News from language & education organisations


News from language & education organisations

'The Smart Choice: German' schools network

15 August 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut is accepting applications to join the schools' network 'The Smart Choice: German'.

In 2016 the Goethe-Institut set up 19 Digital German Networks in the United Kingdom. It is now looking to build on this success and to identify further networks of secondary and/or primary schools that have the intention to start, facilitate and strengthen the teaching of German. 

At least three schools need to build a network. The lead partner can apply for the funding with the Goethe-Institut. It can be a secondary school supporting feeder schools or a cluster of primary schools reaching out to a secondary school teaching German. It can also be three primary schools in one area wanting to make a start with German or already having started with it.

Visit the Goethe-Institut website to find out more and to apply by 30 September 2017.

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Beyond the Panda programme for schools

15 August 2017 (RZSS)

The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) Beyond the Panda programme has been further revised and contains some new materials, in particular the new P1-P3 panda boxes. 

The programme now has two main parts:

  1. China Mobile Library - loan of the panda boxes followed by an expert visit
  2. Outreach workshops - Education Officer led workshops

See the attached brochure for full details of the Beyond the Panda programme. 

There's also an opportunity for schools to book a Beyond the Panda special event at Edinburgh Zoo during 'The Giant Lanterns of China' installation between December 2017 and February 2018. The session will include whole class interactive activities and Mandarin language games. See more information and how to book on The Giant Lanterns of China brochure attached.

You can also visit the website for more information about the RZSS and its activities.

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French classes in Edinburgh

15 August 2017 (Institut français)

The Institut français d'Ecosse is enrolling for their autumn classes commencing September 2017.

Classes and workshops are offered for all ages (toddlers to adults), from complete beginners to fluent speakers.

Visit the website for more information and to enrol.

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Concours de la francophonie 2017 - final report

15 August 2017 (Institut français)

The Concours de la francophonie was launched in 2016 by the Institut français d'Ecosse to showcase the vitality of the French language in Scottish schools and to encourage all learners from P1 to S6.

To enter the competition schools sent in a short film of a class activity in French.

See the attached document for full details of the 2017 competition, winners and photographs.

Magical Christmas Trips 2017

15 August 2017 (UK-German Connection)

Would you like to take part in a Magical Christmas Trip this year and build on or set up a partnership with a school in Germany?

These visits offer primary pupils the chance to get a taste of Germany at Christmas time, meet their German peers and get involved in some seasonal intercultural activity. Secondary pupils have the opportunity to brush up on their German and practice their skills as young leaders.

There are two options for getting involved:
  • apply to take part in a visit to Berlin run by UK-German Connection to set up a link to a school in Germany
  • apply for funding and organisational support to run your own Christmas visit to an existing partner school anywhere in Germany
To find out more, please visit the UK-German Connection's website and apply by 26 September 2017.

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French drama workshops

15 August 2017 (Theatre sans Accents)

Whether you want to perfect your French or your English, Theatre Sans Accents has the right workshop to suit your needs and your level!

No need to be fluent or an experienced actor, everyone is welcomed in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere!

Bookings are now being taken for Autumn term classes, with early bird discounts available.

Follow the appropriate link below to find out more about classes for adults and children:

For children:

For adults:

You can find out more about Theatre sans Accents and their other activities on the website.

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Autumn term French classes

14 August 2017 (Alliance Française)

French classes for adults and children will start at the Alliance Française in Glasgow on 11 September 2017.

Visit the website for full details and to find out about Open Days where you can visit, meet staff and have your language level assessed to establish the best course for you.

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German workshops in Glasgow

11 August 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut in Glasgow is offering workshops in August and September focusing on speaking and practising communication in authentic everyday situations. There are sessions available for Levels A1.2-A2.2 and B1/B2.

Visit the website for more information and to book.

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Which language should we teach in school?

2 August 2017 (MEITS blog)

Increasing motivation for language learning in UK schools and encouraging children to maintain their languages study past the point at which they have the chance to stop is an ongoing challenge. One important question here is: to what extent are success and motivation linked to the particular language pupils study?

The myth of the monolingual Brit, who refuses to speak foreign languages, has been supplemented in recent years by the narrative that we are not only unwilling, but also unable to speak foreign languages. For example, the 2012 European Survey on Language Competences, which sought to provide comparable data on standards of achievement in 15-year old learners across 16 participating countries, showed pupils in England languishing at the bottom of the table, where the learning of the first foreign language (French) was concerned.

The figures, however, tell a slightly different story when we consider the learning of the second foreign language. For example, Sweden, which had topped the charts for English proficiency, languished at the bottom when it came to the learning of the second foreign language (Spanish); learners in English secondary schools who were studying German as a second language did better.

Leaving aside the difficulty of providing robust data from such surveys, this study provides support for the idea that the language learned really does matter. Motivation for English learning is so strong in most parts of the world that for many learners it is now a life skill as much as a foreign language. Motivation for studying the second and third foreign languages, however, can be as difficult to achieve in other parts of the world as it is for the first in our own setting.

In Europe and the rest of the world English’s position as the foreign language of choice remains unassailable. For example, the 2017 Eurodice Report, which provides key data on teaching languages at school in Europe, reports that in 2014 virtually all EU students (97.3 %) studied English during the entire period of lower secondary education. After that came French (33.7 %), German (23.1 %) and Spanish (19.1 %), with other languages rarely studied.

The question of which language should we teach our learners in England remains a source of debate.

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Japanese Taster for Schools (JTS) Programme

1 August 2017 (Japan Foundation)

The Japan Taster for Schools (JTS) Programme exists to create links between schools and Japanese-speaking volunteers. JTS volunteers carry out school visits across the UK to introduce students at any level to the Japanese language, often as part of an International or Japan day. One of the main purposes of JTS is to give schools that do not teach Japanese the opportunity to find out what it is like to learn the language and to provide them with further information should they wish to start offering Japanese. More information about the programme can be found on the Japan Foundation website.

Japan Foundation London currently has a UK-wide network of over 300 volunteers, and are always looking for more! Guidance and training sessions are offered to all members to prepare them for delivering Japanese taster sessions at schools. The next Volunteer Training Day will take place in London on 12 September 2017. If you speak Japanese and are interested in becoming part of the volunteer network, find out more and book your place now!

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From Brexit to Scandi-noir: The Importance of Modern Foreign Languages

31 July 2017 (AHRC)

Many of us will be familiar with the sight of groups of young language students in UK cities over the summer months. Their excitement at being abroad away from their parents often for the first time is obvious. In 2016, he International Association of Language Centres (IALC) reported that there were 2.28 million language students travelling abroad each year, with English language travel making up around 61% of this market.

Whilst these language-learners only represented 0.25% of second language learners across the entire globe, most travelled to English-speaking countries to learn English. If the motivation for learning English in our increasing globalised world is clear, the British often struggle to appreciate the reasons for learning another language.

“The headline news for Modern Languages recently has not been good, with decreasing numbers of entrants at A-level and a number of university departments under threat of closure or severe contraction", said Wendy Ayres-Bennett, Professor of French Philology and Linguistics from the University of Cambridge.

In response to this national concern and its global implications, the AHRC has committed £16m to research in modern foreign languages (MFL) in its Open World Research Initiative (OWRI) project. Its aim is to explore and understand the language learning landscape of the UK, and how it might be transformed.

As part of OWRI, the AHRC has invested in four major research programmes, one of which is Multilingualism: Empowering Individuals, Transforming Societies (MEITS). Alongside her responsibilities at Cambridge, Prof Ayres-Bennett is Principal Investigator for the MEITS project.

“I think that in the current political climate of Brexit and of extensive migration, the need to learn modern foreign languages has arguably never been more important", says Prof Ayres-Bennett.

“I believe that there are huge benefits from being able to step outside a single language, culture and mode of thought", explains Prof Ayres-Bennett. "It enables you to see the world through other people’s eyes".

Prof Ayres-Bennett argues that the ability to speak another language is valuable to many different areas of society. "Whether we think of international relations, diplomacy, security and defence, or areas such as conflict-resolution and peace-building, or, crucially today, business, international trade, and social cohesion, all of these have languages at their heart."

Linguists are needed to provide vital translation and interpreting services. However, the need for direct communication between parties was well demonstrated by the experience of the British military in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Prof Ayres-Bennett also thinks that through reading literature in the language in which it was written, we can begin to see the world through the linguistic categories and worldview of its speakers.

"The gradual opening up of new worlds and the move from incomprehension to being able to make sense of another language and culture can be truly magical ”, says Prof Ayres-Bennett.

Scandi noir dramas have become very popular and one of the biggest hits of the year has been the Spanish language song 'Despacito'. Many young people in Europe improve their English through listening to music and watching films in English so that they no longer need to depend on subtitles.“TV and the internet increasingly provide opportunities for people to view foreign language material and to learn about other cultures.”

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Certificate of Continuing Education (CCed) in Spanish 2017-18

28 July 2017 (University of Strathclyde)

Applications are open for the University of Strathclyde's Certificate of Continuing Education in Spanish (evening classes).

The CCed course will be of interest to those who wish to learn Spanish, including primary and secondary school teachers and a range of professional people with an interest in the Spanish world and their language. The Certificate provides a General Teaching Council approved qualification, subject to a 13 week residency period in a Spanish speaking country.

See the attached flyer for more information, including how to enrol for the September 2017 intake.

Related Files

Transdisciplinary language experiences using the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

27 July 2017 (Language Show London)

This blogpost from Judith McKerrecher outlines the session she will be facilitating on behalf of Scotland’s National Centre for Languages (SCILT) and The Confucius Institute for Scotland’s Schools (CISS) at the Languages Show in London in October 2017.

As well as looking at and discussing the connections to the sustainable development goals, our planet and language learning, the session will explore a variety of contexts for language learning.

Having recently created a new project based professional learning menu, we have carefully considered the SDGs and this is reflected in the choices on offer. For example, the opportunity to combine science experiments with languages, geography, storytelling and outdoor learning or history with language, heritage, culture and nature is a breath of fresh air to language learning. In this way, languages can be used creatively and purposefully in new contexts.

Read more...

Spanish Language and DELE Preparation Online Courses

7 July 2017 (University of Strathclyde)

These new online courses are aimed at prospective candidates for the DELE exams. They will cover the different proficiency levels described by the CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages): A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, and C2.

Although the courses are aimed at familiarising learners with the format of the DELE exams, they also help to prepare you where a particular level of proficiency in Spanish is needed such as working or living abroad, support for other university courses and primary school language policies.

Related Files

N5 Modern Languages: assignment-writing understanding standards materials

4 July 2017 (SQA)

Eight pieces of candidate evidence with commentaries for the new Assignment – writing component of the National 5 Modern Languages course for 2017-18 have been published on SQA’s Understanding Standards website. These contain examples in French, German and Spanish. Further examples in other languages will be published as soon as these are developed.

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SQA update - National 5 Modern Languages

SQA (23 June 2017)

The following documents will be available for all National 5 Modern Languages courses by the afternoon of Friday 23 June:
  • Coursework assessment task - assignment (writing)
  • Coursework assessment task - performance (talking)
  • Course support notes
The course support notes will be added to the National 5 course specification as an appendix. The course specification will then be updated to version 2.0 and the date will change to June 2017, but there is no further change to the content of this document.

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European Youth Event (EYE) 2018

23 June 2017 (European Parliament)

The third European Youth Event (EYE) will be taking place 1-2 June 2018 at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. It provides a unique opportunity for young Europeans, aged between 16 and 30, to make their voices heard and to come up with innovative ideas for the future of Europe.

EYE2018 includes a wide range of activities in English, French and German run under the motto "The plan is to fan this spark into a flame." (Hamilton, My Shot). The activities centre around five main themes:
  • Young and old: Keeping up with the digital revolution
  • Rich and poor: Calling for a fair share
  • Apart and together: Working out for a stronger Europe
  • Safe and dangerous: Staying alive in turbulent times
  • Local and global: Protecting our planet
Visit the EYE2018 website for more information. Groups of at least 10 young people who want to take part need to register on the website between October and December 2017.

Read more...

Connecting Classrooms programme

22 June 2017 (British Council)

If you're thinking about collaborating with an overseas partner school next term, Connecting Classrooms could be the programme for you.

The global education programme is brought to you by the British Council in partnership with the Department for International Development (DFID).

It offers a free learning journey which helps you to improve your classroom practice and develop your ideas with like-minded teachers internationally.

By developing and networking with thousands of teachers across the world, the British Council aims to help young people develop the knowledge, skills and values to live and work in a globalised economy.

Listen to participating teachers share their experiences, and learn more about how you can get involved, on the Connecting Classrooms website.

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Bilingual story book readings

22 June 2017 (The Language Hub)

From August 2017 until April 2018, the Language Hub in Glasgow will be running bilingual story book readings at Hillhead and Partick Library. Whilst aimed at pre-school aged children, everyone is welcome. These sessions are free to attend and have been funded by the participatory budgeting project ‘Over to you Glasgow North’ delivered by WSREC (West of Scotland Regional Equality Council).

Visit the website for more information about these events.

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Chinese intensive courses

22 June 2017 (Heriot-Watt University)

The Scottish Confucius Institute for Business and Communication at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh is holding two Chinese summer courses in July.

Follow the appropriate link below to find out more about the course and to book your place:
  • Intensive beginners 1 (10-14 July 2017) - for complete beginners with little or no knowledge of Chinese
  • Intensive beginners 2 (17-22 July 2017) - for those who have either completed Intensive beginners 1 or have equivalent knowledge of the Chinese language

History teachers' professional development tour to Berlin

21 June 2017 (German Embassy)

The German Embassy is inviting applications for their next Professional Development Tour for British Teachers of History to Berlin, Germany, 15 – 21 October 2017.

The purpose of the trip is to give participants a wide-ranging impression of present-day Germany as a background for teaching German history in UK schools. The trip will include highlights of contemporary Berlin, talks with history teachers and teachers’ associations, visits to the German Historical Museum, the Jewish Museum, the Federal Foreign Office, the Reichstag and more.

The tour will be conducted in English. All costs relating to the trip will be covered by the German Federal Foreign Office.

Please see the attached flyer and booking form for more information. Apply by 8 September 2017.

Host a Teacher from Germany

21 June 2017 (UK-German Connection)

Provide your school with authentic German cultural input by hosting a teacher from Germany for two or three weeks, at no cost to you.

Schools do not need to be teaching German to apply and visits can take place at any time between September 2017 and July 2018. Deadlines 10 July(*) and 21 September 2017 (**).

(*) If you’d like to host in the autumn term 2017
(**) if you’d like to host in spring / summer 2018

Visit the UK-German Connection website for more information and to apply.

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Gaelic e-bulletin - June 2017

21 June 2017 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland's latest Gaelic e-bulletin has just been issued and can be accessed online.

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Face to face workshops

19 June 2017 (British Council)

This summer, why not apply to go on a short workshop in another European country?

Applications are now open for teachers from Early Years to Upper Secondary to attend a 2-3 day professional development workshop in France, Germany, Georgia, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Slovakia, Tunisia or Spain. These events are designed to facilitate new eTwinning projects through partner-finding and project planning activities. Teachers who register on eTwinning from 19 June until 19 August will also receive free wall maps, passport and homework challenge resources in the post, (designed to help kick-start a simple international project). Workshop themes and subject areas are varied, spanning e-safety to computational thinking, MFL, history and culture.

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French summer classes in Glasgow

19 June 2017 (Alliance Française)

There are still places available on the Summer Classes being run by the Alliance Française de Glasgow between June and September 2017. Classes are available for all levels.

Semi-Intensive Courses: enrol in a 4-week French programme suitable for complete beginners, or reinforce your language skills with revisions.

Intensive Courses: brush-up on your French with revisions over the course of 3 days.

Visit the website for more information and to enrol.

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Language learning gap widens between North and South of England

16 June 2017 (British Council)

The language learning gap between the North and South of England is widening, according to a new report from the British Council.

Analysis of examination statistics in the Language Trends Survey 2017 – now in its fifteenth year – highlights that in summer 2016, 65 per cent of pupils in Inner London took a language GCSE compared to just 43 per cent in the North East. More than that, participation rates over the last three years indicate that London is the only part of the country where the percentage of pupils taking languages to GCSE is currently increasing.

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Modern Language Assistants (MLA) Projects 2016-17

15 June 2017 (SCILT / British Council)

Every year language assistants try to make languages really come alive for young people in Scotland's schools, e.g. by initiating a language exchange, participating in language competitions, or by organising immersion days. 

In this blog you can browse through the work of last year's assistants. You can search the slides either by language or by school year group. Enjoy, and we hope you will be inspired to follow in their footsteps!

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EVALUATE Project

15 June 2017 (EVALUATE Project)

EVALUATE is a European Policy Experiment project funded by Erasmus+ Key Action 3.

This experimentation will evaluate the impact of telecollaborative learning on student-teachers involved in Initial Teacher Education in the participating European countries and regions. Telecollaboration, also commonly known as Virtual Exchange, involves engaging trainee teachers involved in Initial Teacher Education in task-based interaction and collaborative exchange with fellow trainees in other locations through online communication technologies.

The guiding research question for the study is: “Will participation in telecollaborative exchange contribute to the development of competences which future teachers need to teach, collaborate and innovate effectively in a digitalised and cosmopolitan world?”

A teacher-training event is due to be held in Italy 5-7 July 2017.

Visit the website for more information about the project and how to get involved.

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Island teachers ready to Go! Gaelic after pilot training programme

14 June 2017 (Stòrlann Nàiseanta na Gàidhlig)

Seven primary teachers from the Outer Hebrides are about to complete a pilot training course that will enable them to train colleagues in how to teach Gaelic to children in their class.

The programme has been specially constructed by training experts working for Gaelic educational resources organisation Stòrlann Nàiseanta na Gàidhlig as part of the company’s strategic approach to boost the teaching of Gaelic in English Medium Education. The training demonstrates how to make best use of the Go! Gaelic programme of resources, created by a team of language experts, designers and IT professionals at Stòrlann.

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German Teacher Award Ceremony 2017

13 June 2017 (German Embassy)

On Monday, 12 June, Ambassador Peter Ammon welcomed John le Carré to his Residence for the annual ‘Sommerfest der deutschen Sprache’, where they presented the 14th German Teacher Awards to outstanding teachers of German in the UK.

The annual German Teacher Award and the ‘Sommerfest’ pay tribute to the work of German teachers across the UK and give guests the opportunity to network. Over 220 teachers and representatives from the education and language teaching sectors, business and media from all over the UK joined this year’s celebrations and followed the announcement of the 2017 winners.

Addressing the teachers in his welcome speech, Ambassador Ammon said that "never before has your mission to teach languages as a gateway to another culture encouraging friendship, trust and understanding across borders been more important than today." He was delighted to welcome renowned writer John le Carré as the keynote speaker for the event, who once more proved himself a staunch supporter of language learning as the key to understanding other cultures.

Morag E J Allan of Wellington School in Ayr was one of the teachers awarded a "Special Mention" at the ceremony.

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'A German Classic' - essay prize for senior phase students

12 June 2017 (Oxford University)

The University of Oxford is delighted to announce the launch of a new essay prize competition: ‘A German Classic’. It is aimed at students with a GCSE or equivalent in German and currently in Sixth-form (equivalent to Years 12 and 13 or S5 and S6 in Scotland).

The classic celebrated this year is Goethe’s Faust, Part I. The task is to write an essay in English (between 2000 and 3000 words) so students who are not yet able to write fluently in German can focus on the challenges of engaging with the language, ideas and conflicts of the work itself.

Visit the university's website to find out more about the competition, prizes and how to submit entries by 13 September 2017.

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South American Spanish Day @ The Zoo

11 June 2017 (Preston Street Primary)

Thursday the 8th June was an important date for P6 and not because Theresa May decided to have her snap election that day. P6 at Preston Street Primary managed to secure themselves an opportunity to attend a South American Spanish Day event at Edinburgh Zoo.

To start the day off P6 had a short introduction via a video from Dr. Arnaud Desbiez who manages the RZSS South American projects. This was followed by Sandie Robb explaining a new initiative ‘Science in the Language Class’ which links to RZSS conservation projects to language learning. This led into a fun quiz which covered facts about some South American animals and included Spanish questions on numbers, colours and parts of the body. Afterwards, a gentleman by the name of Xabier San Isidro told us his story of how his love for languages shaped his life.

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UK-German Connection news - Summer 2017

9 June 2017 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German Connection offers a number of opportunities for UK schools to partner with a school in Germany. The following options are currently available. Follow the appropriate link for more information:

Visit the UK-German Connection website to find out more about all their activities.

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Funding available to partner with schools in China

9 June 2017 (Access China UK / Education Scotland)

Funding is available for schools to set up a successful sister school partnership with China or if you already have a sister school this can be used to re-activate the partnership. The funding is provided by Access China UK Education, which specialises in setting up and supporting schools with active relationships. The deadline to access the fund is 26 June.

Visit the website for more information.

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Young Applicants in Schools

8 June 2017 (Open University)

The Open University's Young Applicants in Schools Scheme (YASS) gives S6 students in Scotland the unique opportunity to study a range of university level modules in school alongside their other studies.

YASS is designed to bridge the gap between school and university, college or employment and helps motivated students stand out from the crowd. It encourages independent learning and builds confidence. Key skills like time management and accessing electronic resources are developed.

Registration for YASS modules is organised through the school, although students deal directly with The OU when it comes to their course work and assessment.

See the webpage for an overview of the language modules which can be studied.

Visit the Open University website or contact Sylvia Warnecke for more information about the YASS scheme and to enrol.

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Scottish Education Awards 2017 - Winners announced!

7 June 2017 (Education Scotland)

Congratulations to all the winners in this year's Scottish Education Awards, particularly those schools who came top in the language categories:
  • St Winning's Primary School, North Ayrshire Council (Making Languages Come Alive)
  • Ardnamurchan High School, The Highland Council (Gaelic Education Award)

Visit the website for information and photos of all the category winners.

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New website dedicated to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

5 June 2017 (ECML)

The CEFR was created in order to provide a transparent, coherent and comprehensive basis for the development of language programmes, curriculum guidelines and teaching/learning materials, as well as to assist the assessment of foreign language proficiency.

The Framework is particularly well-known for its 6-level proficiency scale (A1 < C2), which can be divided into different categories in order to create transparent and coherent language proficiency profiles – a major innovation in the domain of European education.

However the CEFR does not begin and end with the levels, nor is it intended as a standardisation instrument. As a reference tool, its aim is to facilitate transparency and coherence in language education at all levels: curricula, teaching, assessment and teacher education.

The new CEFR website offers a range of different resources, contributed by major European institutions and developed in different research projects and investigations.

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Japanese Language Local Project Support Programme 2017

5 June 2017 (Japan Foundation)

The Japan Foundation London is looking for non-profit-making projects or activities which promote Japanese language education. You can apply for up to £3,000.

We prioritise projects that fit into one of the three following categories:
  1. Introducing Japanese into the curriculum at a primary or secondary school
  2. Supporting GCSE or A-level Japanese courses
  3. Introducing Japanese extracurricular club or enrichment subject at a primary or secondary school
The next deadline to apply for funding is Friday 16 June 2017.

Visit the Japan Foundation website for more information.

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Host a teacher from Germany

2 June 2017 (UK-German Connection)

Would you like to have authentic German cultural input in your school? Through the Host a Teacher from Germany programme, your school can host a German teacher for two or three weeks during the academic year, at no cost.

All schools and FE colleges from the whole of the UK can take part. The UK coordinating teacher does not need to be a teacher of German, and German does not need to be on the school’s curriculum; visiting teachers are either teachers of English or have good knowledge of the English language.

Offers from UK schools to host teachers from Germany in 2017-18 are now being accepted. Application deadlines are 10 July 2017 / 21 September 2017.

Visit the UK-German Connection website for more information.

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German certificate exams - June 2017

1 June 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

Adult certificate exams at the Goethe-Institut Glasgow are taking place in June.

Please register by 6 June 2017.

Visit the website for details of available levels and dates and to apply.

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Edinburgh International Film Festival 2017

31 May 2017 (EIFF)

The programme for this year's Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF) taking place from 21 June to 2 July 2017 has just been published.

The event will showcase films from 46 countries so there are plenty of opportunities to test your language skills!

For more information about what's on offer, visit the EIFF website.

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French summer classes 2017

30 May 2017 (Institut français)

During August the Institut français in Edinburgh is running adults classes for all levels and aims. Whether you are looking to brush up your French over the summer or for some intensive classes, there's something for you.

This year a new intensive course is being launched which might be of particular interest for teachers. This 15 hour course will take place over three days from 8 to 10 August. GTCS registered teachers benefit from a concession fee.

All enrolments before July 11 can benefit from an 'early bird' rate.

See the summer programme for details.

Further information about the Institut français and their full range of activities can be found on their website.

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French workshops for Higher and Advanced Higher students

30 May 2017 (Institut français)

The Institut français is offering a series of 4 workshops from September to December 2017 to help S5 and S6 students preparing for their exam.

Visit the Institut français website for further details and to apply by 23 June.

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1+2 National Events for Principal Teachers of languages and colleagues i/c timetabling : June 2017

30 May 2017 (Education Scotland/SCILT/ADES/GTCS)

These events will focus on 1+2 in the secondary sector and feature inputs from ADES, ES, GTCS, SCILT and a representative from a local business. Purpose of the day:
  • 1+2 – overview of current developments
  • sharing practice across authorities re implementation in secondary
  • transitions between primary and secondary
  • examining the place of languages in BGE and Senior Phase in secondary schools
Scottish Ministers have a clear message to all stakeholders: that learning languages is a normal part of the curriculum from P1 onwards. These regional 1+2 events for the secondary sector are part of the Strategic Implementation Group’s priority to focus on curriculum such that there is clear and effective design which ensures progress through primary and secondary schooling, and on Career Long Professional Learning to ensure practitioners are equipped, enabled and empowered to deliver high quality language learning in primary and secondary schools. Given the significance of the 1+2 policy for secondary modern languages departments, it is important that all schools are represented at these regional events.

Your LA languages contact (usually DO/QIO) will have alerted you to the event for your region, however if you have not yet received the invitation to attend your local event (two invitees per school – PT languages, plus timetabler- usually a DHT) please contact EDSCFE@EducationScotland.gsi.gov.uk

Your regional event will take place as per the schedule below:

Date

Event Location

Authorities involved

Tuesday 20 June

Stirling

Stirling, Falkirk, Clackmannanshire, East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire

Wednesday 21 June

Coatbridge

North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire, West Lothian


Venue details, timings and a programme for the day will be emailed to you when you register for the event.

German Certificate Exams

24 May 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

Goethe-Institut examinations are well known throughout the world and the associated certificates are accepted as a qualification by employers and further education institutions in many countries. Dates for the next season of exams have been published on the Goethe-Institut website.

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Transnationalizing Languages: Heritage and languages in education

24 May 2017 (Transnationalizing Modern Languages )

Transnationalizing Modern Languages (TML) is research partnership project involving the University of Bristol, Cardiff University, the University of Namibia (UNAM), the University of St Andrews (Scotland) and Warwick University, which explores the place, value and development of languages and multilingualism in Scotland, Wales and in Namibia. As part of the educational research, a survey is being carried out of schools across Scotland to gather views on multilingualism and heritage languages in education. This research will be replicated in Namibia and will feed into a final paper looking at the parallels, findings, solutions and support resources.

If you could take 5 minutes of your time to complete this survey, it would be much appreciated – the more feedback, the better! Please also feel free to share with colleagues from across different stages and subject areas.

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Volunteering opportunity for French-speaker

23 May 2017 (Xchange Scotland)

Xchange Scotland, a Glasgow-based youth-led charity, is offering a brand-new, unique volunteering opportunity. Thanks to a strong partnership with French organisation Solidarites Jeunesses, six young French volunteers will be coming to Glasgow for a two-week long placement. 

Xchange Scotland are looking for local French-speaking volunteers/students who would like to join the group of French volunteers and practise their language skills as well as help with project organisation. The level of French language of local volunteers should be preferably between A2-C2 level. This is an opportunity for local volunteers to practise French language with native speakers here in Glasgow as well as develop organisation and communication skills. 

The participants will, for the duration of the project, be based in Auchindrain and join the museum’s outdoor workforce there. This is a small team consisting of young people (many with disabilities) undergoing training, which operates under the direction and supervision of a highly-experienced agricultural worker. This approach offers participants the chance to vary the work they do and gain experience in a variety of activities. The project aims to develop skills and intercultural understanding and also benefit the local community in Auchindrian.

Volunteers will be based in Auchindrain for two weeks from 31st July to 13th August 2017.

More information is available in the attached file or by email to Chiara Varesio.

Chinese Language Assistants grants

23 May 2017 (British Council)

The British Council and HSBC are providing up to ten grants of £3,890 to cover the costs of hosting a Chinese language assistant. Schools can apply individually, or with up to two other schools if intending to share an assistant. Apply by 31 May 2017.

Read more...

Related Links

Apply for a Chinese language assistant by 31 May

Chinese language assistants are native speakers of Mandarin who have experience of teaching overseas and can support students and teachers across the curriculum. Schools can still apply to host a language assistant for the 2017/18 academic year. Apply by 31 May 2017.

China Bridge for school leaders in the UK

23 May 2017 (British Council)

Applications are open for China Bridge, a professional development and networking opportunity in China for primary and secondary school leaders, heads of languages and heads of further education colleges in the UK.

Funded by Hanban (Confucius Institute Headquarters) and delivered by the British Council, the programme enables successful applicants to visit China to connect with Chinese schools and learn more about teaching Chinese language and culture.

Participants will receive support to help them initiate and sustain Chinese school links before, during and after the visit. Travel, accommodation and expenses in China are covered by the programme. Schools must pay for their own flights.

The deadline for applications is 12.00 on 23 June 2017. Visits will take place from 28 October – 5 November 2017.

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French summer workshop for children

23 May 2017 (Alliance Française de Glasgow)

Alliance Française de Glasgow are pleased to announce it will be running a special summer workshop for primary school children (P1-P7) in early July.

This is a great opportunity for the children to improve their language skills, experience life and culture in France as well as make new friends through fun activities!

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Intensive and semi-intensive summer classes in French

23 May 2017 (Alliance Française de Glasgow)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running Summer Classes suitable for all levels between June and September 2017.

Semi-Intensive Courses: enrol in a 4-week French programme suitable for complete beginners, or reinforce your language skills with revisions.

Intensive Courses: brush-up on your French with revisions over the course of 3 days.

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Call for case studies or practical examples of the use of instruments and frameworks for language teacher education and development

22 May 2017 (ECML)

The European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML) is compiling case studies or practice examples of the use of instruments and frameworks that describe the competences and experiences of language teachers and, with respect to language-related issues, of all teachers.

They are inviting teachers, teacher educators/ trainers, administrators/officials at all levels, and employers to share their experiences of using these instruments. The practice examples will be published on the website of the current ECML project Towards a Common European Framework for Language Teachers.

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Key Data on Teaching Languages at School in Europe – 2017 Edition

18 May 2017 (Eurydice)

The 2017 Edition of Key Data on Teaching Languages at School in Europe depicts the main education policies regarding teaching and learning of languages in 42 European education systems.

Some of the questions answered in the report:
  • How long do students spend studying foreign languages?
  • What are the ten most commonly offered foreign languages?
  • Do foreign language teachers travel abroad for training?
  • How many immigrant students speak the language of schooling at home?
  • Plus much more
The report can be accessed on the European Commission's Eurydice website.

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Promoting linguistic skills a priority under the Czech chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe

18 May 2017 (ECML)

The Czech Republic takes over the chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on 19 May. Among the nine designated priorities of the 6 month chairmanship is the promotion of human rights education and linguistic skills.

“The Czech Republic continuously develops and improves tools for linguistic and cultural inclusion in Czech schools to help them deal with the increasing number of pupils whose mother tongue differs from the language of instruction. In this connection, the Czech Chairmanship will actively co-operate with the European Centre for Modern Languages of the Council of Europe (ECML) on promoting teachers’ and other language professionals’ capacities to develop linguistic skills and intercultural competences of learners, as a prerequisite for their successful education.

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Euroscola dates for autumn 2017

16 May 2017 (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.

Dates for the autumn term 2017 are now available.

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

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Falkirk win at Euroquiz final

16 May 2017 (SEET)

Congratulations to the P6 team from Comely Park Primary School, who won the Scottish European Educational Trust’s National Euroquiz Final 2017, which took place in the Debating Chamber of the Scottish Parliament on 15th May 2017.

Team members Tamsin Gold, Edwin Walker, Robyn Dewar-Young and Jaymie Jones were crowned SEET’s Euroquiz Champions 2017 at the national final. The winners were closely followed by St Leonard’s Primary School team from South Lanarkshire, in a nail-biting final round. Sciennes Primary School from Edinburgh also did incredibly well, winning the prize for third place.

Euroquiz is run by the Scottish European Educational Trust, a non-political charity, which promotes education about language learning, Europe and the wider world amongst Scotland’s young people.

See the attached press release for full details about this year's competition and participating schools.

If your school might like to take part in future competitions, visit the SEET website for more information.

Read more...

Related Files

Related Links

Third Place in Euroquiz 2017! (Sciennes Primary School, 15 May 2017) - post includes photos and links to the event on Parliament TV.

Young Language Learner Award - 2017

15 May 2017 (B small publishing)

The Young Language Learner Awards are back!

B small publishing are inviting children and young people to write a four-page story in a foreign language they are learning (choose from Chinese, English, French, German, Italian or Spanish) to be in with a chance of winning books worth £50.

One winner will be picked from the under 6 category and one winner from the 6 and over entries.

Visit the website for full details and to submit entries by 15 June 2017.

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Language Perfect World Championships 2017

12 May 2017 (ALL)

This year's Language Perfect World Championships take place from 15 - 25 May.

Students participate in the world's largest online languages event over 10 days with the chance to earn certificates and qualify for awards and prizes by translating between their target language and English. The competition is relevant for everyone, whatever their ability.

The first 500 schools to register will receive 50 free entries. (ALL members can register all students for free).

Find out more about the competition via the ALL webpage and the competition website.

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Online course: How to succeed in the global workplace

11 May 2017 (British Council)

Beginning your career or starting a new job brings to mind lots of questions, so we’ve designed a course to guide you through those initial weeks and months so you can make a positive start to your career.

You’ll see videos from employers, giving you insights from around the world into what they look for from their employees. You’ll learn how to communicate across cultures and discover the skills to build and maintain relationships with colleagues, managers and clients.

This is a free 4-week course and is hosted online by FutureLearn.

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National Digital Learning Week 2017

9 May 2017 (Digilearn)

National Digital Learning Week takes place from 15-19 May 2017.

This year the theme of the week is ‘Digital Difference’ and throughout the week you’re invited to share and celebrate the digital approaches which make a positive impact on your classroom practice.

Why not use this opportunity to share any digital approaches you have to language teaching and learning in your classroom?

Visit the website to find out more about how you can participate and be inspired.

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The Stephen Spender Prize 2017

9 May 2017 (Stephen Spender Trust)

The 2017 Stephen Spender Prize is open for entries. Entrants are invited to submit an English translation of a poem from any language, ancient or modern. As always, there are prizes in three categories – Open, 18-and-under and 14-and-under – and the competition is open to UK and Irish citizens and residents.

Entry deadline is Friday 26 May 2017.

Visit the website for further information and submission guidelines.

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EOL network ’Learning environments where modern languages flourish’ - 99 partner schools registered

9 May 2017 (ECML)

The EOL ECML project “Learning environments where modern languages flourish” has already succeeded in recruiting 99 partner schools and teachers in ten different countries; we will continue to accept new partner schools until the end of July 2017.

This European network of project partner schools will not only support one another in developing innovative approaches to establishing language friendly learning environments through an exchange of relevant resources, research and practice, but will have dedicated support from the project team throughout the lifespan of their school projects.

Visit the ECML website for more information and to register to join the EOL network.

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Support language attainment in class with a Modern Language Assistant

8 May 2017 (British Council)

Employing a British Council language assistant is a unique way to broaden your students understanding of the world, improve their language skills and increase their cultural awareness.

Language assistants are dynamic, enthusiastic native speakers of French, Spanish, German, Italian and Mandarin Chinese, and are usually undergraduates or recent graduates. As we recruit language assistants directly from their home countries, their language is up-to-date, the classroom resources they provide are relevant and authentic, and they will be well placed to connect with students on their own level . Simply put, employing a language assistant provides the kind of learning experience that cannot be found elsewhere.

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 deadline for applications has been extended to 31 May 2017.

For more information and to apply visit the British Council website.

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National 5 Modern Languages Course Specification

4 May 2017 (SQA)

SQA has just published the revised National 5 Course Specification.

This document contains important information about the changes to the Performance of Talking and the new Assignment-Writing.

The document can be accessed on the SQA website.

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German Teacher Awards 2017

3 May 2017 (Goethe-Institut/German Embassy)

Does your school have a truly outstanding German teacher? There's still time to get nominations in for the 14th annual German Teacher Award offered by the German Embassy in London.

The purpose of this award is:
  • to recognise outstanding achievement by individual teachers of German in the UK
  • to highlight and pay tribute to the work of German teachers in the UK
  • to encourage the commitment of the winners' schools to modern language teaching
Deadline for applications: 17 May 2017. Nominations must be submitted and signed by the headteacher.

Visit the German Embassy's website for detailed information and nomination form.

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Scottish Education Awards 2017 - Finalists

2 May 2017 (Scottish Education Awards)

Good luck to the Scottish Education Award finalists in the language categories!
Making languages come alive (primary)
  • Braehead Primary School, Stirling
  • Doune Primary School, Stirling
  • St Winning's Primary School, North Ayrshire
Gaelic Education Award / Duais Foghlam Gàidhlig
  • Ardnamurchan High School, Highland
  • Sgoil an Taobh Siar, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar
  • Gartcosh Primary School, North Lanarkshire

The award presentations will take place on 7 June. For more information about the awards visit the Scottish Education Awards 2017 website.

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Japan Foundation Local Grant Programmes 2017-2018

2 May 2017 (Japan Foundation)

Japan Foundation London is now accepting grant applications for UK-based Japan related projects taking place in 2017-18 through local support programmes in the following fields:
  • Arts and Culture
  • Japanese Language
  • Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange

Visit the Japan Foundation website for more information and to apply.

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Apply now for a fully funded Chinese Language Assistant!

28 April 2017 (British Council)

The British Council and HSBC are pleased to announce that up to ten grants of £3,890 will be offered to cover the costs of hosting a Chinese language assistant for the academic year of 2017/18.

This is a pilot scheme for UK schools in 2017/18 and is intended to support the Sustainable Development Goal “ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning”. Successful schools will have the full costs of hosting a Chinese Language Assistant covered from mid-September 2017 to the end of June 2018.

Visit the British Council website for more information and to download an application form.

Application deadline: 31 May 2017.

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French summer classes in Glasgow

27 April 2017 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow is holding a number of classes/exams during summer 2017. Follow the appropriate link below to find out more information:

To find out more about the Alliance Française, visit their website.

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uTalk takes language learning to new heights with Emirates, the world’s largest international airline

26 April 2017 (uTalk)

London-based language experts uTalk are helping passengers on Emirates Airline prepare for arrival with new inflight language videos. They’ve produced a series of films, which can be seen on all Emirates flights, giving travellers an introduction to five languages, with beginner lessons covering first words, food and drink and getting around.

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Video: 'Bilingual parents share strategies for home language maintenance'

26 April 2017 (Bilingualism Matters)

Bilingualism Matters at the University of Reading held an event in February 2017 in association with the university's Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism where parents in the audience shared their experience about keeping up the home language with children of different ages. An extract can be seen in the video 'Bilingual parents share strategies for home language maintenance'.

HIBIKI SHAMISEN visit to Orkney, 5-6 May

25 April 2017 (HIBIKI SHAMISEN)

HIBIKI SHAMISEN will have their first public performance in Orkney at the Pier Arts Centre on Friday 5 May at 7:30pm. The performance is free, and will include an introduction to the TSUGARU SHAMISEN, a versatile 3 stringed instrument that extends the range of the traditional shamisen in both sound and volume, and which can be used to improvise in a way similar to jazz.

The shamisen came to Japan originally from India, via China, through Okinawa, and has been established in Japan for about 300 years. It is the instrument associated with KABUKI theatre (in a form called NAGAUTA) and music played by GEISHA (KOUTA) and with the BUNRAKU or puppet theatre. Each of these genres has a particular type of shamisen associated with it.

The TSUGARU shamisen is the biggest and the boldest of all the shamisen types, and is the only one that is also used for contemporary music.

Hibiki Ichikawa, internationally acclaimed master of the tsugaru shamisen, and blues and ENKA singer Akari Mochizuki will perform both traditional and contemporary music, and have prepared some special material in honour of Children’s Day, which is celebrated on 5 May in Japan.

The two musicians will also conduct workshops with students from Stromness Academy and Kirkwall Grammar School while in Orkney. The students will have the opportunity to play the instruments and learn about the history of Japanese music.

There will also be an opportunity for them to meet and exchange music with Douglas Montgomery of Saltfish Forty, and Gemma McGregor whose repertoire also includes the Japanese shakuhachi flute.

HIBIKI SHAMISEN will feature at the Japanese Children’s Day celebration at the Orkney Library on Saturday 6 May, when they will perform at 11am. This performance will also be free, and all ages are welcome.

HIBIKI SHAMISEN’s visit to Orkney has been made possible with the support of the OIC Culture Fund, The Japan Society of Scotland, the Pier Arts Centre, the Orkney Library and blue earth works. The initial contact with HIBIKI SHAMISEN was through the kind offices of Japan Foundation.

For further details about the performance and Pier Arts Centre contact Isla Holloway isla.holloway@pierartscentre.com 01856 850209.

For further details about the visit from Ruta Noreika contact blueworks2@mac.com
07712 411149.

Find out more about HIBIKI SHAMISEN on their website.

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UCMLS 1+2 action plan published!

25 April 2017 (SCILT / UCMLS)

Following our final consultation with stakeholders at the national UCMLS conference in Glasgow on 10 March 2017 we have produced our cross-sector Action Plan in support of Scotland's 1+2 language policy, and it is now available online. Click below for more details but please REFRESH THE PAGE to get the latest version of the webpage!
Marion Spöring, UCMLS chair.

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Linking languages to learning about the world of work

25 April 2017 (Skills Development Scotland)

Lesson inserts are a really simple way of linking learning to careers using resources found on My World of Work.

The importance of linking learning to the world of work is highlighted in the Curriculum for Excellence – in both the principles of curriculum design and the entitlements. It is further reinforced in Developing the Young Workforce and the Careers Education Standard.

To support teachers in making these links explicit, Skills Development Scotland has worked with secondary school teachers across Scotland to develop lesson inserts.

Lesson inserts are short activities which link subject content to relevant labour market information, job profiles and videos on My World of Work.

For languages, lesson inserts are available for:

  • BGE – Modern Languages job research
  • BGE – Modern Languages job market
  • National 4/5/Higher – Global citizenship
  • BGE – Gaelic (learners)

To access the lesson inserts, teachers need to register on My World of Work as a partner. To do this, check the partner tickbox when registering. Once registered as a partner, the lesson inserts can be accessed.

My World of Work has job profiles, real people stories and videos that you can insert into your lesson as a short reference to answer that question that many young people ask “Why are we doing this?”. It will remind them that what they learn today will help prepare them in choosing and following a career path in the future.

To give you an overview of what they are and how they can help you make a connection between school subjects and the wider world of work, have a look at this recent blog post from Skills Development Scotland.

Introduction to Interpreting

25 April 2017 (Heriot-Watt University)

This course, being run by Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, is ideal for anyone fluent in a language but with no interpreting techniques.

As a speaker of a second language, do you find yourself in situations at work where you have to act as an interpreter but have had no formal training? Then this course is for you!

Are you a language student considering a career as an interpreter? Come and join us for a taster course and find out what it means to be an interpreter.

The course will run from 3-7 July 2017 in the university's state of the art interpreting facilities.

Visit the website for more information and book your place by 19 June.

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Language Futures – opportunities for Scottish schools

25 April 2017 (Association for Language Learning)

Language Futures aims to broaden languages provision and promote linguistic diversity. It is currently being used by schools in England to develop a second or third language both within the curriculum and during after school clubs. The programme has been trialled at a variety of levels at secondary as well as at primary across England and the Association for Language Learning (ALL) are looking to expand the scheme into Scotland.

Language Futures sees pupils choose the language they wish to study. There may be a number of languages being studied in any one classroom, with the teacher as facilitator: the teacher sets up the learning, but will not necessarily know all of the languages studied in the classroom. Pupils are supported in their language learning by mentors who are language proficient individuals from the community. The school is the base camp – it is not seen as the sole place of learning – and pupils are encouraged to learn at home and in a variety of different places. Finally, pupils design, plan and carry out extended projects which aim to build knowledge and develop skills, to incorporate language learning and inter-cultural understanding and to connect learning to the real world.

ALL would be very interested to hear from primary and secondary schools interested in piloting the approach in Scotland. Schools can sign up at no cost. ALL have created resources and guidelines to support schools and these are open access on the ALL website. If an individual school is interested, the Language Futures Project Manager would be very happy to talk them through the approach by phone, Skype etc. in the first instance. If a small group of schools was interested, ALL could explore support from a dedicated Schools Adviser who would visit schools to offer targeted support.

For further information, please contact the Language Futures Project Manager Clodagh Cooney.

Language Futures is funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and has been managed by the Association for Language Learning since summer 2015.

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Franco-German Film Series at the CCA

24 April 2017 (Alliance Française)

This year’s film collaboration between the Goethe Institut and the Alliance Française will stand under the heading of comedy.

Though the sense of humor varies according to national history and culture, it still manages to reach people regardless of age, gender, race and across country borders.

Visit the Alliance Française website to find out more about the 4 films being screened during May and June at the Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA) in Glasgow.

The events are free, but registration is essential.

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Link with a German school

24 April 2017 (UK-German Connection)

Broaden your pupils' horizons and enhance your school's international dimension by linking with a German school. Find out how to set up and develop a partnership with a German school, including practical tips and advice on joint activities, projects and visits to Germany.

Visit the UK-German Connection website for more information.

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Sabhal Mòr Ostaig to offer new degree course for Gaelic teachers

23 April 2017 (SALT)

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig (SMO), the National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture, is to deliver a new Gaelic teaching degree.

The BA (Hons) Gaelic and Education recently received validation from the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) and accreditation from the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS ) and the first cohort of students will begin the course in September.

The course will be part of Sabhal Mòr’s degree pathway and will be taught through the medium of Gaelic and will focus on immersion and bilingual teaching practices in schools. This is the first time that SMO has taken the lead role in delivering a teacher training degree, and the course is designed for either secondary teaching (Gaelic as a subject) or Gaelic-medium primary teaching.

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Public Consultation on the Third National Gaelic Language Plan 2017-22

21 April 2017 (Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

A public consultation process has been launched for the third National Gaelic Language Plan, 2017-2022. The plan sets out a strategy designed to grow the numbers learning and using Gaelic in Scotland.

The consultation period will close at 5pm on 17 May 2017.

Visit the Bòrd na Gàidhlig web survey to access the plan and take part in the consultation.

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Photo exhibition workshops for primary schools: “Objectif sport”

20 April 2017 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow is organising educational workshops around sport and the French language in May and June. Through games and activities in French, pupils will learn about sport, sporting events and the values attached to them.

The workshops are designed for primary school pupils and their teachers (P3/P6) who visit the photo exhibition and are free of charge.

See the attached flyer for more information and booking instructions.

From Toulon with Love: Jonny Wilkinson on language learning

19 April 2017 (Cambridge University Press blog)

Is it ever too late to learn a language? In 1997, Jonathan ‘Jonny’ Wilkinson left university to become a professional rugby union player. Since then, Jonny Wilkinson has excelled in the sport, becoming captain of the English rugby national team and seen as the key force that drove his teams to victory in the 2003 and 2007 Rugby World Cup finals. After 12 years with the Newcastle Falcons, he transferred to Toulon in 2009 and that’s when his language-learning journey began… Discover how Jonny found out the hard way the importance speaking the language of his team mates.

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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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Japanese Language Local Project Support Programme

10 April 2017 (Japan Foundation)

The Japan Foundation London is looking for non-profit-making projects or activities which promote Japanese language education. You can apply for up to £3,000.

We prioritise projects that fit into one of the three following categories:
  1. Introducing Japanese into the curriculum at a primary or secondary school
  2. Supporting GCSE or A-level Japanese courses
  3. Introducing Japanese extracurricular club or enrichment subject at a primary or secondary school
The next deadline for the 2017-18 programme is 27 April 2017.

Visit the Japan Foundation website for more information and to submit your application.

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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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Call for applications - Trends in Translation

30 March 2017 (ALL)

The Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, the French Embassy in London, the Institut Français du Royaume-Uni and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) are looking for the next generation of translators into English.

Higher Education Institutions across the UK are being invited to nominate their most promising undergraduate student(s) to take part in a one-day exclusive Masterclass in Translation to be held at Magdalene College, University of Cambridge, on Thursday, 27th April 2017 with the opportunity for two Masterclass students to visit the Frankfurt Book Fair this year.

This call is open to undergraduate students only. Students must have a proficiency in either German or French (Level B1 and higher, according to CEFR). A combination of the two languages is very welcome but not required.

The candidates and the nominators are asked to complete the application form and send it electronically to application@lond.diplo.de by Tuesday 18 April 2017.

For full terms and conditions, visit the Association for Language Learning (ALL) website.

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Japanese for young learners - 6 week teacher course

30 March 2017 (Japanese for Young Learners project)

This course, organised by the Japanese for Young Learners Projects, aims to introduce teachers to Japanese language and culture for use in the classroom. Teachers will be introduced to Japanese language for beginners and to cultural learning activities such as origami and Japanese food.

The course will include developing literacy in Japanese and an introduction to Japanese reading and writing - easier than you think!

The course is being delivered in partnership with the University of Edinburgh and the Japan Foundation, UK. It takes place over six weeks, commencing Thursday 20 April.

Visit the website to register for this free professional development opportunity and see the press article below relating to the project's pilot in Liberton Primary School, Edinburgh.

Read more...

Related Links

Edinburgh primary leads way with Japanese lessons pilot (Edinburgh Evening News, 27 March 2017)

Online Spanish Courses for Primary and Secondary School Teachers in Scotland and Northern Ireland, and PGDE students

30 March 2017 (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 in Scotland and Northern Ireland, and PGDE 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 those with or without previous knowledge of Spanish.

The next course commences 10 April 2017 and lasts for 11 weeks.

Visit the Instituto Cervantes website for more information and to enrol.

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Sessional workers for Club Soletes-Familias

28 March 2017 (Club Soletes-Familias)

Club Soletes is a registered charity based in Glasgow, which has been supporting Spanish-speaking families in Glasgow since 2003. Our weekly family group aims to offer a Spanish-speaking environment, to learn and share knowledge and understanding of the Hispanic cultures, and encourage the use of the minority language (Spanish). Since September 2016, our Big Lottery funded mobile library project - La Biciteca - has been travelling around Early Years establishments, parks and public spaces in North West Glasgow offering storytelling and play sessions in Spanish to both our members and the wider community.

We are currently seeking sessional workers to assist in delivering our activities, as and when required.

See the attached document and application form for further information.

Apply by Friday 14 April 2017.

Commission gives a boost to youth mobility in Europe

27 March 2017 (European Commission)

The European Commission presented today an initiative under the Erasmus+ programme which further supports learning and mobility of young Europeans. Called "Move2Learn, Learn2Move", it will enable at least 5,000 young citizens to travel to another EU country in a sustainable manner – individually or together with their school class. The one-off initiative, which is linked to the 30th anniversary of the Erasmus programme, is consistent with two central priorities of the Commission: to put a renewed focus on Europe's youth, and to facilitate EU citizens' mobility, particularly low emission mobility.

Move2Learn, Learn2Move builds on an idea put forward by the European Parliament in 2016. It will be implemented through eTwinning, the world's biggest teachers' network. Part of Erasmus+, it enables teachers and pupils across Europe to develop projects together through an online platform.

[..] The initiative will be open to school classes of students aged 16 and above taking part in eTwinning.

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ECML online questionnaire "Language in subjects"

27 March 2017 (ECML)

This online questionnaire is part of an ECML project called "Developing language awareness in subject classes". It targets subject teachers (mathematics, history, science, physical education etc.) and teacher trainers who:
  • are experienced in teaching students at the age of 12/13 with a different language background, and/or
  • take an interest in developing their students’ academic, subject specific language.
It takes approximately 15 minutes to complete.

Visit the ECML website to access the questionnaire.

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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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Les Resultats ! Le Quiz de la Francophonie

24 March 2017 (Institut français / Canadian High Commission)

The Canadian High Commission in London, who organised the Quiz de la francophonie this year, have just announced the names of the winning schools who are all from Scotland!

Congratulations to:
  1. Sir E. Scott School ( Les Gateaux Gris)
  2. Mid Yell JHS ( Les Petits Crofters)
  3. Westhill Academy ( les Grenouilles 2 E)
Thank you to all participants and well done to the winning schools who will receive their prizes in due course.

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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4th Castilla y León Award

24 March 2017 (Consejería de Educación)

Each year the Ministry of Education of the Spanish Embassy in the United Kingdom, with the sponsorship of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Junta de Castilla y León, awards the student with the best results in Spanish in the United Kingdom.

The winner will receive a 3-day (2-night) trip to Castilla y León (Spain) for two people, including travel, accommodation, meals and visits.

For more information see the attached leaflet or visit the Consejería de Educación website. Applications should be submitted by 28 April 2017.

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Mary Glasgow invites language students to get their work published!

23 March 2017 (Mary Glasgow Magazines)

Calling all language teachers! Get your students' French, Spanish, German or English writing published on the Mary Glasgow Magazines website.

One of the most popular features of the website is Student News. We publish articles and videos sent by students from around the world who want to share their stories, interests and culture with peers. Students earn points for their stories and comments for a chance to win a prize.

Visit the website to find out more information and to read some sample stories.

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Consultation on Erasmus+

20 March 2017 (Erasmus+)

The March 2017 edition of the Erasmus+ newsletter invites organisations and individuals to complete a questionnaire to share experiences and opinions to help shape how the programme might look after 2020.

The newsletter also contains news on upcoming events and activities.

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Sabhal Mòr Ostaig to offer new degree course for Gaelic teachers

20 March 2017 (SALT)

The BA (Hons) Gaelic and Education recently received validation from the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) and accreditation from the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS ) and the first cohort of students will begin the course in September.

The course will be part of Sabhal Mòr’s degree pathway and will be taught through the medium of Gaelic and will focus on immersion and bilingual teaching practices in schools. This is the first time that SMO has taken the lead role in delivering a teacher training degree, and the course is designed for either secondary teaching (Gaelic as a subject) or Gaelic-medium primary teaching.

Previously SMO had delivered teacher training in partnership with the University of Aberdeen, but with the new course the College is now a lead provider of Gaelic teacher training giving students a unique opportunity to learn in a Gaelic-rich environment. Students can complete the BA (Hons) Gaelic and Education through SMO or Lews Castle College, and the course can be undertaken via distance learning or on campus.

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Scottish schools celebrate French language in Edinburgh on Friday 17 March 2017

17 March 2017 (Institut français d’Écosse )

Three winning schools of the “Concours de la francophonie” will receive their prizes at the special Award ceremony hosted at the University of Edinburgh on Friday 17 March by Emmanuel Cocher, Consul general of France in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

La francophonie is thriving in Scotland as a majority of children now learn French from P1. To celebrate this renewed engagement with languages, the Institut français d’Écosse launched in 2016 a national French competition, to celebrate the international day of la francophonie with all young learners across Scotland.

This student-led competition is designed to value creativity in French and allow a large participation of all primary and secondary schools. Learners are invited to film a short piece, dialogue, song, play, report or any other production in French. The competition is organised in two phases: Local Authorities choose their local champions and a national jury select the winners. For this second edition, various Local Authorities including Shetland Islands Council and Orkney Islands Council, and various independent schools.

87 learners from three of the four winning schools will attend the ceremony, on 17 March at the Outreach Center at the University of Edinburgh. The ceremony will be preceded by various activities in French conducted by 4th year students of French at the University of Edinburgh and teachers of the Institut français d’Écosse.

The winning schools are:

P1/P4
Glasgow City Council – Holy Cross Primary School – P4

P5/P7

Argyll and Bute Council – Dunoon Primary School – P5
Falkirk Council – Antonine Primary School – P5

S1/S3
Shetland Islands Council – Mid Yell Junior School – S3
The Institut français will visit Mid Yell Junior School in June to give their award and prizes to the winners and offer them French activities.

Emmanuel Cocher, Consul general of France and Director of the Institut français d’Écosse said: “La journée mondiale de la francophonie, the international day of la francophonie, is indeed a very special day which brings together French speakers, learners and teachers, to celebrate the French language and the dialogue between cultures.” He added: “Thanks to the 1+2 policy, all students now learn two additional languages in schools and a clear majority have chosen French as their first modern language. This ambitious and exciting policy will have a positive impact on language uptake in schools, and will open new horizons to all young Scots.”

The organisers:

 

The Institut français d’Écosse is the agency of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Scotland, promoting French language and culture. The Institut français d’Écosse supports French language teaching and learning in Scotland.

Additional information is available on www.ifecosse.org.uk

 

The partners:

SCILT, Scotland’s National Center for Languages

SALT, Scottish Association for Language Teaching

Alliance française de Glasgow

The Department of European Languages and Culture of the University of Edinburgh

TV5 MONDE

 

The sponsors:

Total E&P UK

The Franco-Scottish Society

 

The national jury for the 2017 edition:

Louise Glen, Senior Education Officer, Education Scotland

Hannah Doughty, Professional Development Officer, SCILT

Maryse Payen Roy, Committee Member, SALT

Valérie Laplanche Ferguson, Teacher, Institut français d’Écosse

 

The international day of la Francophonie is celebrated all around the world on 20 March. http://www.20mars.francophonie.org/

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17 March 2017 (Education Scotland)

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

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Language teachers sought for PhD study

16 March 2017 (Glyn Jones)

Language teachers are invited to take part in this study which aims to replicate that undertaken by Brian North and Günther Schneider in the course of developing the CEFR descriptors.

Participants can be teaching adult or secondary school learners at any level and are asked to:
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For more information about the study and to register to take part, please visit the website.

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The Junior Language Challenge 2017

14 March 2017 (Junior Language Challenge)

Calling all Scottish primary schools! The Junior Language Challenge is the UK’s only language challenge for primary schools, introducing children to new, exciting languages and encouraging them to become independent learners, while raising money for charity. The first language this year is French.

There are great prizes to be won, including a family holiday to Africa!

Visit the JLC website to find out more and to register a school or an individual. (Please note there is an entry charge per child with all proceeds going to the educational charity, onebillion).

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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).

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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:
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  2. Plastic Pirates
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The teaching of Arabic language and cultures in UK schools

7 March 2017 (British Council / Alcantara Communications)

This report was commissioned by the British Council in March 2016 as part of its Arabic Language and Culture programme, which is now in its fourth year. It builds on previous research undertaken by Alcantara Communications and published as The teaching of Arabic Language and Culture in UK Schools. As a result of this initial research, the British Council developed and tailored its programme, continued to build its contacts with stakeholders in the field, and commissioned further in-depth research into key themes identified. These were contracted as separate strands, since they required different types of expertise. This report covers Strand 2 of the research: ‘Review of the teaching of Arabic language and culture in UK schools’.

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“My language learning hurdles” competition

3 March 2017 (Open University)

Make a short video explaining what you consider your biggest hurdles to language learning and you could win up to £150 in Amazon UK gift vouchers.

We want to hear what you find most difficult about language learning, especially when you start learning a new language. We are looking for well thought-out answers with specific examples of your language learning experience, or maybe good one-liners that showcase some of the difficulties that you have faced in the following areas:
  1. Your motivation for learning a new language
  2. Managing your expectations when starting to learn a new language
  3. Coping with grammar and grammatical terminology
  4. Creating (and sticking to) a learning routine
  5. Practising speaking (as a beginner)
  6. Listening (as a beginner)
  7. Learning vocabulary (as a beginner)
  8. Reading (as a beginner)
  9. Writing (as a beginner)
  10. Finding, evaluating and selecting resources to support learning for beginners
  11. Immersing yourself in the language when not in an area where it is spoken
  12. Getting support from others (including online communities
  13. Keeping your motivation going in the medium to long term
Your video must cover only one of these areas, but you are welcome to submit a video for each of the topics that are relevant to you.

Your video must be no longer than 30 seconds and must be in English.

Visit the Open University website to find out more and how to submit your entry by 17 March 2017.

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Translators' Stammtisch

3 March 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

Literary translators – and translators more generally – are often forced to spend the majority of their time alone, glued to their computers and/or dictionaries. Though many translators are very sociable creatures who enjoy passionate discussions about foreign languages, native tongues, culture, society, politics and (even) grammar! The Translators’ Stammtisch [German; a regular’s table, usually in a pub] is offers a monthly opportunity for literary translators (mainly working into English, though open to translators of all language combinations) to get together and discuss their work and other joys and issues related to literary translation. The theme of the (first) three meetings is “Dialects, vernaculars and other localisms”.

The Translators’ Stammtisch is open to all translators and will meet on Tuesday 7 March 2017 (with a talk by Donal McLaughlin), Thursday 27 April 2017, and Tuesday 16 May 2017, from 6.30pm to 8pm at the Goethe-Institut Glasgow.

Visit the website for more information and to register for these free events.

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Just 1 Week Until Doors Open on Language Show Scotland 2017!

3 March 2017 (Language Show Live)

Language Show Live, 10-11 March at the SEC, Glasgow.

Europe’s largest event dedicated to language teaching and learning is just 1 week away and new performances are still being announced every day, with salsa classes and an additional Gaelic introduction class added today! Every seminar at this free-to-attend event is fully CPD accredited and packed full of exclusive content. Head online today to claim your free ticket and enjoy all the content that Europe’s premier language event has to offer.

Remember: Alongside our trademark seminar, workshop and panel session line ups we also have our fantastic cultural piazza stage, free language taster classes, over 80 exhibitor and much, much more! Take advantage of our pre-show discount on our Language Plus Classes too. These two hour intensive classes are the only thing at the event that we charge for as we bring in some of the world’s top teachers and charge just £18 for the full two hours. Don’t miss out!

Visit the Language Show Live website today!

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Visit the French Zone at Language Show Scotland in Glasgow

3 March 2017 (Institut français)

The French Zone is happy to welcome you to Stand 208 at Language Show Live, 10-11 March 2017, and to offer you a variety of French resources from the Institut français and other key actors of French teaching and learning.

Visit the Institut français website for more information.

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French at the Alliance Française de Glasgow

2 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:

To find out more about the Alliance Française and all their activities, visit their website.

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Indiana University Global Gateway for Teachers

2 March 2017 (Indiana University)

For many years, primary and secondary schools worldwide have hosted final year students as part of Indiana University's Global Gateway for Teachers. The student teachers, who may spend up to 12 weeks in the country, have proven to make valuable contributions to the life and work of school during their stay.

For several years, Highland Council has successfully hosted many students, and the aim is to now extend the programme to include as many Scottish Local Authorities as are interested.

More information about the programme can be found in the attached letter.

Consultation on the British Sign Language (BSL) National Plan

1 March 2017 (Scottish Government)

This consultation on the Draft British Sign Language (BSL) National Plan seeks to gather your views about the proposed actions. The plan has been produced in collaboration with the BSL National Advisory Group.

The consultation is open from 1 March to 31 May 2017.

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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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Vive la francophonie 2017

27 February 2017 (Institut français)

Each year the embassies of the francophone countries organise a UK-wide quiz for S2 and S3 students entitled Vive la francophonie. This year's competition will take place on 13 March.

It is simple for schools to take part:
  1. Enrol your team
  2. The quiz will be online on 13 March any time from 10am to 2pm. It should take maximum an hour to answer the questions.
The top 3 teams with the most answers right, in the shortest time, wins!

Visit the website to find out more about the competition and to register your students by 8 March.

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Language Show Live Scotland 2017

24 February 2017 (Language Show Live)

There's still time to get your tickets for this year's Language Show Live Scotland event at the SEC, Glasgow!

The event, dedicated to language teaching and learning, is just a fortnight away and all programme details, teaching seminars and language classes are now live online. Every seminar at this free-to-attend event is fully CPD accredited and packed full of exclusive content.

For full programme details and to register, visit the Language Show Live website. Don't miss out!

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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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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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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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The Junior Language Challenge 2017

17 February 2017 (Junior Language Challenge)

The Junior Language Challenge is the UK’s only language challenge for primary schools, inspiring a love of languages at a young age and encouraging children to become independent learners, while raising money for charity.

The JLC 2017 will open on 10 March, but registration starts now - visit the website sign-up pages to register a school or an individual. (Please note there is an entry charge per child with all proceeds going to the onebillion charity).

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Translation Course for University Students March 2017

17 February 2017 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running a new translation course specifically designed for students who are currently studying French at University. This course will increase language skills and should greatly help prepare for exams where translation is involved.

This new 5-week course will take place on Wednesdays between 3.45-5.45pm starting Wednesday 1 March.

Visit the website for more information and to enrol by Saturday 25 February.

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Latest issue of the SRF's Forum magazine

16 February 2017 (SRF)

The January 2017 edition of the Scotland-Russia Forum's magazine 'The Forum' is now available. It covers a range of topics, including the 1917 anniversary through Scottish eyes, a description of travels in the Altay, Soviet mapping of places nearer home, and the Edinburgh
Makar’s first impressions of Moscow as well as her wonderful translations of Russian
poems into Shetlandic.

Read these articles and more SRF news online now!

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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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New Content Announcement for Language Show Scotland 2017!

10 February 2017 (Language Show Live)

Language Show Live, 10-11 March at the SEC, Glasgow

Europe’s largest event dedicated to language teaching and learning is just 1 month away and the teaching seminar, TEFL forum and language class line ups have all been announced and are now live online! Every seminar at this free-to-attend event is fully CPD accredited and packed full of exclusive content. Head online today to claim your free ticket and enjoy all the content that Europe’s premier language event has to offer.

Remember: Alongside our trademark seminar, workshop and panel session line ups we also have our fantastic cultural piazza stage, free language taster classes, over 80 exhibitor and much, much more!
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UCML and others send Brexit letter

10 February 2017 (UCML)

This letter has been written by a number of heads of UK modern languages and linguistics subject associations, including UCML, and endorsed by several others. It will be sent to the media and a number of leading UK politicians.

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Join the EOL network

9 February 2017 (ECML)

Do you feel passionate about the learning and teaching of languages? Do you believe that your learners will benefits from acquiring language skills? Would you like to improve your school environment in relation to language teaching and learning? Are you interested in working with the ECML (European Centre for Modern Languages) of the Council of Europe?

Then why not join the EOL network? The EOL project team is delighted to work with all stakeholders in education in order to develop learning environments where modern languages flourish. More than 40 schools are already involved in the EOL project.

To find out more about the project and to join, visit the ECML website.

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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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Le concours de la francophonie competition winners

8 February 2017 (SALT / Institut français)

Winners of the 2017 Concours de la francophonie, a competition run by the Institut français d'Ecosse for schools in Scotland, have now been announced!

Visit the SALT website for more information about the winners in each category.

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Many Languages, One World - 2017 student essay contest

7 February 2017 (Many Languages One World)

The United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI), in collaboration with ELS Educational Services, Inc., (ELS) invites students, 18 years and older, who are enrolled in a full-time course of study at a college or university, to participate in the Many Languages, One World Essay Contest.

The essay should discuss global citizenship and cultural understanding, and the role that multilingual ability can play in fostering these and must be written in one of the six official languages of the United Nations (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian or Spanish).

Visit the Many Languages, One World website for more information about the competition and how to enter. Submission deadline is 16 March 2017.

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New semester German courses

7 February 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut in Glasgow has a range of courses for beginners to advanced learners for the new semester commencing 13 February 2017. Classes in general language courses take place on a once-a-week basis for 16 weeks.

See the programme of courses available and visit the website to enrol.

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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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The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2017

1 February 2017 (Japan Foundation)

Taking inspiration from Charlie Chaplin’s famous quote “Life is a desire, not a meaning”, the Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2017 features an all-encompassing introduction to Japanese cinema through the prism of “desires, hopes and impulses”.

Presenting films by established and up-and-coming directors, animation, documentary and classics, this year’s programme promises to not only entertain but also provide a vivid insight into what drives human action.

Screenings are taking place between 3 February and 29 March in various locations around the UK, including Stirling, Edinburgh, Inverness and Dundee.

Visit the website for full programme details.

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Teacher Volunteers Wanted

1 February 2017 (NUS Scotland)

The Scottish Migrant Institute has been set up as a teaching hub to provide training and education to the asylum seeker, refugee and migrant community. These evening and weekend classes, hosted at the University of Strathclyde, offer a range of subjects to adults who want to learn in their spare time. They are currently recruiting volunteers to teach French and Spanish – this would be an ideal opportunity for ML teachers or students who have some spare time to commit.

For more information please contact Lord Apetsi, NUS Scotland Asylum Seeker & Refugee Officer. An information event will be held at the University of Strathclyde in March/April (date to be confirmed).

Yakety Yak Language Cafés in Glasgow

31 January 2017 (Yakety Yak)

Yakety Yak has some new venues for French and Italian language cafés in Glasgow.

Visit their website for more information.

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Professional Learning for Teachers of Gaelic Medium Education (GME)

27 January 2017 (Education Scotland)

Streap, the Postgraduate Teaching Certificate for teachers of GME will start on 4 September 2017. There are a limited number of places available. An induction event takes place in Glasgow on 14 and 15 September 2017. There is now a Facebook page relating to this professional learning. Please email for more information. This programme is currently fully funded by the Scottish Government.

Find out more about the programme on the University of Aberdeen website.

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French classes for the new semester

26 January 2017 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow has a number of upcoming courses for the new term. Follow the appropriate link below for more information:

For more information about the Alliance Française visit their website.

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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.

Scottish Education Awards 2017

19 January 2017 (Scottish Education Awards)

The Scottish Education Awards celebrate the hard work and success which takes place in Scottish education. They recognise the achievements of people who dedicate their lives to children and young people and showcase the valuable work and innovation in Scottish classrooms.

There's still time to submit nominations for the Awards, so get your entries in for the Making Languages Come Alive (Primary) and Gaelic Education/Duais Foghlam Gàidhlig.awards before the closing date of 15 February 2017.

Visit the Scottish Education Award website to make your nomination.

Read more...

Pass the Panda across Scotland

19 January 2017 (RZSS)

Conservation charity the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) is excited to announce the official launch of its brand new ‘Panda Pass It On’ game for schools. The game, which is part of the conservation organisation’s Beyond the Panda education programme, launched at four schools in all four corners of Scotland on Tuesday 17 January: St. Patrick’s, South Ayrshire; Lasswade High, Midlothian, Portree Primary, Isle of Skye and Forehill Primary, Aberdeen.

With only four copies of the game available, the intention is for schools to keep the fun, learning resource for a week before passing it on to other schools. The panda games will hopefully make their way across Scotland, with each school logging their location through a QR code on the back of the game, which will allow RZSS to follow the games as they travel.

Sandie Robb, Senior Education Officer at the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, said: “I’m incredibly excited about the launch of the Panda Pass It On game. It is the first of its kind and is a fun way for children to learn more about China, its history, culture and language as well as their famous animals, the giant pandas. It will be really interesting to track the games as they travel to different schools.”

The game forms an introduction to the Beyond the Panda education programme, which is designed to promote cross-curricular learning, with pupils investigating and discovering more about China. The materials cover Curriculum for Excellence experiences and outcomes in science, topical science, social studies, language and literacy. This is delivered through an outreach programme with fun, interactive games led by an education officer from RZSS, or in the case of the Panda Pass It On game, by itself.

The programme is sponsored by the Confucius Institute for Scotland at the University of Edinburgh with support from the Scotland China Education Network and the Confucius Institute for Scotland’s Schools at the University of Strathclyde.

For more information, please visit the RZSS Beyond the Panda website.

picture of children playing gamepicture of children playing

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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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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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Japan days for schools

16 January 2017 (RZSS)

Come along to our Japan days at RZSS Highland Wildlife Park, held in partnership with the Association of Scottish Philatelic Societies youth StampIT programme.

Experience a day at the park to visit the Japanese macaques along with an educational session using games and activities to learn about Japanese language and culture. Suitable for P6/7 and S1 levels. Entrance to the park is free for these special pilot events but places are limited and booking is essential.

Places available on Wednesday 8 March or Wednesday 15 March 2017. First come, first served. Contact Sandie Robb srobb@rzss.org.uk for further details and booking information.

UCML January Plenary 2017: Post-Brexit Implications for HE Languages

13 January 2017 (UCML)

Presentations of most of the speakers at the Workshop held on 6 January 2017 are now available to view on the UCML website.

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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.

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Scotland-Russia Forum news bulletin

11 January 2017 (SRF)

The latest news and events from the SRF can be found in their January news bulletin. You can practise your Russian language at the next Чай н Чат (Chai n Chat) in Edinburgh on 2 February.

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New term German classes in Glasgow

11 January 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut in Glasgow offers a range of courses for beginners through to advanced learners and is now enrolling for the new term classes, running from 13 February to 26 June 2017.

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for more information and to enrol by 3 February.

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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.

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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.

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New term French classes in Glasgow

9 January 2017 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow has a number of upcoming courses for the new term. Follow the appropriate link below for more information:

For more information about the Alliance Française visit their website.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!

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European Language Gazette issue 35 (December 2016)

6 January 2017 (ECML)

The latest edition of the European Language Gazette has just been published. This provides up-to-date news about the ECML (events, projects, resources), its partners and other relevant sectors of the Council of Europe. It focuses on language education and national developments in the member states and beyond.

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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.

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Give your curriculum an international edge

6 January 2017 (British Council)

Spark enthusiasm for international learning by getting your school community on board with the International School Award.

Managed by the British Council, the International School Award is a supportive and motivational framework that guides schools through their international work. With three certified levels, and free in the UK, the award will take you from introducing international work to the curriculum, to embedding it within your school’s culture.

Following an accessible methodology you will forge links with partner schools around the world, enhance your curriculum and prepare your students for life as global citizens.

Visit the British Council Schools Online website to find out more about how your school can grow and develop with the International School Award and read the article below from the British Council Voices blog which offers advice on 'Six ways to make your school more international.'

Read more...

Related Links

Six ways to make your school more international (British Council Voices blog, 14 November 2016)

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.

LFEE Europe immersion courses in France and Spain 2017-18

6 January 2017 (LFEE)

LFEE Europe has been an international course provider since 2002. Our team of experienced and fully qualified native teachers are committed to promoting French and Spanish language and culture throughout Europe. Funding for all our courses is available through the European Union Erasmus+ Programme.

For more information see the attached flyer or visit the LFEE website.

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English Language Assistants Programme

4 January 2017 (British Council)

Students and graduates - work across the world as an English Language Assistant. There is no better way to explore and experience life in another country than by living in it.

The English Language Assistants programme provides a unique opportunity for UK students and graduates to experience living abroad and make their CV stand out from the crowd by supporting the teaching of English in an overseas school or university.

Language Assistants can gain a wealth of transferable skills as well as proficiency in a foreign language by becoming immersed in another culture. Placements are paid and teaching time is limited to between 12 and 20 hours a week which puts assistants in a great position to be able to travel, learn and pursue new interests.

Placements are available in fourteen countries worldwide including France, Spain, Germany, Italy, China, Switzerland, Austria, Canada and Latin America.

Visit the British Council website and see where becoming an English Language assistant can take you. Applications for the 2017-18 academic year are now open and will close on 28 February 2017.

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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.

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UCAS: End of year acceptances cycle 2016 published

19 December 2016 (UCML)

19 December 2016: UCAS published data for the end-of-year acceptances cycle for 2016. Although overall the trend for language acceptances continues to decrease (-8% overall on last year), there are some positive signals coming from some of the languages.

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ELEO: Spanish Centres of Resources Digital Library

15 December 2016 (Consejería de Educación)

The Consejería de Educación has recently launched a digital library. If you are a teacher of Spanish, you can have an access to a myriad of resources.

Visit the site for more information and register now!

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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.

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1+2 languages Development Officers’ conference

15 December 2016 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland, SCILT and UCMLS ran a joint DO conference on Tuesday 29 November with a focus on sharing good practice in implementation strategies for 1+2 languages.

The morning session was given over to a presentation by Professor Angela Scarino, University of South Australia, architect of the Australian languages policy. You can now view Professor Scarino's presentation online.

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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.

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Report shows progress in promoting modern foreign languages in Welsh schools

14 December 2016 (Welsh Government)

The number of pupils learning Mandarin has more than doubled according to a new report on a drive to increase the use of modern foreign languages in Welsh schools (Weds 14th Dec).

In October 2015 the Welsh Government published Global Futures, a plan to improve and promote modern foreign languages in Wales and today a new report on the progress made has been published.

It comes as the Education Secretary will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Spanish Government to improve and promote the teaching and learning of the Spanish language in Wales.

The MOU builds on a range of activity being carried out in Wales by the Spanish Embassy Education Office.

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Language Futures

13 December 2016 (ALL)

Language Futures is an exciting approach for schools interested in developing languages beyond the classroom.

Initially a KS3 approach, Language Futures is now being adopted by primary schools with a range of primary-focused guidance and resources being developed over 2016-17.

Its core purpose is to generate deep engagement with learning and to encourage learners to take responsibility for their learning both within and beyond the classroom. Increasing motivation and engagement are integral to the approach with learners not only choosing the language they wish to learn, but also exercising choice in elements of what and how to learn. A core feature of the approach is the personalised support offered to pupils by mentors who are volunteers from the local community with an in-depth knowledge and fluency in a particular language, recruited to provide good models of the language.

Visit the ALL website for further information on launching Language Futures in your school.

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European Language Gazette N° 34

13 December 2016 (ECML)

The latest edition of the European Language Gazette has just been published.

The ECML's e-newsletter provides up-to-date news about the ECML (events, projects, resources) and other relevant sectors of the Council of Europe, as well as our partners. It focuses on national developments in the field of language education in the member states and beyond.

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.

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ECML colloquium: Ensuring quality in language testing and assessment: the contribution of the CEFR

9 December 2016 (ECML)

Materials from ECML colloquium on 7 December 2016, 'Ensuring quality in language testing and assessment: the contribution of the CEFR' can be viewed on the ECML website.

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Nominations open for the Scottish Education Awards

9 December 2016 (Education Scotland)

The Scottish Education Awards celebrate the hard work and success which takes place in Scottish education. They recognise the achievements of people who dedicate their lives to children and young people and showcase the valuable work and innovation in Scottish classrooms.

Entry to the Awards is open to all publicly funded schools, including secondary, primary, nursery and special schools. There is a wide variety of categories to enter which are linked to Curriculum for Excellence. SCILT encourage schools to consider applying for Making Languages Come Alive (Primary) and Gaelic Education/Duais Foghlam Gàidhlig.

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Teach English outside the UK

9 December 2016 (British Council)

With year-long and six-month paid placements and light teaching hours, becoming a Language Assistant is a unique way to experience another country and make your CV stand out from the crowd. Applications for the 2017-18 academic year are now open and will close on 28 February 2017.

Read more...

High Fives for the Fifth SCEN Summit

5 December 2015 (SCEN)

Read an account of the Fifth SCEN China Youth Summit.

Related Files

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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French Film Festival Aberdeen

23 November 2016 (TOTAL E&P UK)

TOTAL E&P UK Ltd are proud to be once again supporting the French Film Festival at the Belmont Cinema, in Aberdeen. Now in its 24th year, the Festival will run from Thursday 24 November to Sunday 4 December.

An important and popular part of this cultural showcase are the school screenings. Designed to encourage younger audiences to explore the study of modern languages, Total host private screenings for primary and secondary school children to encourage them to learn French. Over 500 pupils from Aberdeen City and Shire attended two separate screenings of The New Kid (Le nouveau) and Long Way North (Tout en haut du monde) at the City’s arts cinema. These TEP UK sponsored cinema trips provide pupils with the exclusive opportunity to continue their French learning outside of the classroom as well as offering an insight into French culture.

Virginie Jégat, Communications Coordinator at Total said “Here at Total E&P UK we see on daily basis the benefit of languages in the workplace. The ability to speak a language adds huge value to the business experience, whilst increasing cultural understanding. The French Film Festival is a unique event in Aberdeen and it is ideal that we can use the context of film culture to inspire the younger generation”.

Richard Mowe, Director of the French Film Festival UK said: “The Festival is the most comprehensive and diverse showcases for French-speaking cinema in the UK and this year has expanded to more than 30 different locations. Aberdeen has always been a vibrant hub of the Festival thanks to Total E&P UK’s support, particularly in programmes for young people. Vive le cinéma!”

Total is a global company with over 30 nationalities working in their UK head office in Aberdeen. As a multicultural and diverse organisation, we are committed to encouraging the younger generation to consider the energy industry as an attractive career option. The French Film Festival is an ideal opportunity to showcase language as an equally important aspect of study alongside the role Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects have in today’s curriculum.

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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.

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French grammar and oral courses for university students

23 November 2016 (Alliance Française)

Studying French at university? Brush up on your grammar and oral skills at the AF !

We will be running two new courses for grammar and oral practice specifically designed for students who are currently studying French at university.

The courses will run for 5 weeks during January/February 2017.

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

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CPD Workshops for Primary School Teachers in 2017

23 November 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running a programme of CPD workshops in French for Primary school teachers between February and April 2017.

Ten topics will be covered, tailored to the needs of Primary school teachers.

For more information and to enrol, visit the Alliance Française website.

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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.

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News from Scotland-Russia Forum

21 November 2016 (SRF)

The latest news and events from the SRF can be found online in their November bulletin.

If you want to practise your Russian language skills, the next Chai n Chat (Tea and Chat) takes place in Edinburgh on 1 December.

Read more...

Language within

18 November 2016 (What's on Glasgow)

Language classes for adults, kids and teens in the heart of Glasgow.  Choose from English, Italian, Spanish, French and Gaelic.

Visit the website for more information.

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Book Week Scotland 2016

18 November 2016 (Scottish Book Trust)

Book Week Scotland is taking place from 21-27 November 2016.

There will be a host of events taking place around the country, including those celebrating Scots and Gaelic languages. Check the events schedule on the Scottish Book Trust website to see what's available near you.

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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...

Language skills ‘more vital than ever’

15 November 2016 (British Council)

Language skills are ‘more vital than ever’ if the UK is to remain ‘outward looking’ and ‘open for business’ in the run up to Brexit, new British Council research has revealed.

In a survey of over 2,000 UK adults, the majority saw the ability to speak foreign languages as being essential if the UK is to successfully reach out to other countries (63 per cent) - and guarantee continued trade and investment (61 per cent) – in light of the result of the EU referendum.

Over two thirds of those surveyed (67 per cent) believed that as a country, we currently don’t encourage enough young people in the UK to learn other languages, with a similar number (63 per cent) stating that schools need to make more time than ever before for language learning as the UK prepares to leave the European Union.

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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.

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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.

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Formal consultation of new extended CEFR

8 November 2016 (SALT / Council of Europe)

An invitation to participate from Villano Qiriazi, Education Department of the Council of Europe.

Fifteen years after its publication, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: learning, teaching, assessment (CEFR) remains one of the best known and most used Council of Europe policy tools. Since its official publication in 2001, an impressive ‘toolkit’ has been built around the CEFR: samples illustrating the reference levels in a number of languages, a databank of descriptors, manuals for examination bodies, guides for different categories of users… A number of policy documents also further develop the underlying principles and education objectives of the CEFR. And, of course, the European Language Portfolio has largely contributed to the implementation of these principles, strongly promoting objectives such as reflective learning and learner autonomy.

You are invited to take part in a formal consultation process concerning the proposed new version.

Visit the website for more information.

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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!

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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.

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Bilingualism, Autism and the Brain

7 November 2016 (DART, University of Edinburgh)

A new PhD research project will shortly be starting to explore whether bilingualism could also help autistic people to improve social cognition abilities.

Visit the University of Edinburgh's DART website to find out more and to see how you can participate in the study.

Read more...

European Language Gazette (September/October 2016)

3 November 2016 (ECML)

The European Language Gazette, the ECML's e-newsletter, provides up-to-date news about the ECML (events, projects, resources), the Language Policy Unit and other relevant sectors of the Council of Europe, as well as our partners. It focuses on national developments in the field of language education in the member states and beyond.

The latest edition is now available to view online.

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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.

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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.

Read more...

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.

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Related Files

Japan Foundation Funding Programme 2017

1 November 2016 (Japan Foundation)

The Japan Foundation is now accepting applications to several Annual Grant Programmes which support organisations and individuals in the fields of Arts and Culture, Japanese Language Education and Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange.

Visit the website for more information about each programme and how to submit your application.

Read more...

Related Links

Funding for Japanese Language Education Projects held in the UK - the next deadline for applications for funding to introduce and support Japanese in schools is 18 November 2016.

Opinion: Brexit and the importance of languages for Britain #5

1 November 2016 (University of Cambridge)

In the fifth of a new series of comment pieces written by linguists at Cambridge, Dr John Gallagher, historian of early modern Europe, argues that Britain should look to its past to rediscover the importance of language learning.

The article also includes links to the previous entries in the series.

Read more...

Gaelic Easter courses 2017

31 October 2016 (Sabhal Mòr Ostaig)

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig is a National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture and is offering short 5-day courses during Easter 2017 on the Isle of Skye.

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

Read more...

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...

International Education Week 2016: Make Time for Languages

26 October 2016 (British Council)

The British Council celebrates International Education Week every year, promoting the benefits of international learning and cultural exchange to a huge community of teachers and school leaders in the UK and all over the world. We believe that international learning, global communication and language learning is more important now than ever. That’s why this year’s IEW theme is ‘Make Time For Languages’.

We’ve got a whole raft of offers, opportunities and resources to help you celebrate International Education Week and make time for languages in your schools and classrooms.

Visit the British Council IEW website to find out how you can get involved from 14-18 November.

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...

Euroquiz 2016-17

24 October 2016 (SEET)

SEET is very pleased to announce that Euroquiz 2016-17 has now officially launched! We run an annual Euroquiz for P6 pupils, promoting education about Europe and encouraging the development of foreign language skills and intercultural competencies amongst young people in Scotland.

If you are interested in finding out more about Euroquiz, visit the SEET website where you can watch our promo video, or contact jane@seet.org.uk. Primary schools will receive information via their local authority including a registration form.

Read more...

New grant post EU referendum and funding deadline reminder: 31 October

21 October 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Apply for a grant to engage your pupils in discussions on our future in Europe as part of our flexible funding scheme. If you’d like to apply for flexible funding, a taster trip or a planning visit to a partner school, these programmes all have a rolling deadline. For other activities, such as joint thematic projects and partnership celebrations, don’t miss the deadline: 31 October 2016.

Read more...

Survey on perceived benefits of langauge learning

21 October 2016 (British Academy)

As part of a British Academy special project exploring the (mis)match between perceived and evidenced benefits of language learning, British Academy would like to invite you to participate in a short online questionnaire survey.

British Academy is interested in hearing your language learning experiences, and your thoughts and attitudes towards language learning. It doesn't matter if you can speak only one language or many.

There are 40 questions in total, and will take no more than 15 minutes to complete.

Child questionnaire

Adult questionnaire

Your feedback is important. Thank you for your support.

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...

Related Files

Swinney sets out bold ambition for Gaelic

19 October 2016 (Scottish Government)

The Deputy First Minister John Swinney has delivered the Angus Macleod Memorial lecture during the Mod in Stornoway today setting out the importance of the Gaelic language to Scotland as part of a bold ambition to build participation and economic activity in the future.

Mr Swinney was making his first major speech on the subject since assuming ministerial responsibility for the Gaelic language after the election. Over the summer the Deputy First Minister has engaged widely with a range of stakeholders central to the future of the language.

Read more...

£700,000 for Gaelic language delivery

19 October 2016 (Scottish Government)

Additional funding to improve facilities at Glasgow’s two Gaelic schools has been announced by the Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, John Swinney.

Glendale Gaelic School and Sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu will use the extra £700,000 to further improve the learning environment for young people studying core subjects such as physical education, STEM and ICT, ensuring Gaelic learning provides a fully immersive experience across the curriculum.

The money will also be spent on upgrading school facilities helping to tackle an increase in demand for places.

Since the introduction of the Gaelic Schools Capital Fund in 2008 the number of young people in Gaelic medium education has increased nationally by 32%.

Read more...

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

Supporting Bilingual Learners in the Mainstream Classroom

13 October 2016 (University of Strathclyde/SCILT)

Do you work with bilingual learners? Would you like to develop your ability to support them to develop their linguistic competence and to learn through English in mainstream primary or secondary classrooms?

This course is designed to enable you to understand and act on theories of bilingual learning and policy to support bilingual learners in Scottish schools, and to gain experience of current classroom-based practice in Scotland and around the world.

The next course starts on 14 January and runs from January to December 2017 at the University of Strathclyde. Classes are held at the University on Saturdays, on average once a month. See the attached leaflet for further information.

For information on other initiatives and organisations supporting bilingualism and multilingualism in Scotland, visit the EAL and Bilingualism webpages in the Learners and Parents section of the SCILT website.

Read more...

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...

Opinion: Brexit and the importance of languages for Britain #3

13 October 2016 (University of Cambridge)

In the third of a new series of comment pieces written by linguists at Cambridge, Jocelyn Wyburd, Director of the University’s Language Centre and Chair of the University Council for Modern Languages, argues that Brexit poses an additional threat to language learning in Britain which must be overcome.

Just one of the motivations to vote ‘Leave’ in the UK’s recent EU Referendum was a desire to limit immigration, fuelled by a wide range of issues including strains on jobs and public services, but also by discomfort (verging on fear) about multiculturalism and multilingualism in ‘Anglophone’ Britain.

We heard that Nigel Farage disliked sharing trains with people speaking languages other than English, and shortly before the referendum it was reported that a Muslim woman on a bus had been berated for not speaking English to her son, when she was actually speaking Welsh.

Wales is a proudly bilingual nation which, through its Global Futures strategy is dedicated to promoting language learning and greater cross-cultural understanding. Scotland, meanwhile, has adopted the EU-wide goal of mastery of Mother Tongue plus two languages (where Mother Tongue might be English, Scots or another language). No such goals exist for the UK as a whole or for England, though the Department for Education’s statement of purpose for the teaching of languages in English schools opens with the assertion that “learning a foreign language is a liberation from insularity and provides an opening to other cultures”.

Links to Parts 1 and 2 can also be found on the website.

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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Dundee Literary Festival 2016

12 October 2016 (Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

This year's Dundee Literary Festival takes place from 19 October to 25 November and includes Scots and Gaelic language events.

Children will especially enjoy the session on 22 October, 'Rock and Roald Dahl Party' with Matthew Fitt, featuring Scots translations of some of Dahl's classic books.

Visit the website for details.

Read more...

Final LangOER Conference: “Open Education: promoting diversity for European Languages”

12 October 2016 (ECML)

The conference, held in Brussels on 26-27 September 2016, was an initiative of the European funded network LangOER, and was co-organised with the Educational Repositories Network – EdReNe. The event brought together experts in open education and digital content repositories, educational researchers and policy makers concerned with language education, pedagogical use of ICT, and social integration and inclusion.

Presentations and livestreams from the conference are now available online.

Read more...

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!

Read more...

£3.9 million modern languages research project launched in Manchester

11 October 2016 (University of Manchester)

A consortium led by The University of Manchester has launched a four-year language research project which aims to demonstrate the UK’s critical need for modern languages research and teaching. The project will collaborate with schools and universities to develop curriculum innovations, and strengthen university commitments to local community heritage.

The launch of ‘Cross-Language Dynamics: Reshaping Community’, which is funded by an AHRC Open World Research Initiative (OWRI) grant, took place at The University of Manchester. They are leading a consortium which includes 11 other universities, city councils, the Royal Opera House, Tyneside Cinema, political think tank Chatham House, and a sixth-form college known for its strengths in modern languages.

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DELF/DALF French exams

10 October 2016 (Alliance Française)

The next session for the DELF/DALF will take place in December 2016.

The DELF (Diplôme d’Etudes en Langue Française) and the DALF (Diplôme Approfondi en Langue Française) are official diplomas awarded by the French Ministry of Education to certify foreign candidates’ proficiency in French. They are available at varying levels, including the DELF Junior for children learning the language.

The exams can be taken at:

Follow the relevant link above for more information and to enrol for the exam by Friday 28 October 2016.

Read more...

International School Award webinars

9 October 2016 (British Council)

The British Council are holding a series of free webinars during October and November that aim to support schools with submission of the Action plan for Accreditation/Reaccreditation level of the International School Award prior to the deadline on 13 November 2016.

Visit the Schools Online website for further details and to register.

Read more...

Opinion: Brexit and the importance of languages for Britain #2

7 October 2016 (University of Cambridge Research)

In the second of a new series of comment pieces written by linguists at Cambridge, Dr Heather Inwood, Lecturer in Modern & Contemporary Chinese Literature and Culture, argues that Britain needs to improve its language skills to build trade relations and break through cultural divides.

Read more...

Related Links

Opinion: Brexit and the importance of languages for Britain #1 (University of Cambridge Research, 26 September 2016)

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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Generation UK – China

6 October 2016 (British Council)

The British Council is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Scottish Government to support more students from Scottish universities to undertake internships in China through the British Council’s Generation UK – China campaign. The partnership will be focused on supporting Scottish students from low-income backgrounds to gain international experience in the world’s second-largest economy.

Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science, Shirley-Anne Somerville, said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Scottish students to develop highly valuable knowledge and skills working in one of the world’s fastest-growing and most dynamic economies. The Scottish Government’s support for this programme underlines our commitment to investing in Scotland’s future workforce and further strengthening our growing engagement with China.”

The Generation UK – China campaign will assist the Scottish Government in delivering its International Framework and in further strengthening relations with China. It will also develop the academic achievement and employability of students and recent graduates of Scotland’s higher education institutions.

“My experience interning in Beijing was fast-paced, exciting and always engaging,” said Justine Porter, a graduate of the University of Dundee who completed a two-month internship at a law firm in Beijing through the Generation UK – China campaign last year.

Visit the British Council website for more information.

Read more...

Theatre workshops in French

4 October 2016 (Institut français)

Drama games, improvisation, play readings... Edinburgh-based company Théâtre Sans Accents encourages you to go beyond language boundaries and explore a theatrical language made from a plurality of accents. Keep yours, and discover French in another way!

The workshops are suitable for intermediate/advanced level. The first takes place on Wednesday 12 October with further workshops scheduled in November and December.

Visit the Institut français website for more information.

Read more...

SCHOLAR and the National Assessment Resource

30 September 2016 (SCHOLAR)

SCHOLAR has a new feature: for all the SQA listening and reading assessments for Higher French, German and Spanish, we have put together a set of SCHOLAR activities which cover much of the vocabulary and concepts in each of those assessments.

When planning an assessment, teachers can give their pupils links to the SCHOLAR activities which will help them prepare for the assessment. They can be found in the Exam Preparation area of each language. Log in with your ID and password, which your school has!

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.

Magical Christmas Trips - deadline reminder: Monday 3 October 2016

28 September 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Give your primary pupils the chance to experience Germany's Christmas culture in a real-life setting! This four-day visit to Berlin will give them the chance to meet German children of the same age and get involved in seasonal intercultural activities.

Two options now available: apply for a visit run by UK-German Connection or receive funding to organise your own!

Read more...

UK-German Connection flexible funding scheme

27 September 2016 (UK-German Connection)

This special flexible funding scheme is designed to bring young people of the UK and Germany together to facilitate an exchange of ideas, joint learning and open discussions on special topics and current issues.

Funding is available for schools and youth groups in the UK and Germany for grants of between £500 and £5000. Activities must be joint and bilateral (UK-German) with a high level of interaction between the young people.

Current themes available under the flexible funding scheme:

  • World War 1
  • Our future in Europe - maintaining the UK-German connection
Visit the UK-German connection website for further information about the scheme and guidelines for applying.

Read more...

Antonella Sorace: Why language learning matters (now more than ever)

26 September 2016 (University of Edinburgh blog)

There is no better way to celebrate the European Day of Languages than reminding people how good it is to have more than one language in the brain. Multilingualism is a very good investment both for individuals and for societies, but this is not obvious in Scotland and the UK more generally, because of the ‘privileged monolingualism’ of English native speakers. The common perception that “everyone speaks English” makes foreign languages seem irrelevant and leads to lack of incentives to learn languages. Language skills in the UK are falling just as the need for them is growing. According to one estimate, lack of language skills costs the UK economy £48 billion a year.

Read more...

Multilingualism: Empowering individuals, transforming societies

26 September 2016 (MEITS)

MEITS is a major interdisciplinary research project funded under the AHRC Open World Research Initiative. Linguistic competence in more than one language – being multilingual – sits at the heart of the study of modern languages and literatures, distinguishing it from cognate disciplines. Through six interlocking research strands we investigate how the insights gained from stepping outside a single language, culture and mode of thought are vital to individuals and societies.

Read more...

Modern languages 'at a crossroads' - new project launched today

26 September 2016 (Oxford University Arts Blog)

Today is international languages day. But in the UK, modern languages is “at a crossroads”, according to an Oxford University professor. Katrin Kohl, professor of German Literature, says the perception of languages in schools and society is suffering.

Today, she and her fellow researchers have launched a major four-year research programme to investigate the interconnection between linguistic diversity and creativity. The project, called Creative Multilingualism, will explore how being able to speak more than one language can make us more creative. There is much more information about the planned research on the project’s website.

Professor Kohl tells Arts Blog a bit more about the project.

Read more...

More funding for Gaelic learning

23 September 2016 (Scottish Government)

More than 10,000 young people will benefit from additional funding for Gaelic music, drama and language teaching.

The Scottish Government will provide £33,000 to Fèisean nan Gàidheal in 2016-17 to support Gaelic learning.

The new funding will go towards the production of a new Gaelic music, drama and dance show involving children from two Gaelic primary schools – one in the Highlands and one in the central belt.

It will also allow the organisation to offer their Fèisgoil Gaelic language lessons to local authorities that have not experienced them yet.

Read more...

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

French grammar course for university students

22 September 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow will be running a new grammar course specifically designed for students who are currently studying French at University. This course will increase students' language skills and should greatly help prepare for exams.

The 5-week course takes place on Wednesdays commencing 19 October.

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

Read more...

Promoting Excellence in Sign Language Instruction

21 September 2016 (ECML)

The ProSign 2 project Promoting Excellence in Sign Language Instruction aims to raise the profile of sign language (SL) teachers in Europe and to support them in their efforts to achieve excellence in their teaching, both content-wise and didactically.

PRO-Sign 2's goal is to disseminate high quality materials aligned to the CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) and to facilitate the exchange and strengthening of expertise amongst Europe's sign language teachers to support them in their work and to raise the quality of sign language teaching and learning.

Find out more on the ECML website.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

Scotland-Russia Forum news

21 September 2016 (SRF)

The latest news bulletin from the SRF is now available to view online. If you want to learn Russian there may still be a few spaces left on this term's courses. Check out the bulletin for details.

Read more...

Beginners French 1 course for primary teachers

21 September 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow is running a new 10-week Beginners 1 French course specifically designed for primary school teachers between October and December 2016.

The course is suitable for complete beginners and will take place on Wednesdays 3.45-5.45pm between 5 October and 14 December 2016.

For more information and to enrol, visit the Alliance Française website.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

Scottish Gaelic Awards 2016

19 September 2016 (Daily Record / Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

As part of the Daily Record's drive to celebrate all aspects of Scottish culture, and following the success of the 2015 Gaelic Awards, we are proud to launch the 2016 campaign with headline sponsors Bòrd na Gàidhlig. 

The Scottish Gaelic Awards reward all aspects of our Gaelic culture, education and language highlighting the excellent work undertaken to maintain growth and heritage.

If you know someone who deserves an award for their contribution to Gaelic, submit your nomination by Friday 25 September. A list of award categories can be found on the Scottish Gaelic Awards website.

The Awards will be presented at a high-quality dinner in Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow on Wednesday 16 November 2016.

Read more...

Erasmus+ information sessions: Autumn 2016 series

19 September 2016 (Erasmus+)

Erasmus+ will be holding a series of free half-day information sessions in 6 venues across the UK.

The sessions are for any organisation in the UK working in the sectors of education, training, youth or sport. These events will provide an overview of the funding opportunities available under Erasmus+ in 2017, and are primarily intended for newcomers to the programme.

There will be a session in Glasgow on Wednesday 2 November 2016.

For information on all the locations and to register your place, visit the Erasmus+ website.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

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.

New German courses from 27 September 2016

19 September 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Due to demand the Goethe-Institut in Glasgow has opened another beginners course on Tuesday evenings. There are also some places left on their other courses.

For full details visit the Goethe-Institut website and if you'd like to join, please make sure that you enrol this week.

Read more...

European Day of Languages - 26 September 2016

19 September 2016 (ECML)

The 15th Anniversary of the European Day of Languages, 26 September 2016 – giving voice to Europe’s languages

The European Day of Languages, celebrated every year on the 26 September, is a festival of linguistic diversity, a day to encourage language learning for young and old; a day to come together and marvel at the beauty of all of Europe’s languages.

Against the current backdrop of rising populism, xenophobia and intolerance where language is used to exclude and divide, this year’s European Day of Languages on September 26 gives us a much-needed opportunity to highlight all that is positive and enriching in today’s increasingly multilingual and culturally diverse Europe.

Fifteen years after its inception, the Day continues to represent a force for unity as it reaches out a welcoming hand to new cultures and languages. It is one of many examples of the Council’s pioneering work to promote linguistic diversity, tolerance and respect.  Other successful current initiatives include; the development of a Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture; the No Hate Speech Movement campaign as well as the Action Plans on the fight against violent extremism and radicalisation leading to terrorism and on Building Inclusive Societies.  Such initiatives are strengthened through the Council’s cooperation with the European Commission, as exemplified through the joint action of the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML) and the European Commission, notably in the area of multilingual classrooms.

So let us use our celebrations on and around 26 September 2016 to send a clear message throughout Europe and beyond: linguistic diversity is an important resource to be used and cherished, not just today, but every day. We must support the children fleeing from war and terror. We must recognise and value all of the languages they bring to our schools. We must continue to strive for unity in diversity, harnessing the positive power of linguistic diversity to enrich our democracies and create safer, more cohesive and inclusive societies.

Background information on the Day

The European Day of Languages (EDL) is a day to encourage language learning across Europe.

At the initiative of the Council of Europe, the European Day of Languages has been celebrated every year, on 26 September, since the European Year of Languages in 2001.

The specific aims of the Day are to:

  • alert the public to the importance of language learning in order to increase plurilingualism and intercultural understanding;
  • promote the rich linguistic and cultural diversity of Europe;
  • encourage lifelong language learning in and out of school.

The dedicated website for the Day is available in 35 languages and hundreds activities are registered in the events’ calendar of the site. The EDL activities which take place in Europe and increasingly on other continents are organised mainly by schools, universities, language and cultural institutes, associations and also by the European Commission’s translation field offices.

In 2015 over 900 events were recorded in the events’ calendar.

Magical Christmas Trips to Germany 2016

12 September 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Give your primary pupils the chance to experience Germany's Christmas culture in a real-life setting! This four-day visit will give them the chance to meet German children of the same age and get involved in seasonal intercultural activities.

As part of this programme, a group of primary pupils from the UK travel to Germany with their teachers, as well as 'mentors' from a nearby secondary school to meet their German peers, learn some new German words and get a taste of Christmas in Germany.

To find out more and how to apply, visit the UK-German Connection website.

The organisation offers a number of funded activities for primary and secondary pupils and teachers, details of which can also be found on their website. Visit their funding webpage for all the grant options available.

Read more...

German online group course for adult learners

9 September 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut’s German online group course allows you to align your German studies with your time schedule, no matter where you are. However, you will not be learning alone but in a small group.

The next course commences on 19 September 2016 and is available at various learner levels.

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for more details and to enrol.

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Deutsch mit Karla and Kai

9 September 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

‘Deutsch mit Karla & Kai’ is a scheme of work that follows on from the ‘Deutsch mit Felix & Franzi’ programme. It is intended for children who have finished two years of German at primary level, having had around 40 minutes of German per week.

‘Deutsch mit Karla & Kai’ consists of 6 chapters, each of which opens with a video clip. The films introduce the new learning and teaching content in a playful way. The learners will already have a basic knowledge of German. They will therefore be able to access completely new structures and vocabulary in the context of the stories.

Access the resource on the Goethe-Institut website.

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Spanish language course for school teachers and PGDE students

9 September 2016 (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 in Scotland and PGDE 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 in Scotland and PGDE students with or without previous knowledge of Spanish.

Course length and dates:

  • 11-week course
  • From 26 September to 4 November 2016
Visit the website for more information and to enrol.

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'My Erasmus+ Moment' photo competition 2016

8 September 2016 (Erasmus+)

Erasmus+ is running a fun photo competition for anyone from the UK who has taken part in the Erasmus+ programme in 2016 – from students to staff members, volunteers to youth workers, teachers to trainers, and apprentices to trainees.

Send us your best ‘Erasmus+ Moment’ photo for a chance to win one of ten prizes and have it posted on our website and social media sites, produced as a canvas keepsake or perhaps even for it to appear in our brochures!

The competition closes on 13 October 2016.

Visit the website for full details and how to enter.

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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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Global Collaboration Day - 15 September

8 September 2016 (Global Education Conference)

Students, teachers, and organisations will celebrate global collaboration on 15 September 2016!

On this day (and beyond), experienced global educators and professionals will host connective projects and events and invite public participation. The primary goals of this whole day event are to demonstrate the power of global connectivity in classrooms, schools, institutions of informal learning and universities around the world, and to introduce others to the tools, resources and projects that are available to educators today.

Between now and 1 October 2016, global educators will design collaborative projects in which other students and teachers may participate during the course of the 2016-2017 school year. The objective is to create and present as many globally connective projects for students and educators as possible.

If you would like to design an activity for Global Collaboration Day (15 September) in which you promote your upcoming project, please get your project submitted by 11 September. Or you can join any of the listed events for an introduction to projects which interest you.

Visit the Global Collaboration Day website for more information and details as to how you can get involved.

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Six professionals on why UK teenagers should learn languages

6 September 2016 (British Council Voices)

For many young people in the UK, learning another language is not a priority – only nine per cent of teenagers progressed beyond a basic level in the language they were learning in 2013. But with so many people around the globe already speaking English, I wanted to know if learning another language is really worth it. Here's what I found out from some people who would know.

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Pupils across England start intensive lessons in Mandarin

7 September 2016 (UK Government)

A new £10 million Mandarin excellence programme will see at least 5,000 young people on track towards fluency in Mandarin Chinese by 2020.

Hundreds of secondary school pupils in England have already begun intensive lessons in Mandarin Chinese as the first initiative of its kind is rolled out across the country.

Secondary school pupils will study Mandarin for 8 hours a week over the course of the next 4 years through the programme - a significant increase on the time pupils currently spend on the subject.

Mandarin Chinese is the most widely spoken language in the world, and is seen as important for young people in the UK to master in order for the country to remain globally competitive in the future.

Read more...

Launch of ELTon Awards Nominations 2017

6 September 2016 (British Council)

The British Council is calling for worldwide nominations for its 2017 ELTons award scheme which recognises innovation in English language teaching.

The annual awards are into their fifteenth year and celebrate innovation and excellence in different aspects of English language teaching (ELT) around the world.

Any ELT professional can apply for consideration for one of the categories including authors, teachers, trainers and publishers.

The deadline for submissions is 4 November 2016 and a shortlist will be drawn up by March 2017.

Visit the British Council website for more information and to download an application pack.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

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.

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!

Read more...

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.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

History teacher trip to Berlin: 23 - 29 October 2016

1 September 2016 (German Embassy)

The German Embassy London, together with the Federal Foreign Office, annually organises a professional trip for British teachers of history to Berlin. This year’s History Teacher Tour will take place from 23 to 29 October and is now open for applications until 12 September 2016.

Please pass on this opportunity to your colleagues who teach history.

For more information, please visit the German Embassy website.

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E-bulleting for Gaelic Education

31 August 2016 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland has just published their latest e-bulletin for Gaelic Education. This edition includes information on Gaelic Medium Education (GME); Gaelic Learner Education (GLE) and the promotion of Learning about Gaelic Language and Culture as part of Scotland’s identity.

Read more...

Residential training courses in Germany 2017

30 August 2016 (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.

Available are language courses, courses on "Landeskunde", methodology and teaching strategies and also courses for teacher trainers.

Apply now for a scholarship from the Goethe-Institut Glasgow. Deadline for applications is 15 October 2016.

Details and application form are available on the Goethe-Institut website.

Read more...

SRF Russian classes for adults 2016-17

26 August 2016 (SRF)

Scotland-Russia Forum's new session classes commence on 19 September 2016. Enjoy learning Russian in small groups with a professional Russian language tutor.

Visit the SRF website for details of all the available courses and to enrol.

Read more...

PG Cert Streap: Gaelic Medium Education

26 August 2016 (University of Aberdeen)

Applications are now invited for a limited number of places remaining on Streap, the Postgraduate Teaching Certificate for teachers of GME, commencing in September 2016.

This part-time programme is fully funded by the Scottish Government.

For more information, visit the University of Aberdeen website.

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...

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...

SCEN Newsletter

23 August 2016 (SCEN)

The latest newsletter from SCEN is now available online. This includes dates of upcoming events for Autumn 2016.

Read more...

European Language Gazette

19 August 2016 (ECML)

The latest issue of the European Language Gazette is now available on the ECML website. This edition has a focus on European Day of Languages. The publication is available in English and French

Read more...

German courses 2016-17

19 August 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut in Glasgow offers a range of courses at different levels with new term courses starting in September. Visit the Goethe-Institut website for full details and to enrol.

Read more...

French classes 2016-17

19 August 2016 (Alliance Française / Institut Français)

New session adult and children's classes commence in September at both the Alliance Française in Glasgow and the Institut Français in Edinburgh. Follow the appropriate link below for more details and to enrol:

Host a teacher from Germany 2016-17

18 August 2016 (UK-German Connection)

Add an international dimension to your classroom by hosting a teacher from Germany for two or three weeks. It's free, flexible and provides schools with authentic cultural input.

Schools have until 21 September 2016 to apply.

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

Read more...

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...

EPALE focus: European Day of Languages

11 August 2016 (European Commission)

On the 26 September EPALE (Electronic Platform for Adult Learning in Europe) is celebrating European Day of Languages. We love languages at EPALE – learning new languages can help share information and experiences across borders, broaden our cultural horizons and improve cognitive function.

In honour of European Day of Languages, we’ll be hosting a day-long discussion which will be moderated by language teacher and polyglot Alex Rawlings (link is external) and EPALE’s thematic coordinator for Quality, Andrew McCoshan. We’re looking for people who are passionate about language learning to take part in the panel discussion – if this sounds like you, get in touch.

We’re also on the lookout for articles, opinion blogs, resources and case studies about language learning.

Visit the website for information on how to contribute and take part.

Read more...

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

German language courses

29 July 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut in Glasgow offers a range of courses, classes and workshops. The following are currently available for enrolment. Click on the appropriate link for further information:

For more information about the Goethe-Institut and the activities they offer, visit the website.

Read more...

Turbulent Times: Skills for a Global World

26 July 2016 (Think Global)

If recent events have proven anything, it’s that the world in which our young people are growing up is turbulent and unpredictable. Over the past 12 months, Think Global has been working together with OCR to look more closely at questions about the skills young people really need to live and work in such a world.

Focusing on the views and understandings of employers, who can play a crucial role in supporting young people to learn and practise skills for a global world, we surveyed 500 business leaders from across the country and across sectors to build an up-to-date picture of whether or to what extent our young people are prepared to thrive both today and in the future.

Notable in the global context which informs this research, was the finding that over a quarter (28%) of employers were affected by a lack of workers with foreign language skills; a figure rising to almost half (44%) in London.

The full report can be accessed on the Think Global website.

Read more...

Can learning languages help refugees cope?

21 July 2016 (British Council Voices)

Marie Delaney, co-author of a new British Council report called Language for Resilience, explains how language learning has helped refugees cope with their situations.

Find out more on the British Council website.

Read more...

1+2 languages: progress from first to second level

7 July 2016 (Education Scotland)

This publication from Education Scotland is a suite of advice, frameworks and resources to support primary teachers to plan for depth and progression in modern language learning experiences. These resources were developed in conjunction with primary practitioners who deliver L2 and L3 experiences.

Visit Education Scotland's National Improvement Hub website for more information.

Read more...

ADES 1+2 languages implementation review

5 July 2016 (Scottish Government)

The independent review of the implementation of the 1+2 languages policy recently undertaken by the Association of Directors of Education Scotland (ADES) is now available to download from the Scottish Government’s website.

Read more...

1+2 languages : L3 audit tools for use in primary and secondary contexts

4 July 2016 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland has published L3 audit tools for primary and secondary on the National Improvement Hub website. These tools will help practitioners to gauge whether their proposals fulfil the criteria to provide a suitable L3 experience.

Visit the website for more information.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

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.

Read more...

French summer courses in Glasgow

22 June 2016 (Alliance Française)

There are still a few places left on some of the Alliance Française summer courses taking place between June and September.

There are also a few places available on their children's summer workshop starting Monday.27 June.

For more information and to enrol, visit the relevant webpage on the Alliance Française website below:

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.

Read more...

Statistics and nuance – the new secrets behind learning a foreign language

21 June 2016 (European Commission)

Software that uses statistics to adapt to your learning style and greater insight into how the brain processes ambiguity and nuance are helping scientists design new ways to learn a foreign language.

Dr Mait Müntel, CEO and co-founder of EU-backed start-up Lingvist, is an unlikely language-learning entrepreneur. He was working as a physicist at the CERN lab in Switzerland, part of the team that discovered the Higgs boson, when he had the idea that he has developed into a growing business.

Read more...

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!

Language Assistant adds Spanish flavour to Central Scotland

20 June 2016 (British Council)

In 1989 Mark Milarvie worked as an English Language Assistant in Spain. Now, he is the Principal Teacher of Modern Languages at St Margaret’s High School, North Lanarkshire and has over 20 years’ experience teaching foreign languages. This year he is working with Rafael, a Spanish university student and Modern Language Assistant. Rafael’s time is split between St Margaret’s High School and one of the local feeder primary schools. He is very active in both, helping to enhance the curriculum, and implement the 1+2 language policy.

Read more on the British Council website where you can also find out how to apply to host a language assistant in your school.

Read more...

PgCert - Supporting bilingual learners in the mainstream classroom

15 June 2016 (University of Strathclyde)

This is a part-time accredited specialist course for all teachers working with bilingual learners. It’s open to qualified teachers as well as allied professional workers such as speech and language therapists and educational psychologists.

You’ll enhance your knowledge and practice of innovative approaches to curriculum design and delivery for bilingual learners.

Find out more about the course content, entry requirements and how to apply on the University of Strathclyde website.  Application deadline: end of June for September 2016 start.

Read more...

Competition for teachers: 'Deutsch für dich' in the classroom

15 June 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut is looking for the best ideas on how to use the 'Deutsch für dich' community in class. Teachers, take part in the competition and win an iPad!

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for more information and submit your ideas by 30 June 2016.

If you're not already familiar with the Deutsch für dich resource, find this and other packages on the Goethe-Institut website to help learners practice German free of charge.

Read more...

The Smart Choice: German schools' network

15 June 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

This opportunity is currently not available.

Just published - Issue no. 31 of the European Language Gazette

15 June 2016 (ECML)

The latest edition of the ECML's European Language Gazette is now available and can be accessed, in English and French, via the ECML website.

Read more...

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...

Certificate of Continuing Education in Spanish

10 June 2016 (University of Strathclyde)

The School of Humanities at the University of Strathclyde is delighted to invite applications for the Certificate of Continuing Education in Spanish in the academic session 2016-2017.

These evening degree programmes will comprise undergraduate level modules in the language at first, second and third-year levels.

The two first-year modules, Introduction 1A and Introduction 1B, are intensive beginners’ classes. They are suitable for people with some or no knowledge of the language but with previous experience of language learning, and would equally suit those with qualifications in the language from some years ago who wish to refresh their knowledge.

The CCEd provides a General Teaching Council approved qualification and has in previous years appealed to candidates from diverse backgrounds, including secondary school teachers wishing to acquire an additional language, primary school teachers, teachers of classics, musicians and a range of professional people with an interest in the Spanish-speaking world and their languages.

See the attached flyer for more information about the programme or visit the website.

Read more...

Related Files

Threlford Memorial Cup 2016 - call for nominations

10 June 2016 (Chartered Institute of Linguists)

We are calling for nominations for the Threlford Memorial Cup 2016. The cup is presented annually to a person, an organisation, or for a project that has inspired others with an original language initiative.

So if you know of someone who has done something truly amazing for language-learning, we would love to hear from you.

Visit the Chartered Institute of Linguists' website to download the nomination form and submit entries by 29 July 2016.

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...

Dr Alasdair Allan addresses parliament in Norwegian

9 June 2016 (Scottish Parliament TV)

Hear the Minister for International Development and Europe, Dr Alasdair Allan, address the Scottish Parliament in Norwegian to mark the 750th anniversary of the Treaty of Perth.

Read more...

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...

Essential German: Intensive course for complete beginners

9 June 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Are you planning a visit to a German-speaking country, would you like to be able to speak with German-speaking friends in their native tongue or would you like to learn a bit of German just for fun? If you are a complete beginner, this one-week intensive course is for you!

The course will run from 27 June to 2 July 2016. Visit the Goethe-Institut website for more information and enrol by 17 June.

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.

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Visit China with Chinese Bridge for UK schools

6 June 2016 (British Council)

Are you interested in encouraging the teaching and learning of Mandarin in your school?

Chinese Bridge is offering an exciting opportunity for school leaders, heads of languages, and local authorities. If you want to invest in your own professional development, link with a school in China, or encourage teaching Mandarin and Chinese culture in school, this Hanban funded visit could be just what you need.

Travel, accommodation and expenses in China will be covered by the programme, but schools must pay for their own flights.

Successful applicants will be offered a place on a week’s visit to China from 22- 29 October 2016 and will be invited to take part in a pre-departure briefing to prepare for the visit.

Only 60 places are available, so visit the British Council Schools Online website to find out more and make sure you apply online by 12 noon on 7 July.

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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.

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MOOC: Multilingual Learning for a Globalised World

3 June 2016 (Future Learn)

This free 3-week online course, commencing 13 June 2016, will explore multilingual education and how it can impact and improve education and even wider society.

Our languages are an essential part of who we are as human beings. They are instruments of communication and are often a source of dignity and of human pride. Our life experiences and views of the world are bound up in our languages.

In week 3 you can hear about the Mother Tongue Other Tongue multilingual poetry competition, where school pupils are invited to express themselves either in the language they speak at home or in one they are learning at school, and which will be run again in Scotland by SCILT in the new term.

For more information about the course and to enrol, visit the Future Learn website.

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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.

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French summer intensive classes in Edinburgh

2 June 2016 (Institut français)

The Institut français offers one-week summer intensive courses in July and August with a concession fee for teachers. This 15 hour-course will focus on speaking skills through theatre or radio workshops.

Four levels are available : beginners (A1), elementary (A2), intermediate (B1) and advanced (B2)

For more information, see the Summer 2016 brochure or visit the Institut français website for details of all the courses, events and resources they offer.

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LACS: Empowering language networks

2 June 2016 (ECML)

The LACS (Language associations and collaborative support) network mediates between ECML projects and language teacher associations and other networks at regional and national levels. Its purpose is to raise awareness of existing ECML projects and resources, and to motivate teachers and others involved in language education to adapt these to their local environment, in order to facilitate widespread impact on learning and teaching.

Discover the searchable online directory of language associations and organisations and how it can be used on the ECML LACS website, along with guidelines and examples of using ECML resources in different contexts.

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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.

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Chinese Consul General Pan Xinchun Attends the Scotland-China Association Primary School Art Competition Prizegiving

1 June 2016 (Chinese Consulate General, Edinburgh)

On 27 May, the Scotland-China Association (SCA) Primary School Art Competition Prizegiving was held in the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland. Chinese Consul General Pan Xinchun attended the event and presented the prize to the winners.

Consul General Pan expressed his congratulations to the winners, sayiing he was very pleased to see so many students entered the competition and created lots of excellent art works centered on China. Though they have never been to China, the works of Chinese Dragon, Giant Panda and Zodiac Monkey they created are so lively and impressive. With the development of the China-Scotland relations, Chinese language and culture become more and more popular among Scottish teenagers. So far, 5 Confucius Institutes have been established in Scotland, and more than 20,000 primary and secondary students are learning Chinese language and culture.

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Connecting Classrooms school partnership programme

31 May 2016 (British Council)

Connecting Classrooms is a global education programme brought to you by the British Council in partnership with the Department for International Development (DFID).

It offers a free learning journey which helps you to improve your classroom practice and develop your ideas with like-minded teachers internationally.

By developing and networking with thousands of teachers across the world, the British Council aims to help young people develop the knowledge, skills and values to live and work in a globalised economy.

To find out more about the programme and how to take part, visit the British Council Schools Online website, where you can also hear a participating teacher reflect on her time visiting Nigeria with Connecting Classrooms.

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Donkey Xote for Primary Schools in the Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival

31 May 2016 (Consejería de Educación)

After the great success of previous years, Edinburgh University, in collaboration with the Consejería de Educación, is going to launch the third Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival (ESFF) from 6-13 October 2016. We would be glad to share this experience with you. For this reason we are currently planning our programme which also includes an animation film particularly suitable for primary school pupils (P6 and P7).

See the attached flyer for more information.

TeachMeet Connect Launch

31 May 2016 (TeachMeet Scotland)

On Wednesday 21 September 2016 TeachMeet Connect is being launched, a series of TeachMeets happening across Scotland on the same day where teachers will get together and share what they do. Coinciding with the Scottish Learning Festival, this will be a celebration of all the good things happening in classrooms across Scotland and a chance to explore how TeachMeets can support professional development.

Whether you’ve been to loads of TeachMeets before or this will be your first, this is your chance to get connected to other teachers in Scotland who want to share too. We’d love you to get involved and hold a TeachMeet Connect of your own.

Why not set up a TeachMeet devoted to language teaching and learning? It's a great opportunity to meet like-minded people and share ideas and best practice. Visit the website to find out more and to register your interest in taking part.

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E-bulletin for Gaelic Education

31 May 2016 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland has just published their latest e-bulletin for Gaelic Education.

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Summer French story sessions for children

31 May 2016 (East Lothian Council)

30 minute French story sessions for children aged 4 to 7 years old are being held in different locations across East Lothian during the summer holidays.

Visit East Lothian Council's website for more information.

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SQA Modern Languages update - May 2016

31 May 2016 (SQA)

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

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Deutsch für dich

30 May 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Register to join the learning and teaching community free of charge to help learn and improve your German.

Find out more in the 'Deutsch für dich' promotional video and visit the Goethe-Institut website to register.

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New ECML publications and websites now available

27 May 2016 (ECML)

The results of 14 projects from the Learning through languages programme are now available online. A summary of these rich resources and websites is presented in the online brochure, offering
  • a brief description of each resource, including the key target audience;
  • the languages in which each resource is available;
  • the thematic area on the ECML website where each resource has been located.
Over the coming weeks the results from each of the projects will also be showcased individually on the ECML website.

Read more...

Summer language learning at Strathclyde

27 May 2016 (University of Strathclyde)

The University of Strathclyde's 2016 summer programme includes options to learn French, German, Italian and Spanish as well as a taster session 'Break into Hebrew.'

Visit the website to access the programme giving full details of the courses available over the summer.

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How to prepare students for international communication

25 May 2016 (British Council Voices)

To communicate successfully in an international environment, you need to be able to grasp what is being said and respond appropriately.

In this blog, Chia Suan Chong offers three strategies to help students use English in international environments, including considering different cultural views of the same situation - an ideal exercise for those with a multinational class.

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Edinburgh International Film Festival 2016

25 May 2016 (EIFF)

The programme for the Edinburgh International Film Festival 2016 taking place from 15-26 June has just been launched.

There are two foreign language films showing as part of the Junior festival strand. Find out more about each by following the appropriate link:

  • The Canterville Ghost (Le Fantôme de Canterville, French, age 8+) - an aristocratic French ghost tries to prevent a family moving into her castle
  • The Shamer’s Daughter (Skammerens datter, Dutch, age 10+) - a medieval fantasy epic
For more information about this year's festival and all the films on offer, visit the EIFF 2016 website.

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The benefits of teaching languages outdoors

24 May 2016 (innovate)

In the beginning, human beings were not designed to spend hours each day surrounded by brick walls. They were naturally programmed for survival, for the great outdoors with its unpredictability, and each day provided naturally occurring learning opportunities which were a necessity if our ancient ancestors were to survive.

While Curriculum for Excellence in Scotland, and in many cases, the natural creativity and ingenuity of our teachers, seeks to promote and facilitate interdisciplinary learning and contextualised learning, more of us are literally taking learning outside, beyond the four walls. The importance of this can be justified both on a national and international level. The new How Good is our School 4 specifically mentions as one of its aims “to increase Learning for Sustainability.”

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The benefits of teaching languages outdoors

24 May 2016 (Innovate my school)

In the beginning, human beings were not designed to spend hours each day surrounded by brick walls. They were naturally programmed for survival, for the great outdoors with its unpredictability, and each day provided naturally occurring learning opportunities which were a necessity if our ancient ancestors were to survive. 

[..] Combining language learning with being outside, enjoying nature and teaching the use of natural resources and the local environment around learners makes for a stimulating, enriching opportunity. This is relevant to the context of a school or community, and which can be developed and linked to a much wider global context. One very effective way to do this in Scotland, and beyond, is by combining language learning with the John Muir Award.

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Certificate exams at Goethe-Institut

23 May 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Goethe-Institut examinations are well known throughout the world and the associated certificates are accepted as a qualification by employers and further education institutions in many countries. Detailed information about the exam, regarding content as well as practice materials, can be found on the Goethe-Institut website

To register, please send the completed application form to the Goethe-Institut Language Department:

Scottish Education Awards 2016 - Finalists announced!

23 May 2016 (Education Scotland)

Finalists in the 17 categories for the Scottish Education Awards 2016 have now been announced.

Congratulations and good luck to the schools nominated in the following language categories:

Making Languages Come Alive

  • St Michael's Primary School
  • St Blane's Primary School
  • Dalmilling Primary School

Gaelic Education Award

  • Abercorn School
  • Sgoil an Iochdair agus Sgoil Dhalabroig
  • Bun Sgoil Chnoc a' Chonaisg | Whinhill Primary
More information about the awards can be found on the Scottish Education Awards website.

Read more...

Essential German: Intensive Course for Complete Beginners

23 May 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Are you planning a visit to a German-speaking country, would you like to be able to speak with German-speaking friends in their native tongue or would you like to learn a bit of German just for fun? If you are a complete beginner, this course is for you! Enrolment: by 13 June. 

For enrolment please contact Goethe-Institut's Language Department.

The value of languages: Ideas for a UK strategy for languages

23 May 2016 (UCML)

What value should we put on languages in the UK? Why do they actually matter (if the world is learning English...)? What strategies do we need as a country in respect of languages? This excellent report draws out some of the current evidence, illustrated by excellent case-studies and then makes several strong recommendations about a way forward.

The report, published in May 2016, follows the high level cross-departmental workshop held in autumn 2015 which brought together language academics, lobbyists and civil servants and was chaired by Baroness Coussins, co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Languages.

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West Dunbartonshire win at Euroquiz final: St Mary’s Primary team named Euroquiz Champions

18 May 2016 (SEET)

Congratulations to the P6 team from St Mary’s Primary School Duntocher, who won the Scottish European Educational Trust’s National Euroquiz Final 2016, which took place at Heriot Watt University yesterday (17th May 2016).Team members Anna Dalrymple, Molly Hall, Nicky Borthwick and Owen Graham were crowned Euroquiz Champions 2016 at the national final. The winners were closely followed by St Margaret’s Primary School team from Fife, with their fingers on the buzzer in a nail-biting final round. Alloway Primary School (South Ayrshire) and St Leonard’s Primary School (South Lanarkshire) also did excellently, both coming in at third place.

Euroquiz is run by the Scottish European Educational Trust, a non-political charity, which promotes education about Europe and language learning amongst Scotland’s young people. 31 teams of primary six pupils came from all across Scotland to attend the final, all hoping to raise the trophy as winners. All teams demonstrated an impressive level of knowledge about European countries, history, culture, current affairs and the EU. All participants were a credit to their schools and worked really well together in their teams. The finalists were put through their paces by quizmaster and Director of SCILT Fhiona Fisher and Head of the European Parliament Information Office in Scotland, Per Johansson, who read out the answers. Well done to everyone who participated in Euroquiz 2016!

Football and German - Materials for your German classroom

23 May 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Popular events like the European Football Championship 2016 provide ample opportunities for motivating young learners. The Goethe-Institutes in France have developed some practice materials for the German classroom suitable for various levels and ready for kick off.

Visit the Goethe-Institut website to download the free resources.

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SQA Modern Languages review report

20 May 2016 (SQA)

SQA has published a National Qualifications Modern Languages Review Report which contains important up-dates on the new qualifications.

Read more...

Ministers acknowledge the key role of languages and language education

19 May 2016 (ECML)

The importance of language education and the added value of the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML), were highlighted at the Council of Europe Conference of Ministers of Education, Brussels, 11-12 April 2016.

The focus of the conference was the Council of Europe flagship Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture. This new educational tool for teaching democracy and democratic values has been developed by the Council of Europe with input from over a thousand teachers and experts across the continent. It sets out a series of 20 key competences needed to play an active role in democratic society and explains how these can be defined and measured.

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...

Losing identity during the refugee crisis

16 May 2016 (The Atlantic)

Rachel McCormack arrived in Europe last November to research international schools catering to English-speaking students, but her plans were overwhelmed by the magnitude of the continent’s refugee crisis. Now, she’s spearheading a campaign to deliver Arabic-language books to refugee shelters in the Netherlands.

Read more...

Connecting Classrooms is open for applications!

16 May 2016 (British Council)

After the success of the first window of applications, the second is now open for professional partnerships funding. By applying for a £3,000 grant, you can gain the experience to work with your partner face-to-face, allowing you to further support and guide each other on the Connecting Classrooms learning journey. Visit now to learn more about the grant funding and eligibility criteria.

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An exchange with a visible difference

16 May 2016 (British Council)

Transferable and vocational skills are providing a focal point for an exchange between specialist colleges for visually impaired students in the UK and France.

Read more...

Gaelic Medium Education Newsletter - Spring 2016

13 May 2016 (Comann nam Pàrant)

Comann nam Pàrant, the national organisation that advises and supports parents/carers of those in Gaelic Medium Education (GME), has published their latest newsletter which is available online.

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Scotland-Russia Forum news bulletin

11 May 2016 (SRF)

The Scotland-Russia Forum has issued their May newsletter outlining all the latest news, events and opportunities in Scotland and beyond.

This edition includes news of volunteering opportunities in Russia this summer and an internship in Astana.

Access all the information in the bulletin online.

Read more...

Internships in China

9 May 2016 (Generation UK/British Council)

Whether you’re looking to pick up an internship in accounting, architecture, engineering or just about any other industry, Generation UK-China can help provide funding for your trip and make sure you make the most of your time in China.

Companies across the world are looking to engage with China, and value employees with experience in China immensely. New industries and work opportunities in China are rising up faster than the skyscrapers that accommodate them. Developing a connection with China could be the smartest choice you can make right now.

There are two-month internships available for applicants aged 18 years and over who are currently enrolled full-time at a UK university or who have graduated from a UK university within the past year. Whilst the ability to speak Mandarin is not essential, it is recommended successful applicants learn some of the basics.

Full details of the available opportunities, funding and application process can be found on the British Council's Study, Work, Create web portal.

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Launch of High Five Spanish

9 May 2016 (Radio Lingua)

Radio Lingua is delighted to announce the launch of High Five Spanish which follows a similar model to our French resource. Learners can join Scottish learner Sophie who is learning Spanish, in Spain, with her friends Marina and Miguel.

We’re making the trial version of High Five Spanish available to all schools until 30 June. All existing High Five French schools are ‘pre-approved’ and the Spanish trial will automatically appear on their account. Any other schools should register for the free trial on the Radio Lingua High Five Spanish website and we’ll set up trial accounts for them. The free trial provides access to the first ten lessons of the series including video and audio resources, teachers’ notes, classroom ideas and activity sheets for pupils.

Visit the High Five Spanish website for full details about the resource.

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10 famous faces who speak other languages

6 May 2016 (EuroTalk blog)

We’ve posted previously about movie and sport stars who speak other languages. But it turns out they’re not the only famous linguists, so here are a few more. Prepare to be impressed…

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Bookbug Week 2016

5 May 2016 (Scottish Book Trust)

Bookbug Week 2016 will take place between 16-22 May and will celebrate ‘Around the world with Bookbug’.

This international theme will inspire children and adults alike to explore songs and rhymes from around the globe. A whole host of fun story, song and rhyme activities for children will be taking place in local libraries and community venues.

Visit the Scottish Book Trust website for a list of dates and venues around Scotland.

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eTwinning improves teachers' cross-curricular skills and much more!

4 May 2016 (eTwinning)

A recent survey carried out as part of the eTwinning project, which celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2015, shows incredibly positive results about its impact on the teachers' community. An overwhelming majority of the project's participants say that it has helped them improve their skills in various different areas.

eTwinning is, evidently, affecting teachers’ professional practice and development substantially. More than 90 per cent of the 6,000 teachers who participated in the survey said eTwinning had improved their competence in teaching transversal skills. In other words, team work, creativity, problem-solving and decision-making.

What’s more, 89 per cent of the teachers reported that their foreign language skills for teaching and project-based teaching skills were improved due to the eTwinning community. 80 per cent said that they were better prepared for multicultural and multilingual scenarios after joining eTwinning projects.

Read more...

Related Links

eTwinning online training, workshops and courses - information about webinars and short online sessions taking place between May and June 2016.

Burscough Village Primary celebrate eTwinning Day (eTwinning UK, 11 May 2016) - Year 5 pupils from the school tell in this video what eTwinning means to them.

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.

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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...

German for children - films in lessons

2 May 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Children love films. They ensure variety and entertainment in lessons – and support the learning process. What should teachers look out for when they use them in lessons? Here are some tips and practical examples.

Read more...

Research participants wanted: Italian-English bilinguals

2 May 2016 (Bilingualism Matters)

Scientists working on the EU funded AThEME project are looking to recruit Italian-English bilingual adults for their research into how people process multiple languages.

If you're a native Italian speaker aged between 18-40 and would like to take part, visit the Bilingualism Matters website for more information and to register interest.

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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...

Colours of the Alphabet screenings in Scotland

29 April 2016 (Colours of the Alphabet)

Liz Lochhead will be launching the Scottish preview tour of 'Colours of the Alphabet' at the GFT on 11 May and taking part in a post screening discussion on the relationship between language and childhood with director Alastair Cole and producer Nick Higgins.

The launch event will mark the opening night of a run of 11 screenings and discussions across Scotland during which the filmmakers and guest contributors will discuss the issue of mother-tongue education and the impact of teaching additional languages in primary schools.

Visit the website for a full list of dates and venues and to secure your tickets. Places are limited.

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The Language Magician - German for children

28 April 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

One of the main aims of this Erasmus+ project is to develop an assessment tool to be used in primary schools called THE LANGUAGE MAGICIAN. The game will be fun for the children, build on their language and IT-skills and provide information on their progression. It will support teachers by giving them a tool to assess their pupils’ abilities using non-threatening testing methods and hopefully also increase the enjoyment of learning a foreign language at this age.

The project is still under development, but visit the Goethe-Institut website to find out more.

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New online group courses in German enrolling now

28 April 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Would you like to learn German in a group although you can’t come to our institute? Do you travel a lot for work and therefore would like to study at any place and time? Do you prefer a more intensive course? Then join our German online group course! Not only will you learn in collaboration with other students - you will also cover an entire level in 16 weeks (based on 6-7 hours of course work per week).

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for more information and to enrol. Course commences 17 May 2016.

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French language courses and exams in Glasgow

28 April 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow has a number of courses and exam sessions coming up in the summer. Follow the appropriate links below for more information:

For more information about the Alliance Française and what they can offer, visit their website.

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Teacher Academy: a European response to teachers' professional development needs

25 April 2016 (European Commission)

With rapidly changing societies, Europe’s 5 million teachers are facing an increasing number of challenges and demands in their daily work in the classroom. The Teacher Academy, the School Education Gateway’s new service, is here to help teachers across Europe.

Teachers are increasingly expected to play a key role in addressing some of the challenges for our societies linked to technological, social and economic changes. However, teachers often face a range of barriers to accessing professional development, ranging from a lack of relevant courses and conflicts with work schedules to the high cost for some teachers of taking advantage of what is on offer (OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS)).

To address these barriers and support teachers in their daily work in the classroom, the European Commission has now launched Teacher Academy as part of its School Education Gateway portal.

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Study a language at LSE this summer

25 April 2016 (LSE careers blog)

Did you know that the LSE Language Centre offers summer courses? Each year, ‘Summer Languages’ has grown to include more languages, levels and courses of different levels of intensity. You may want to consolidate the language skills you have learned during the academic year, or you may want to try learning a language as a beginner. You could even restart learning a language you were taught at school.

More information about all the courses and languages available can be found on the LSE Summer Languages website.

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German Teacher Award 2016

25 April 2016 (German Embassy)

If you know a truly outstanding German teacher at your school – make sure that their dedication and excellence get the recognition they deserve!

The German Embassy is pleased to invite nominations for the annual German Teacher Award, now in its 13th successful year.  Further information on the nomination process and selection criteria is available on their website as well as on the documents attached. 

Please note, only head teachers can make a nomination.  Submissions from German teachers themselves or their pupils will not be accepted.

The deadline for nominations is 1 May 2016.

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Gaelic language course

22 April 2016 (Staffin Community Trust / Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

Àrainneachd, Cànan is Dualchas (‘environment, language and heritage’) is a ten-day practical course for Gaelic speakers that explores the strong links between the language and the Scottish environment. It is open to all fluent speakers and near-fluent learners of the language who would like to continue to develop their fluency.

It will run again in North Skye in 2016, from 25 to 29 July and from 01 to 05 August. Students can attend either or both weeks.

Visit the website for more information about the course.

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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)

Summer courses for UK teachers of Spanish

20 April 2016 (Consejería de Educación)

The Spanish Embassy Education Office offers 11 grants for summer courses in Santander (Spain), aimed at teachers of Spanish in the UK.

These grants are awarded by the Ministry of Education of Spain in collaboration with Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo (UIMP), and cover course fees, materials, accommodation, meals and activities (journey not included).

If you are interested, please apply from 18 April to 2 May 2016 by following the instructions on the website.

Read more...

New French and Polish resources

19 April 2016 (Education Scotland)

Education Scotland is pleased to launch new resources for French and Polish. Both resources include teacher’s notes, activity packs, film clips and sound files.

The French resource is designed as an L2 learning journey, aimed at second level learners and involves Astérix on a journey to Scotland, based on the story ‘Astérix chez les Pictes’

The Polish resource supports an L3 beginners’ language experience and can be used in either primary or secondary as an L3 insert. The language journey here is based on an animated film, based around the scientist Copernicus.

Links to both resources can also be found in the Primary and S1-S3 classroom resource sections of the SCILT website.

Leadership Award: Gaelic Education

19 April 2016 (Education Scotland)

Social Enterprise Academy and Education Scotland are working in partnership to deliver an Institute of Leadership and Management Award for teachers of Gaelic Education. The next Leadership Award for Gaelic Education will commence on 20 and 21 May 2016. It will be based in Strathpeffer.

If you wish to enrol for this award or require more information visit the Education Scotland learning blog.

Read more...

The Languages Trends Survey 2016

18 April 2016 (British Council / Education Development Trust)

Teachers have expressed 'deep concerns' about the current state of language learning in schools in England, according to a new report from the British Council and Education Development Trust.

The Language Trends Survey 2016 - now in its fourteenth year - identifies numerous challenges currently facing language teaching in England and highlights that teachers and school leaders see the exam system as one of the principal barriers preventing its successful development.

[...]The Language Trends Survey 2015/16 is the 14th in a series of annual research exercises, charting the state of language teaching and learning in schools in England. The research is based on an online survey completed by teachers in 492 state secondary schools, 556 state primary schools and 132 independent secondary schools across the country. This year, case studies from both primary and secondary schools have been included to provide a more detailed picture of what is happening on the ground.

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Spanish language online courses for school teachers, PGCE students and general public

11 April 2016 (Instituto Cervantes)

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 AVE Global, an interactive platform specifically designed by the Instituto Cervantes for the teaching and learning of Spanish.

Course length and dates

  • 10 weeks: 18 April 2016 – 1 June 2016
You must enrol before the start date of the course.

Levels

  • From A1.1 to B1.4

Fee

  • Primary and Secondary School Teachers and PGCE students with or without previous knowledge of Spanish: £95. Course code: 658
  • General public: £150. Course code: 656
How it works

Students will receive a schedule with the online material to be completed throughout the course. A reminder of this work will be sent every week. The course tutor will also set a number of written tasks to practice the contents covered. The tutor will send all tasks back with corrections and personalized feedback. The course also includes 9 self-evaluation tests.

Courses include access to the online interactive material (text, audio and video), self-evaluation tests, written tasks corrected by the course tutor and a final certificate, provided the course is completed successfully.

Study time and hours

On average, students will have to work 5 or 6 hours per week (10 week course, fast track). They will have unlimited 24/7 access to the online material for the duration of the course and they will not need to go online at specific times.

Certificate

The Instituto Cervantes will issue a certificate on request stating that the student has completed the online course, provided that all the online compulsory work has been done and a minimum of five tasks have been sent to the tutor.

How to enrol

  1. If you are a complete beginner please contact Instituto Cervantes London on 0207 23 503 53 with your personal details and provide your School or Department details or write to: aclon1@cervantes.es
  2. If you have some knowledge of Spanish, go to http://pruebadenivel.cervantes.es/exam.php?id=17 to do a placement test. Once you find out your level, please contact Instituto Cervantes Londres on 0207 23 503 53 with your personal details and provide your School or Department details. If you would like to look at the materials prior to enrolment, please request a temporary trial login details at: tutorave.londres@cervantes.es
  3. Once you are enrolled, you will receive an email confirming your payment. Your course login details will be provided during the week the course starts.
Please note that you should be able to prove that you are a teacher or a PGCE student by giving your school details or Education Department. We advise you to proceed with the payment when making the inscription and claim the fees paid towards the course from your school or account department.

Additional Class Based Sessions and / or Teacher Training sessions

We also offer class based language sessions in order to consolidate the contents of the course with a native tutor. If you are interested please contacttutorave.londres@cervantes.es

We also offer teacher training sessions to consolidate not only the contents of the course but also to develop specific materials for teaching Spanish at different levels. If you or your school is interested, please contacttutorave.londres@cervantes.es

SCEN Letter April 2016

10 April 2016 (SCEN)

The latest news and events from the SCEN are now available in this April 2016 Letter.

Related Files

Why children should learn a second language

7 April 2016 (EuroTalk blog)

The Scottish Government has committed to every child learning a second language at the age of 5. Alongside this, they’ll learn an additional language in P5, which means children will know 3 languages by the time they leave school. It’s called the 1+2 policy and we think it’s a great pledge, as there are so many reasons why children should learn another language.

Earlier this week an article came out stating that ‘bilingual babies are smarter’. Growing up learning or hearing a second language helps to increase their learning capabilities including problem solving and memory. This means not only do children benefit from knowing a second language; it also helps them improve across all other subjects that they’re learning.

Read more...

Scotland-Russia Forum newsletter

2 April 2016 (SRF)

The latest news and events from the SRF are now available in their April bulletin.

This edition includes information about a new Russian course for primary schools being offered by Early Start. It's a short course which would give Scottish schools the opportunity to offer Russian as their L3. Find out more in the SRF bulletin.

Read more...

SQA National Qualifications March 2016 update

31 March 2016 (SQA)

Latest updates on the new National Qualifications are available on the SQA website.

If you're a teaching professional looking for a new challenge, included in this update are additional marker opportunities in 2016 for French and Spanish Higher exams.

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...

Born Global evidence published by the British Academy

31 March 2016 (British Academy)

Born Global is a resource for the languages community to use to help make the case for the importance and value of studying languages.

Born Global consists of quantitative and qualitative data on the complex relationship between language learning and employability. Each data set is accompanied by a booklet with background information and a summary of key findings. The data is open and free to use, it is available on the British Academy website.

The British Academy has used this evidence in a new publication Born Global: Implications for Higher Education. It offers reflections on the current state of play for languages at university, and can be downloaded from the British Academy website.

Read more...

eTwinning Generation - Celebrating Ten Years of eTwinning

29 March 2016 (eTwinning)

Thinking about linking your class with another through an eTwinning project? Read the latest publication from the British Council eTwinning team which contains an inspiring collection of testimonials from former participants in eTwinning projects.

Many of the interviewed young people consider eTwinning to be the most motivating
and enjoyable way to learn. Their experiences with eTwinning have helped them to
develop their language and ICT skills, as well as an understanding of different cultures,
in line with the goals set out at the launch of the platform back in 2005. But there is
much more to it.

See the book 'eTwinning Generation - Celebrating Ten Years of eTwinning' and visit the website to find out how to start your own eTwinning journey.

Read more...

Language learning for business

29 March 2016 (Scottish Government)

In a global, multi-cultural society, being able to communicate in more than one language is increasingly vital. It is important for the nation’s prosperity that young people are attracted to learning languages and that they become confident in speaking languages other than their own.

According to the CBI's Education and Skills survey 2015, over three quarters of businesses (77%) have a need for language skills among their employees, with over one in ten (11%) stating they would need language skills in the next few years.

The Scottish Government is committed to expanding and improving language learning so that our young people are equipped with the skills and competencies needed for the global economy. That is why we have made an ambitious languages commitment to introduce a norm for language learning based on the EU 1+2 model. This will ensure that all young people in Scotland have excellent language learning opportunities from a young age, as a normal and expected part of a broad, relevant school education.

Ken Lindsay tells us of his experiences of learning languages and how they have helped him in his role as an International Brand Ambassador for Chivas Brothers Ltd.

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...

New term French courses in Glasgow

24 March 2016 (Alliance Française)

We are now enrolling students for Term D which will take place between Tuesday 19 April and Saturday 13 June. There will be a new Beginners 1 class taking place every Tuesday between 6-9pm.

In addition to our general French classes ranging from Beginner to Advanced levels, we will be running three new add-on classes for Term D to help you improve your French - Conversation, Grammar or Phonetics classes.

To find out more, follow the relevant link below:

For further information about the Alliance Française and what they can offer, visit their website.

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...

Goal! Tor! But!

24 March 2016 (Alliance Française / Goethe-Institut)

The Goethe-Institut and the Alliance Française in Glasgow together with the Scottish Football Museum present a free month-long celebration of football and community across Glasgow this April.

From 1-30 April pop in to your local library or arts centre to experience a series of free film installations about how communities around the world react to the beautiful game.

Cinemas across the city will play host to some fantastic free football-themed movies.

On 27 and 28 April, join us at Hampden Park for a free and informative two-day symposium on Football and Social Inclusion.

For full details visit the Goal! Tor! But! 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...

Welsh footballers help pupils go global

23 March 2016 (Welsh Government)

Players from the Wales National Football team have been doing their bit to help pupils concentrate on their modern foreign languages lessons by launching a new learning resource pack linked to this year’s Euros.

The educational resources have been produced as part of the Welsh Government’s Global Futures plan which aims to improve and promote modern foreign languages in Wales.

The Euros-based resources have been published on Hwb, the digital learning platform for schools, so teachers can capitalise on their pupil’s excitement in the run up to June’s tournament, and use the packs to promote the importance and relevance of modern foreign languages.

Read more...

Bòrd na Gàidhlig appoints new Ceannard (CEO)

23 March 2016 (Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

Bòrd na Gàidhlig, today announced the appointment of Shona MacLennan as its new Ceannard (CEO) who will take up post on 6 June 2016.

Ms MacLennan, originally from Spean Bridge, brings to the Bòrd over 20 years experience in the development of business within the Highlands and Islands. She is a Gaelic learner of Edinburgh University and is currently working with Sabhal Mòr Ostaig as Director of Business and Organisational Development. She has been involved in a wide range of Gaelic initiatives and developments, including working for various Gaelic organisations. Ms. MacLennan has extensive governance and strategic planning experience as well as a sound knowledge of community development.

Welcoming the appointment, Bòrd na Gàidhlig Cathraiche (Chair), Allan MacDonald said: “We very much welcome Shona to Bòrd na Gàidhlig and wish her all the best. We are fortunate that she brings with her a wealth of experience in the Public Sector including governance, strategic planning and community development and growth. She has also served as a non-executive director of Highlands & Islands Airports Ltd, Grampian TV and UHI Ltd. The appointment comes just as we have welcomed new Board Members and just as we take the initial steps in preparing the next National Gaelic Language Plan which will take us through the next 5 years so her specific skills will be put to good use.”

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Cambridge to explore benefits of multilingualism with new AHRC research project

22 March 2016 (University of Cambridge)

The University of Cambridge is to launch a major new research project to study the benefits of multilingualism to individuals and society, and transform attitudes to languages in the UK, as part of the AHRC’s Open World Research Initiative.

At a time when more than half the world’s population speaks more than one language in their daily lives, and almost one in five UK primary school pupils have a first language other than English, what does it really mean to be multilingual, and what are the opportunities and challenges of multilingualism for individuals and society?

These questions are amongst those to be answered by a new research project at the University of Cambridge, thanks to an unprecedented £4million grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). The project, called Multilingualism: Empowering Individuals, Transforming Society, aims to not only understand people’s experiences of speaking more than one language, but also to change attitudes towards multilingualism and multiculturalism throughout society and amongst key policy-makers.

Read more...

Summer courses in France for French teachers and teacher trainers

21 March 2016 (CLA)

The Centre de Linguistique Appliquée (CLA) in France offers summer pedagogical training courses during July and August for French teachers and teacher trainers.

There are six different courses available, each designed to encourage exchange of ideas and networking.

The courses qualify for Erasmus+ funding. 

More information about the programmes on offer can be found on the attached pdf files or by visiting the CLA website.

Read more...

Related Files

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

Spanish course for teachers and PGDE students in Scotland

17 March 2016 (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 in Scotland as well as PGDE 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.

Information about the new 11-week language course for school teachers (Primary and Secondary) and PGDE students in Scotland, which will take place from 11 April 2016 is available on the attached document.  Enrolment open now!

FREE! Euro 2016 challenge for secondary schools

16 March 2016 (Arsenal Double Club)

In celebration of the European Championships in France this summer, the Arsenal Double Club team are launching an exciting, free-to-enter language challenge for all UK secondary schools.

The challenge is to create a language activity for primary school children aged 9-11, in a language of your choice, about any aspect of France or French culture.

The best overall group, as decided by the judges, will receive the Arsenal Double Club Euro 2016 trophy and have their language activity adapted and published as an official Arsenal Double Club teaching material!

This competition is open to all UK secondary schools and you do not need to be an existing Double Club school to participate.

Deadline for entries is 6pm on Tuesday 10 May 2016.

Visit the Arsenal Double Club website for more information and how to register to take part.

Read more...

UWS Research Project on 1+2

15 March 2016 (UWS)

We are seeking to make contact with primaries who would want to take part into our 1+2 Team Research Project.

We are investigating Primary School practitioners' perception of issues associated with the implementation of the 1+2 Language policy in terms of management (recommendations and related issues), staff engagement, pedagogy and methodologies. Other possible aspects to be considered could be the perceived impact on pupils' engagement and attainment. We have started to work with local primaries but we need more to participate in this project!

If interested, please contact: Laurence.Giraud-Johnstone@uws.ac.uk

ASLS Young Writers Competition 2016

14 March 2016 (ASLS)

The Association for Scottish Literary Studies (ASLS) is running a creative writing competition for stories in Scots for S1 and S2 pupils.

Pupils should write a short story of not more than 750 words in length and submit their entries by 31 May 2016.

A slide presentation is attached which can be used to support the teaching of creative writing in Scots.  A further document is also attached containing examples of previous entries. 

Further information about the competition and how to enter can be found on the ASLS website.

Read more...

Related Files

Host a primary-trained French Language Assistant - New for 2016-17

11 March 2016 (British Council)

The British Council would like to make as many primary colleagues as possible aware of a brand new opportunity for securing a primary-trained French Language Assistant in 2016-17.

The British Council and the French government have agreed to make it easier for primary schools to benefit from having a French Language Assistant.

  • Assistants will be primary-trained (either recently qualified primary teachers in France, or trainee teachers) and there will be sustained support and training for the trainees and for schools from the British Council
  • Up to 6 schools can now share a single assistant (up from 3 schools), greatly reducing costs
  • The British Council are waiving the £2000 'finders fee' for organising the placement
The attached flyer gives more details. We're really excited about this initiative and we hope colleagues will consider getting involved.

Local authorities/schools would need to apply by early April, so any colleagues who might potentially be interested are invited to get in touch with us (ideally before the Easter break) to explore the various options.

Please contact Claudia Donati at the British Council: claudia.donati@britishcouncil.org or Philip Harding-Esch on philip.harding.esch@gmail.com.

British Sign Language (Scotland) Act gains momentum

11 March 2016 (Scottish Government)

A new expert advisory group has been appointed to support the implementation of legislation which will improve the way public services meet the needs of deaf British Sign Language (BSL) users.

This follows the introduction of the historic BSL (Scotland) Act 2015 last September, which recognised BSL as a language of Scotland, and will result in the first BSL Action Plan.

Eight deaf BSL users were recruited, as well as a hearing parent of a deaf child, to work alongside public bodies – such as Creative Scotland, COSLA and the NHS – to support the implementation of the Act.

Read more...

LFEE Europe launching its new blog

10 March 2016 (LFEE)

Our super trainee, Chiara Mazzeo, has been working hard to produce a simple and creative blog which will keep you updated with all our activities (Immersion Courses, training sessions, events, achievements, deadlines, news), as well as our tweets, pictures and videos.

You can use the blog to move easily between the Powerlanguage (PLL online French course) and the LFEE websites, our You Tube Channel, and the other social networks. It’s easy: just go to www.lfeeblog.net and explore! Don’t forget to leave a comment to let us know what you think and… share to your heart's content! We look forward to hearing from you on the blog! You can also read feedback from teachers who signed up for our PLL online French course in the 'news' section of the blog and can contact info@pll-online.net should you require any further information about the course.

Read more...

Language learning theatre workshops

10 March 2016 (Theatre sans accents)

At Theatre Sans Accents, we believe that languages should engage with your mouth and your ear before engaging with your hand and pen… The theatrical form provides a safe and relaxed environment out of the classroom ​to explore foreign languages in concrete situations.

We are currently offering workshops in French and English as an additional language.

All levels are welcome with workshops for adults and children.

Term starts week commencing Monday 11 April until Saturday 2 July 2016 (no break over the 12 weeks). Our summer school programme will enable you to improve and learn new linguistic skills through practical theatre techniques , you get the best out of both worlds: languages and Arts!

Visit the website for further information and how to register. Please note there is a charge to attend the workshops.

Read more...

French Beginners 1 course for primary school teachers

10 March 2016 (Alliance Française)

There are still a few places left on the new 10-week Beginners 1 French course for Primary School teachers being run by Alliance Française de Glasgow between March and May 2016:

  • This course is suitable for complete beginners
  • 20 hours of lessons over 10 weeks tailored to the needs of Primary School teachers: classroom and speaking activities, pronunciation, communication, increase your confidence and feel more comfortable speaking French
  • The course will take place on Wednesdays 3.45-5.45pm commencing 16 March 2016. (Please note this is a week later than originally advertised)

Visit the Alliance Française website for full details and to enrol.

Read more...

Last chance to book your ticket for Language Show Scotland

9 March 2016 (Language Show Live)

Scotland’s largest language event opens this weekend at 10am! Join us for an incredible celebration of languages and save time on arrival by registering for your ticket now.

At Language Show Live Scotland you’ll find a wealth of language resources, expert advice and networking opportunities to help your professional development.

Top reasons to attend:

  • The best language companies exhibiting on the main show floor
  • Over 30 free CPD certified seminars
  • 1+2 Primary Hub supported by SCILT and Goethe Institut
  • Careers Zone and CV Clinic
  • Gaelic & Scots Festival
  • Networking opportunities

All this and much more on your doorstep this 11-12 March. And here's the best bit: it’s all FREE to attend!

Don't delay! Register in advance for free entry tickets and avoid the queues on the day.

Language Show Live Scotland will take place at the SECC in Glasgow. Visit www.languageshowlive.co.uk/scotland for more information.

Read more...

News from the Institut français d'Ecosse

8 March 2016 (Institut français)

The Institut français d'Ecosse supports the learning and teaching of French in Scotland and encourages cross-cultural exchange. The latest opportunities to highlight include:

  • La francophonie - from 12 to 20 March 2016 French language and Francophonie is celebrated around the world. The dis moi dix mots website has a variety of activities to take part in online or in class with your pupils.
  • 1+2 workshops for primary schools - new French workshops for your primary class: French children books, science experiments or geography... Learn both the language and the pedagogy to conduct these activities in your class. Have a look at the training catalogue online.
  • Summer intensive courses - new one-week intensive classes in July and in August. If you are not traveling to France this summer, enjoy our French immersion class in Edinburgh! See the Summer 2016 online brochure for details.
For more information about the Institut français and what they can offer, visit their website.

Read more...

TES School Awards 2016 - deadline extended

8 March 2016 (TES)

There are still a few days left to get your nomination in for the International Award category of this year's TES School Awards.

This award is for the school with the most innovative international strategy, ranging from initiatives to improve pupils’ and teachers’ understanding of other countries, languages and cultures to full-scale international partnerships.

You will need to demonstrate the impact this strategy has had across the school and the wider community. The judges will be keen to see clear achievements and quantifiable evidence of the success of any initiatives.

Visit the TES School Awards 2016 website for full details and to submit your nomination by 13 March 2016.

Read more...

New ECML projects

8 March 2016 (ECML)

2016 sees the start of two new projects run by the ECML. Follow the relevant links for more information.

  • 'Digital literacy for the teaching/ learning of languages' - started in January 2016 and will run until December 2018. In response to the shortage of teacher training opportunities in digital literacy across Europe, the project provides a basis for a teaching methodology which integrates digital technologies. This will be done through a range of online interactions for teachers, plus a critical use of digital tools and resources to develop language and intercultural skills.
  • 'Languages at the heart of learning' (2016-19) - along with a new 'Language for Work' project with the focus being on the professional development of practitioners involved in work‐related language learning for adult migrants including refugees and ethnic minorities, who are often facing language difficulties by the integration into the labour market. The project creates tools and resources to support teachers, teacher educators, providers and other actors in the field.

Find out more about the ECML and their range of activities on their website or via their most recent newsletter, the European Language Gazette 30 - February/March 2016..

Read more...

Scottish European Educational Trust Newsletter

7 March 2016 (SEET)

The Scottish European Educational Trust (SEET) has published its first newsletter for 2016.

In this issue you can find the most up-to-date information regarding their projects and latest news, including Euroquiz heat results, developments in the Our Europe competition and information about a new project, Get Set Go, offering sessions to raise awareness of volunteering and exchange opportunities for 14-18 year olds at home and abroad - a great way to enhance their language skills!

Read more...

Related Links

Press articles regarding Euroquiz:

Highland Council Primary Schools to Compete in Scotland-Wide Euroquiz (The Highland Times, 7 March 2016)

Highland Council primary schools to compete in Scotland-wide Euroquiz (Community Caithness, 8 March 2016)

Angus Primary Schools to compete in Scotland-wide Euroquiz (Angus Council, 8 March 2016)

Bilingualism Matters Spring 2016 Newsletter

7 March 2016 (Bilingualism Matters)

Bilingualism Matters have just published the Spring edition of their newsletter.

Find out about the organisation's recent activities including research updates, press articles and information on upcoming and recent events around Scotland.

Read more...

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.

Sign language interpreting service expands

3 March 2016 (Scottish Government)

Online British Sign Language (BSL) interpreting service contactSCOTLAND is celebrating its first anniversary by expanding into the third sector.

The Scottish Government-funded service, which allows Deaf people across Scotland to contact public sector services using sign language, is being extended to community groups, voluntary organisations, charities, social enterprises, co-operatives and individual volunteers.

This project is unique in the UK and is the first nationally funded public sector Video Relay Service (VRS).

Minister for Sport, Health Improvement and Mental Health, Jamie Hepburn, confirmed the Scottish Government’s commitment to the service as it marked its first anniversary.

Read more...

Language Show Live Scotland opens next week!

3 March 2016 (Language Show Live)

Scotland’s largest language event opens next week at the SECC in Glasgow and will bring you the best suppliers and speakers from the language industry all under one roof.

Start planning your visit in advance to make the most of your time at the show. Here’s a few of the highlights we've picked out to get you started: 

  • ‘1+2: A National Overview’ with Louise Glen, Education Scotland 
  • ‘Contextualising Learning in the Broad General Education’ with Julie-Anne Mckenzie, SCILT 
  • ‘Is your Primary Language Teaching Effective?’ with Juliet Park, Yewlands Academy 
  • ‘Using School Partnerships to Support Languages’ with Kate Walker, British Council

This is just a taster of what’s on offer at Language Show Live Scotland. Browse our full seminar programme and discover all the other inspirational sessions we’ve planned.

This is a unique opportunity to meet national and international top industry experts all in one place in Glasgow. Don’t wait any longer and register today to receive your FREE ticket.

Read more...

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...

Study in France - apply for an Entente Cordiale Scholarship

26 February 2016 (French Embassy)

The Entente Cordiale Scholarship Scheme is a prestigious bi-lateral awards scheme that funds British postgraduate students who want to study in France and French students who want to study in the UK. Funded for the most part by the private sector in both countries the scheme provides funding for around 20 French and British students each year.

Applications are now open.  The deadline to apply is 13 March 2016.

For full details about the scholarships and how to apply, visit the French Embassy's website.

Read more...

Translation Course for University students

26 February 2016 (Alliance Française)

Improve your translating skills at the Alliance Française!

They will be running a new translation course specifically designed for students who are currently studying French at University. This course will increase your language skills and should greatly help prepare for exams where translation is involved (version & thème).

This new course will take place on Wednesdays between 3.45-5.45pm and will start on Wednesday 2nd March for 5 weeks.

The cost to enrol is £60 per student.

Please visit or contact AF Language Office if you wish to enrol.

Read more...

e-bulletin for Gaelic Education

26 February 2016 (Education Scotland)

The latest e-bulletin for Gaelic Education has been published by Education Scotland. This e-bulletin includes information on Gaelic Medium Education (GME); Gaelic Learner Education (GLE) and the promotion of Learning about Gaelic Language and Culture as part of Scotland’s identity.

Employ a language assistant in Scottish schools

26 February 2016 (British Council)

Employing a British Council language assistant is a unique way to broaden your students understanding of the world, improve their language skills and increase their cultural awareness.

Language assistants are dynamic, enthusiastic native speakers of French, Spanish, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese and Russian, and are usually undergraduates or recent graduates. As we recruit language assistants directly from their home countries, their language is up-to-date, the classroom resources they provide are relevant and authentic, and they will be well placed to connect with students on their own level . Simply put, employing a language assistant provides the kind of learning experience that cannot be found elsewhere.

The deadline for applications has been extended to 31 May 2016. Visit the British Council website to find out more and to apply. Follow the relevant section on the webpage to find out specifically about employing a Chinese language assistant.

Read more...

Beginners 1 Course for Primary School Teachers March-May 2016

25 February 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running a new 10-week Beginners 1 French course for Primary School teachers between March and May 2016:

  • This course is suitable for complete beginners
  • 20 hours of lessons over 10 weeks tailored to the needs of Primary School teachers: classroom and speaking activities, pronunciation, communication, increase your confidence and feel more comfortable speaking French
  • The course will take place on Wednesdays 3.45-5.45pm between 9 March and 25 May 2016.

Visit the Alliance Française website for full details and to enrol by Wednesday 2 March.

Read more...

1+2 Primary Hub, free seminars and much more at Scotland’s largest language event

24 February 2016 (Language Show Live)

It’s not long now until Language Show Live Scotland opens its doors to Glasgow. Don't miss this incredible celebration of languages and register in advance to secure your free ticket.

Stop by the 1+2 Primary Hub where practitioners from SCILT and the Goethe Institut will be on hand to give you advice on the new 1+2 approach for language learning and delivering languages at primary level.

Elsewhere on the show floor you’ be able attend over 30 free seminars and workshops and be inspired by top industry experts. Plus attend language classes, watch cultural performances and meet the best language suppliers over two days of insight and inspiration from the best in the business.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity and register today for your FREE ticket.

11-12 March • SECC, Glasgow

Scotland-Russia Forum Bulletin

18 February 2016 (SRF)

The latest edition of the SRF news bulletin is now available online.

Their website for children 'Find out about Russia' has been updated, so take a look at the new layout. They will also be at Language Show Live next month and will be offering a 'Try Russian' language taster - don't miss out!

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...

Language Show Live Scotland 2016: Over 30 free seminars and workshops from top industry experts

18 February 2016 (Language Show Live)

March is just a few weeks away so don’t delay and get your FREE ticket to attend Scotland’s largest language event.

Language Show Live is a unique opportunity to network with colleagues and industry experts while attending educational seminars dedicated to teachers and other language professionals.

Plus you’ll be able to meet the best suppliers from the language world and source the latest products – all under one roof.

Don’t miss out! Register today for your FREE ticket and avoid the queues on the day.

Read more...

International Mother Language Day

17 February 2016 (UNESCO)

International Mother Language Day (21 February) was designated in 1999 by UNESCO and is designed to promote awareness of linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.

The theme of the 2016 International Mother Language Day is “Quality education, language(s) of instruction and learning outcomes.” 

Find out more on the UNESCO International Mother Language Day website.

Read more...

Junior Language Challenge

16 February 2016 (Junior Language Challenge)

The Junior Language Challenge 2016 will open to schools and individuals on 11 March and the first language this year will be… Romanian!

The Junior Language Challenge is the UK’s only language challenge for primary schools, inspiring a love of languages at a young age and encouraging children to become independent learners.

Please note there is an entry fee with all proceeds being donated to charity.

Visit the Junior Language Challenge website for more information or see the YouTube video of last year's final.

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.

English Language Assistants in Spain

12 February 2016 (British Council)

Would you like to be an English Language Assistant in Spain for the 2016-2017 academic year? British Council applications are now open.

The large number of posts available this year means that it is very likely that the vast majority of applicants for Spain will be allocated by the Spanish Ministry of Education (MECD).

Please note that the minimum language level required for a post in Spain is A2 on the European Framework (slightly lower than the B1 requirement for other countries) and that, as with all countries, applicants do not need a formal qualification in Spanish to be eligible.

Find out more about the eligibility requirements and posts in Spain on the British Council website.

Why become a language assistant in Spain?

Becoming a language assistant in Spain offers candidates a paid international work placement that can really make their CV stand out. As well as providing an opportunity to build on their Spanish language and teaching skills (or find out whether teaching is really for them), a language assistant placement enables candidates to develop a range of skills such as confidence, team working, adaptability and cultural awareness that are transferrable to future employment. In fact, 95% of last year's assistants said the assistantship enhanced their career prospects, and 90% said they'd improved or greatly improved their language, teaching and other transferable skills.

With only 12-16 teaching hours per week and a generous monthly allowance, assistants in Spain have the opportunity to explore this interesting and diverse country, as well as to visit neighbouring countries in their spare time.

Read more...

Language interest grows

11 February 2016 (Scottish Government)

Pupils in the majority of Scotland’s council areas are now learning languages in Primary 1, under the Scottish Government’s 1+2 languages policy.

The Scottish Government made a commitment in 2011 to introduce the model in every council by 2020 – meaning every primary school pupil will start learning a first additional language in P1 and a second by P5, continuing until the end of S3.

Five years on, 21 out of 32 local authorities will be delivering the first additional language for P1 by the end of this school year, with all councils expected to meet the commitment by 2020.

Minister for Learning, Dr Alasdair Allan, met young people speaking French, Spanish and Gaelic when he visited Edinbarnet Primary School in West Dunbartonshire today.

Dr Allan’s visit follows the recent publication of figures from the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey (SSA) in 2015 that show 89 per cent of people in Scotland think that learning a language other than English in school from the age of five is important.

Read more...

Modern Languages - Progression

11 February 2016 (Education Scotland)

If you were unable to join the second Glow TV event held on 28 January by Education Scotland's modern languages team on progression from first to second level, the recording is now available on the Glow TV Watch Again channel (Glow login required).

Read more...

International School Award

11 February 2016 (British Council)

There are three entry points to the International School Award: Foundation, Intermediate and Accreditation. The level your school is at will depend on how much international work you have already done.

Hosting a language assistant automatically qualifies you for the Foundation Level of the International School Award.

Visit the British Council Schools Online website for more information.

Read more...

Can we learn a second language like we learned our first?

11 February 2016 (British Council Voices)

Robert William McCaul, winner (with Marek Kiczkowiak) of the TeachingEnglish blog award, examines the influential ideas of linguist Stephen Krashen, and the implications they have for the language classroom.

If you've ever doubted whether you're a good language learner, then bear in mind that you've already learned one language very well indeed – your first. But this raises an interesting question: can adults learn a second language in the same way they learned their first as children? And if so, what are the implications for the classroom?

Read more...

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...

Join thousands of language teachers and professionals next month!

10 February 2016 (Language Show Live)

It’s not long now until Language Show Live Scotland opens its doors to Glasgow this 11-12 March. Don’t miss this brand new language event taking place in the heart of Scotland and celebrate languages with thousands of other language teachers and professionals.

Taking place for the first year in Glasgow, the show will offer over 30 free CPD certified seminars, support and advice from industry experts and over 80 exhibiting companies – all under one roof!

Don’t delay and book your free ticket today at Language Show Live.

For more information and full seminar programme please visit our website.

Read more...

Developing the Young Workforce: Information and resources

9 February 2016 (Education Scotland)

Information and resources to support Developing the Young Workforce. From Education Scotland.

Related Files

Discovering Wales and Welsh with the Open University

5 February 2016 (The Open University)

LG001 is a new short online Non-Accredited-Learning (NAL) course produced by the Open University Department of Languages and designed for anyone interested in learning about Wales and acquiring basic language skills in Welsh.

The course content is organised around five themes, allowing learners to explore key aspects of Welsh culture from a different angle. The language content is aimed at complete beginners and takes learners through the basic functional skills such as asking for directions and ordering food.

Though there is no assessment or tutorials, quizzes are available to test knowledge and language skills and Learning Advisers will support learners in the course forum.

Details on the course content and how to register. Please note there is a fee for this course.

It is also possible to try the first 4 hours of the course for free on the OpenLearn site

From language assistant to Chinese government official

5 February 2016 (British Council Voices)

When Abbey Heffer arrived in China in 2013 as a language assistant, she could barely order dinner at a local restaurant in Mandarin. Now, the first female foreign national in history to work for the Chinese government, she can talk and write to her friends and colleagues in Chinese.

Read more...

The lowdown on applying for an Erasmus partnership project

4 February 2016 (Erasmus+)

You can apply for funding for one or two types of Strategic Partnership project in 2016, depending on the sector: supporting exchanges of practices, or supporting innovation. This year’s application deadline is 31 March, except youth with two remaining deadlines: 26 April and 4 October. The support available from the UK National Agency includes guidance notes and webinars tailored for each sector.

You can now download the new factsheet on working with partners in your Erasmus+ project with information, advice and top tips from the National Agency. It contains best practice from those currently running Strategic Partnership projects as well as hints from our programme teams. From monitoring to arranging partner meetings, why not take a look to see how it could benefit your partnership?

Bring Chinese language and culture alive in the classroom with a Modern Language Assistant

3 February 2016 (British Council)

Mandarin is a vital language of the future - the Chinese economy is expanding rapidly, almost a quarter of internet usage is in Chinese, and it is the most widely spoken language in the world.

Give your students an opportunity to practice, improve and enrich their language skills with a native speaker. There is nothing as satisfying or rewarding as communicating in Mandarin and being understood by someone who speaks the language.

Support your students in becoming effective communicators and prepare them to be global citizens.

Read more...

New concours de la francophonie

2 February 216 (Institut français d’Ecosse)

The Institut français d’Ecosse, in partnership with SCILT, presents a new national competition to encourage all young French learners and their teachers around Scotland and to celebrate the international day of la francophonie, which is celebrated around the globe on 20 March.

Read more...

2016 Stephen Spender Prize is open for entries

2 February 2016 (Stephen Spender Trust)

The 2016 Stephen Spender Prize is open for entries. Entrants are invited to submit an English translation of a poem from any language, ancient or modern. As always, there are prizes in three categories – Open, 18-and-under and 14-and-under – and the competition is open to UK and Irish citizens and residents. 

Closing date: Friday 27 May.

Read more...

J-Basic - Last Chance EVER to enrol!

2 February 2015 (Japan Foundation)

J-Basic Online for Teachers, the online course for teachers with a basic level of Japanese will close permanently on 30 June 2016. Applications for all stages will be accepted until 31 March 2016.

Read more...

Making languages come alive!

2 February 2016 (Education Scotland)

Does your school:

  • Develops a culture which actively promotes the value of learning languages within the school and wider community?
  • Enable pupils to use language skills as a means to communicate in school routines and to learn about other people and other parts of the world?
  • Work effectively within its cluster group to implement the 1+2 policy for language learning?
  • Shares the benefits of language learning with parents and the extended school community?
  • Celebrates achievement in language learning?

The 'Making language come alive' awards is open for nominations from PRIMARY schools across Scotland which can demonstrate the above and the impact this has on learners, the school and the wider community.

Nominations close 12pm 15 February 2016 so there is still time to apply!

The Gaelic Education Awards is also open for nominations.

Read more...

60% of lower secondary level pupils studied more than one foreign language in 2014

1 February 2016 (Eurostat)

Learning a foreign language at school is very common in the European Union (EU), with around 18 million lower secondary school pupils (or 98.6% of all pupils at this level) studying at least one foreign language in 2014. Among them, nearly 11 million (59.9%) were studying two foreign languages or more.

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...

TES School Awards 2016

29 January 2016 (TESS)

Entries are invited for the TES Schools Awards 2016.

Now in its 8th year, the event aims to spotlight the extraordinary dedication and skill of school staff who are helping pupils to achieve both inside and outside of the classroom. There is an 'International' category, which includes Foreign Languages.

Visit the website for a full list of categories and entry criteria.

Enter online by 6 March 2016.

Read more...

Related Links

TES Schools Awards 2016 opens for entries (TESS online, page 16-17, 29 January 2016) - subscription required to access

New courses in German enrolling now

29 January 2016 (Goethe-Institut)

Enrolment is now open for the next session of courses commencing 13 February 2016 at the Goethe-Institut Glasgow.

If you are unsure of your language level or would like more information and advice, there's an Open Day on Saturday 30 January, from 10.00 - 1.00pm or visit the website for full programme information and to enrol.

Read more...

Second round of regional cross-sector hub meetings

29 January 2016 (SCILT/UCMLS)

Back in September 2015 the University Council for Modern Languages in Scotland (UCMLS) in collaboration with SCILT held a series of regional cross-sector hub meetings in the universities of Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, and Strathclyde. The second round of meetings will take place in late February and early March.

As before, we want to offer teachers, 1+2 Development Officers and university languages and education staff the opportunity to network and plan joint initiatives that will support and promote language learning, including building on the Business Brunches that are currently running in January and early February.

The new meeting dates and venues are as follows: 

  • Saturday, 20 February, 10.00-12.00: University of St. Andrews 
  • Wednesday 24 February, 16.30-18.00: University of the West of Scotland, Paisley Campus 
  • Friday, 26 February, 14.00-16.00, Heriot Watt University, Riccarton Campus 
  • Wednesday, 9 March, 17.00-18.30: Inverness College (UHI)

To register your intention to attend, please complete the registration details at this link:
https://hass.eu.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_5nF2qbiyTDaFkMZ

Please note there will be a limited number of places which will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. We aim to confirm your attendance either way by Friday 12 February 2016. Further details, including agenda and room numbers at each venue, will be emailed to attendees about a week before the actual event.

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).

Find inspiration and keep in touch with industry developments - Scotland’s biggest language event • 11-12 March, SECC Glasgow

29 January 2016 (Language Show Live)

Join thousands of other language teachers and find the resources you need to keep up-to-date with this fast-paced industry at Scotland’s biggest language event.

We’ve curated an extensive seminar programme to expand your knowledge, develop new skills and keep you up-to-date with industry changes. Highlights include: 

  • ‘1+2: A National Overview’ with Louise Glen, Education Scotland 
  • ‘Contextualising Learning in the Broad General Education’ with Julie-Anne Mckenzie, SCILT 
  • ‘Using School Partnerships to Support Languages’ with Kate Walker, British Council 
  • ‘Is your Primary Language Teaching Effective?’ with Juliet Park, Yewlands Academy 
  • ‘Exciting Projects to take languages out of the classroom’ with Angela Gallagher-Brett, Routes into Languages

All sessions are free to attend and can be counted towards your CPD as well.

Don’t miss out and register online for free tickets at the Language Show Live Scotland website.

Read more...

French courses in Glasgow

28 January 2016 (Alliance Française)

The Alliance Française in Glasgow are offering the following courses during the next term (Term C - February to April). Follow the appropriate link for more information on the courses and enrolment:

For further information about the organisation and other services they offer, visit the Alliance Française website.

Read more...

Erasmus+: Providing more and better opportunities to support Europe's future generations

26 January 2016 (European Commission)

In its first year, Erasmus+, the bigger and more fit-for-purpose programme for education, training, youth and sport, is already living up to expectations.

With a budget of over €2 billion in its initial year, Erasmus+ has already offered more than one million people the opportunity to take part in 18.000 funded projects. More flexible opportunities for collaboration across sectors are also helping Europe's education, training, youth and sport systems to try out innovative practices and contribute to reform and modernisation.

Reports published today offer the first results one year after the start of the Erasmus+ programme and can be accessed on the European Commission's website.

Read more...

LLAS e-learning symposium 2016

26 January 2016 (LLAS)

Recordings from the LLAS e-learning symposium held on 21-22 January 2016 are now available online.

Read more...

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.

Related Files