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City’s first Doric poetry slam to take place

16 February 2019 (The Press and Journal)

A new event to promote Doric among younger audiences has been launched. Jo Gilbert, 43, will host the first ever Doric Poetry Slam next month, and hopes the event will attract people from all backgrounds.

The competition will be judged by a panel of local creatives, including writer Shane Strachan, spoken word artist Mae Diansangu, Aberdeen University Literature Society’s Rebecca Clark and Scots Language advocate Alistair Heather.

Each entrant will prepare three poems either in or influenced by Doric – in a bid to make the slam inclusive to all, whether performers are familiar with Doric or not.

Ms Gilbert, herself a writer, said “I’m half-toonser, half-teuchter. When I’m writing, sometimes the words just come out in Doric. I love bringing a north-east voice to slams and poetry nights all over Scotland and it’s always well received.

“I wanted for the competition to have a younger feel to it. Part of writing in Doric for me is to keep the language alive. Most Doric writing is archaic and twee, so I began writing about more contemporary subjects."


LinguaChef 2019

15 February 2019 (SCILT)

We are thrilled to announce that we are once again working in partnership with City of Glasgow College to host our LinguaChef competition. It brings together two of our favourite topics – languages and food! As well as practising linguistic and culinary skills, pupils will work on their wider social, literacy, numeracy and financial skills.

Pupils from P1 – S6 are invited to work in teams of 2 or 3 to submit a recipe for an international dish symbolic of a country where either a language they are learning in school or a language that pupils use at home is spoken. So we are expecting to see some exciting recipes from France, Spain, Germany, South America, the Caribbean, Africa, Poland, Russia, the Middle East or even as far as China or Japan. We are also encouraging pupils to be creative, for example they could incorporate a bit of Scottish ‘fusion’ into their recipe to give it a twist.

Three semi-finalists from each age category will be selected based on their submitted recipes and they will then be invited to the grand finale with a chance to prepare, cook and present their dish in the professional kitchens at City of Glasgow College. An overall winner from each category will be chosen to win a prize for themselves and their school.

Schools have until 8 March 2019 to register their interest.

More detailed information about the competition and last year's final can be found on SCILT's website.


MTOT 2018-19 winners announced!

15 February 2019 (SCILT)

We would like to thank and congratulate everyone who took part in this year's Mother Tongue Other Tongue multilingual poetry competition in Scotland. We received a wonderful range of poems which were creative, amusing, poignant and thought-provoking. Judging proved extremely difficult! 

After much deliberation, we are pleased to announce this year’s successful entries for the 2018-19 anthology as follows:

Mother Tongue





P1 – P3


David Taiwo (Yoruba)

Our Lady of Peace Primary


Highly commended

Giulia Ferretti (Italian)

St Aloysius College JS


Highly commended

Ishal Jannata Farhin (Bengali)

West Primary

P4 – P6


Nermeen Jamal Horani (Arabic)

St John Ogilvie Primary


Highly commended

Jamal Oladunjoye (Yoruba)

St Charles's Primary


Highly commended

Lucja Lubanska (Polish)

St Charles's Primary



Qainat Qamar (Urdu)

Pollokshields Primary


Highly commended

Kitty Zhu (Mandarin Chinese)

St James' Primary



Shahd Dongo (Arabic)

Craigmount High


Highly commended

Alex Mondova (Czech)

Bishopbriggs Academy


Highly commended

Lovely Selwyn (Tamil)

Bishopbriggs Academy

Senior Phase


Diana Procházková (Czech)

George Heriot's


Highly commended

Alexandra Grimaldo (Spanish)

Craigroyston Community High


Other Tongue







Anna Inglis (Spanish) 

St Aloysius College JS             



Holly Price (French)

Doune Primary


Highly commended

Milly Russell (French)

St George's Primary



Orla Kelly (Spanish)

St Aloysius College JS


Highly commended

Melody Elizabeth Clark-Want (Gaelic/English)

Port Charlotte Primary



Emily Feerick (Japanese)

Bearsden Academy


Highly commended

Brooke Braidwood & Chloe Gibb (French)

Graeme High

Senior Phase


Boglarka Balla (French)

Graeme High


Highly commended

Simi Singh (French)

Graeme High

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

To mark participation in the competition, registered schools will shortly be sent a certificate which can be printed out and presented to pupils who took part. The finalists above will be invited to receive theirs at the MTOT celebration event on 16 March.

Thank you all once again and keep writing!

Register your interest now! The 1+2 Languages Leadership Programme 2019

15 February 2019 (SCILT)

SCILT and Education Scotland will be accepting applications from today to attend the flagship national leadership programme that has been running since 2014 and was recognised at GTCS Excellence in Professional Learning Awards in both 2017 and 2018.

The 2019-20 programme comprises a 4 day Summer School in July 2019 with further optional elements in Spring and Summer 2020 that lead towards completion of learning activities on SCEL’s Framework for Educational Leadership and/or the award of GTCS Professional Recognition: leading learning in languages. This year the Summer School will take place from Monday 1st to Thursday 4th July 2019 at the University of Strathclyde’s city centre campus in Glasgow. 

This Masters level programme supports schools, clusters and local authorities to build leadership capacity and is completely free of charge for educators in the public sector. Altogether up to 50 places will be available to post-probationer teachers or teacher educators who have, or aspire to have a role in leading languages education for young people, families and colleagues in and beyond their own workplace.

Before submitting your application, we would encourage you to discuss with your headteacher/line manager which should focus on how you might make the most of this professional learning in your context in the future.

Visit the registration page for more details and how to register your interest to this programme. Applications close at 5pm, 26th April.


Erasmus+ funding

14 February 2019 (Erasmus+)

The 2019 deadline for Erasmus+ Key Action 2 Strategic Partnerships funding applications on 21 March (11am UK time) is fast approaching. The February newsletter contains links to a wide range of resources, including webinars with live Q&As, guidance notes and one-to-one support calls, to make sure you submit a high-quality application.

In other news, you can get the latest update on Brexit and the UK government's commitment to Erasmus+ and if you want to inspire your pupils to consider studying abroad, share Rachel Lowe's story. After studying abroad in Spain through Erasmus+, Rachel accomplished her dream of speaking another language. Sixteen years on, she is using Spanish to communicate her research, present at conferences and engage with schools.


DAAD/IMLR German Writing Competition 2019

14 February 2019 (DAAD)

This year, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Institute of Modern Languages Research (IMLR) are joining forces for the sixth time to invite all learners and lovers of German, from secondary school upwards, to take part in a writing competition.

2019 marks the 200th birthdays of Queen Victoria and her husband Albert. This year’s competition is launched on Valentine’s Day to commemorate a love that blossomed across borders, cultures and languages, between the Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and the British queen. 

They first met in May 1836, were engaged in October 1839 and married in February 1840. During the years before Albert moved to Windsor Castle, many letters crossed the Channel – from Britain to Saxony and back from Saxony to Britain – and most, if not all of them were written in German, the language Victoria had learnt from her mother as a little girl.

Your competition brief is to imagine one of these letters. You could:

  • Put yourself in the shoes of Victoria or Albert (or both) and write a (pair of) letter(s) or
  • Creatively adapt one (or an exchange) of their letters as a mini-play, lyrics for a rap song (à la Hamilton), a (set of) poem(s) or similar

Does Albert share his thoughts with Victoria about moving to Britain and becoming a part of her life? Does Victoria tell Albert about Britain while contemplating their life together?

Be creative and think outside the box. The only two rules: your text must be written in German and not be longer than 350 words. Submission deadline is 15 May 2019.


Nearly half of Britons find a second language attractive in a potential romantic partner

14 February 2019 (British Council)

Nearly half of all Brits find the ability to speak a foreign language attractive in a partner, according to a survey of more than 2000 adults published today by the British Council.

Respondents demonstrated the range of their romantic speech, with 56 per cent able to say ‘I love you’ in a foreign language, although, only 11 per cent could say the phrase which arguably has an instrumental role in prompting those three little words, ‘Will you go out with me?’ in a language other than English.        

The poll also revealed the linguistic lengths Brits are prepared to go through for love. Just over a third (34 per cent) of respondents would contemplate picking up another language if it might result in romance.   

The survey found that men ranked French as the most romantic language, while women preferred Italian.

British Council Schools Advisor, Vicky Gough said: “Love, romance, and relationships are really good reasons to learn a foreign language. After all, learning a second language opens doors to new cultures and peoples.

“It’s fine saying ‘I love you’ to someone in a foreign language, but it’s better if you can tell them why. That’s why language learning is so important – you’re not going to make that connection just using a phone translator.”


The language of conversation impacts on the 'synchronization' of our brains

14 February 2019 (Science Daily)

Experts from the Basque research centre BCBL have shown for the first time that the way in which the activity of two brains is connected depends on whether the dialogue takes place in the native language or in a foreign language.

As two people speak, their brains begin to work simultaneously, synchronizing and establishing a unique bond. This is what in neuroscience is called brain synchronization.

New research by the Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language (BCBL) in San Sebastián and published in Cortex magazine confirms that this phenomenon depends on the language we use to communicate.

The study, carried out with the collaboration of several international institutions such as the University of Toronto (Canada) and the Nebrija University of Madrid, has allowed scientists to analyze how brain wave synchrony occurs in different linguistic contexts.

Thus, experts have found for the first time that the way in which the activity of two brains becomes synchronized or similar depends on the language used in the conversation.


Interdisciplinary Learning: preparing for the future

13 February 2019 (SQA)

SQA Chief Executive, Dr Janet Brown, contributed to the Royal Society of Edinburgh’s recent conference, Interdisciplinary Learning: Creative Thinking for a Complex World.

Dr Brown participated in a panel session chaired by Ken Muir, Chief Executive of the General Teaching Council for Scotland. She was joined in the discussion, which focused on examples of Interdisciplinary Learning (IDL) in practice, by Gayle Gorman, Chief Executive of Education Scotland and David Coyne, Director of the Centre for Work-Based Learning.

Dr Brown discussed the importance of interdisciplinary learning for young people, and how the experiences and skills it develops, enables young people to be prepared for their next steps – whether that is into work or to continue in education.

Dr Brown illustrated the power of interdisciplinary learning, by highlighting SQA’s suite of qualifications, including Advanced Highers, the Scottish Baccalaureate, and in particular, the Interdisciplinary Project unit. The aim of this unique project, at SCQF level 7, is to broaden candidates’ experience, extend their knowledge and understanding, develop cognitive and generic skills, build confidence, and develop an understanding of the interdependence of subjects.

Students in fifth and sixth year of secondary school can undertake a Scottish Baccalaureate in Expressive Arts, Languages, Science and Social Sciences. It requires two, different courses, at least one of which has to be at Advanced Higher, one at Higher and the Interdisciplinary Project unit, which can also be taken as a standalone qualification.

Dr Brown commented: “In our fast changing world, providing qualifications, like our Interdisciplinary Project, that inspire our young people, is vital. The project gives them experiences across inter-connected subjects, in a range of environments. Recent examples include analysing the views of the public on important social issues, work-life balance, the popularity of graphic novels, classical music’s effect on productivity, and the impact of tourism on preservation.

“Interdisciplinary Learning is an engaging way to develop the foundations of twenty-first century skills in young people, which they will increasingly need as they take their next steps, in a world that is likely to be looking for a workforce and citizens, who are more agile and can adapt and be comfortable with change.”


Connecting Classrooms: Learning for the Sustainable Development Goals (Level 2)

12 February 2019 (Scotdec)

Learning for the Sustainable Development Goals (Levels 2) is a free course designed for GTCS registered teachers and early years practitioners in Scotland.

Combining an interactive and participatory approach, Learning for the Sustainable Development Goals (Level 2) will support teachers in developing their confidence, knowledge, and skills to bring the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) alive in the classroom and beyond. Links to Curriculum for Excellence will be made explicit, as will the national and international contexts which support young people to critically engage in real-world issues.

Dates in Edinburgh available during March and May 2019.


Book a trainer

12 February 2019 (British Council)

You can book one of British Council's specialist trainers to visit your school and deliver our global learning courses. This could be an INSET or twilight session - choose a time, place and length that works for you. 

Cluster leads can also deliver training to teachers in their cluster, using our specialist training materials on global learning and developing international partnerships. 

Visit the website for more information and to book.


Speaking the same language at national meeting

12 February 2019 (Education Scotland)

‘Looking Beyond 1+2’ was the focus of the annual National Modern Languages Network meeting in Stirling this month.

The day saw the launch of the new National Modern Languages Hub on GLOW, incorporating a new Yammer forum and bringing together policy, resources and CLPL for practitioners delivering languages for Scotland’s learners.

Participants heard updates from:

  • SQA on changes to Advanced Higher
  • Larbert High School cluster on their award-winning approach to implementing the 1+2 approach to language learning
  • Dr Joe Carson, St Andrews University, on the challenge of a first year university course in French
  • SCILT on how the Developing the Young Workforce agenda and language learning can work together

Colleagues ended the day by taking time to share their priorities for implementing the Language Learning in Scotland: A 1+2 Approach​ in their local authorities.

The 1+2 approach is the Scottish Government’s policy aimed at ensuring that every child has the opportunity to learn a modern language from P1 until the end of the broad general education (S3).


Business brunches inspire Scotland’s future global workforce

12 February 2019 (SCILT)

Young people from eleven schools across the north east of Scotland had the opportunity to engage with local businesses at the Aberdeen Marriott Hotel in Dyce on 31 January 2019. 116 learners from S3-S5 heard from a range of business leaders who view language skills as key to the growth and success of their company. The Business Brunch demonstrated the relevance of language skills in a work context and aimed to encourage pupils to continue with their language studies into the senior phase of their secondary education, and beyond school.

A teacher attending the event said: “Pupils today discovered that language learning can be the key to gaining decent employment. Languages can literally take you around the world and can even help you to fall in love.”

One of the young people added to this and commented: “Today I learnt that languages are an important thing to have a basic knowledge of. Languages are good for work.”

Edward Welch from the University of Aberdeen and a speaker at the event said: “The Business Brunch is a great way for students to find out about the exciting opportunities opened up by learning languages and discovering other cultures. Hearing speakers from different professions talk about how language skills have helped their career was really inspiring and hopefully motivated students to keep studying languages through school and into university.”

The event was organised by SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages based at University of Strathclyde, in partnership with DYW North East together with the University Council for Modern Languages Scotland (UCMLS).  Schools represented were Aboyne Academy, Alford Academy, Banchory Academy, Banff Academy, Lochside Academy, Meldrum Academy, Mintlaw Academy, Oldmachar Academy, St Margaret's School for Girls, The Gordon Schools and Turriff Academy.

Companies attending included Dragados, Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce, Ernst and Young LLP and the University of Aberdeen. The following businesses supported the event by hosting a stall in the Marketplace: Al-Maktoum College of Higher Education, Founders4Schools, the Scotland-Russia Forum and The Open University in Scotland. 

Fhiona Mackay, Director of SCILT said: “In these times of uncertainty, it is even more important than ever that we equip our young people with the skills they will need for life beyond school.  We want them to be outward-looking and able to operate in an interdependent world. Events such as these highlight the importance of language skills and intercultural competencies in the world of work.

“The business leaders who speak at these events give of their own time because they understand how much these skills are needed and valued by employers and how vital they are for Scotland’s business community. This kind of collaboration is an example of how education and business sectors can work together for their mutual benefit so that we can support young people and help them develop the portfolio of skills that employers require in their workforce.”

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

This collaboration between schools and businesses supported Scotland’s International Policy to equip young people with international communication and employability skills that they will need in our increasingly globalised society and economy.

The event is one of a series of Business Brunches being held across Scotland in December 2018 and January 2019.

More information on SCILT’s 2019 Business Brunches.

Digital Modern Languages tutorial writing sprint - Call for proposals

12 February 2019 (Language Acts and Worldmaking)

The Digital Modern Languages tutorial writing sprint is a physical and virtual event designed to create a variety of open educational resources demonstrating the critical and applied use of digital tools and methods for teachers, learners and researchers interested in modern languages and cultures. 

This initiative is led by the ‘Digital Mediations’ strand on the Language Acts & Worldmaking project, which explores interactions and tensions between digital culture and Modern Languages (ML) research. The project is funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) under its Open World Research Initiative (OWRI). 

The DML tutorial writing sprint aims to: 

  • Produce a set of learning resources which will improve critical digital literacies in ML learning and research  
  • Facilitate greater engagement between digital practitioners and ML educators/researchers  
  • Provoke discussion about possible connections between digital literacies at secondary and HE levels and beyond 
  • Foster greater connection between ML and heritage/community language learning modes  
  • Provide students and researchers with new modes of engagement with ML content and research 
  • Contribute to greater awareness of the importance of Modern Languages learning and research 

This initiative will lead to the production of a series of self-learning online tutorials on how to use digital tools and methods critically in researching or learning about ML languages and cultures. The outcome will be an edited collection of tutorials, providing a snapshot of digital methods for modern languages. 

The tutorials will be approximately 4,000 words in length, and be written in approachable, non-expert language with clear examples. 

Proposals are invited for Tutorials (‘how to’ use a particular digital method or tool) which address either educational or research challenges in the Modern Languages and Cultures, including both: 

  • Language learning and
  • Learning and research about ML cultures 

Visit the website for further information and submit your proposal by 28 February 2019.


In pictures: FilmG Awards winners

12 February 2019 (BBC)

A short film about domestic violence has won two top prizes at the 2019 FilmG Awards.

Sòlas won its creator Lana Pheutan the best drama accolade and Lewis-based actor Mairi MacLennan the prize of best performance.

Held annually since 2008, FilmG is a Gaelic-language short film competition.

[..] The theme for 2019 entries was "In the Blink of an Eye", and the full list of winners can be found on FilmG's website.


Brendan Rodgers hopes to pass Spanish lesson against Valencia

9 February 2019 (The Herald)

Brendan Rodgers remains something of a footballing linguist. The Celtic manager is learning French and he is already fluent in Spanish. It’s a handy string to the bow in these multi-cultural times.

“A lot of them [overseas] are surprised because normally us British people are a bit insular that way,” said Rodgers of his ability to turn his hand to another language.

“Young Maryan [Shved], the player we signed from Ukraine was a great example of what language can do. He didn’t speak English, I didn’t speak Ukranian but we could speak Spanish because he had two years at Sevilla.

“If I could do two things in the world I’d speak every language and I would play every musical instrument. Why? It’s the ability to communicate. As you grow older you understand communication is so important."


Bhasha Language Festival shouts loud about city's cultures

9 February 2019 (The National)

Bengali, Gaelic, Arabic and more will be heard as minority communities raise their voices in a day-long celebration of languages.

Bhasha: the Glasgow Language Festival will bring together poetry, song, drama, short films and academic expertise at the Mitchell Library today.

The event is organised by the Bangladesh Association Glasgow (BAG), which calls it “our gift” to the city.

Speakers from Zimbabwe and China are amongst those set to celebrate the rich mix of languages – including British Sign Language – in Scotland’s biggest city.

Saif Khan of BAG said: “There are experiences you have in your own language that probably will never be able to be translated or vocalised in another. But we can still share and find communality.”


More British children are learning Mandarin Chinese – but an increase in qualified teachers is urgently needed

8 February 2019 (The Conversation)

Mandarin Chinese is seen as being of increasing strategic importance, and in recent years there’s been a growing number of students taking up the language in schools across the UK.

There were more than 3,500 GCSE entries for Mandarin Chinese in 2018. But it’s not just China’s global dominance that makes Mandarin an appealing alternative to learning a European language. For students, it’s exciting and opens up a window into other cultures and ways of thinking.

Take the character for home and family 家 – which is a pig under a roof – many students are keen to find out why. New learners of the language are also always pleased to discover that verbs don’t change – so no having to remember different endings off by heart – and there are no tenses in Mandarin Chinese.

The learning of Chinese is taking off globally, so there are many new and innovative resources for students. China is also keen to welcome guests and school students have been able to benefit from in-country learning – supported financially by Chinese host institutions during their stay. Many come back home and realise the opportunities to work in China or with Chinese companies in their future will be huge.


Fitting in: why Polish immigrant children say ‘aye’ to the Glasgow vibe

8 February 2019 (The Conversation)

All of us have a range of speech styles, altering how we talk to fit different situations. The adjustments we make can be barely noticeable: you might tell a work colleague that you’re going “swimming” after work, and then later tell your friends that you’ve just been “swimmin’”. But even tiny, subconscious adjustments have a real social effect, playing a part in building social relationships and constructing identity.

This is something that linguists study and describe and gather evidence about, but it’s not something that only academics understand – it’s something we all notice, experience and talk about. I explore this particular skill in episode two of my podcast, Accentricity, which brings together what academics know about style-shifting with how we all experience it in everyday life.

Sociolinguistic research has built up a picture of how people alter their speech, or “style-shift”. However, most of the research we have is on people using their first language; we know less about style-shifting in a new language. Do learners pick up style-shifting behaviour even as they are picking up the sounds and structures of their new language?


Deaf actress learns to sign in Glaswegian for hit BBC comedy Two Doors Down

8 February 2019 (Daily Record)

Deaf actress Sophie Stone had to learn to sign like a Glaswegian for her role in hit BBC comedy Two Doors Down.

She plays Louise, an old friend of Joy McAvoy’s character Michelle, and appears in Monday’s episode – which is the last in the series.

Sophie admitted she wanted to get the right regional dialect sign language for the show.

Sophie, 38, who’s originally from London, said British Sign Language – BSL – has dialect influence, slang and phrases of its own from region to region, just like an accent.


Gaelic support service to inspire Scots to speak the language

8 February 2019 (The Scotsman)

Young people will be able to access a range of support services provided in Gaelic as part of a new initiative.

The project, launched by Young Scot, will offer advice online about topics including financial management, puberty and internet safety. It aims to help inspire more young people in Scotland to speak the language.


Registrations now open for Language Linking Global Thinking 2019-20

8 February 2019 (SCILT)

SCILT is now inviting schools to register their interest in taking part in the Language Linking Global Thinking initiative in session 2019/20. 

The project links students on their year abroad with primary and secondary schools. Students communicate with a designated class in their partner school during the course of the year to illustrate how enriching it is to spend a year abroad using a language other than English. 

While the student is abroad, the partner school receives regular contact from the student through blog posts, emails and other resources. The two-way correspondence between student and class brings the language alive for pupils and shows them the real relevance of learning a language. 

Visit the LLGT webpage for more information on Language Linking Global Thinking, and to read some of the student blogs from previous years.

For further information and to request a link for 2019/20 please contact SCILT. Please note places are limited.


New job profile on the SCILT website

8 February 2019 (SCILT)

We have a selection of job profiles on our website covering a range of careers and roles where languages are being used.

Our latest addition comes from Craig Smith, a manufacturing engineer with Mitsubishi Electric Air Conditioning Systems Europe Ltd based in Livingston. As the company has its HQ in Japan, he tells us that learning Japanese has been a great advantage and improved his future career prospects.

Teachers, share his profile with your pupils to highlight the benefits language learning for life and work.


Student exchanges in no-deal Brexit threat

6 February 2019 (BBC)

Universities are warning the Erasmus study abroad scheme will have no more funding for UK students in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

It would mean that 17,000 UK students would not study in European universities as planned next year.

The UK government had previously indicated it wanted to continue taking part in the exchange scheme.

But Universities UK says new advice last week suggested no further support would be available in a no-deal Brexit.

The universities organisation says, as a "matter of urgency", the UK government must "reconsider its decision" so that financial backing will be assured for students in the exchange scheme.

Universities UK is launching a campaign calling on the government to commit to funding study-abroad placements for 2019-20 and beyond, even if there is no deal on Brexit.


Funding for ASMCF's Schools Liaison and Outreach Activities

5 February 2019 (ASMCF)

The deadline for the ASMCF's Schools Liaison and Outreach Activities is fast approaching. This fund offers up to £500 to support members of the Association who organise teacher- or pupil-focused events in a partnership between universities and schools, and which fulfil the following objectives:

  • promote the learning of French in its social, political, historical and cultural context in schools to prepare pupils for the diversity of content of current UK French degrees
  • assist teachers who wish to engage in personal intellectual development in subjects relating to those which they are teaching, with a view to enrich their provision and enable them to help students to bridge the gap between school and university

The deadline for the submission of applications is 28 February 2019 for projects to be undertaken between April and October 2019. More information about the scheme, including project criteria and application procedure can be found on the ASMCF website.

More information about successful past projects and examples of outreach activities are available on the ASMCF blog.


Summer courses in Germany: Deadline 1 March 2019

5 February 2019 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German Connection run summer courses in Germany, which are now open for application.

Both programmes combine language learning with cultural trips and excursions, as well as staying with host families.

There’s also a paid CPD opportunity for teachers to act as group leaders on the German Pupil Courses.

The application deadline for all programmes is 1 March 2019.


New Perth festival celebrates language and our landscape

5 February 2019 (Daily Record)

A new literary festival is to be staged in Perth this year.

Celebrating the beauty of the Scots language and contemporary Scottish culture, the Soutar Festival of Words will be held in April.

Named after the celebrated Perth bard William Soutar, the festival is being organised by Culture Perth and Kinross.

The festival will take place at a number of different venues and outdoor locations across Perth from Friday, April 26 until Sunday, April 28.

Over 20 events will take place over the three-day festival, with highlights including author talks, a poetry slam, an open mic session, traditional Scottish music and opportunities for local people to take a step into the world of creative writing.


ECML project "Action research communities for language teachers": webinar recording available on the project website

5 February 2019 (ECML)

The European Centre for Modern Languages project “Action research communities for language teachers” (ARC) has supported teachers in European classrooms in using action research as an essential tool for the development of reflective classroom practice - highlighting ways in which teachers can enhance their self-confidence and professionalism. The webinar, which took place on 25 January 2019, provides an insight into the experiences gathered over the 3 years of the project (2016-2018) and the results achieved.

Visit the ECML website for more information.


Participate in the online survey on the need for future resources about language-related teacher competences

4 February 2019 (ECML)

The project team has already developed a catalogue of existing instruments and publications which describe different dimensions of language-related teacher competences in these areas across different levels of education (eg primary, secondary or tertiary education). 

Now they wish to explore the need for, and the potential benefits of a future overarching reference resource focusing on the teacher competences needed for the effective use and development of language in various types of teaching. 

The project team invites all interested parties to participate in this online survey by 26 February 2019.


French pop video competition

1 February 2019 (Institut français)

French Pop Video Competition

The Institut français du Royaume-Uni, with the support of Francophonie UK, is organising a French song video contest for all primary and secondary students in the UK school systems of England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, and the Channel Islands. Teachers can submit their students’ video clips in 3 age-categories before 5 April 2019. In May, local juries in 9 geographical areas (including 5 in England) will award qualified laureates with £100 worth of book tokens per winning entry. Local laureates will automatically enter the National final, and the UK grand winners, announced in early June, will be invited to attend the Francophonie UK School Music Awards as part of a special-guest concert on Friday 28 June at the Institut français in London (travel expenses paid!). Visit the website for more information and free registration or see the attached flyer.

Teaching French through Music CPD tour, from 25/02 to 02/03

As part of the French Pop Video Competition, the Institut français du Royaume-Uni will be offering a UK-wide teacher training tour from 25 February to 2 March to learn how to teach French through music. FREE Workshops led by the prestigious international French training centre CAVILAM will be delivered for secondary teachers of French in London, Jersey, Cardiff, Manchester, Edinburgh, and Belfast. Visit the website or see the attached flyer for more information and register before 15 February.


Does studying abroad help academic achievement?

31 January 2019 (European Journal of Higher Education)

Studying abroad as part of a degree has become commonplace for many students in European and other developed countries. Universities actively promote opportunities as part of internationalization strategies.

Whilst research has looked into the ‘abroad’ aspect of study abroad, there is less literature on the ‘study’ aspect, and in particular, the effects that the period has on academic achievement. This article provides evidence that studying abroad has a beneficial effect on overall academic achievement.

The article compares the final degree grades of students at Sheffield Law School (UK) who participated in a year studying abroad, with those who did not. Interviews with students across the period deepen the qualitative dimension to the research by exploring how students felt about their academic experience. Whilst few students opt to go abroad for the purposes of improving grades, most feel that the additional confidence and maturity, alongside deeper knowledge of their subject and a break in the pattern of their studies, contributes to their higher achievement.

Read the full article online.


Worldwide Napier magazine - Call for contributions

30 January 2019 (Edinburgh Napier University)

Building on the success of the first two issues of Worldwide Napier, our magazine in foreign languages, we are, for our next issue, calling for submissions about the cultural concepts of “attachment” and “detachment”, ie the emotional connection one may have with a place, a period of time, a person, a thing, what makes someone nostalgic (or not).

Secondary school pupils are being invited to contribute articles for the next issue. As per usual, the article(s) will be written in one the following languages your students are currently studying: French, German, Italian or Spanish. Submission deadline is 1 March 2019.

See the attached letter for more information and to access previous versions of the magazine online. There's also a printable poster to promote the opportunity on school noticeboards.

SCHOLAR online tutor sessions - Higher Modern Languages

28 January 2019 (SCHOLAR)

SCHOLAR turns its attention to Higher Modern Languages in February:

  • 4 February - SCHOLAR online tutor Douglas Angus will be delivering a session on getting ready for the new talking assessment at 6pm. There is also a downloadable worksheet available in advance on SCHOLAR.
  • 25 February - also at 6pm, Douglas will deliver a session on assignment writing. The worksheet associates with that will be available a week before the session. Both these sessions will include resources in French, German and Spanish

Visit the SCHOLAR website for more information about joining the sessions.


Glasgow Film Festival 2019

24 January 2019 (Glasgow Film Festival)

The programme for this year's Glasgow Film Festival taking place from 20 February to 3 March is now available.

There's a wide selection of international films on offer, so plenty of opportunities to practise your language skills!

View the brochure for more information.


Oral Revision Courses: Higher and Advanced Higher French

1 December 2017 (Alliance Française Glasgow )

The AF Glasgow will be running special revision courses for pupils who are sitting their Higher and Advanced Higher French oral examinations in early 2018.


Threlford Memorial Cup 2017 - Call for nominations now open

26 May 2017 (Chartered Institute of Linguists)

Do you know someone who's done something truly amazing for language learning?

Chartered Institute of Linguists is looking for nominations for the Threlford Memorial Cup 2017. The Cup is presented annually to a person, an organisation, or for a project that has inspired others with an original language initiative. The Cup will be presented by Royal Patron HRH Prince Michael of Kent at our Awards Evening in London in November.

The deadline for nominations is Friday 28 July 2017.


Disclaimer: These news stories do not claim to be comprehensive and the views expressed do not necessarily represent the views of SCILT.

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