)
  • Auchinleck Acadmeny (East Ayrshire)
  • St Roch's Secondary (Glasgow)
  • St Luke's High School (East Renfrewshire)
  • Cardinal Newman (North Lanarkshire)

A big thank you and well done to all of the schools who have participated in the project so far!

You can find out more about the film-making project on the SEET website.

Read more...

MTOT deadline for submissions – 18 December

15 December 2015 (SCILT)

Last chance to submit entries for this year’s MTOT multilingual poetry competition!  You have until midnight 18 December to get your entries in.

Thanks to all those who have participated. We look forward to seeing all the great work which has been produced and will be in touch again in the New Year once judging has taken place. 

If you still need to submit your pupils’ entries, follow the guidance in the Teacher's Pack within the RESOURCES tab on our MTOT pageOr see the MTOT blog where you can also find submission guidelines.

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Concours de la francophonie - coming soon!

15 December 2015 (Institut français)

The Institut français is delighted to present le concours de la francophonie, a new competition for all primary and secondary French learners across Scotland, in partnership with SCILT.

To participate, schools have to submit a video (filmed with tablets, phones or other devices) of a small piece in French: a song, a dialogue, a play etc. So, if you had prepared something with your students for les rencontres théâtrales, you just need to film the performance. This way, all schools across Scotland will be able to take part.

There are four categories:

  • P1/P4
  • P5/P7
  • S1/S3
  • S4/S6.

The competition will be held in two phases, semi-finals at the council level, and finals at the national level. The two best productions of each category will win the following: 

  • P1/P4 students and schools who may not be able to travel to Edinburgh in a day will win an immersion day in their school, with French native speakers. 
  • P5 to S6 students who are able to travel will be invited to celebrate la journée mondiale de la francophonie in Edinburgh on 18 March, with French immersion activities and an award ceremony.

Creativity is a key element of this student led competition; dialogues, reportages, interviews and all other forms are possible. In addition, jury will look at the command of the French language, which will be adapted to your students level. Finally, we encourage the participation of all students in the classroom.

More details about the competition will be available in January.

Read more...

SQA updates - Advanced Higher Modern Languages

14 December 2015 (SQA)

The SQA has updated a number of files on their Advanced Higher Modern Languages webpage.

A list of updates is attached and the files can be accessed on the SQA website.

Read more...

Related Files

Winners announced: Secondary school writing competition

14 December 2015 (British Council)

In partnership, Education Scotland and British Council Scotland launched a secondary school writing competition to promote international education in schools and to find pupils' views on how international they thought their school is.

To enter, Scottish secondary school pupils were asked to submit a short essay answering the question below:

‘How international is your school and how International could it be? Please write about how international experience has shaped or could shape your time at school.’

We received an overwhelming number of submissions from pupils across Scotland and the three winning entries can be seen on the British Council website.

Congratulations to the winners and their schools!

Read more...

Nihongo Cup - Japanese speech contest for secondary schools

11 December 2015 (Japan Foundation)

The Nihongo Cup Japanese Speech Contest for Secondary School Students in the UK is open for applications!

This contest is open to students in the UK studying Japanese language. There are three categories: Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4&5 Pre-GCSE, and Key Stage 4&5 Post GCSE. Finalists will be invited to perform their speech at Conway Hall in front of a panel of judges and VIPs from the field of Japanese language education and Japan-UK relations, for the chance to win some fantastic prizes – including a trip to Japan!

For more information and to apply, visit the Japan Foundation website.

Closing date for entries is 31 March 2016.

Read more...

Oral Revision Courses: Higher & Advanced Higher - February 2016

7 December 2015 (Alliance française)

As in previous years, the Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running Higher and Advanced Higher Oral Preparation courses for pupils who will be sitting their French oral examinations in 2016.

The sessions will take place on Fridays during February between 4-6pm.

Visit the website for full details and to enrol by 29 January 2016.

Read more...

BB is back!

4 December 2015 (SCILT)

Due to popular demand, SCILT, in partnership with University Council for Modern Languages (UCMLS) is delighted to announce that we will be hosting a series of Business Brunch events (formerly Business Breakfast) across Scotland next year! Last chance to register for all events 4 December (except Edinburgh - 10 December)!

Aimed specifically at S3 - S6 pupils, each event will provide learners with the opportunity to hear from a wide range of dynamic business leaders who view language skills as key to the growth of the success of their organisations and why they compete successfully in a globalised market.
Most importantly, it will give young people the opportunity to ask questions and find out more about the variety of careers and employment opportunities that are open to people who can demonstrate language skills on their CV.

In addition, we will highlight the benefits of offering the SVQ unit 'Building your own Employability Skills' from the Languages for Life and Work Award, because it can be an effective stepping stone for the employability context in National 4/5, Higher and Advanced Higher.

To find out more and register interest for these events, visit our Business Brunches 2016 webpage.

Read more...

Subject choice is vital in improving children's life chances, researchers say

20 November 2015 (TESS)

The Scottish government’s drive to close the attainment gap will fail to boost the life chances of deprived children because many are not choosing the right subjects, research suggests.

The University of Edinburgh researchers call for academic subjects such as English, maths, sciences and languages to be compulsory for longer and for schools to give pupils better advice about the long-term implications of their decisions.

(Please note a TES/TESS subscription is required to access the online article in full).

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Oxford German Olympiad

10 November 2015 (Oxford German Network)

The Oxford German Olympiad 2016 is open for submissions!

This year's theme is 'Deutscher Humor – nichts zum Lachen?' with different tasks applicable to the various age categories being judged.

You can find the full guidelines and instructions for taking part on the Oxford German Olympiad website along with a downloadable flyer for your school.

Entries must be submitted before the deadline at noon on Friday 4 March 2016.

Read more...

Digital Days competition

10 November 2015 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut London invites German teachers and their pupils to take part in this unique competition series.  The topic for this year's competition is Geschenke - Gifts.

Five categories for different levels of language skills are provided. Primary teachers and secondary teachers can choose which competition they think suits their students best.

Please register by sending an email to roma.schultz@london.goethe.org by 13 November 2015.

More information is available on the Goethe-Institut website.

Read more...

Win a Trip to Paris 2016 competition

9 November 2015 (ULIP)

The University of London Institute in Paris (ULIP) are again offering students studying French at AS/A Level or equivalent the chance to win a trip to the City of Light!

This year ULIP's "Win a Trip to Paris" competition theme is Europe. Politicians are discussing whether or not the UK should stay, or leave the European Union, otherwise known as 'Brexit'. All you have to do to enter is watch the video about "Quel serait l'impact du ''Brexit'' sur l'activité économique ?" and answer a few related questions before 31 January 2016.

Full details can be found on the ULIP website.

Read more...

The council where one language isn't enough

6 November 2015 (TESS)

Glasgow to insist on 'dual linguist' specialists in its secondary schools.

Read the article on page 10 of the electronic version of TESS magazine.  Please note this is only available free online until 12 November 2015 after which a subscription will be required to access.

Read more...

Related Links

Enjoy the digital edition of TES for free (TES, 6 November 2015)

Fokus: Films from Germany - Screenings for schools

5 November 2015 (Goethe-Institut)

Fokus: Films from Germany is a Scotland-wide event featuring innovative, inspiring and challenging films by Germany-based directors.

We’re delighted to be screening two films to schools: one; Rettet Raffi!, an entertaining comedy about the adventures of a boy and his pet hamster, aimed at young children, and the other one, Who Am I – Kein System Ist Sicher, a gripping thriller set in the world of underground computer hackers aimed at older children.

The festival is jointly organized by Goethe-Institut Glasgow and Filmhouse Edinburgh.

See the ;attached flyers for further information about the screenings and how to book or visit the Goethe-Institut website..

Read more...

Juvenes Translatores 2015

26 October 2015 (European Commission)

Congratulations to the Scottish schools selected as part of the UK's representation in this year's Juvenes Translatores contest.

The Juvenes Translatores is an annual translation contest for 17 year old students and takes place this year on 26 November.

Good luck to pupils from Bishopbriggs Academy in Glasgow, George Watson's College in Edinburgh, Inverclyde Academy in Greenock, Morrison's Academy in Crieff and Plockton High School!

Read more...

Availability of past papers for all Modern Languages qualifications

21 October 2015 (SCILT/SQA)

We have been advised by the SQA that there are no plans to remove 'old NQ' materials out with the SQA retention policy. That is that all past paper materials on the site is available for 5 years after the examination - so from now 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011 materials are available.

SQA only clears copyright for the years the materials are published and therefore centres should not store materials out with that period.

There has been no specific communication to centres on this matter as there has not been a change to policy or practice.

Past materials can be found on the SQA website.

Read more...

Parlons français - French speaking competition for AH students

20 October 2015 (AMOPA)

The 'Parlons français' competition, run by AMOPA in collaboration with Total, is now five years old and is going from strength to strength.

To enter all that's required is a short recording of students as they prepare for their speaking test. This is then assessed and feedback given. Prizes and certificates will also be awarded.

The competition is so easy to enter now as the technology is readily available and it supports your own preparation with students, it's not an "extra" task.

To find out more about the competition and how to enter see the attached flyer.

Last chance to enrole for pnline Spanish course for teachers and PGCE students

2 October 2015 (Consejería de Educación)

The Instituto Cervantes and the Spanish Embassy Education Office in the UK offer Spanish Online Courses for Primary and Secondary School Teachers and PGCE students through Aula Virtual de Español Global (AVE Global), an interactive platform specifically designed by the Instituto Cervantes for the teaching and learning of Spanish.

The course is suitable for Primary and Secondary School Teachers and PGCE students with or without previous knowledge of Spanish and will run from October 2015 to March 2016.

See the attached flyer for more details and enrolment information.

Related Files

Chinese language scholarship opportunity 2016-2017

2 October 2015 (CISS)

The Confucius Institute for Scotlands Schools and our Chinese partners, the Tianjin Education Commission and the Tianjin International Chinese College, are delighted to offer selected Scottish pupils a one-year scholarship to learn Chinese in Tianjin for the academic year 2016-2017. This life-changing opportunity is one of a kind in Europe and rewards the commitment that Confucius Classroom Hubs in Scotland have demonstrated in the promotion of Chinese language and culture.

Attached is a letter with further details and an application form. We would be grateful if you could circulate to your hub schools as soon as possible. The closing date for applications is Friday 6 November 2015.

Applications should be returned to katie.hawkins@strath.ac.uk.

Many thanks for disseminating this information to interested pupils.

eTwinning Weeks

1 October 2015 (eTwinning)

Want to start your eTwinning journey?  "Follow me" is the theme for the 2015 eTwinning Weeks, which run until 9 October.

During this time you will have the chance to get all the information you need to embark on your eTwinning journey by exploring sample projects and reading testimonials from ambassadors who'll provide valuable tips to help you on your way.

Visit the eTwinning website to find out more.

Read more...

SQA events - Understanding Standards, National 1-5 and Higher

30 September 2015 (SQA)

SQA are hosting a series of Understanding Standards events for a selection of Courses, Awards and Units at National 1 - 5, and for Higher Course assessment.

The National 1 - 5 events began on 28 August 2015 and focus on the standards and assessment of the relevant Course/Award/Unit.  The event covering Text for Scots Language Award takes place in Glasgow on 27 January 2016.

The Higher events began on 7 September 2015 and run until January 2016. They are for subject specialists who wish to develop their understanding of the standards required in the Course Assessment at Higher.  The Higher modern languages event takes place in Stirling on 3 December 2015.

Full programme details and how to book your place can be found on the SQA website.

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Call for contributions to an e-book 'Employability for Languages: A Handbook'

25 September 2015 (LLAS)

We are planning the publication of a selection of case studies showcasing the excellent and inspiring work of language teachers, academics and practitioners in the area of employability for language graduates. This collection will form a snapshot of good practice and show the outcomes of recent projects and debates in the area of employability. Case studies will accompany articles from invited contributors describing a variety of personal experiences in the area.

This open access e-book will be freely available for download and will be aimed at practitioners in secondary and tertiary education. The focus of the book will be around practical experience ‘in the field’ and reflective practice, rather than research.

Expressions of interest in contributing to the book are invited.  Deadline 5 October 2015.  More information can be found on the LLAS website.

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Schools Online

25 September 2015 (British Council)

School's Online is the British Council's international learning programme for schools and teachers.

The programme helps to develop international education in your school by creating meaningful connections with educational institutions on a global scale.

Embedding international learning into your classroom also deepens students' understanding and respect for the world around them.

By registering with Schools Online you will gain access to classroom resources, professional development courses and form relationships with schools across the world.

Visit the British Council's Schools Online website for more information.

Read more...

Into Film Festival 2015

23 September 2015 (SecEd)

The annual Into Film Festival takes place from November 4 to 20, with a host of screenings, workshops and resources available for schools, including foreign language options.

This article previews the event.  For further information and to book tickets visit the Into Film Festival website.

Read more...

Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival

23 September 2015 (Consejería de Educación)

The second Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival is just round the corner. From 2-10 October 2015 there will be screenings of 16 contemporary films in Spanish at the Filmhouse Edinburgh, plus a number of talks/discussions by experts and directors. A week of wonderful varied cinema. An event worth making time for! Please come and enjoy this with us, and spread the word to all your friends.

See the festival website for full programme details and how to obtain tickets.

Read more...

The Our Europe film making project 2015-16 has launched!

17 September 2015 (SEET)

This innovative, educational project, run by the Scottish European Educational Trust, asks pupils in S3-S6 to work in teams of four to come up with an idea for a short film based on how being a European citizen affects them as young people living in Scotland. The concept must creatively address European issues as well as include at least one language other than English.

Our Europe is a great way to get pupils engaged in language learning, boost their confidence
and develop their core skills. If you would like to know more about the project, or arrange a
school visit, see the attached flyer and head to the Our Europe website to register for the competition.

Read more...

Who's Watching Who?

15 September 2015 (University of Edinburgh)

Who's Watching Who? (University of Edinburgh) is delighted to invite you and your pupils to a free event being held at The Byre Theatre in St Andrews on Saturday 26 September at 3:30pm.

The event is a rehearsed reading of a play based on research into East Germany so is ideal for those with an interest in German history and/or theatre and is accompanied by a set of specially created educational materials in English and German developed with Higher and Advanced Higher level teaching in mind.  Teachers can find out more on the project's Information for Teachers page.

The play is set in January 1990, in a provincial East German theatre in Friedrich-Engels-Stadt. Two months before the action starts, the Berlin Wall fell, and the world changed. The old certainties and hierarchies have been overthrown, and no one knows the rules. No one knows how many actors will turn up for work. No one knows whether there will be any audience, no one knows what that audience will want. No one really knows what country that audience lives in any more.

Alone in their rehearsal room, the theatre practitioners have to confront the question of what their theatre is for. What should they programme? What should they rehearse? The older members want to stage a play that was a hit in the West and could never be staged in the East - a play written by one of their former colleagues, who was expelled from the GDR. When he turns up out of the blue, old wars, suspicions and accusations rise to the surface...

Free tickets are available to book for the following readings:

  • Saturday 26 September, 3:30pm: The Byre Theatre, St Andrews
    Book on the website or call 01334 475000.
  • Thursday 24 September, 7:30 pm: The Traverse, Edinburgh, tel. 0131 228 1404
  • Friday 25 September, 7:30 pm: Websters, Glasgow

Visit the Who's Watching Who? website for more information about the project.

Read more...

Language study beyond school

11 September 2015 (SCILT)

Do you have students looking to further or develop their language learning on leaving school? Make sure they know about the Beyond School section of the SCILT website. With useful information on different language courses and options available here in Scotland, there are also links to UCAS and language courses UK-wide to help their selection process and the transition from school.

The section includes advice and information on:

  • The benefits of language learning for you and your career 
  • Undergraduate language courses at Scottish and UK universities 
  • Options for combining languages with other degree subjects 
  • Beginner and refresher language courses and modules at Scotland’s colleges 
  • The gap year – opportunities to study, work or volunteer abroad 
  • The student voice – blogs, advice, hints and tips from those who’ve been there

The site also outlines the support Scottish universities can provide to teachers and schools in their language teaching and staff professional development.

So please make your language teaching professionals, pupils and guidance staff aware of the ‘Beyond School’ website. It’s got their language needs covered!

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Young Applicants in Schools (YASS)

10 September 2015 (Open University)

The Open University's Young Applicants in Schools Scheme (YASS) gives S6 students in Scotland the opportunity to study at higher education level without leaving friends and family behind. Study fits around school work and social lives, encourages independent learning and builds confidence.

YASS is designed to bridge the gap between school and full-time university and help able and motivated students stand out from the crowd. Over 500 young people from more than 100 schools took Open University modules last year.

YASS is a unique opportunity for S6 students in Scottish schools to bridge the gap between school and full-time university through independent learning. Run by The Open University in Scotland, YASS offers motivated and able students a chance to study a range of university level modules in school alongside their other studies. Language options are available in French, German, Spanish, Italian and Chinese.

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MTOT - Free Creative Poetry Workshops for Teachers

4 September 2015 (SCILT)

In taking MTOT to a national level this year, we are delighted to be able to offer FREE poetry workshops for primary and secondary teachers at four different venues across Scotland.

Teachers will work with Juliette Lee, a poet and creative writer, for a half-day workshop to develop their own creativity, explore poetry and the impact of language we use, including our Mother Tongue and also experimenting with poetry in an Other Tongue too. We hope that teachers will leave inspired and able to take back some ideas and examples to work with their own pupils who will then submit their poems/rhymes/raps/songs into the MTOT competition.

Due to high levels of interest for the competition in general, we have decided to leave registration for schools open until Friday 9 October. Teachers do not have to attend one of the workshops to register their school for the MTOT competition although the workshops are a fantastic opportunity to develop your skills in teaching poetry, languages and to gather ideas to take back into the classroom.

Spaces are still available at the following workshop:

  • Friday 9 October, 13.30 – 16.30 ; Open University, Edinburgh (deadline for registration Friday 2 October)

Register by completing the MTOT workshop registration form on the SCILT website.

For more information about MTOT and to register your school to take part in the competition visit the MTOT 2015-16 page of our website.

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HSBC/British Council Mandarin Chinese speaking competition

2 September 2015 (British Council)

Entry is now open for the HSCB/British Council 2015/16 Mandarin Chinese speaking competition!

The competition is a great, fun opportunity for students to practise and improve their Mandarin Chinese language skills. It is open to UK secondary schools and further education colleges and entrants must be non-native speakers of Chinese.

Visit the British Council website to find out more and apply by 9 October and your students could win a trip to Beijing.

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Carey Mulligan, Sir Ian McKellen and Michael Sheen lend support to schools' film festival

2 September 2015 (TES)

Major film stars including Carey Mulligan, Sir Ian McKellen and Michael Sheen are backing the Into Film festival this year.

The Into Film festival is the world’s largest film festival for pupils and teachers. Supported by TES, it invites 450,000 primary and secondary children to participate in watching and making films.

The event, which will be held between 4 and 20 November in 520 cinemas around the country, will include preview screenings, film-making workshops and question-and-answer sessions with industry experts. These will all be accompanied by teaching resources.

Tickets are now available for more than 2,700 screenings of more than 150 films, held around the country. This includes a number of foreign language films.  Check the Into Film Festival website for full details and to book.

Read more...

MTOT 2015-16 registration extended

1 September 2015 (SCILT)

Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) 2015-16 has launched in Scotland!

The multilingual poetry competition celebrates linguistic and cultural diversity through creative writing. Mother Tongue encourages children who do not speak English as a first language to share a remembered poem from their mother tongue. Other Tongue encourages children learning another language in school to write an original poem in that other tongue.

The competition was successfully piloted in Glasgow last year and we're delighted to now offer all primary and secondary schools in Scotland the chance to participate.

Take a look at our MTOT 2015-16 webpages for full details about this year's competition. You'll also find a section on previous events and testimonials from those who took part, as well as links to the MTOT blog and a host of other useful resources, including the teacher's pack containing the categories, criteria and rules.

During September and October there will be some Saturday workshops available for teachers from schools registered for the competition. There will be a limited number of places which will be allocated on a first come first served basis, so watch for more details about these soon and ensure you don't miss out!

Register your school for MTOT now*! Deadline extended to 9 October 2015.

*Some schools are reporting an issue with accessing the online registration form. If your authority is also blocking the page, we would suggest registering from a home PC or emailing us to be registered manually.

Read more...

Our Films, Our Europe competition now launched

1 September 2015 (SEET)

Our Films, Our Europe is an innovative film making project run by SEET and supported by the European Parliament. Teams of S3-S6 pupils from all secondary schools in Scotland are invited to take part in the project which encourages European languages, international discussions and creative film making.

The competition has now launched and all secondary schools in Scotland are invited to take part.

For more information and to register for the competition visit the Our Europe website.

Read more...

What’s Your Story?

31 August 2015 (The Story Is)

We’re looking for 10 young people in Scotland, aged 14-17, with stories to share and a passion for discovering how to tell them.

We’re not just talking novels and poems, we’re talking video games, blogs, fanfic, slam poetry and spoken word, TV, movies, comic books, journalism, illustration, zines, song lyrics, web serials and anything you’d like to write!

The application process is in English but your creative work sample does not have to be. Plenty of creative people in Scotland make work in other languages and everyone who meets our application criteria is welcome to apply. We will get your work translated so that we can consider it.

Gaelic applicants, please note that there is one place specifically intended for a person working in Gaelic, but that does not necessarily mean that only one person working in Gaelic will be selected.

For more information visit The Story Is website.

Read more...

SQA vacancies - Visiting Assessors for AH Modern Languages

28 August 2015 (SQA)

SQA is currently seeking to recruit additional Visiting Assessors (VA) to conduct Talking assessments at Advanced Higher level in Modern Languages.

Applications can be found following the relevant links below. You will also find information here relating to contract specification, selection criteria and key performance measures.

Closing date for all applications: 1 November 2015.

Juvenes Translatores 2015

28 August 2015 (European Commission)

The annual translation contest for 17 year olds will take place on 26 November. This year’s theme will be the ‘European Year for Development’.

Schools must register between 1 September and 20 October.

Full details are available on the Juvenes Translatores website.

Read more...

Mother Tongue Other Tongue 2015-16 launch

21 August 2015 (SCILT)

Today sees the launch of Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) 2015-16 in Scotland!

The multilingual poetry competition celebrates linguistic and cultural diversity through creative writing. Mother Tongue encourages children who do not speak English as a first language to share a remembered poem from their mother tongue. Other Tongue encourages children learning another language in school to write an original poem in that other tongue.

The competition was successfully piloted in Glasgow last year and we're delighted to now offer all primary and secondary schools in Scotland the chance to participate.

Take a look at our MTOT 2015-16 webpages for full details about this year's competition.  You'll also find a section on previous events and testimonials from those who took part, as well as links to the MTOT blog and a host of other useful resources, including the teacher's pack containing the categories, criteria and rules.

During September and October there will be some Saturday workshops available for teachers from schools registered for the competition.  There will be a limited number of places which will be allocated on a first come first served basis, so watch for more details about these soon and ensure you don't miss out!

Register your school for MTOT now*!  Deadline 31 August 2015.

*Some schools are reporting an issue with accessing the online registration form.  If your authority is also blocking the page, we would suggest registering from a home PC or emailing us to be registered manually.

Read more...

Our Films, Our Europe competition

20 August 2015 (SEET)

Our Films, Our Europe is an innovative film making project run by SEET and supported by the European Parliament. Teams of S3-S6 pupils from all secondary schools in Scotland are invited to take part in the project which encourages European languages, international discussions and creative film making.

The competition will launch on 1 September 2015 with all secondary schools in Scotland invited to take part.

For more information, see the attached press release or visit the SEET website where you can also find details of last year's competitors and the winning films.

Read more...

Related Files

French exam support classes for secondary students

20 August 2015 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow are running 24-week exam support classes between September and March/April for secondary schools pupils who will be sitting their National 5 (formerly known asStandard Grade/Intermediate 2), Higher or Advanced Higher French exams at the end of the academic year and who need extra support with their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills.

For more information, please check their website or call the AF Glasgow's Language Office on 0141 331 4080.

Read more...

GCSE results: figures show slump in foreign languages and rise in computing

20 August 2015 (The Guardian)

Fewer entries for GCSE French, German and Spanish, though grades for languages have improved.

Read more...

Related Links

Drop in take-up of foreign languages prompts concerns of UK's ability to trade globally (The Independent, 20 August 2015)

GCSE results: fall in numbers taking foreign languages 'a cause for concern' (The Guardian, 20 August 2015)

Why has there been a drop in students taking language GCSEs? Teachers' views (The Guardian, 20 August 2015)

GCSE results: Language entries drop for second year running (TES, 20 August 2015)

GCSE exam results: The top 10 best performing GCSEs of 2015 (The Independent, 20 August 2015) 'Other Modern Languages' in second place.

GCSE Results Day 2015 live: top grades drop for fourth year in a row following efforts to fight grade inflation (The Telegraph live blog, 20 August 2015) [..] 10.20 Figures from today reveal an overall drop in the number of entries to modern foreign language exams. 

GCSE results 2015: pass rate rises but A* grades dip (The Guardian, 20 August 2015)
[..]Modern languages French, Spanish and German all saw falling entries, with the numbers taking German this year dropping by nearly 10%. 
 
GCSE results remain stable but major concerns emerge over top grades in maths (TES, 20 August 2015) [..] The number of students taking language GCSEs fell for a -second consecutive year, despite the subjects being included in the government’s English Baccalaureate (Ebac) performance measure.

CBI responds to 2015 GCSE results (CBI, 20 August 2015) On languages, Ms. Hall said...

British Council comments on GCSE languages 2015 (British Council, 20 August 2015)

EBacc effect wearing off on GCSE languages (Alcantara Communications, 20 August 2015)

GCSE exam results for languages (UCML, 20 August 2015)

Speak to the Future calls for Head Teachers to implement the EBacc and support an outward-facing Britain with an outward-facing curriculum, which includes languages (Speak to the Future, 20 August 2015)

Would you pass a GCSE French exam?

20 August 2015 (The Guardian)

Test your vocabulary and grammar with the Guardian's quiz partially drawn from past GCSE papers.

Read more...

Funding for UK-German activities

14 August 2015 (UK-German Connection)

Schools can apply for grants for joint projects or activities with a German partner school, anniversary celebrations and preliminary visits for teachers.

The next deadline for grants is 31 October 2015 (the next deadline after this will be 31 January 2016).

Funding deadlines for the various opportunities on offer can be found on the attached document or visit the UK-German Connection website for full details of the opportunities available.

Read more...

British Council comments on A-Level languages 2015

13 August 2015 (British Council)

The 2015 A-Level entry figures show low numbers of students taking language exams, with a 1% drop in the number of French exams and a 4.25% drop in German. Spanish is the exception with a 14% rise in entries.

Commenting on the figures, Vicky Gough, Schools Adviser at the British Council, said:
"Despite languages being crucial for life and work in an increasingly connected world, A-Level entry figures remain disappointingly low for yet another year.”

Read more...

Related Links

British Council Wales comments on language A-Levels (British Council Wales, 13 August 2015)

Latest figures for languages at A level (Alcantara Communications, 13 August 2015)

Mixed messages from today’s A level results for languages (Speak to the Future, 13 August 2015)

Analysis of A and AS results in Languages in the UK (UCML, 13 August 2015)

Science and language subjects suffer decline as A-level choices shift (The Guardian, 13 August 2015)

A level results 2015: Which subjects did students do the best and worst in? (13 August 2015)

Summer 2015 AS and A level results: a brief explanation (gov.uk)

Modern Foreign Languages Entries 2014-15 (Joint Council for Qualifications)

A & AS Level results 2015 (Association for Language Learning, 14 August 2015)

British Academy comments on A Level results (British Academy, 14 August 2015)

Science A-levels cut in sixth form college cash squeeze

11 August 2015 (BBC News)

Sixth form colleges in England say they have had to cut the number of science and foreign language courses they offer, because of financial pressures.

[..] A-levels in modern languages have been cut in 28 colleges (over a third), while 17 (just under a quarter) reported cuts in science, technology, engineering and maths subjects.

Read more...

Language study bounces back after a decade of decline

10 August 2015 (The Herald)

A long-term decline in the number of pupils studying languages at Higher appears to have been reversed.

New figures show most modern languages have seen an increase in entries in 2015 after years where numbers have fallen.

Statistics from the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) show French has seen a 10 per cent increase with entries rising to 4,572.

Spanish continues a remarkable rise over the past decade with entries rising 28 per cent to 2413.

Read more...

Insight: Why Scots face a language barrier

8 August 2015 (The Scotsman)

Our children’s lack of foreign language skills cry out for a shake-up in education policy, and yet constant upheaval in our schools may be one of the problems, writes Dani Garavelli.

Read more...

Substantial rise in skills for life and work

5 August 2015 (Scottish Government)

43,911 qualifications specifically recognising skills for life and work have been gained this year – a rise of 18.3 per cent compared to last year. [..] With more relevant work-related learning for all young people at the heart of Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce, Scotland’s Youth Employment Strategy, key increases in attainment include:

  • Modern Languages for Life and Work SQA Award, has almost doubled at SCQF level 3 and 4 since 2014 with increases from 383 to 720 and 750 to 1,444 respectively

Read more...

A-levels and GCSEs: Tougher subjects on the rise as teens look to enter elite universities

5 August 2015 (The Telegraph)

(Applies to England) The number of pupils taking tough subjects at GCSE and A-levels, like maths and science, rose this summer as students regard them as “very good currency” to get into elite universities, the exams regulator has said.

[..] Dr Wendy Piatt, director general of the Russell Group, said: “The increase in the number of students taking facilitating subjects at A-level is welcome news. These subjects are required more often than others for degree courses at our universities.

[..]“We are concerned that a further fall in the number of students studying foreign languages at GCSE is concerning – languages are vitally important to the UK if it is to be fully engaged with the world.”

Read more...

Mock Council of the European Union 2015

4 August 2015 (British Council)

Do you teach 16-18 year old students? Applications are now open for 30 schools or further education colleges from across England and Scotland to take part in the 2015 #MockCouncil of the EU in London on Thursday 26 November.

In the Mock Council 30 schools are each assigned the role of an EU member state or an EU institution and simulate a meeting of the EU's Council of Ministers on two topical EU policy proposals. Two students from each school must research these policy areas and represent their adopted country or institution at the council meeting. Students are encouraged to use foreign languages where possible in the discussions, to reflect the multilingual nature of the EU; interpretation into English is provided.

Visit the British Council website to find out more and how to apply by 23 August 2015.

Read more...

Results day for students

4 August 2015 (Scottish Government)

Students across Scotland achieved a record 156,000 Higher passes this year – up 5.5 per cent on 2014.

Results certificates have been sent to 142,862 candidates sitting a wide range of qualifications – including new Highers for the first year and Nationals for the second year; and existing Access, Intermediates, Highers and Advanced Highers.

Figures released by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) show attainment is again high this year, with Higher English passes up 17.7 per cent to 27,902, and Higher modern languages passes increasing by 15.2 per cent to 7,419.

Read more...

Related Links

Record numbers of Scottish students pass higher exams (The Independent, 4 August 2015)

Questions over higher Scottish exam pass rate (The Telegraph, 4 August 2015)

Record Highers pass rate triggers concerns about Scottish qualification (The Guardian, 4 August 2015)

Bannerman High pupils success in Shanghai

28 July 2015 (Glasgow City Council)

Three pupils from Bannerman High School, who are attending the Shanghai International Youth Summer Camp with young people from 22 countries, have been awarded second place for their presentation and exhibition about Scotland.

S4 pupils Heather Finlay, Alicia Harvey and Emma Hastings, who are studying Chinese at the school, are accompanied on this international trip by their teacher, Jenny Chang.

Fhiona Fisher, Director of the Confucius Institute for Scotland's Schools (CISS) based at the University of Strathclyde and who facilitated the trip said: 'This is an outstanding achievement for the pupils from Bannerman High School and their teacher. They have shown the world how great young people from Glasgow can be!'

The Shanghai International Youth Summer Camp runs from 21-30 July 2015 and welcomes young people from all over the world. CISS worked with schools in Scotland to put forward three pupils for this unique opportunity.

Read more...

Future of community language qualifications secured

22 July 2015 (UK Government Department for Education)

The government has stepped in to secure the future of GCSEs and A levels in community languages such as Panjabi and Turkish - Schools Minister Nick Gibb announced today (22 July 2015).

Exam boards have said that there are a number of community languages which may not be continued at GCSE or A level but the government is today announcing that it is taking action to work with the boards and Ofqual to make sure as wide a range of language subjects as possible continue to be taught in the classroom.

Read more...

Our Europe Final 2015

30 June 2015 (SEET)

Finalist teams from Balfron High School (Stirling) and Lenzie Academy (East Dunbartonshire) spent three days in Brussels last week, from Sunday 21st June to Wednesday 24th June, competing in the final of the Our Europe Film Competition run by the Scottish European Educational Trust.

After a close-run final at Scotland House, Balfron High were determined to be the overall winners of the competition.

For more information about the final see the attached flyer or visit the SEET website.

Read more...

Mathématiques sans Frontières 2015

23 June 2015 (North Lanarkshire Council)

Mathématiques Sans Frontières is an annual competition organised jointly by North Lanarkshire Council and Heriot Watt University.  This year's winning team were from the High School of Glasgow!

See the attached documents for more information about the competition and this year's entries and winners.

Win £4000 to get more of your students to aim higher!

19 June 2015 (British Academy / SCILT)

British Academy Schools Language Awards (BASLA) 2015

The deadline for applications is now approaching!  You have until 30 June to apply for the 2015 Schools Language Awards.

As part of its programme to support and champion the learning of languages, the British Academy is again offering a series of Awards to schools and colleges throughout the UK for the encouragement of excellence in language learning. This year the Awards focus on activity which encourages more students to take language learning to a higher level.

The Awards are intended to encourage schools to find imaginative and effective ways of improving take up and enthusiasm for language learning into S5, S6 and beyond, which build partnerships and address the social imbalance in the profile of language learners at higher levels.

The Awards are open to all secondary schools and colleges and cover all languages other than English, including those learnt as community languages. A total of 15 Awards of £4000 each will be made to schools throughout the UK and at least one Award will go to a winning proposal from Scotland. One outstanding project from across the UK will receive an additional £2000.

Supplementary education

The British Academy are also offering Awards for innovative and exciting projects throughout the UK that encourage larger numbers of supplementary school students to take language learning to a higher level – the sort of level where they can use the language in the workplace and their future careers to benefit others. Schools could win £4,000 or more to put their ideas into action.

The deadline for applications for both awards is Tuesday 30 June 2015. See the attached document or visit the British Academy website for more information and to apply.

Read more...

Related Files

Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition going nationwide in 2015-16!

19 June 2015 (SCILT/CISS)

Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) is an exciting multilingual poetry project which celebrates linguistic and cultural diversity through creative writing, and showcases the many languages which are spoken and learned by young people in school and at home. After a very successful pilot of the competition in the Glasgow area last year, SCILT are excited to announce the roll-out of MTOT across the country from August 2015. 2015/16 will build on the success of last year’s initiative and see the competition go nationwide allowing all pupils from P1 – S6 to participate in collaboration with our partner universities.

The winning poems, as well as a wider selection of commendable entries, will be compiled and published in a Mother Tongue Other Tongue anthology. There will be additional prizes, so start thinking now about how you might get involved.

September will see the official launch of the competition with poetry and creative writing workshops for teachers taking place at our HE partner institutions across the country (dates and venues tbc). Registration to take part in the competition and to attend the teachers’ poetry workshop launch events will open in August 2015. More information on how to register and book a place on a workshop will be available to schools early in the new school year.

Why not visit our MTOT 2015-16 webpage where you'll find all the information you need, including links to our poetry resources page, where we have collated a number of downloadable poetry and language materials as well as links to useful websites. You could also read the 2014 winning poems featured in our anthology for some further inspiration and find out about last year's competition and celebration event, or take a look at the MTOT website from Routes into Languages North West and Manchester Metropolitan University to see how the competition ran in England and Wales last year.

Read more...

Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival for Schools

15 June 2015 (Consejería de Educación)

After the great success of last year, The Hispanic Studies of Edinburgh University, in collaboration with the Consejería de Educación (Spanish Embassy Education Office), is going to launch the second Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival (ESFF) from 2 - 10 October 2015 and would love to share this experience with schools in Scotland. For this reason, they are currently planning their programme, which also includes three Spanish films with English subtitles, particularly suitable for primary and secondary school pupils.

Please see the attached invitation letters for primary and secondary schools, which also include information on how to book.

Vive le Fringe!

9 June 2015 (Institut français)

For the past five years, the Institut Français has been a venue at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Under the banner ‘Vive le Fringe’, we have been bringing French companies to the Fringe and presenting an eclectic and ambitious programme of French theatre, circus and children’s shows.

The 2015 programme features three shows dedicated to young audiences for which we’ve been devising post-performance workshops for schools in order to complement the viewing and allow classes to make the most of their visit to the Institut français and to the Fringe. You can find out more details about each show by clicking on the relevant link below.

Out now: CISS and SCILT’s 2015-16 Career Long Professional Learning menu!

5 June 2015 (SCILT/CISS)

The new menu of workshops from SCILT and CISS are now available for bookings from August!

SCILT and CISS aim to provide high quality professional learning opportunities to support the teaching and learning of languages across all sectors and all parts of the country. Authorities, clusters or schools may be interested in booking one or more of the workshops from the SCILT and CISS Professional Learning Programmes for 2015-16. 

Whatever your professional learning needs, we will endeavour to meet them. If you have specific requirements we are happy to develop bespoke input and support.

Visit the pages below to view the menus for 2015-16, to read testimonials from previous workshop attendees and for information on how to book a workshop:

Book now for the start of the new session and remember all our services and workshops are absolutely free of charge!

Funding for Japanese Language Education Projects held in the UK

3 June 2015 (Japan Foundation)

Institutions can apply for up to £3000 for non-profit-making projects or activities which will have a significant and wide impact on the promotion of Japanese language education throughout the UK, or in their local area. For example, conferences on Japanese language education, seminars for teachers, projects to produce Japanese language teaching materials, etc. We also welcome projects that introduce Japanese into the curriculum, or bring it into the timetable at Schools or Universities. Priority is given to the following: 

  • Projects with a wide impact on Japanese language education
    Up to £3,000 for projects that contribute widely to the maintenance and strengthening of Japanese language education, e.g. conferences on Japanese language education, seminars for teachers, projects to produce Japanese language teaching materials, projects by organisations working in partnership, which benefit not only the institution applying for the programme, but which have a beneficial effect on others. 
  • Introducing Japanese to schools or universities 
    • Up to £3,000 for projects that promote the introduction of Japanese into the curriculum (or onto the main school timetable) at primary and secondary schools. Or projects that support the introduction of Japanese language classes at university - as part of our Primary Japanese Campaign, primary schools that would like to introduce Japanese as their main language in the new Key Stage 2 curriculum will be able to maintain their project by re-applying for funding twice for the same project. This means primary schools will be able to apply for up to a total of £9,000 over three years
    • Up to £1,000 for projects in primary or secondary schools that introduce Japanese as an extra-curricular activity or enrichment subject, even if this is not within the school timetable. These activities must continue for at least a year to qualify for the grant

The next application deadline for the 2015-16 programme is 19 June 2015. 

Further information and how to apply is available on the attached flyer.

When 30 years of teaching doesn’t get you top marks

29 May 2015 (TESS)

An experienced teacher at one of Scotland’s leading private schools could be forgiven for assuming that securing a top grade in an exam sat by students would be a walk in the park. But Jeremy Morris, a veteran teacher of French and German at Fettes College in Edinburgh, has hit out at the exam marking system after learning the hard way that it is not. Mr Morris (pictured, far right), whose school counts former UK prime minister Tony Blair among its alumni, took an A-level French paper alongside his students last year as an experiment.

Read more...

Learners International - new resource for schools!

28 May 2015 (British Council/Education Scotland)

British Council in partnership with Education Scotland has today launched a new online resource to help schools and pre-school centres improve outcomes for pupils and staff through international engagement.

The resource is designed to support schools in their journey of continuous improvement in learning through partnerships with educational establishments in other countries.  Working in partnership the aim is to develop learners' skills and attitudes that are necessary to participate effectively in a globalised world.

International engagement involves learning about other countries:

  • their cultures
  • education systems
  • languages
  • the global themes of interest to us all
  • and by forming a partnership with educational establishments abroad and/or being involved in global learning programmes

The aim of the partnerships are:

  • to improve knowledge and skills across curriculum areas
  • to challenge stereotypes and prejudices
  • and to make learners aware of the possibilities that exist for learning and work outside Scotland

This, by extension, allows learners to understand Scotland and its place in the world. Partnerships allow those involved the opportunity to share ideas in pedagogy and the space to reflect on their own practice; and in so doing, improve the quality of learning and teaching. Partnerships can be developed digitally or can also involve face to face meetings between staff and/or learners.

Find out more about Learners International on the Education Scotland website.

Read more...

Lesson planner - Secondary French

28 May 2015 (TES)

This “grammar challenge” was designed to motivate my 14- and 15-year-old pupils and make assessment more fun and interactive.

Read more...

Get the ball rolling in Spanish – with #fútbol

28 May 2015 (TESS)

Pupils can learn a surprising amount from foreign language tweets about football matches I began my lesson with that breezy staple “What are we going to learn today?” The answer to this question shocked the class: “Vamos a estudiar el encanto de la Copa FA.” Yes, the romance of the FA Cup. There was a palpable frisson of excitement.

Read more...

Related Links

Promoting modern languages in the Senior Phase

28 May 2015 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland has grouped together a number of case studies, identifying the key features common to modern languages departments, where languages are continuing to flourish beyond the Broad General Education (BGE). A number of schools took part in conversation days hosted by Education Scotland in 2014 followed by this set of case studies, which highlight a variety of approaches to encourage uptake in the senior phase.

The case studies can be accessed on the Education Scotland website.

Read more...

SALT Modern Languages Competition 2015

26 May 2015 (SALT)

Learners in all Scottish schools are invited to design a poster on the subject of food and healthy eating. You can create your entry using any form of media you prefer as long as it’s written in the language you’re learning.  Closing date for entries is 25 June 2015. 

For more information visit the SALT website.

Read more...

Interactive Exhibition with Guided Tours: Umdenken von der Natur lernen

26 May 2015 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut in partnership with Glasgow City of Science will bring this exciting interactive exhibition to the Glasgow Science Centre. The exhibition presents the four elements - water, fire, earth and air and promotes greater awareness of and a more sensitive attitude towards the environment, nature and natural resources. Our young visitors are encouraged to explore surprising facts, intercultural dimensions and study positive as well as negative examples in order to engage with central environmental themes.

Following an interdisciplinary and intercultural approach and providing customized teaching materials and workshops, the exhibition Umdenken - von der Natur lernen combines linguistic abilities and an interest in learning German with scientific topics and the subject of environment protection.

The interactive exhibition runs from 26 May to 9 June.  Guided tours are available for S2-S5/6 pupils (other age groups on request). 

Slots available:

  • Wednesday, 03 June, 13:00 - 14:30
  • Thursday, 28 May 10:00 - 12:30 
  • Thursday, 04 June, 10:00 - 12:30
  • Thursday, 04 June, 13:00 - 14:30
  • Friday, 05 June: 10:00 - 12:30
  • Friday, 05 June: 13:00 - 14:30
  • Monday, 08 June: 10:00 - 14:30

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for full details and to book your school's tour.  There are also taster materials available to try out in your classroom.

Read more...

Glasgow Science Festival 2015 - Energy for a sustainable world

26 May 2015 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow is delighted to take part once again in the Glasgow Science Festival in June and to present a special bilingual exhibition in French/English entitled Energy for a sustainable world / Energies pour un monde durable.

We will also be running educational workshops for secondary school pupils and their teachers who visit the exhibition (dates are 4, 5, and 8-12 June).

Among the themes covered by this interactive exhibition are the relationship between energy and development, the scarcity of some resources, and the impact on climate change that our ever increasing energy needs have.

Thanks to some playful elements, visitors to the exhibition will be made aware of issues relating to energy access, its link to economic and social development, and environmental issues. The exhibition contains description of such varied topics as:

  • What is energy? 
  • Sources and resources 
  • Geopolitics and energy access 
  • Research and innovation 
  • Energy storage 
  • Solar power

This exhibition fits in with the Curriculum for excellence (Science & French) and is suitable mostly for S1-S4 pupils, although S5 & S6 can also attend.

The exhibition will be accompanied by fun and engaging experiments as well as a French/English questionnaire so that pupils can learn more about the exhibition and the topics covered.

Visit the Alliance Française website for more information and to book your school visit.  Places are limited so don't delay!

Read more...

Vacancies: Professional Development Officer (2 posts)

12 May 2015 (SCILT)

SCILT requires two Professional Development Officers to support secondary schools as they continue to develop their strategy for the implementation of the 1+2 languages policy. This is an exciting opportunity to work at national level and drive forward the strategic languages agenda in Scotland. The Professional Development Officers will be responsible for developing and delivering a broad range of support measures for teachers of languages. This would include, for example, leading professional learning workshops and managing projects, national awards/competitions and other promotional events. It is expected that the post holders will support practitioners to turn policy into practice to create a positive impact on learners. This will be based on identification of practitioners’ needs, with particular reference to the aims of Curriculum for Excellence and the implementation of the 1+2 languages policy.

For the full job specification and how to apply visit the Stathclyde University vacancies webpage.

Closing date for applications is 25 May 2015.

Read more...

Exam board chief: 'Unless we act soon, even GCSE French and German could face the chop'

8 May 2015 (TES)

The furore around the announcement by some exam boards that they will no longer provide GCSEs and/or A-levels in ‘lesser-taught’ languages such as Turkish, Polish, Urdu and Gujarati begs some big questions. Given that the boards are a mixture of not-for-profits and commercial organisations, it is clear this is not simply a matter of money. The challenges are systemic and the root causes are a mixture of cultural attitudes, failed infrastructures and policy failures over many years.

Formal education has seen an overall decline in the study of traditionally taught foreign languages – French, German, etc – while the study of lesser-taught and community languages has failed to grow.

Any rational analysis of trends in school language education reveals that all languages, apart from English, are in danger of becoming ‘lesser taught’. The number of A-levels awarded in all available languages in 2011 was 40,685 and by the summer of 2014 it was 32,680. Many languages departments in universities are facing a real threat of extinction. Unless something is done soon to correct this we will wake up one morning to learn that GCSE French and German are also for the chop.

Read more...

Related Links

Newham lecturer’s concern over end to community language exams (Newham Recorder, 6 May 2015)

SCILT Business Breakfasts webpage now live

8 May 2015 (SCILT)

SCILT was delighted to host three motivational Business Breakfast events in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen at the beginning of this year. Our main aim was to support S3-S6 pupils in the uptake of language learning in the senior phase by providing schools with an opportunity to hear from various dynamic speakers who view language skills as a key part to the success of their businesses.

We have uploaded presentations and photographs from the event onto our website. You might find the presentations useful to use with your pupils to promote the benefits of languages.

Visit our Business Breakfasts 2015 webpage for more information.

Read more...

MOOC: Games in schools (2nd round)

29 April 2015 (European Schoolnet Academy)

Primary and secondary teachers are welcome to join this exciting MOOC exploring the potential of games-based learning in schools. The course is being run jointly by European Schoolnet and ISFE (The Interactive Software Federation of Europe) and is entirely free. The course will examine the opportunities but also challenges offered by integrating games into our teaching and learning and will provide practical examples of gaming tools and activities to use in your daily teaching practice. We will be learning through a mix of video, interactive activities and discussions as well as sharing of resources.

The first question we will explore is, why use computer games in schools? We will then look at a range of games which do not necessarily have an educational purpose but can be used nicely for thematic learning on topics such as gravity, planets, construction, and many others. However, we will also explore games that have an explicit pedagogical focus and are designed to help students learn anything from Maths to Languages.

The course commences on 18 May 2015 and runs for 6 weeks. Visit the European Schoolnet Academy website for more information and to sign up.

Read more...

Into Film Festival 2015

28 April 2015 (Into Film)

The Into Film Festival is a free and annual celebration of film and education for schools and young people across the UK.

The Festival, formerly known as the National Youth Film Festival, takes place from 4–20 November 2015. It aims to help educators bring learning to life for 5-19 year olds by inspiring young people to watch, make and understand film in new and creative ways.

There will be a series of foreign language films to choose from (with English subtitles) with dates and locations to be announced closer to the event.  In the meantime, teachers can register interest now on the Into Film website and be informed as soon as bookings are possible.

Read more...

1+2 learning events - registration now open!

24 April 2015 (SCILT)

To support the 1+2 language learning model SCILT and Education Scotland are offering the following learning events during May/June for language practitioners in Scotland.  Click on the appropriate link for further information and to register your attendance.

Senior phase learning events 

L3 learning events 

Project Trust and SCILT promote global citizenship

21 April 2015 (Project Trust)

Project Trust’s Global Citizenship Programme sends passionate and enthusiastic Returned Volunteers who have become Global Citizenship Ambassadors into primary and secondary schools to provide interactive educational sessions about global issues they’ve had unique first-hand experience of overseas. Lucy Hughes (Cambodia 2012/13) and Ben Haldane (Namibia 2013/14) ran a session at Kinross High School talking about their experiences of learning another language, presenting alongside our partners SCILT (Scotland’s National Centre for Languages).

Read more...

Secondary school writing competition

16 April 2015 (British Council)

British Council Scotland and Education Scotland are pleased to announce a writing competition for secondary schools in Scotland! We would like to ask you to encourage your secondary school pupils to submit short essays to highlight how international their school is, or how international could it be.

Examples of things pupils could write about are:

  • how their language learning experience allows them to think more internationally or opens international opportunities 
  • what they have learned about other countries and how that changed their perception of the world 
  • what other international activities already exist in their school such as school exchanges or school links with schools abroad 
  • what international activities they would like to see happening in their school in the future

Competition overview

Topic of the short essay: ‘How international is your school and how International could it be? Please write about how international experience has shaped or could shape your time at school.’
Word limit: 300 words maximum, 280 words minimum (the title is included in the word count)
How to enter: Pupils have to submit their work in PDF format by midnight on Monday 25 May 2015 to Natasha Kozlowska at natasha.kozlowska@britishcouncil.org stating the subject as ‘Writing entry’. Entries must be submitted with your name and your school.
Deadline: Midnight on Monday 25 May 2015
Prizes: The prize for the winning pupil is an iPad and a certificate signed by Education Scotland. The winning work will also be published on the Education Scotland website, and the winner will be invited to an awards ceremony to present their work. The prize for the school is a framed certificate signed by Education Scotland, presented during an event celebrating Scotland’s international links.

Please see the attached document for further information about the competition, which can be found be also found on the British Council website.

Read more...

Learning events coming soon!

27 March 2015 (SCILT)

Senior phase learning events

Recommendation 16 of the ‘1+2 Report’ states: ‘The Working Group recommends that schools provide all young people with flexible opportunities and encouragement to study more than one modern language to the level of a National Qualification Unit or course, in the senior phase, whether in their own school or through cluster arrangements with other schools.’

Would you like to:

  • expand provision in the senior phase? 
  • boost the number of young people continuing with a language beyond the broad general education? 
  • hear what others are doing and have an opportunity to discuss possibilities with colleagues?

If so, you may find inspiration at the senior phase learning events in May. Each event will have three different speakers talking about the courses they offer in the senior phase. They will say what they do to attract young people to study languages. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and engage in discussion with colleagues and representatives from SCILT and Education Scotland.

The dates are:

  • Saturday May 9 in Aberdeen 
  • Saturday May 16 in Dunfermline

Venues to be confirmed. Each event will last a morning. The opportunity to register for one or both of these events will be available soon.

L3 learning events

Recommendation 4 of the ‘1+2 Report’ states: ‘The Working Group recommends that a second additional language (L3) be introduced for pupils at a later stage in the primary school. The time for introduction of the L3 language would be…….no later than P5.’

Recommendation 11 states: ‘The Working Group recommends schools develop language learning for L3 during the broad general education, choosing from a range of approaches………’

As one would expect, schools and authorities are at different stages in their preparations for L3. Further guidance on L3 has been produced by Education Scotland and is available on their website and the SCILT website - 'A 1+2 approach to language learning - Further guidance on L3 within the 1+2 policy' under the Guidance tab. A range of approaches to the delivery of L3 in both primary and secondary schools is described in the guidance. Understandably, L3 remains the area where most schools and local authorities are still at the planning stage or are at the early stages of delivery.

There will be two learning events for L3.

  • Saturday 30 May in Glasgow - L3 in the primary school 
  • Saturday 6 June in Stirling - L3 in the secondary school

Venues to be confirmed but both events will last a morning and will take place in the central belt. Each will involve three presentations where speakers describe how they have begun working on L3 in their school or local authority. Much of this work is relatively new and some is at the trialling stage. Each speaker offers a different approach.

There will be dedicated time to ask questions and to engage in discussion with colleagues. Each event will be supported by representatives from SCILT and Education Scotland. The opportunity to register a place for one or both of these events will be available soon.

Lern Deutsch- Die Stadt der Wörter

24 March 2015 (Goethe Institut London)

"Lern Deutsch - Die Stadt der Wörter" is an online game for learners of German as well as absolute beginners. Beginners are enabled to enlarge their vocabulary and to compare their language skills to others. In addition, basic grammatical structures are learned in a playful way.

Read more...

National 5 and New Higher revision guides

24 March 2015 (National Parent Forum of Scotland)

The National Parent Forum of Scotland (NPFS) has published a series of New Higher Revision guides. These resources provide a clear, straightforward explanation of what learners need to know in order to prepare for the new Higher exams. For each subject, there are links taking you directly to specimen papers, exemplar question papers and sites where you can access other useful information. Please note that these resources are for the new Curriculum for Excellence Highers.  Guides for French, German and Spanish are available.

These NPFS National 5 Revision in a Nutshell subject guides supplement learning and revision in class. They are organised alphabetically, by subject, covering 20 subjects which have exams and for which the SQA has provided relevant past paper questions. Guides for French, German and Spanish are included.

All the guides can be accessed under the 'For Learners' section of the NPFS website.

Read more...

French immersion days for secondary students

24 March 2015 (Institut français)

Bring your class to the Institut français for an exciting day filled with French immersion activities.

Choose between a film viewing or a workshop shedding light on a piece of French culture for your S1 to S6 students, with or without the croissants and juices.

For more information and to arrange a visit, see the Institut français website.

Read more...

Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival Poster Competition 2015

17 March 2015 (Consejería de Educación)

We invite Scottish students studying Spanish in secondary education to take part in a competition to produce a poster with a striking image reflecting both cinema and Spain, although the competition is open to all students in secondary education, especially those studying media, product design and art.

The poster will be displayed around the city of Edinburgh in September and October 2015 in various sizes and formats. It will also be the cover of our programme and leaflets.

The deadline for entries is 1 April 2015.

See the attached flyer for full details and how to enter.

French Easter Revision Courses April 2015

13 March 2015 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running semi-intensive revision courses between Monday 13 and Friday 17 April for Secondary School pupils and University students who are due to sit their French examinations later this year.  Enrol by 2 April 2015.

Full details can be found on the Alliance Française website.

Read more...

The Open University ‘Young Applicants in Schools Scheme’ (YASS)

12 March 2015 (Open University)

YASS is designed to bridge the gap between school and full-time university, giving S6 students in Scotland the opportunity to fit study around school work and social lives. The scheme is intended to encourage independent learning and build confidence.

On this programme students may study from a wide range of subject areas across the university; from the Department of Languages, we offer beginners and intermediate modules (French, German, Spanish, Italian, Chinese and Welsh), an introductory languages and cultures module and also modules in English (academic purposes and professional communication skills for business).

Funding for the scheme is through the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), which fully supports students from local authority schools studying one of the modules on the scheme.

For further information please visit the Open University website and if you have any queries please contact Scotland-languages@open.ac.uk.

Read more...

Articulate Language Camps

12 March 2015 (Articulate Language Camps)

Easter Revision Day

This Easter, we are offering National 5 and Higher pupils the chance to revise for their French exams with the support of qualified language teachers. Pupils can take part in a variety of listening, reading and writing projects to help them prepare for their upcoming SQA assessments. The Revision Day will give them a chance to leave their textbooks for a while, learn in a relaxed and supportive environment and have a little fun with the foreign language.

The revision day camp will take place of Wednesday 8 April. For just £12, pupils can join us from 10am until 5pm at the Glasgow Gaelic School in the city centre. To reserve a place or request an information pack, pupils should call 07791 698945 or email us at info@articulate-languagecamps.com.

Launch Camp

At our two-day residential summer programme for children aged 6-11, young campers get the chance to experience French, Spanish or German or improve their existing language skills in a fun and interactive way. Our camp ‘launches’ campers into the world of language learning through projects, play and songs. From making a film in Spanish and going on a forest scavenger hunt to singing campfire songs in German and taking an archery class in French.

For more information on dates, prices, location and the programme, please visit our website, Articulate Language Camps, or get in touch at info@articulate-languagecamps.com.

International Camp

Our week-long summer programme brings together young people aged 12-17 from all over Europe to share their language and their culture. With options to learn French, Spanish, German or English, campers can teach one another and practise their speaking and listening skills with young native speakers of the languages they are studying. With a variety of digital media project classes and outdoor sport activities, the programme is full of adventure and excitement.

To hear from previous campers or to find out more information about dates, prices, location and the programme, please visit our website, Articulate Language Camps,  or get in touch at info@articulate-languagecamps.com.

Read more...

Bagpipes at Euroscola, 5 March 2015

11 March 2015 (European Parliament)

Euroscola is a unique event for schools to learn about European integration by experiencing it first hand. Students from the 28 EU Member States are selected to become a Member of the European Parliament for one day at the Parliament's premises in Strasbourg.

On 5 March, pupils from Scotland, representing the United Kingdom, were piped in to the European Parliament chamber. See their entrance and speech on YouTube.

To find out more about the programme and how your school can take part, visit the Euroscola website.

Read more...

How pupils are saying nein, danke to German

6 March 2015 (TESS)

Students can’t seem to get enough of Mandarin but are bidding ‘auf Wiedersehen’ to the language of Scotland’s near neighbour and economic partner Germany. Julia Belgutay asks why

The premise offered hope to foreign language teachers and all those promoting language learning in schools across Scotland. The 1+2 strategy, announced by the government in 2012, was finally going to bring language learning up to speed with other European countries.

Every child in Scotland would study one foreign language from the first year of primary school, and a second from no later than P5 – a pledge that the government backed up with £4 million of funding last year and a further £5 million in 2014-15.

But more than two years into the implementation of the ambitious strategy, it has become clear that not all languages have been winners. Indeed, some are losing – badly.

Read more...

Related Links

We need to speak up for the value of German (TESS, 6 March 2015)

#DigiLearnScot - Have You Got the 1+2 Factor?

27 February 2015 (Education Scotland / SCILT)

Next week, as part of Digital Learning Week, sees the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning launch 1+2 Factor, an exciting new competition which aims to showcase the learning and teaching of languages in schools across Scotland. Individual classes, schools or clusters are invited to use any of the tools within Glow to create a learning space which will help with the implementation of 1 + 2.

On the 1+2 Factor site within GLOW you can find important dates, useful links and documents to help create your learning experiences.

Join us on Glow TV on Wednesday 4th March at 12:30 PM to find out how to get involved in this nationwide event for Scottish education establishments.  Register on the #DigiLearnScot - Have You Got the 1+2 Factor? webpage

So what are you waiting for? Create, Collaborate, Innovate.

Please note, Glow login required to access.

Read more...

‘Hong Kong: A Dream Destination for University Study’ competition

25 February 2015 (Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office London)

UK secondary school students are offered the chance to win a place at a university summer school in Hong Kong!

To enter the competition, all pupils have to do is describe why they think Hong Kong would be a great place to study as a university student. Entries can be through any means – an essay or through social media, for example a video clip on YouTube, a post in a blog, and the entries should focus on the advantages of Hong Kong as a destination of pursuing tertiary education. Five winners will be selected and entries will be judged based on content, creativity and presentation. Deadline for entries is 20 April 2015.

See full competition criteria and how to enter on the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office London website.

Read more...

Language linking, global thinking! - register interest

20 February 2015 (SCILT)

SCILT is inviting schools interested in taking part in the Language Linking Global Thinking initiative in session 2015/16 to register now. 

The project links students on their year abroad with primary and secondary schools. Students communicate with a designated class in their partner school during the course of the year to illustrate how enriching it is to spend a year abroad using a language other than English. 

While the student is abroad, the partner school keeps in regular contact with the student by emailing, sending postcards and other resources. The two-way correspondence between student and class brings the language alive for pupils and shows them the real relevance of learning a language. 

This initiative has been piloted this year in three local authorities, and SCILT is now extending it to schools across Scotland. 

If you would like to take part in this project for session 2015-16, please email SCILT. Places are strictly limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Schools who took part in the pilot are invited to register interest in the same way if they wish to continue the project into a second year.

More information on Language Linking Global Thinking 2014-15.

Some of the students have used blogs to facilitate their contact with the schools. Read the student blogs.

Online Spanish course for teachers, undergraduate BA students and postgraduate PGDE students

19 February 2015 (Consejería de Educación)

The Instituto Cervantes and the Spanish Embassy Education Office in the UK offer Spanish online courses for teachers, undergraduates and PGDE students through Aula Virtual de Español (AVE), an interactive platform specifically designed by the Instituto Cervantes for the teaching and learning of Spanish.

The course is suitable for primary and secondary school teachers, undergraduate BA and PGDE students with or without previous knowledge of Spanish and will run from April to October 2015.

*Please note that this course will not qualify secondary teachers to teach Spanish in a secondary school.

See the attached flyer for more details and enrolment information.

How to teach … German

16 February 2015 (The Guardian)

Deutschland ist wunderschön! Our collection of lesson ideas and resources will help you get students excited about learning German.

Read more...

GCSE reform: regulations for modern foreign languages

9 February 2015 (Ofqual)

(Applies to England)  Reforms to GCSE modern foreign languages have now been published by Ofqual.

Read more...

SQA Modern Languages Update - January 2015

5 February 2015 (SQA)

The latest update from the SQA on the new Modern Languages qualifications focuses on the development of Advanced Higher, with information relevant to the subject and details of the support available to teaching professionals.

The update also details a series of implementation events for Advanced Higher Modern Languages taking place on the following dates:

  • Friday 20 February (Glasgow) 
  • Monday 23 February (Stirling) 
  • Wednesday 25 February (Edinburgh) 
  • Friday 27 February (Aberdeen)

There is a link within the document to register attendance.

Read more...

School support activities from Scottish universities

3 February 2015 (SCILT/UCMLS)

SCILT has worked with UCMLS to collate the opportunities available from Scottish universities to support language teaching and learning in schools across the country. We hope schools will access these opportunities to support the work being done in the classroom.

Read more...

Spanish Immersion Days

2 February 2015 (SALT Edinburgh)

Learning a new language has many benefits at any age. However, the earlier you start this process, the higher the results. One of our new projects are the Immersion Days for Higher and Advanced Higher, an intense time at different secondary schools throughout Scotland when young adults can enhance their knowledge of the Spanish language and culture. See video footage from the first of these events held in Aberdeen on 23 January.

Read more...

AMOPA 'Parlons français' - A competition for students of AH French

30 January 2015 (Alliance Française)

The competition is now in its fourth year and with continuing sponsorship from Total it's hoped it will continue to grow.

“It must be the easiest competition ever to take part in!” That’s a quote from one school last year.

And it’s true. All that's needed is a short recording of students as they prepare for their speaking test. This will then be assessed, everyone given some feedback and prizes and certificates awarded.

See the attached flyer for full details about the competition and how to enter.  The deadline for entries is 21 February 2015.

Why Au Revoir les Enfants is the one film you should watch this week - video review

29 January 2015 (The Guardian)

Peter Bradshaw recommends Louis Malle's 1987 autobiographical film, which takes place in a boys' boarding school towards the end of the second world war, explores French guilt surrounding antisemitism and the events that took place during the Holocaust. The film traces the friendship between two 12 year olds during WW2 and is in French/German with English subtitles. Au Revoir les Enfants returns to the cinema on 30 January with a re-release by the BFI in conjunction with Holocaust Memorial Day.

Read more...

Related Links

See the BFI website for a list of screenings, including those in Glasgow and Aberdeen.

Promotional postcard

27 January 2015 (SCILT)

SCILT have produced a postcard to highlight the advantages of continuing language learning to complement future studies, whether at college or university, and to highlight the options available. It will be particularly useful for supporting senior pupils make choices about their paths beyond school.

Lots more information on the options available beyond school is available from the Beyond School pages of our website.

If your school is interested in ordering this leaflet, please visit the Learners and Parents pages on our website, where you will also find our 'Inspiring Scotland's Young People...' leaflet and the 'Loving our Languages' bookmark, as well as our '1+2 parent information leaflet'. To order any of these materials please complete the order form and email it back to us. Although these products are free of charge, we would ask in return that you briefly explain how you intend to use them in your establishment.

Read more...

Russian ambassador calls for exam U-turn on language Higher

26 January 2015 (The Herald)

Moves to scrap the Russian language Higher in Scotland's schools have been attacked by the Kremlin's most senior envoy to the United Kingdom.

Dr Alexander Yakovenko, the Russian Ambassador to Great Britain and Northern Ireland, urged ministers to protect the qualification, describing it as culturally significant and vital to our future economic competitiveness.

The intervention comes after the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) decided to axe Higher Russian after 2015 because too few pupils were sitting it.

However, figures published last summer show there was a 44 per cent increase in entries in 2014, with number rising from 36 to 52. Although the number is still relatively small, there are now more entries for Russian Higher than at any time since 1992.

Read more...

Les Ateliers du Secondaire

23 January 2015 (Institut français d'Écosse )

It's still time to sign up for the first workshop of Institut français d'Écosse new monthly rendez-vous for secondary teachers on Thursday 29 January. These free workshops happen every last Thursday of the month and provide you with tools and resources for your class. The January session will be about video resources for your S1-S6 class.

Read more...

News from LFEE

22 January 2015 (LFEE)

See the attached newsletter from Le français en Ecosse (LFEE) for information on the following:

  • Erasmus+ guidelines for teachers wishing to apply to LFEE courses in France and Spain 2015-16.
  • Primary professional learning opportunities for teachers in Scotland.
  • Training for secondary teachers, including spaces available for 3 week course in Lyon and resources on embedding ICT into teaching practice.

You can also visit the LFEE website for more information about the training available for Scottish language teachers.

Read more...

Related Files

'Our Europe' film competition 2015 semi-final

22 January 2015 (SEET)

On Monday 2 February the Scottish European Educational Trust will host the semi-final of the Our Europe Film Competition 2014-15 at SocietyM in Glasgow.

In the initial stage of the competition, teams of four S3-S6 pupils were asked to submit storyboards, which made use of at least one European language other than English, explaining their ideas for a short film about how being an EU citizen affects them. This year 70 teams from high schools across Scotland signed up to take part. The six best entries were then chosen and invited to participate in the Our Europe semi-final workshop day.

This year’s semi-finalist teams come from: Balfron High School (Stirling), St Lukes High School (East Renfrewshire), Kinross High School (Kinross), Lenzie Academy (East Dunbartonshire), Douglas Academy (East Dunbartonshire) and Marr College (South Ayrshire).

See the attached press release for more information or visit the SEET website.

Read more...

Oral Revision Courses: Higher & Advanced Higher - February 2015

22 January 2015 (Alliance Française)

As in previous years, the Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running Higher & Advanced Higher Oral Preparation courses for pupils who will be sitting their French oral examinations in 2015.

Sessions will take place between 4-6pm at the Alliance Française de Glasgow as follows:

  • Friday 6 February 
  • Friday 13 February
  • Friday 20 February
  • Friday 27 February

For more information and to enrol by Friday 30 January, visit the Alliance Française website.

Read more...

Summer courses in Germany for secondary pupils 2015

21 January 2015 (UK-German Connection)

Do you have pupils who are interested in going to Germany this summer? UK-German Connection has two fantastic courses that might be of interest to them, both of which combine language learning with cultural trips and excursions, as well as staying with host families. The application deadline for both courses is 10 March 2015

German Pupil Courses: These two-week language and culture courses are part-funded and are for pupils in S5 or S3. Follow the link for further details and the online application.

German Scholarships Programme: This is a free four-week programme for excellent students of German in S5. Follow the link for further details and the application form.

There are also opportunities for teachers to act as group leaders on the German Pupil Courses.

Funding opportunities for UK-German activities

21 January 2014 (UK-German Connection)

Do you need funding for activities with your German partner school? UK-German Connection has grants available for UK-German projects, activities and anniversary celebrations. The next deadline for grants for UK-German activities is 31 January 2015 (the next deadline after this will be 31 May 2015).

Read more...

Questions for the Cabinet – new Highers

20 January 2015 (Scottish Parliament)

On Tuesday 3 February we will hold an evidence session with the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning. The focus of the meeting will be the new Highers.

We welcome your questions for the Cabinet Secretary on the new Highers or other topical issue relating to the Curriculum for Excellence. We would also welcome written submissions in relation to the new Highers.

Send your questions or written submissions to ec.committee@scottish.parliament.uk by 27 January.

Read more...

SQA up-date

16 January 2015 (SQA)

Higher Exemplar Question Papers are now available on the SQA website for all languages other than German and Urdu reading, which will be published by the end of January.

On the SQA webpage, click on “Specimen and Exemplar Question Papers and Marking Instructions”.

Read more...

Google and Eurostar sponsor new Franco-British schools’ competition

15 Januiary 2015 (Franco-British Council)

The Franco-British Council is delighted to announce that the digital giant Google and Eurostar are both supporting its 2015 competition for schools.

The competition is directed at S2 and S5 pupils at state schools ONLY in Scotland and the equivalent Year 9 and Year 12 pupils from state schools ONLY south of the border. The competition requires pupils to pick a city* in France and create their very own website championing it and explaining why their friends should all go there. Entries will be judged by a panel of digital, communications and travel experts from Google, Eurostar, the Daily Telegraph Newspaper and the Foreign Office. The winning three groups (5 pupils and 1 teacher per group) will get the opportunity to visit their chosen French city for the weekend!

The aim of this competition is to stimulate interest and research in France amongst language students and to give them the opportunity to demonstrate their creative, linguistic and IT skills.

Please see the full competition details on the Franco-British Council website through the 'read more' link below.

The competition runs from Janusary - 24 April 2015. Teachers should send the link of their pupils’ website entry to prize@francobritishcouncil.org.uk and contact angela@francobritishcouncil.org.uk with any questions.

*French Cities included in the competition: Reims, Metz, Strasbourg, Nancy, Mulhouse, Besançon, Dijon, Lille, Rouen, Caen, Le Mans, Laval, Rennes, Angers, Nantes, Tours, Poitiers, Angoulême, Bordeaux, Lyon, Valence, and Avignon. Please take a look at the map.

Read more...

European Charlemagne Youth Prize

13 January 2015 (European Parliament)

The Charlemagne Youth Prize is organised jointly by the European Parliament and the International Charlemagne Prize Foundation in Aachen and awarded each year for projects which foster understanding between people from different European countries.

The projects are run by people aged between 16 and 30 and winning projects should provide models for young people living in Europe and offer practical examples of Europeans living together as one community.

Past winners include youth exchange programmes and artistic and internet projects with a European dimension.

The deadline for submissions is 2 February 2015.  More information and guidelines for submitting applications are on the website.

Read more...

Related Links

The European Parliament also provides a number of online teaching resources and opportunities for schools to learn about the European Union and related issues.

YouTube video session with Greg Horton, CILT Cymru Languages Wales 2014 - Engaging Language Learners in Key Stage 3

8 January 2015 (CILT Cymru)

How do we ensure that as many pupils as possible opt to study GCSE languages? This session demonstrates tried-and-tested ways of engaging pupils across the ability range while at the same time achieving maximum linguistic progression.

Read more...

Connecting Classrooms funding

7 January 2015 (British Council)

Apply for funding for your school partnership now! This is the last grant application round for the current Connecting Classrooms funding offer. 

Don’t miss this opportunity to get funding to collaborate directly with international peers. Connecting Classrooms brings challenging global issues to life through meaningful cross-cultural relationships.

The grant supports visits from at least one teacher from each of the schools in your partnership. Make sure you submit your application for funding in 2015 by the deadline of 30 January 2015.

For more information and to apply, visit the British Council Schools Online website.

Read more...

French film essay competition 2015

6 January 2015 (University of Oxford)

The Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages at Oxford University is looking for budding film enthusiasts in Years 7-11 (P7-S4) and 12-13 (S5-S6) to embrace the world of French cinema. To enter the competition, students in each age group are asked to re-write the ending of a film in no more than 1500 words.   Work can be done in English or French.

See the University website for more information and how to apply before 27 March 2015.

Read more...

Schools 2015 website competition

6 January 2015 (Franco-British Council)

Pupils in S2 and S5 are invited to choose their favourite French city from the list provided and design a website to promote the city and explain why we should all go there.  Extra credit will be given for including written or spoken French.

Winners will have the chance to visit their chosen French city, courtesy of Eurostar and the Franco-British Council.

Visit the Franco-British Council website for full details of the competition and how to enter.  The competition closes on 24 April 2015.

Read more...

Real Madrid and Lidl: recommended topics for A-level languages

18 December 2014 (TES)

(Applies to England) Real Madrid, French rap music and Germany’s Aldi and Lidl supermarkets are among the topics that university academics have recommended for study in new “academically rigorous” foreign language AS- and A-levels unveiled today.  The subject areas are listed in suggestions for individual project work from the A-level content advisory board (Alcab), made up of university academics and other subject experts.

[..]The recommendations from universities come as the government has published new “academically rigorous” compulsory subject content for reformed AS- and A-levels in languages, maths and geography this morning (see related item below).

Read more...

Related Links

GCE AS and A Level Modern Foreign Languages guidance (Department for Education, 18 December 2014)

Pupils 'should learn about Gareth Bale in A-level Spanish'(The Telegraph, 18 December 2014)

Les Rencontres Théâtrales 2015

16 December 2014 (Institut français)

The Institut français has been organizing les Rencontres Théâtrales for many years. It is a unique experience for your primary and secondary school students to perform in French on a stage. These past years, les rencontres took place in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen.

In 2015, les Rencontres Théâtrales will take place in Edinburgh on 26 March at Broughton High School.  The date for Glasgow will be announced soon.

If you'd like to organise les Rencontres Théâtrales in your council, please contact Thomas Chaurin, Education Attaché for France in Scotland.

For more information about les Rencontres Théâtrales, see the video trailer.

Read more...

New Spanish resources on the SCILT website

10 December 2014 (SCILT)

The Professional Development Officers at SCILT have developed materials for use with Spanish learners. 

New Higher
  • Gang Culture
  • Media
  • Volunteering

Access these materials through the Classroom Resources section of our website.

Read more...

SCEN competition

9 December 2014 (SCEN)

A reminder that the closing date for the SCEN competition is drawing near!

Entries for the SCEN Competition, in collaboration with The Scottish Review and its Editor Kenneth Roy, should be a written article (maximum 850 words for senior students, 200 words for primary and S1-S2 students) on the following:

'Why all Scottish students should have the opportunity to learn Chinese'

The winning entry will be published in The Scottish Review!

  • Senior Prize (senior phase school pupils; university and college students and young professionals): £250
  • Junior Prize (upper primary and lower secondary pupils: £100!

Closing Date: 15 December 2014.

Please send entries electronically to the Convener of SCEN: judithmcclure12a@aol.com

Pupils put language skills to the test

3 December 2014 (Brechin Advertiser)

Brechin High School pupils, along with other Angus secondary school pupils, took part in an ‘on the job’ workshop to test their language skills.

The event saw pupils having to provide a solution to two real-life humanitarian crisis scenarios, and it required them to work on a solution and present the solution in French.

The first of the two scenarios involved the pupils assisting an engineer or medic from the Royal Navy to make them understood when they are operating within the challenging situation of a humanitarian crisis.

The solution had to be weather proof, easy to use, durable and effective. The pupils were also shown examples of what may or may not work and be asked to identify useful phrases that need to be included.

In the second scenario, pupils were asked to use their language skills to explore the properties needed for a building to withstand a Tsunami. Each group was given a budget and had to design a village within these constraints.

Read more...

Beyond the Panda education project - new website!

2 December 2014 (RZSS)

Thanks to a partnership with Jaguar Land Rover (China), Sandie Robb, Senior Education Officer for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland got the opportunity recently to visit Chengdu and Ya'an - along with 10 students and 4 staff from Lasswade High School. You can see an excellent video of the trip on the 'Beyond the Panda' new website, which not only includes a wealth of information on the giant panda project but has excellent lesson plans and activities.

The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland outreach sessions 'Beyond the Panda' and 'Giants' are still available for schools, however they are always revised and redeveloped each year to build on new resources and ideas. Please email Sandie Robb, srobb@rzss.org.uk, for full details.

Read more...

Higher/Advanced Higher Spanish immersion days for schools in 2015

28 November 2014 (Consejería de Educación)

The Spanish Immersion Days are intended to provide an opportunity for Higher and Advanced Higher Spanish students or a similar level of examinations to practise their Spanish meaningfully with native speakers.

For more information about the programme, visit the website or see the attached flyer.

Registration is now open!

Read more...

Related Files

Languages for life

24 November 2014 (Angus Council)

School pupils in Angus recently took part in an ‘on the job’ workshop which used their language skills in real-life humanitarian crisis scenarios.

At the workshop, pupils had to provide a solution to two real-life crisis scenarios which required them to work on a solution and present the solution in French.

The top eight winning teams were selected from each project by the school staff and they will now compete in a Dragon’s Den Panel consisting of Naval, Angus and SCILT staff on 17 December.

Read more...

SCEN Competition

18 November 2014 (SCEN)

We invite entries for the SCEN Competition, in collaboration with The Scottish Review and its Editor Kenneth Roy. The challenge is to write an article (maximum 850 words for senior students, 200 words for primary and S1-S2 students) on the following:

'Why all Scottish students should have the opportunity to learn Chinese'

The winning entry will be published in The Scottish Review!

  • Senior Prize (senior phase school pupils; university and college students and young professionals): £250
  • Junior Prize (upper primary and lower secondary pupils: £100!

Closing Date: 15 December 2014.

Please send entries electronically to the Convener of SCEN: judithmcclure12a@aol.com

Win a trip to Paris!

13 November 2014 (ULIP)

To commemorate the centenary of WW1 the University of London Institute in Paris (ULIP) is running this year's 'Win a trip to Paris' competition with a WW1 theme. To enter, students of Higher/Advanced Higher French have to watch the video on their website about "Les Taxis de la Marne", a famous WW1 event that took place right outside ULIP's front door, and answer a few related questions before 31 January 2015.

The French teacher of the winning student also receives a hamper of luxury Parisien goodies!

Visit the ULIP website for full terms and conditions and to take part in the competition.

Read more...

MTOT blog: The Creative Bag of Tricks - “Cinquains”

12 November 2014 (SCILT)

To support activities for the Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) competition, SCILT is sharing practical ideas for helping learners to write simple poems in the target language. These are published through our “Creative Bag of Tricks” series on the MTOT blog. The first of our items about short form poetry, “Cinquains”, is available to read now.

This is #6 in the "Creative Bag of Tricks" series.  If you've missed any of the previous activities these can still be accessed via the blog archive.

Read more...

Our Europe’s new Script Centre – an online language tool

12 November 2014 (SEET)

Following on from the launch of this years’ Our Europe Film Competition, the Scottish European Educational Trust (SEET) has launched ‘Script Centre’. This brand new online language resource is designed to help pupils at various levels of learning construct sentences in foreign languages as well as provide the vocabulary they may need to talk about European issues. SEET aims for this new interactive study aid to assist Our Europe entrants in constructing sentences which they can use within their foreign language scenes. In addition, Script Centre should allow pupils to rely less on input from their teacher in terms of content and be able to express their views more independently, with only grammar needing checked.

The resource is available to any class who wish to use it, all teachers need to do is create an account. Script Centre is accessible via the ‘resources’ page of the Our Europe website or directly at the Script Centre webpage.
 
Please note that the Our Europe Film Competition is still open for registration, with the deadline for submissions being 10th December 2014. More details about the competition as well as links to register can be found at the website provided above.

If you have any questions or experience difficulties in using the resource, please contact: madeleine@seet.org.uk.

Read more...

'Make the most of your partner school' webinars

11 November 2014 (British Council)

For this year's International Education Week (17 - 21 November) the British Council is running a series of webinars aimed at UK teachers on 'Make the most of your partner school'.

There are a variety of sessions during November and December for both primary and secondary levels partnering with French, German and Spanish schools.

For dates and times of all the sessions on offer and to register for your chosen webinar, visit the registration webpage.

Read more...

Related Links

For other suggestions as to how schools can get involved in this year's IEW, visit the British Council's International Eduction Week 2014 website or see the IEW toolkit for schools.

‘Modern languages will be dead in the water’

7 November 2014 (TES)

Sixth-form colleges may be forced to drastically cut the number of A-levels and other qualifications they offer as a result of funding pressures and moves to encourage students to take core subjects.
College leaders have warned that the number of A-levels on offer could fall from 40 to as few as 15, significantly narrowing the choice available to students. Modern foreign languages will be “dead in the water”, with further maths and creative subjects such as music and drama also vulnerable.

Read more...

Competition for Secondary Pupils: Sport in meinem Leben

6 November 2014 (Goethe-Institut)

Let your pupils shoot a video about “Sport in meinem Leben“ and win a trip to Berlin or other cool prizes. Register and upload your video by 16 November 2014.

See the Goethe-Institut website for more information.

Read more...

The European eTwinning Prize Competition 2015

6 November 2014 (eTwinning)

To join the competition, projects must have been awarded the European Quality Label in any year of the project’s lifespan. Only the partners of a project who have received the European Quality Label can apply for and win a European Prize. All projects must demonstrate that they have been active in the 2013-2014 school year.

Prizes are available for primary through to secondary ages with special category prizes also being awarded in the 2015 competition.

Read more...

Scotland Goes Global Ambassadors

6 November 2014 (NUS Scotland)

NUS Scotland are looking to work with schools around Scotland between 17th -21st of November to celebrate and promote International Education Week. We will also be able to offer further sessions up to March as needed. The training is absolutely free as it is funded by the Scottish Government and we are ideally looking for S3-S6 cohorts although this is flexible with a training session of roughly 1 hour.

This is an innovative module on study abroad opportunities which was first launched on a pilot basis last year. Funded again by the Scottish Government as part of the Investing in Scotland’s Global Future project, the training module is now ready to be delivered by a Scotland Goes Global Ambassador at your school absolutely free of charge.

Scotland Goes Global Ambassadors are students who have studied abroad as part of their course. This scheme is a pilot project of paid students ambassadors designed to go out to schools, colleges and universities and deliver training on study abroad opportunities to students.

Schools Module
The schools module works from the basis of young people’s experience of global experiences that they might have locally and sets these in the context of their daily lives. It then takes them on a journey to understand why they should consider going global, either locally by opening up their minds to people in their community who might be from other cultures or online opportunities, or how they might go about trying to set themselves apart from the crowd by studying abroad as part of their future college or university choices.

Book a Global Ambassador or download the materials
Booking an Ambassador to come to your school couldn’t be easier. Complete the request form on the Scotland Goes Global website.

For more information on any aspect of our work, please do not hesitate to contact us by emailing scotlandgoesglobal@nus-scotland.org.uk or by phoning Helen O’Shea on 07515 575375 or Kate Samuels on 07974305692.

Read more...

Double Club German

31 October 2014 (UK-German Connection)

With Germany as the current winners of the World Cup, now has never been a better time to kick-start a programme combining football and learning German! Double Club German is an award-winning educational programme for primary and secondary pupils using Arsenal FC to show pupils that language learning can be fun! Teachers have access to a range of recently updated resources, including detailed, step-for-step teachers' notes, interactive PowerPoint presentations and a brand-new, bright and colourful pupils' workbook.

If you are interested in taking part, please contact Steve Eadon, Double Club Languages Coordinator at languages@arsenal.co.uk - expressions of interest will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Note: if organising Double Club German sessions as an after-school activity is not feasible at your school, it can also be run as an activity in lessons or during the lunch-hour.

Double Club German is a project developed and run in partnership between Arsenal FC, the Goethe-Institut London and UK-German Connection.  More information is available on the Arsenal Double Club website.

New resources now include interactive video activities with Arsenal winger and German U19 international, Serge Gnabry. The full set of videos is available to all teachers participating in Double Club: German, however two sample videos are publicly available. 

Read more...

European Language Portfolio (ELP)

28 October 2014 (SCILT)

Celebrate and record language learning in and out of school with the SCILT ELP. This Prezi explains how. Also check out the Prezi alongside highlighting ‘What SCILT can do for you’.

Read more...

New eTwinning website

28 October 2014 (eTwinning UK)

If you’ve already been involved in eTwinning, enter the competition by 3 November 2014 to tell us how eTwinning has influenced your teaching.

For those yet to experience eTwinning, the site contains information on funding available, professional workshops and resources to help you get started and a video and case studies outlining eTwinning projects and their impact.

Read more...

The Language Ambassadors are here!

23 October 2014 (University of Strathclyde)

This year again we are offering to visit schools (Secondary or Primary) to talk about our varied experiences as language learners and try to enthuse pupils to follow in our footsteps.

Motivation, experiences abroad, transition to first year at university, job prospects, university courses…this is what we can tell you about.

Boost your young learners’ motivation, invite us in!

For more information visit the Language Ambassadors Programme webpage and to organise a visit contact:

Cédric Moreau, c.moreau@strath.ac.uk.

Read more...

DAAD Poetry-Writing Competition

9 October 2014 (Goethe-Institut)

This poetry-writing competition for students aged 12 and above is organized by the Institute of Modern Languages and the DAAD London in conjunction with the 'Germany: memories of a nation exhibition' at the British Museum.

Accompanying the object-based approach of the exhibition to make German history visible and tangible, the competition wants to draw on the students’ curiosity and creativity by letting them re-sculpt the objects in words. More specifically, they are asked to create a 'Dinggedicht', a poem based on any one of the objects presented at the exhibition.

Poems may be written in English or German; they do not have to rhyme. The only rule is that they must be no longer than 250 words.

In order to take part students do not have to visit the exhibition personally, they may view a number of iconic objects on the British Museum website and blog page which can be accessed via the DAAD competition website.

Submission deadline is Friday 14 November 2014.

Read more...

MTOT blog: The Creative Bag of Tricks

9 October 2014 (SCILT)

To support activities for the Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition, SCILT is sharing practical ideas for developing creative writing skills through the “Creative Bag of Tricks” series published on the MTOT blog. The fourth item, “I am” poems, is available to read now.

Read more...

Glasgow modern languages newsletter - Autumn 2014

9 October 2014 (Glasgow City Council)

Read about the latest language activities and events which have been taking place in Glasgow's schools in the attached Autumn newsletter.

Pupils at the hub of language

6 October 2014 (Dunfermline Express)

Queen Anne High School in Dunfermline has been named Scottish Outstanding Confucius Hub 2014 after it was awarded the title for its contribution to Chinese studies.

A successful trip to China saw Queen Anne staff and pupils take on the challenge of Mandarin lessons along with learning about Chinese culture and visiting spectacular sights such as the Great Wall. The kids got to visit Queen Anne’s partner school in Tianjin, where they learned about education in China before heading home to bond with the families by watching the country’s own version of the X Factor! The ‘immersion trip’ saw not only the pupils put to the test, but teachers too as they sat and passed Mandarin exams and came home having learned some useful words.

Read more...

‘Every learner a language learner, every teacher a language teacher’

3 October 2014 (British Council)

The British Council organised an evening event on 26 September on the European Day of Languages to celebrate language diversity and language learning in UK schools.

‘Every learner a language learner, every teacher a language teacher’ featured case studies from Bordesley Green school in Birmingham and St Austin’s Primary in Liverpool on how they support MFL, CLIL, and EAL learners.

For those who were unable to attend the event, the presentations can now be viewed on YouTube.

Read more...

Immersion courses in France and Spain 2015-16

3 October 2014 (LFEE)

LFEE now has course dates available in 2015 and 2016 for both primary and secondary teachers in either France or Spain.

The courses are fun and motivating and will help you implement the Scottish Government 1+2 language initiative and enhance your Professional Review and Development profile.

Funding for all courses is available through the European Union Erasmus+ Programme (formerly Comenius In-Service Training).  Please contact LFEE as soon as possible to pre-register and receive guidelines to help you apply for the Erasmus+ funding. Expected Erasmus+ application deadline: January 2015.

Full course details and how to register are available on the attached brochure or visit the LFEE website.

Along with LFEE we have other partner/cultural organisations who also offer professional learning opportunities both in Scotland and overseas.  Details can be accessed via the professional learning page on our website.

Read more...

RELAUNCH! 'Vorsprung mit Deutsch' Webportal for the Young Global Citizen

26 September 2014 (Goethe Institut)

'Vorsprung mit Deutsch' is a web project for young people with an interest in learning German or improving their existing German language skills while gaining experience in a professional or leisure context. Under several headings young people can find ideas for planning holidays or work experience, for job opportunities or career prospects as well as study options and scholarships. This is a great way to motivate and guide pupils towards making German part of their potential career pathways.

Read more...

A-level languages to be marked more fairly, says Ofqual

26 September 2014 (BBC News)

Applies to England

A-levels in modern foreign languages will be marked more fairly from next summer, the exams regulator, Ofqual, has promised. The changes follow complaints from schools that too few students were getting top marks in language exams compared with other subjects. Head teachers had described grading as "unpredictable and inaccurate".

Read more...

MTOT blog: The Creative Bag of Tricks

16 September 2014 (SCILT)

To support activities for the Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition, SCILT is sharing practical ideas for developing creative writing skills through the “Creative Bag of Tricks” series published on the MTOT blog. The third item, “Calligrams”, is available to read now.

Read more...

Scottish Learning Festival (SLF) 2014 - Modern languages

11 September 2014 (Education Scotland)

This year at the Scottish Learning Festival the modern languages team from Education Scotland will be focusing on two key areas:

Their seminar “A 1+2 approach to language learning: policy into practice” will take practitioners and local authority representatives through the key elements and stages towards implementation of the 1+2 policy. The session includes an input from Emma Sowerby, Scottish Borders Council, who will share experiences of implementation from school and local authority perspectives. Information about the support and resources on offer from Education Scotland and SCILT, as well as the latest national guidance and support will also be shared.

In their conversation slots “Encouraging modern languages to flourish in the Senior Phase” they will engage practitioners in a professional dialogue about the strategies used by successful modern languages departments to maintain and increase uptake in modern languages beyond the Broad General Education.

For full details and to book your seminar place, see the conference programme on the Education Scotland website.

Read more...

MTOT blog: The Creative Bag of Tricks

10 September 2014 (SCILT)

To support activities for the Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition, SCILT is sharing practical ideas for developing creative writing skills through the “Creative Bag of Tricks” series published on the MTOT blog. The second item, “Metaphor”, is available to read now.

Read more...

HSBC/British Council Mandarin Chinese Speaking Competition

9 September 2014 (British Council)

Applications for the 2014-15 competition are now open.

The competition is a great, fun opportunity for students to practise and improve their Mandarin Chinese language skills. Winning students will win a trip to Beijing and visit historical sites, interact with Chinese students and experience Chinese culture.

See the British Council website for more information and to apply. Application deadline 10 October 2014.

Read more...

Launch of Gaelic immersion course for teachers

5 September 2014 (University of Strathclyde)

Gaelic language teaching in Scotland's schools is being boosted by a University of Strathclyde training programme. The Gaelic Immersion for Teachers (GIfT) course at Strathclyde offers qualified teachers who have learned Gaelic to intermediate level the chance to become fluent speakers of the language and learn the specialist skills needed for working in Gaelic medium classrooms.

Read more...

Related Links

Teachers to start Gaelic course (Evening Times, 6 September 2014)

Scholarships for teacher training in Germany

8 September 2014 (Goethe-Institut)

Every year the Goethe-Institut offers an attractive range of residential training and language courses for teachers of German (specialists and non-specialists) as well as teacher trainers.

Courses include: 

  • Language Courses (2 or 4 weeks) 
  • Landeskunde (1 to 3 weeks) 
  • Methodology/Teaching Strategies (2 to 4 weeks) 
  • Courses for Teacher Trainers (1 or 2 weeks)

Scholarships are available from the Goethe-Institut.  For full details and to apply by 15 October 2014 visit their website.

Read more...

Learning how to love languages

6 September 2014 (Lancashire Evening Post)

Recent research on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills shows that the lack of language skills in the UK is costing the nation an estimated £48bn a year, while the latest A level and GCSE results showed a drop in the number of some modern language entries, sparking concerns over the lack of recognition of the need for foreign language learning. Education Reporter Sonja Astbury looks at some of the work being done in schools to reverse the trend.

Read more...

Eurotoolbox 2014-15

4 September 2014 (Goethe-Institut London)

The Eurotoolbox consists of 5 specially chosen collections of children's and youth literature from Europe in the original language - German, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Italian, with between 12 and 15 books in each language.

The exhibition of books is free to borrow for 2-4 weeks at a time and is available from September.

Visit the Eurotoolbox launch webpage for more information about the collections and contact Mariella Riccobono at the Italian Cultural Institute to arrange a booking slot: maria.riccobono.iic@esteri.it 

Read more...

Juvenes Translatores 2014

2 September 2014 (European Commission)

The eighth Juvenes Translatores translation contest for 17-year-old students in secondary schools will be held on 27 November 2014.

To participate, schools must register first — between 1 September and 20 October (see the rules on the website for details). This year's theme will be "European identity".

The winners (one per Member State) are invited to Brussels in spring the following year to
attend an award ceremony at the European Commission's headquarters.

The winners' teachers are also invited to the award ceremony, in recognition of their work in
motivating their students to learn languages.

For further information about the competition and to register visit the Juvenes Translatores 2014 website. An information sheet with the key details can also be found on the attached letter from Androulla Vassiliou, the European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth.

Read more...

Schools need to vary language teaching amid ‘predominance of French’, report suggests

29 August 2014 (Irish Times)

About 70 per cent of second-level students study a foreign language up to Leaving Certificate level but the number studying a third is “declining year on year”, the Department of Education has warned.
Publishing a consultation document today on developing a new languages strategy, the Department cites an over-reliance on French as an option within schools.

Read more...

Opportunities for schools with Germany

28 August 2014 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German Connection has a number of current and upcoming opportunities for activities with Germany this term:

  • Host a teacher from Germany - application deadline 19 September 2014.
  • First World War Centenary - call on 020 7824 1570 for information on funding available for thematic UK-German learning activities around the First World War.
  • Funding for UK-German activities - the next deadline for grants for UK-German activities is 31 October 2014.
  • The Bears Project - teddies, Alex and Ben, bring a fun and accessible international dimension to the primary school classroom!
  • FLA Ambassadors network - if you have a language assistant from Germany in your school this year, then do encourage them to apply to be an FLA Ambassador. They can apply for funding to run a small project.  Application deadline 20 October 2014.

You can also find an overview of all deadlines for UK-German activity in 2014-15 on the website.

Read more...

European Day of Languages 2014 - SCILT webpage now live

22 August 2014 (SCILT)

Each year September 26th marks the European Day of Languages (EDL). It's all about finding ways to get people in schools, colleges and the wider community excited about languages. How you celebrate is up to you!

SCILT has launched the European Day of Languages 2014 webpage where you can finds lots of ideas for how your school can celebrate. You can also order EDL materials for your school like posters, stickers and pens.

Let us know how you celebrate, and you could even feature in our EDL 2014 blog!

Read more...

Scotland Goes Global Ambassador Scheme

21 August 2014 (NUS Scotland)

Scotland Goes Global Ambassadors are students who have studied abroad as part of their course. Student ambassadors visit schools, colleges and universities to deliver a short training module on study abroad and employability opportunities to students.

The schools module works with young people encouraging them to think about what might help them to look for a job and what will drive their career decisions.

See the attached information sheets for further details about the scheme and to book an ambassador visit for your school, or visit the Scotland Goes Global website.

Read more...

Would you have passed GCSE French?

21 August 2014 (The Guardian)

Do you know you pluperfect from your conditional? A broad vocabulary and understanding of grammar are needed if you want to get top marks in a GCSE exam. See how well you remember your school French lessons. 

Visit the website and take the quiz!

Read more...

GCSE results: 'Lionel Messi effect' drives rise in Spanish

21 August 2014 (The Telegraph)

Examiners report a rise in the number of pupils taking Spanish GCSEs while entries for French and German drop, prompting claims it could soon become the most popular foreign language in schools.

Read more...

GCSE results 2014: the full breakdown

21 August 2014 (The Guardian)

The proportion of students getting an A*-C grade in their GCSE results rose for the first time in three years. Take a look at the other key numbers in the 2014 GCSE results and download the results in full.

Read more...

Related Links

GCSE results 2014: key figures in Vines (The Guardian, 21 August 2014)

The Guardian view on the GCSE results: the foreign-language deficit

21 August 2014 (The Guardian)

The number of students learning a second language at school is in free-fall.

Read more...

Related Links

What is happening to languages at GCSE? (Speak to the Future, 21 August 2014)

British Council comments on language GCSEs (British Council, 21 August 2014)

Mother Tongue Other Tongue 2014 - new competition for Glasgow schools

19 August 2014 (SCILT)

Schools in Glasgow have been sent an email inviting them to enter the new multilingual poetry competition, Mother Tongue Other Tongue. The competition celebrates the diversity of cultures and languages spoken and learned by young people at school and at home and invites young people to be creative and find their own voice through poetry, lullabies, rap or songs. Full details are available on our website

Read more...

Russian Higher to be scrapped

18 August 2014 (Herald)

The number of pupils studying Russian at Higher level has risen sharply just a year before the national examinations body intends to scrap the qualification.

Less? It really means more, says minister

15 August 2014 (TESS)

Education secretary Michael Russell believes it will become the norm for pupils to take just six Nationals rather than the eight courses typically taken under the Standard grade, but insists the change will not squeeze out science or languages.

Read more...

Flagship exams 'not worth the effort and should be scrapped'

15 August 2014 (Herald)

Flagship qualifications designed to raise the profile of science and languages in Scottish schools should be scrapped, teachers' leaders have said.

Read more...

Dedicated student gets near perfect results in all 4 A-levels

14 August 2014 (The Telegraph)

A dedicated student who achieved a 99 per cent pass rate across all four of her A-levels will go on to study at Cambridge.

Tabitha Jackson won joint first in the Trinity Hall medieval and modern languages essay-writing competition in 2013 and has been accepted by the McKinsey Leadership Academy.

She dropped only 14 marks out of 1600 across her four A-levels, gaining A* grades in English, Spanish, Latin and French.

Read more...

Gaelic (Learners) Higher - Route map

8 August 2014 (Education Scotland)

The route map for Gaelic (Learners) Higher is now available on the Education Scotland website.

Route maps are a sequential list of the key guidelines, advice and support for qualifications at N4, N5 and Higher. They include important information about assessment, learning and teaching. These papers are for teachers and other staff who provide learning, teaching and support as learners work towards National 4, National 5 and Higher.

Read more...

Related Links

The route map for Gàidhlig Higher is also available on the Education Scotland website (Education Scotland, 25 June 2014)

SQA Attainment Statistics - August 2014

5 August 2014 (SQA)

The Attainment Statistics (August) 2014 report in relation to SQA qualifications has now been published in Microsoft Excel format and can be viewed via the SQA website.

Read more...

Related Links

Results for National courses and Awards 2014 (SQA, 5 August 2014)

Gàidhlig Higher - Route map

25 June 2014 (Education Scotland)

The route map for Gàidhlig Higher is now available on the Education Scotland website.  This paper is for teachers and other staff who provide learning, teaching and support as learners work towards Gàidhlig Higher.

This route map provides a link to Education Scotland’s support materials together with a number of other subject-specific links staff may find useful as they develop programmes of learning.

Read more...

Glasgow Modern Languages Summer 2014 Newsletter

19 June 2014 (Glasgow City Council)

Take a look at all the stimulating articles about Glasgow schools' languages projects in the attached newsletter.

Schools drop languages for being too difficult, says Coventry University expert

18 June 2014 (Coventry Telegraph)

(Applies to England) Schools aren’t entering pupils for modern languages at A-level because the subjects are considered to be too difficult, according to a lecturer at Coventry University.

Read more...

Sixth-form colleges face closure because of deep budget cuts, with courses in languages, maths and science also being chopped

16 June 2014 (Independent)

Applies to England

Sixth form colleges are under threat with several facing closure this year because of deep cuts to their budgets, claims a new study by the Sixth Form Colleges’ Association (SFCA). A survey of England’s 93 sixth form colleges reveals that more than one in three colleges have already had to axe their language courses – while more than one in five have scrapped courses in the Stem science and maths subjects.

Read more...

Related Links

Cuts 'risk standards' at top sixth form colleges (BBC News, 16 June 2014)

Sixth-form colleges shrinking in face of funding cuts (The Guardian, 17 June 2014)

Spanish Secondary Teacher Training Seminars in Spain

12 June 2014 (Consejería de Educación)

The Regional Government of Castilla y León (Spain), in cooperation with Instituto Español Murallas de Ávila (IEMA), an organisation which promotes Spanish Language and Culture in Ávila, Spain, invites British Secondary teachers of Spanish to participate in one of their Spanish Teacher Training Seminars in the World Heritage City of Ávila, Spain. Scholarships are available.

Available courses include:

  • “¡Recíclate!”, 28 July - 1 August: How to teach aspects of Spanish culture in class.
  • “Vivir en Tiempos difíciles”, 11- 14 August: From Franco to Democracy. How to teach aspects of Spanish History in the classroom.
  • “¡A Hablar!”, 4-8 August, or 27-1 October: Conversation course for Spanish teachers.

For more information please contact IEMA School director: Dr. Rainer Rutkowski. director@iema.com.  Telephone 0034-920 222 773.  Full details of the courses are also available on the IEMA website.

Read more...

Mother Tongue Other Tongue 2014

12 June 2014 (SCILT)

On Wednesday 28th of May, poets and young people from Glasgow schools celebrated the launch of the Mother Tongue Other Tongue (MTOT) multilingual poetry competition at the University of Strathclyde. SCILT is running the pilot competition for Glasgow schools from the start of the 2014-15 session. Take a look at the highlights of the launch event on our website and find out more about the competition and how your school can take part. Invitations to register in MTOT will be issued to schools throughout Glasgow in August so make sure you get involved!

Read more...

New FLAME website

10 June 2014 (ALL)

FLAME is an initiative led by the Association for Language Learning to support the integration of language learning with other curriculum subjects. They hope that the initiative will increase the number of primary and secondary schools that combine subject and language teaching, and that in this way help to transform the quality of language learning in schools. It’s called FLAME Plus and includes information about FLAME and links to cross-curricular primary resources.

Read more...

Euroscola – dates now available for 2015!

6 June 2014 (European Parliament)

Euroscola brings together about 600 students from all over the European Union for a day in Strasbourg discussing aspects of European integration, in multilingual working groups of 100 students. It is open to students aged 16-18. Dates are now available to book between January and May 2015. Visit the website for more information and to apply.

Read more...

Strictly 1,000 Words competition

2 June 2014 (Language Show Live / Speak to the Future)

Strictly 1,000 Words is a national competition for language learners in schools, universities and language enthusiasts everywhere to produce a short video containing no more than 1,000 words in another language. Videos must be no more than 2 minutes long and contain up to 1,000 words in another language.

See the website for entry criteria. Deadline for applications is 11 July 2014.

Read more...

UK-German Connection Scholarships Essays

22 May 2014 (UK-German Connection)

Read this year's winning essays on the UK's EU role, language teaching in the future and youth unemployment, written by participants of the German Scholarships Programme 2014.

Read more...

Euroscola - an opportunity for 16-18 year olds

20 May 2014 (European Parliament UK)

Take your Senior Phase pupils to Strasbourg for a mock parliament! Euroscola brings together about 600 students from all over the European Union for a day in Strasbourg discussing aspects of European integration, in multilingual working groups of 100 students. It is open to students aged 16-18.

Additional dates have now been made available in October, November and December 2014. Visit the website for further information and to enquire or apply.

Read more...

e-Stòras, a new resource for Gaelic Medium Education

19 May 2014 (Comhairle nan Eilean Siar)

The Multimedia Unit of the Education and Children’s Services Department of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar has developed a new website to support 3-18 Gaelic Medium Education. Resources support Gàidhlig as well as a range of other curricular areas. The website is being continuously updated with new materials to enhance young people’s learning opportunities through the medium of Gaelic.  For more information, visit the website or contact evelyn.coull@cne-siar.gov.uk.

Read more...

Modern languages competition 2014

16 May 2014 (SALT)

For this year’s competition you are invited to design a poster, slide presentation or short video with pictures and text on the subject ‘FESTIVALS‘. Entry is open to any individual pupil/student or group of pupils/students in any Scottish school. The use of a language other than English must feature on the entry.  The closing date for submissions is 20 June.

Visit the SALT website for full details.

Read more...

UK-German Youth Ambassadors 2014-15

13 May 2014 (UK-German Connection)

Do you have pupils who are enthusiastic about the German language and culture, and want to share their experiences and provide authentic cultural input for younger pupils? The UK-German Youth Ambassadors are a network of young people in the UK and Germany who have a genuine interest in the other country and are keen to help promote UK-German activities and encourage other young people to get involved. They do this through engaging with younger pupils in their own school and local area, by planning and running their own projects and activities.

Membership of the network is free and UK-German Connection covers the costs for the twice-yearly meetings. The school's support for their Youth Ambassador is essential.

We welcome applications from young people aged between 15 and 19 who are still in school and who are open-minded, reliable and excellent communicators.

Please visit our website for further details about the Youth Ambassadors network, the programme framework and the application procedure. The application deadline is 30 June 2014 (please note the earlier deadline this year) and the first meeting will take place in London in October.

Read more...

The reasons behind the decline in languages at A level

8 May 2014 (SecEd)

The latest Languages Trends study has revealed yet further decline in language learning, with specific concerns about post-16 study. Kathryn Board and Teresa Tinsley consider some of the reasons behind the continuing problems.

Read more...

“Mother Tongue Other Tongue” Poet Laureate Education Project Coming Soon to Glasgow!

2 May 2014 (SCILT)

From August 2014, SCILT will be piloting the inspiring multi-lingual poetry competition and Poet Laureate Education Project, Mother Tongue Other Tongue, in Glasgow schools. If you are a teacher in a Glasgow primary or secondary school who is looking for a creative way to motivate language learning and celebrate all the languages spoken by your learners, go to our webpage to read more about what MTOT can offer you.

Read more...

Exhibition of Third-year Students’ Research Projects in French, Italian & Spanish

1 May 2014 (SCILT)

Creativity, research and languages proved a great combination again last month in the 2nd annual ‘Exhibition of Third-year Students’ Research Projects in French, Italian & Spanish’ from the School of Humanities at University of Strathclyde. Groups of third-year students were given 'carte blanche' to research any aspect of life or identity in a country where the target language is spoken. Investigations ranged from art to women’s suffrage by way of gypsy culture, fashion, independence and music.

Led by lecturers Caroline Verdier and Lidia Acosta, the research challenge also features in two new SCILT blogs. Secondary learners considering studying Italian, Spanish or French at university might want to check out this student blog which details one of the groups’ process and learning in the course of their research project, or this poster blog showcasing the research posters in all three languages.

Information on both this year's and last year's Third Year Languages Research Projects can also be found on SCILT's 'Beyond School' section of the website.

Read more...

German IT Competition: Digital Days - Reisefieber

29 April 2014 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut London invites German teachers and their pupils to take part in this unique competition series requiring language and computer skills alike! Fun and steep learning curves are guaranteed when you take on one of these tasks:

  • Watching a video animation clip to solve a German city puzzle
  • Doing a digital treasure hunt about Germany’s UNESCO sites
  • Taking part in a sports commentary reading competition by recording or filming your class/group (texts will be provided)
  • Completing your own German comic inventing a funny storyboard
  • Using your own creativity to write an e-postcard
  • Doing the sound recording for the Felix & Franzi-Reise animation clip and come up with creative German dialogues
  • Special: Finding German traces in your neighbourhood and present them

… and all you need is a computer.

Seven categories for different levels of language skills are provided. Primary teachers and secondary teachers can choose which competition they think suits their students’ best.

Please register by sending a registration form to roma.schultz@london.goethe.org by 20th May 2014 and you will be sent a USB-stick. All the categories are explained and the relevant materials are provided. The materials are also suitable for work offline.

Visit the Goethe-Institut London website for full details and the registration form.

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UK’s young people to benefit from €1 billion Erasmus+ fund

28 April 2014 (British Council)

The European Commission has announced it will make available almost €1 billion over seven years to help people in the UK to gain crucial international skills under the new Erasmus+ programme, managed in the UK by the British Council and Ecorys.

Hundreds of thousands of young people in the UK will be able to access the new programme over the next seven years in order to study, train, gain work experience and volunteer across the EU and further afield.

More than 30,000 young people per year – the equivalent of over 70 fully-laden jumbo jets – are expected to gain opportunities to expand their horizons under the programme. This represents a 50 per cent increase on the number of UK young people receiving grants compared with the EU’s previous Lifelong Learning and Youth in Action programmes, which Erasmus+ will replace.

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Related Links

Erasmus+ launches across Europe (The Pie News, 30 April 2014)

New resources for secondary German

25 April 2014 (SCILT)

We have uploaded materials to support secondary German onto the SCILT website. These materials were developed by the Modern Languages Department at Greenwood Academy.

The Gruffalo

Are you looking for a different way to teach descriptions to your German classes? Here is a novel approach one teacher took. By using the German translation of The Gruffalo, S2 German learners were exposed to different and unusual vocabulary in an engaging and interesting way.

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Erlkönig

Looking for a way to incorporate the literature of another country into the new Higher syllabus and develop literacy skills among your learners? Here is an approach taken by one teacher which links Erlkönig with Rammstein and develops learners literacy skills at the same time.

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Language World 2014: ALL Joined Up - catch up on what you missed!

22 April 2014 (ALL)

Language World is the annual flagship event of ALL, with two days of professional development for teachers, the largest UK exhibition of language teaching resources directly aimed at teachers, a social event, and a chance for teachers from all over the country to meet up with their subject community to celebrate language teaching and learning.

Language World 2014 took place last week at the University of Lancaster, and our theme this year was All Joined Up. The conference focussed on the need for teachers across sectors to work with one another to make language learning from age 7 onwards exciting, meaningful and successful. This year’s successful event showcased valuable and inspiring work which language teachers and language teaching professionals could learn from and use in their own practice.

If you didn't get the opportunity to join us this year, don't worry - we don't want anyone feeling left out! Speakers presentations and handouts are available through the link below.

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UK Youth Employment to Worsen on Lack of Language Skills

22 April 2014 (International Business Times)

Britain's dire youth unemployment situation could worsen as Ucas figures show that there has been a 5% drop in modern language applications, says a leading translation and interpretation group. According to All Languages, the latest set of Ucas figures, which show a 5% drop in modern language applications despite the overall number of students applying for university places rising, will only exacerbate tougher competition for graduate positions due to the lack of language skills.

Why this house believes the EU is in danger

11 April 2014 (TESS)

Students debate European politics at multilingual event.

“I can’t see any hands going up. No one has a question for the speakers? I would really like you to ask some questions!”

No translation was needed for the brief awkward silence at the end of a multilingual debate in Edinburgh as the chairman opened up the discussion to the floor on the impact of Scottish independence on the future of the European Union.

But it was soon clear that the fast-approaching referendum in Scotland was fuelling young people’s interest in languages and politics. The occasion, hosted by Heriot-Watt University last week, attracted more than 400 secondary school students from across the country.

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More focus on British history and foreign languages: Massive changes to GCSEs and A-levels announced

9 April 2014 (The Independent)

(Applies to England) Sweeping changes to GCSE and A-level exams will usher in an era of more focus on British history and the geography of the UK, it has been announced.

However, pupils studying modern languages will be encouraged to speak the language more - and all questions will be posed in the foreign language they are studying.

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Gaelic Poetry Competition....!

8 April 2014 (Creative Scotland)

Struileag has launched a major new poetry competition, giving you the chance to win great prizes!

Struileag is a multi-faceted project, creating a live stage event to be performed during the Glasgow Commonwealth Games as part of the year of Homecoming, an interactive story-telling website, a TV programme, a book, a CD album and many other exciting elements, such as this competition!

Poems must be in Scottish Gaelic, be unpublished and under 50 lines in length. The deadline for entry is the 17th of May.

For full details visit the Creative Scotland website.

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Madrid visits for primary and secondary schools doing an exchange project

4 April 2014 (Consejería de Educación)

The Education Authorities of the Regional Government of Madrid offer the possibility of hosting students and teachers from domestic and overseas schools wanting to do an exchange project with a Spanish school in the Madrid Region.

Levels. Primary and Secondary school.
Groups. 15 to 50 students.

Accommodation. 2 possibilities: in hosting families or at the CIE, Centro de Intercambios Escolares (School Exchange Hostel).

The prices of the CIE, including lodging and 3 meals, are as follows:

  • 6 nights / 7 days: 145 Euros per person.
  • 5 nights / 6 days: 110 Euros per person.

Deadline to apply: 25th April.

Should you want to find a partner school in Spain, please email francisco.garcia@mecd.es

Find more information in the attached file.

Related Files

Language Perfect World Championships – registration now open

2 April 2014 (Language Perfect)

The ever popular annual global competition, the Language Perfect World Championships, helps students across the globe to learn vocabulary, verbs and common phrases from a wide range of foreign languages. Registration for the 2014 competition is now open!

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GLOW Meet British Academy Schools Languages Award 2014

4 April 2014 (SCILT )

Over £8000 to be won! BASLA Alert! Calling all secondary, supplementary and FE languages teachers!

£4000 will be awarded to two language learning projects in Scottish secondary, supplementary schools or FE colleges via the British Academy Schools Language Award (BASLA) this Autumn.

If your establishment has plans in place or is already involved in an imaginative language learning project which is improving uptake in languages in the Senior Phase and beyond, then you could be in with a chance of winning.  See the British Academy website for more information. 

All winning projects are then considered in the UK category. The overall UK winner will double their money, walking away with £8000 and the title of British Academy Schools Languages Award Winner 2014.

The deadline for applications is 30th June 2014. SCILT is hosting a GLOW Meet to provide key information and helpful insights to BASLA success. Anne Breivik, one of the BASLA judging panel will explain how to write a dazzling submission. Gillian Campbell-Thow, Education Support Officer for Modern Languages at Glasgow City Council and co-leader of one of the two Scottish winning projects in BASLA 2013, will share details of the very successful ‘Parliamo Glasgow’ venture.

This GLOW Meet will be recorded and made available to watch again.

Date: Monday 12th May Time: 4-5pm

Venue: GLOW - go to ‘View Web Conferencing Room GLOW MEET HERE’ in the ‘GLOW MEET HERE’ section of the page.

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Bring French language and culture alive for your students with funding for a visit to France

31 March 2014 (British Council)

Secondary schools (including further education colleges) that have existing partnerships with a school in France can receive funding for reciprocal student visits. £5000 per school is available through the Charles de Gaulle and Lefèvre programmes. Apply for both grants simultaneously so you and your partner school could access £10,000 each in total. Apply by 2 May 2014.

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Materials for new Higher languages

31 March 2014 (Education Scotland/SQA)

Materials have been published on Education Scotland's GLOW site for the new Higher languages exams.  You will need a GLOW userid and password to access the materials.

Higher specimen question papers and the second Unit Assessment Support Pack for Higher have also been published by the SQA.  Specimen papers are available on SQA website and UASPs on SQA secure site.

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Glasgow Schools Modern Languages Newsletter

31 March 2014 (Glasgow City Council)

The latest Modern Languages Newsletter from Glasgow schools has been published. This issue contains: 

  • Interdisciplinary Projects at Celtic Learning Centre
  • Eurozone Crisis IP at Bellahouston Academy
  • Louis Pasteaur languages / science project
  • Euroquiz 2014 in Thornwood Primary
  • Bannerman High's Chinese events
  • Italian events at St Charles' Primary

Easter French revision courses

27 March 2014 (Institut français)

The Institut francais in Edinburgh will be running revision courses from 7 to 11 April for Secondary pupils who are due to sit their French examinations (National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher).

More information is available on the Institut français website.

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The Voyage: Easter Special

27 March 2014 (UK-German Connection)

The voyage Easter special will be online from 31 March, featuring quizzes, articles and recipes on Easter in Germany and the UK - read about the Ostereiersuche and Osterfeuer, and try your hand at making an Osterzopf!

Easter in Germany 

Ostern in Großbritannien

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Language learning in primary and secondary schools in England

25 March 2014 (CfBT)

Based upon the findings from the 2013/14 Language Trends survey, this report assesses the state of language teaching in English primary and secondary schools.

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Apply now for a Language Assistant. Bring language and culture alive with a native speaker in the classroom

20 March 2014 (British Council)

Support implementation of the 1 + 2 languages policy by hosting a Language Assistant in your school.

The British Council team is on hand at every step and our dedicated online support offers everything you need to get your pupils’ learning experience off to a great start. Our free service includes careful selection of the best candidate to suit your school, guidance on administration and training courses for Language Assistants.

How can Language Assistants help?

Their responsibilities can be tailored to suit your school’s requirements. Assistants can support the teaching of a first (L2) or a second (L3) modern language by:

  • supporting teachers’ language acquisition and improving their cultural knowledge
  • developing lesson plans and delivering classes on topics to complement different subject areas
  • running extra-curricular activities for additional support (e.g. lunch time clubs)
  • working across different areas of the Curriculum for Excellence to develop projects based on cultural themes
  • setting up an international partnership with a school overseas.

Where are they from?

Assistants are native-level speakers of French, Spanish, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese and Russian. They come from 15 countries in Europe and beyond.

You can also apply for a Chinese Language Assistant for free (by 31 January) or at a heavily subsidised rate (by 28 March). They  work from mid-September 2014 to 26 June 2015.

What do I do next?

Visit our website to find out more about the programme and apply. If you are a local authority school, your local authority should apply on your behalf.

Contact the Languags Assistants programme directly: assistants.uk@britishcouncil.org.

You can also read an assistant’s blog on her experience of teaching French in an Angus primary school.

Articulate Language Camps 2014

20 March 2014 (Articulate Language Camps)

Articulate Language Camps are back for summer 2014. There is something for everyone with their range of summer camps bringing foreign language to life, bringing together language learners from all over Europe and engaging children through digital media projects and outdoor adventure sport.

  • Launch Camp is our two-day camp (for ages 7-12) which gives children an authentic summer camp experience without them being away from home for too long. Our team of young teachers and experienced ‘mums’ make sure everyone feels safe and cared for with a 1:4 adult to child ratio.
  • International Camp brings together young people (aged 13-17) from all over the world so that they can make friends and learn from young native speakers of the language they are studying.

Visit the Articulate Language Camps website for more information.

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