Making Links Abroad

A short report on the twilight CPD for language teachers by teachers and consultants who have made links or support teachers to make effective links with target language learning countries for their own schools. A WTSA/JLN DFE MFL Language Learning for Everyone CPD event.

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  1. I wanted our local teachers to explore making links abroad.To hear first hand from local teachers and local consultants some of the ways to access and use the funding and links you can make through the British Council and also ETwinninguk.The CPD is part of the WTSA/JLN DFE funded project janetlloyd.net/everyone.htm Language Learning for Everyone
  2. Erzsi Culshaw @Erzsiculshaw, Graham Butler,Independent Education Consultant for International School Links and Odette Hunt @OdetteHunt from PQFrance (offering Erasmus Key Action 1 CPD in Carcassonne France, shared some of the wonderful ways that schools can organise indirect,direct and teacher CPD opportunities abroad. We have complied a simple directory of other local links and consultants/companies too that can help individual schools make those links!
  3. Erzsi shared her ETwinning projects with teachers at the CPD.She explained how ETwinning has allowed her to bring the outside world in to the classroom and to develop four projects with different links over the period that she has been registered on the ETwinning website  http://www.etwinning.net/en/pub/index.htm 
  4. The immediacy of the projects and the exchange of simple written and filmed activities are allowing Erzsi to establish concrete target languages links.It has meant that Erzsi is building an effective and good friendship with the teachers in the projects too. All the shared activities are easy to load in to a secure online website where teachers have their own log ins and materials such as pictures and personal details are only shared with other partner schools.
  5. I loved the fact that classroom objects came to life in this video from one of Erzsi's partner classes .Simple and so effective! The children in a school in NW England have the opportunity to take a tour with children of their own age around a classroom in Spain.Fantastic! Similarities and differences - "my World-your World", "our local environment", "welcome to our school", all come to mind as project titles that go across the primary curriculum.
  6. The idea of shared messages allows children to "practise speaking in full sentences" and to "describe people,places and objects in speaking and writing".Two DFE POS learning objectives being explored in a practical and real way with that "contact wity the authentic native speaker" And the children haven't moved away from their schools in Spain and England"!They now have friends abroad and a reason to continue their language learning.....
  7. Erzsi shared with us a creative written device that lots of us use - the concertina character, but here she was using the device to ask children to write about their ETwinning partners and therefore once again the children were exploring key learning objectives of the DFE POS- broadening their vocabulary , describing people in writing and understanding basic grammar and sentence structure.
  8. This was probably my favourite! Fruit recipe sampling! There is a WOW factor to this ,because the children here in NW England are sampling snack recipes made by their friends in Spain!! In Spain the children were sampling the english snack recipes.Again here I could see teachers exploring "healthy eating" , "exotic fruits", "taste and smell sense activities", "DT" .... the list goes on. The content is fruits and the incidental learning will be around nouns,using bilingual dictionaries and instrtuctions in a target language.all for an authyentic purpose.Thanks for sharing Erzsi!
  9. The use of Book Creator as a way of sharing theses recipes brought the language learning bang up to date in the 2015 primary language learning classroom!
  10. Schools and teachers need guidance on what funding is available and how to access and use this funding wisely.Graham Butler is an independent consultant with whom I have worked with for many years at both regional and authority level .He shared with all the colleagues first of all the British Council guide on ETwinning and linking classrooms across Europe. Graham works at a strategic level and also accompanies teachers on visits to schools in China and South Africa. He is able to guide teachers through the form filling and make sure that visits run smoothly and effectively.You contact Graham directly on gbutler53@gmail.com
  11. Our first stop with Graham was to understand more about the International Schools Award. The ISA. There are three stages - and more details can be found here on the British Council website  https://schoolsonline.britishcouncil.org/accreditation-and-awards/International-School-Award 
  12. I like the fact that you can take this stage by stage and work up to "full" award.The initial stages are simple and easy to manage and the "full " award will bring activities , teacher to teacher and possibly children to children contact opportunities. It helps school to have the "authentic" and "native speaker" contact that is required in the DFE POS and once again allows language teachers to brings cross curricular and whole school focuses in line with classroom language learning! Brilliant!
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