Latest News

A selection of language-related news. Does not claim to be comprehensive or represent the views of SCILT.


Immersion course in León - August 2022

17 May 2022 (Consejería de Educación)

Any plans for this summer? Sign up for the Teaching and Culture course in León for Spanish Secondary School and University teachers.

We are offering grants for Secondary School and University teachers of Spanish to enrol in our course in León in collaboration with the University of León and Mester Academy during August 2022.

The course content includes a number of areas in relation to teaching Spanish as a foreign language along with cultural activities. There are three starting dates to choose from 31 July-6 August, from 7-13 August, or from 14-20 August 2022. This course will be delivered fully in Spanish therefore we recommend that teachers should have at least a B2 level.

Visit the Spanish Education office website for more information and to apply by 31 May 2022.


One week immersion course for Spanish teachers

29 March 2022 (Consejería de Educación)

Any plans for this summer? Sign up for the Teaching and Culture course in Burgos for Spanish Secondary School and University teachers.

We are offering 100 grants for Secondary School and University teachers of Spanish to enrol in our course in Burgos in collaboration with the University of Burgos and Mester Academy during July 2022.

The course content includes a number of areas in relation to teaching Spanish as a foreign language along with cultural activities. There are three starting dates to choose from 3-9 July, from 10-16 July, or from 24-30 July 2022. This course will be delivered fully in Spanish therefore we recommend that teachers should have at least a B2 level.

For all information regarding the course and how to sign up can be found on the Consejería de Educación website.


Turing Scheme 2022-23

28 February 2022 (Scottish Government)

Year 2 of the Turing Scheme is launching today. This will provide organisations with the opportunity to register projects taking place in the 2022-23 Academic Year.

There are four key actions that can be taken from 28 February:

Visit the updated Turing website to:

  • Register to apply for funding
  • Subscribe to the new Capita newsletter mailing list
  • Sign up for webinars
  • Start planning your organisation’s application

Note the programme is now administered by Capita on behalf of the DfE. They have a dedicated team of staff available to help plan and submit applications. Support will be available from 28 February via the Contact Us page on the website and via an online system for those who register.


Why do children learn languages more effortlessly than adults?

21 February 2022 (UNRIC)

On the occasion of International Mother Language Day, UNRIC spoke to Dr Eleonore Smalle, a post-doctoral researcher at Ghent University (Belgium) and a lecturer at Tilburg University (the Netherlands), about the mechanisms of cognition and language learning.

Languages play a vital role in preserving our traditions, history and mode of thinking. They impact our identity, communication and education. Multilingual societies exist through their languages, which allow them to transmit traditional knowledge and cultures, achieve quality education and build inclusive societies. Mother-tongue based multilingual education is a key component of inclusion in education.

We asked Dr Eleonore Smalle about the recent findings in the field of language learning. We wanted to know why children are thought to be better language learners than adults, and how cognitive development affects language acquisition across the human life span.


Teach abroad as an English Language Assistant

9 December 2021 (British Council)

Apply to be an English Language Assistant in 2022-23! Placements are open to candidates with language skills in French, German, Italian and Spanish – as well as selected destinations open to those from other disciplines.

Visit the British Council website to find out more and check eligibility. Apply by 1 February 2022.


Opportunities from LFEE

9 November 2021 (LFEE )

Festival of Languages… connecting with schools from Scotland, France, Spain and Germany…

Our first Connected Learning Festival celebrates the learning and teaching of English, French and Spanish for upper primary and secondary school pupils.

Through short videos and 3D animations, our characters and their avatars take teachers and their learners from the comfort of their classroom to our virtual land where everything is possible!  

Please click on the link below for free access to the Characters presentations in English, French and Spanish.

Share what learners produce with other schools from other countries on Padlet. Practitioners are given ideas on how to record what is produced by their learners and to create an exhibition which can be shared on Padlet and/or within their own school.

The Turing Programme... Send your learners to France, Spain and Germany….

LFEE Europe will build a consortium to support pupil mobilities in 2022 – 2023.

Should you be interested in sending your learners to one of the above 3 countries, get in touch with us. We will put in a bid which, if successful, will allow schools to get funding to send pupils abroad. The grant will cover all costs for pupils and accompanying teachers: travel expenses and subsistence.

We have partnered with many primary and secondary schools in France, Spain and Germany where the trip will take place. Alternatively, you can find a partner of your choice.

Should you be interested, please email us on:

It would be good to write a little description of a specific theme/project you might be interested in exploring whilst abroad: sustainability, history, geography etc.

Flexible Funding Scheme

23 September 2021 (UK-German Connection)

UK-German Connection's Flexible Funding Scheme supports joint activities and projects between UK and German partner schools and youth groups, including visits or virtual activities.

The grant is open to primary, secondary and SEN schools, FE colleges and youth groups in the UK and Germany. Grants of up to £10,000 are available.

Visit the UK-German Connection website for more information and apply by 1 October 2021.


Opportunities from UK-German Connection

12 August 2021 (UK-German Connection)

Despite the UK no longer being part of the EU, UK-German Connection remains dedicated to supporting partnerships, offering intercultural opportunities, and facilitating connections between schools, youth groups and young people themselves in both countries. 

Current opportunities include the following. Click on the relevant link for more information:

  • Funding for UK-German exchange activities - Schools and youth groups with a partner in Germany can apply for grants for planning visits, taster trips and joint activities, including virtual projects. A series of Q&A webinars will take place throughout September for anyone interested in finding out more about this funding offer.
  • Host a Teacher from Germany - Whether travel is going to be possible or not, you can still bring authentic German language and culture to your classroom in 2021/22. Through the Host a Teacher from Germany programme, your school can host a German teacher (virtually or face-to-face) for one, two or three weeks during the academic year, at no cost. Register by 28 September 2021 (to host in spring and/or summer 2022).
  • UK-German Youth Council - Do you know any top-notch communicators with an interest in UK-German youth relations? There's still time for young people between the ages of 14 and 25 to apply for our UK-German youth council. This network will develop ideas and help co-design programmes and activities for young people in both countries. Applicants from all backgrounds are welcome and German language skills are not a requirement. Deadline: 24 August 2021.

Visit the UK-German Connection website for a full overview of their opportunities and initiatives for young people. Or register to receive their newsletters.


School trips to UK from EU could halve as Brexit hits cultural exchanges

4 June 2021 (The Guardian)

French and German educational trip organisers bringing as many as 750,000 school pupils to the UK every year have warned that tougher post-Brexit entry requirements are likely to cut the number of young Europeans visiting Britain by half.

“We’ve already seen a big fall-off in interest,” said Edward Hisbergues, the sales manager of a leading French operator, PG Trips. “My business was 90% UK, 10% Ireland; now it’s all about Ireland. Schools are inquiring about visits to the Netherlands or Malta.”

The British government has rejected requests from organisers to exempt children taking part in short organised educational trips from new passport and visa measures due to come into effect on 1 October, saying they are needed to strengthen Britain’s borders.

The organisers said many thousands of UK host families, language schools, hotels and other businesses around the country, and especially in cities such as Canterbury that specialise in the educational market, risked suffering a significant economic impact.

They also said the new border restrictions could inflict broader and longer-term damage to Britain’s relations with Europe.

School trips “foster intercultural understanding and reduce prejudice”, wrote the German federation of leading school trip organisers, whose members run 7,000 trips a year to the UK representing more than 1.5m overnight stays.

“They forge lifelong connections with the UK, increase tolerance for people, cultures and different ways of living and thinking, and help the acquisition of language skills in the internationally most important language.”

Hisbergues said school trips abroad “really open eyes. They can inspire kids and change the course of young lives.”


Vuelve a España - 2021 summer scholarships for Spanish language teachers

4 May 2021 (Consejería de Educación)

Course for Spanish language teachers on language, culture, and gastronomy (University of Valladolid, July 2021)

Open until May 10th the deadline to apply for one of the 50 scholarships to take a week-long course in Valladolid in the month of July 2021.

For whom? For teachers of Spanish in British secondary schools or universities (regardless of nationality (British, Spanish or other).

What? The course combines a varied didactic program (history, cinema, culture, games, language skill development, gamification…) with recreational and tourist activities. It is organized by the University of Valladolid, the Academia Mester, and the Junta de Castilla y León.

What does the scholarship include? The course (classes and cultural program), accommodation, and most of the meals. The selected participants only pay 100€ for management and the plane ticket to Madrid (round trip). Transfers from Madrid airport to Valladolid are also covered by the scholarship.

All the information about the dates, details of the course and the scholarship, and the online application form is available on the Consejería de Educación website.


Time to Move 2020

20 October 2020 (Eurodesk UK)

Covid-19 is no reason to give up on your dream of studying, volunteering, working, or travelling abroad. Many young people have had to change their plans, but this doesn’t mean that the chance is lost forever. Instead, take this as an opportunity to plan and prepare for your trip.

The Time to Move project is back during October 2020 with online and offline events to promote mobility and experience new ways to discover the world. Aimed at young people aged 13-30 the project also provides the opportunity to design a Time to Move themed T-shirt that best represents the spirit of the campaign.


Autumn immersion week

1 October 2020 (Language Learning Scotland)

Calling all S5 and S6 Modern Languages students studying French, German Spanish and Mandarin. From 12-16 October 2020, Language Learning Scotland is running a virtual language immersion week. Come along to learn more about the culture, the course and so much more!

Meet like-minded language lovers and hear talks from native young people and industry professionals. Get help and advice on navigating your way through Higher and Advanced Higher with tips for memorising grammar and vocabulary.

Visit the LLS website for more information and to apply. 


Coronavirus: Covid-19 cuts short students' year abroad studying

24 August 2020 (BBC)

Swapping Port Talbot for Paris was a big deal for Maia Evans. It was the first time she'd left home and the reason she chose to study French.

So you can imagine the 21-year-old's frustration when she had to abruptly leave her class, leave her adopted French family and leave France altogether when coronavirus took hold.

"I was loving it," recalled Maia. "The children were great, my family was lovely and my French was improving massively. Then France shut down overnight."

When Maia bid au revoir to Aberavon Beach she was excited to immerse herself in French culture - not just living with different people for the first time, but people who spoke another language.

It was going to be more Seine and Sacre-Coeur than the steelworks and Swansea Bay of home for Maia and she enjoyed every second in Paris' bustling suburbs.


Coronavirus: Homeschooling in a language you don't speak

18 April 2020 (BBC)

Until a few weeks ago, non-Welsh speaking parents who had chosen Welsh-medium education assumed their children would spend about 30 hours a week immersed in the language - at school. Now attempting to "home school" in a language they don't speak, they face an extra layer of challenge.

In Cardiff, for example, about 63% of pupils in Welsh-medium schools come from homes where no Welsh is spoken. On top of anxiety about coronavirus and general concern about education, some parents are worried their children's Welsh language skills will suffer.


DiscoverEU free travel passes for young people

6 March 2020 (Erasmus+)

Do you know an 18-year-old up for an adventure? DiscoverEU is back – giving them the chance to travel across Europe!

If you’re unfamiliar with this European Union initiative, it offers young people aged 18 the opportunity to discover Europe by providing them with a free travel pass. They can travel by themselves or with a group of up to four friends.

The next round of applications takes place from 12 to 26 March 2020 and 30,000 travel passes are available.

Visit the Erasmus+ website for more information, including a short video about the initiative.


Skye's the limit at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig - a unique Gaelic-only college set in a stunning island location

24 February 2020 (The Herald)

As global interest in Gaelic grows, students from across the world are travelling to Skye to study at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, the National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture.

Situated in the stunningly beautiful peninsula of Sleat in the south end of the island, Sabhal Mòr Ostaig is a unique Gaelic-only environment and the only college of its kind offering further and higher education through the medium of the language.

The college offers a range of provision from beginners’ courses to a PhD, with the flexibility of studying part-time or full-time, on campus or via distance learning. At a crucial time in the survival of the language, graduates have helped create a Gaelic speaking workforce that now holds key posts across a wide range of sectors in Scotland.

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig is one of the key partners in fulfilling the government’s objectives in the National Gaelic Plan, which aims to increase the number of people speaking the language and accelerate the growth of Gaelic.

Many people are keen to learn more about the language because of its rich culture and the college provides a wide range of short courses in Gaelic language, song and traditional music. Ceilidhs, workshops, conversation circles and music sessions all create an encouraging atmosphere that bring together students from 30 countries across five continents. 


Funded summer courses in Germany - applications now open!

6 February 2020 (UK-German Connection)

We offer three summer course opportunities for pupils and teachers, all combining language-learning with cultural trips and excursions, as well as staying with host families. All are part or fully funded. Follow the appropriate link to find out more about each course.

Application deadline for each programme: 1 March 2020.

If you have any questions about the courses, don't hesitate to get in touch with the UK-German Connection team at

DiscoverEU is back, with even more travel passes!

4 February 2020 (Eurodesk)

Are you 18 years old? Are you up for an adventure? If yes, get ready to explore other countries by applying for DiscoverEU, a European Union initiative giving young people the opportunity to travel.

Almost 70,000 young people have received a travel pass since the first application round in 2018. Another round is taking place from Thursday 12 March 2020 11am (UK time) until Thursday 26 March 2020 11am (UK time), with 30,000 passes available.

For the most part you will be travelling by rail, but the DiscoverEU pass also covers alternatives such as buses or ferries. 

Visit the website to find out more about eligibility and how to apply.


Securing Gaelic in the Western Isles and beyond

31 January 2020 (The National)

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (Western Isles Council) recently attracted a flurry of media attention by announcing that Gaelic-medium education (GME) will become the default model in the islands’ schools, so that parents preferring English-medium education will have to opt out. GME has been offered in the islands’ schools since 1987, but English has been the default option up to now.

The new policy is welcome but hardly radical. GME is a long-established and successful model, not only in the Western Isles but across Scotland. Parents will still have the option of English-medium education, unlike in northwest Wales where only Welsh-medium education is available.

There is a consensus in Gaelic circles that more must be done to secure the position of the language in the Western Isles, the only part of Scotland where the language remains widely spoken in the community. There is much less agreement on what steps ought to be taken – indeed there has been relatively little serious, focused discussion.


MSPs demand apology for 'highly offensive' Tory comments on Gaelic education

23 January 2020 (The Scotsman)

Children's education could suffer by a move which will see Gaelic as the main teaching language for all primary one pupils in the Western Isles from next year, the Scottish Conservative shadow education secretary has said. Liz Smith, MSP, described the new policy which will see Gaelic become the "default" language for P1 pupils as a "deeply troubling step".

Alasdair Allan, SNP MSP for the Highlands and Islands, is demanding that Ms Smith withdraw her “highly offensive” remarks and apologise.

John Finnie, Scottish Greens MSP for the Highlands and Island, also said Ms Smith's comments were "offensive and inaccurate".

Pupils starting lessons in Gaelic will learn English from P4 onwards. Parents who want to opt out of the new system can have their children taught in English from P1.

However, Ms Smith, said Gaelic should not be promoted over English: “This is a deeply troubling step and one that could put children in the Western Isles at a distinct disadvantage to their peers."


Immersion courses in France and Spain

17 January 2020 (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.

Teachers wishing to apply for courses in France and Spain for 2020-2021 can also benefit from Erasmus+ funding to cover the tuition fee, accommodation, subsistence and travel costs. The next funding application deadline is 5 February 2020.

Please contact LFEE Europe as soon as possible to pre-register and receive guidelines to help your application.

For more information, see the course brochure.


Key subjects to be taught through Irish under plan to boost standards

11 November 2019 (The Irish Times)

Subjects such as physical education, maths and art are to be taught through Irish in about 20 primary, secondary and pre-schools under a new project aimed at boosting the teaching and learning of Irish.

The move has been partly prompted by concern over the quality of teaching and learning of Irish in schools.


'The new frontier of skills development' – growing number of organisations join campaign to double the percentage of UK students studying abroad

6 September 2019 (Universities UK)

Five organisations, Cultural Vistas, Pagoda Projects,, Common Purpose and The Intern Group, have pledged support to help more UK students study abroad as part the Go International: Stand Out campaign. The pledges include new scholarships for students to study abroad, discounts on visa services, free places on development programmes and discounted accommodation overseas.

The pledges are part of the UK-wide Go International: Stand Out campaign, run by Universities UK International, which aims to double the percentage of UK undergraduates who study, work, or volunteer abroad to 13% by the end of 2020. The five organisations announcing pledges today join five organisations who have already made pledges to the campaign: CRCC Asia, Campus France, DAAD London, The Higher Education Statistics Agency and QS.

Data suggests that there are significant academic and employability benefits to students who study abroad: those who studied abroad were 20% less likely to be unemployed six months after graduating than those who did not. There were especially pronounced benefits for those from a disadvantaged background. For example, BME students who studied abroad were 17% more likely to be in a graduate job six months after graduating than their peers. The campaign aims to widen access to study abroad opportunities.


No-deal Brexit fears for Erasmus student exchange scheme

13 August 2019 (BBC)

The Scottish and Welsh governments have expressed fears over the future of the Erasmus student exchange programme in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Both administrations have jointly written to the UK education secretary to express their concerns.

The EU programme helps students study in other countries.

The UK government has guaranteed payments for successful applicants and said it is "exploring participation" in a successor scheme.

Erasmus is an EU-funded programme which enables students to either study part of their degree or undertake a work placement abroad.

About 53% of UK university students who learn abroad do so through the initiative.

Some countries which are not in the EU - including Iceland, Norway and Serbia - also take part.

The letter is signed by the Scottish higher education minister, Richard Lochhead, and the Welsh education minister, Kirsty Williams.

Both devolved administrations are opposed to a hard Brexit but if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, they would like participation in Erasmus to continue.

The letter argues that leaving the EU without a deal or an arrangement covering the scheme will result in universities, colleges, and schools being ineligible to submit applications to participate in the final year of the current Erasmus+ programme in 2020.

It says: "This will be a significant loss to both our education sectors.

"Between 2014 and 2018, Erasmus+ has enabled an estimate of over 10,000 students and staff in Wales to undertake mobility visits to benefit their learning and career development.

"In Scotland, proportionally more students take part in Erasmus+ than from any other country in the UK."

It calls for an urgent meeting of education ministers to discuss the steps being taken towards ensuring that a hard Brexit does not lead to a loss of provision and opportunities for universities, colleges and schools.


Related Links

Concerns raised over Erasmus student scheme as no-deal Brexit looms (The Guardian, 13 August 2019)

Doubts over Erasmus+ after EU exit (Scottish Government, 13 August 2019)

Language travel still popular for UK students, with Spain gaining foothold

8 August 2019 (The Pie News)

Despite headlines reporting drops in language studies in schools across the UK, youngsters from secondary schools around the UK are continuing to travel overseas in busloads, educational tour operators have said. And Spain – and its language – is becoming increasingly popular.

However, concerns surrounding Brexit and safety have caused issues of their own, and the lower uptake of languages at GCSE level is reflected in language travel industry trends.

The British Council’s Language Trends 2019 report found that entries for GCSE languages had declined by 19% over the past five years. French and German GCSE candidate levels saw reductions of 30%, the report explained.

“Spanish language trips are getting very close to the demand for French language”

At A-level, between 2017 and 2018, German was down by 16%, French by 7%,  and Spanish by 3%. However, provisional entry figures for 2019 show Spanish candidate numbers increasing by 10% and French increasing by 4%.

German instead is set to continue to fall by 2.5%.

Of the 776 primary schools and 845 secondary schools surveyed for this report, 8% said they had offered school trips abroad in the previous year.

In last year’s survey, that number was 12%, but more respondents were included in the 2019 report.

Michelle Evans, head of product & marketing at educational tour operator NST noted that a large proportion of its language trips were for students under GCSE age.

“Teachers are trying to engage the students in lower secondary years in languages, so that they can encourage them to take that subject at GCSE,” she told The PIE News.


‘The best way to learn a language is to immerse yourself in it’

25 September 2018 (Irish Times)

Learning a new language can seem like a mammoth challenge, but for those who are really intent on developing fluency, nothing beats full immersion by moving to the country where it is spoken day-to-day. Ahead of European Day of Languages on September 26th, readers living around the world share their experiences of the frustration and joy of learning a new tongue.


Languages Beyond School

21 September 2018 (SCILT)

As the UCAS application process gets underway, make sure any pupils thinking of continuing their language studies check out the Beyond School section of our website.

This section contains useful information to help senior pupils decide on the different language courses and options available once they have left school, at college, university or as part of a gap year. There are links to courses available in Scotland and across the UK.

Pupils, parents, guidance and careers staff should all find this section of our website useful.


Inspire your students with new funding for global learning

19 September 2018 (British Council)

Connecting Classrooms is back, and we have some exciting updates for the new school year.

If you are thinking about taking your school on an international journey this year, it’s time to take a look at how you can join the new Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning programme.

You can apply for Connecting Classrooms opportunities either as an individual school, or part of a cluster, which will be overseen by a lead school.

Becoming a lead school provides a host of benefits, including access to grants to develop your cluster, the opportunity to deliver CPD to other schools in your area and cover support for your co-ordinator’s time. 

Visit the website for more information and apply by 28 October to be included in the first round of grant awards.


Erasmus+ funding for schools: twilight sessions

17 September 2018 (Erasmus+)

Interested in funding for international pupil exchanges, staff overseas teaching/training placements and partnerships with schools across Europe?

Erasmus+ and eTwinning offer fantastic opportunities for UK schools to connect with schools across Europe.

Taking place in September to November 2018, we are running free sessions in cities across the UK for school staff interested in beginning or enhancing international collaboration. There's an event in Glasgow on 30 October.

Whilst the twilight session offers a particular focus for schools, there is also a daytime information session more specifically for organisations who are new to the Erasmus+ programme and are considering submitting an Erasmus+ application in 2019.


Time to Move T-shirt contest

13 September 2018 (Eurodesk)

The Time to Move T-shirt contest returns in 2018! 

If you are at least 13 years old and not more than 30, design a Time to Move themed T-shirt that best represents the spirit of the campaign, share it with us and have a chance to travel around Europe by train!

Time to Move is a collection of events for young people organised all over Europe during the month of October. The activities focus on introducing hundreds of possibilities through which you can go abroad and take part in an international project, explore Europe or gain experience you need for your future.

Visit the website for more information and submit entries by 31 October 2018.


The lessons Gaelic schools can teach us about learning

15 August 2018 (The National)

[..] Gaelic medium education succeeds in producing new generations of fluent Gaelic speakers because, as its name suggests, it makes use of the Gaelic language to teach other subjects. Kids don’t sit in classes where they are taught Gaelic in the same way that French or other foreign languages are taught in schools.

The difference in the fluency level that is achieved is stark. I was taught Gaelic the old-fashioned way, and am the proud possessor of a Gaelic Learner’s O Grade and a Gaelic Learner’s Higher. I was taught Gaelic in much the same way kids in modern Scottish schools are taught French or German, in a dedicated class, a couple of hours a week. The result is that although I can puzzle out a written text in the language and have a reasonably sized Gaelic vocabulary, I struggle to follow a Gaelic conversation and can’t express myself orally.


Scottish youth to explore the way of the dragon...

13 August 2018 (4barsrest)

Carnoustie High School Band will head east this September to become the first youth brass band to tour China.

The remarkable opportunity came following a performance at the Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow in 2016 for the renowned Confucius Institute for Scotland.

Such was the success that it led to the school's head teacher Donald Currie being contacted to set the ball rolling on the ambitious initiative — and now, after almost two years of research and fundraising the band will fly out on 7th September for 15 unforgettable days of music and cultural learning.

Confucius Hubs are based in schools and seek to make links with local communities throughout Scotland — with Carnoustie serving the Angus area. It promotes the joint planning of cultural activities, sharing ideas and resources to stimulate the learning and teaching of Chinese language and culture.

The band will fly out from Glasgow, and after a short stop in Dubai will carry on to China where they will enjoy seven days in Tianjin and seven more in Beijing before their return.

While in Tianjin, the band members will be learning Mandarin, as well as performing three concerts. They will also visit Chinese families and schools, enabling the young musicians to experience Chinese culture first hand with a chance to learn Gongfu (Chinese martial arts), Tai Chi, and the ancient arts of calligraphy and mask painting.


Shanghai teacher immersion course 2018

7 August 2018 (CISS)

A group of teachers from Scotland spent two weeks in July immersing themselves in new cultural experiences in Shanghai, China.

A typical day consisted of an early start, breakfast in the Shitang (canteen) followed by Mandarin classes. Everyone greatly enjoyed the lessons as beginners were well supported whilst the more experienced speakers were sufficiently challenged. 

This was followed by a cultuphoto of Shanghai skyline by nightral excursion or experience. For most this was the highlight of the trip as it allowed everyone to apply their learning and to experience authentic Chinese culture.

Highlights in Shanghai included a riverboat cruise by night, showcasing the breath-taking skyline, relaxing from the hustle and bustle experiencing Tai chi, and producing calligraphy and hearing stories behind the characters.

‘Language Linking, Global Thinking’: The Life-Changing Impacts of Travel

14 June 2018 (University of Stirling)

As you’ll have gathered from this blog, a good number of our students opt to apply for English Language Assistantships every year, whether between their 2nd and 3rd years or as graduates. For the past few years, some of our ELA students have also participated in SCILT’s ‘Language Linking, Global Thinking’ scheme during their year as assistants and we thought it’d be good to get a sense of what this actually involves – from the perspective of the students involved.


Language Leaders - training week in Cavilam

16 April 2018 (Institut français)

For the third year, the Institut français is offering grants to six Language Leaders of Scotland to attend a one week training course in France.

The course will take place at the Cavilam Alliance française de Vichy from 30 July to 3 August 2018.

The Cavilam is an international centre of excellence for French teachers and teachers' trainers which welcomes teachers from all over the world.

This course is open to all practitioners with a leading role on your 1+2 strategy: in a school, a cluster, or at the council or regional level.

Further information regarding the grants, programme, accommodation/transport and how to apply can be found in the attached documents. Please note that the Institut français covers only the course fee.

The application deadline is 11 May 2018.

Secondary summer courses in Germany

29 November 2017 (UK German Connection)

A unique opportunity for pupils to immerse themselves in German language and culture in 2018! Places will be available for part- or fully-funded summer courses.

Applications open mid-January 2018

German Pupil Courses

German Scholarships Programme

Group leadership opportunities

For teachers of German: Become a group leader on the German Pupil Courses and accompany a group of 12 pupils to Germany. This is a great opportunity for your professional development, whilst spending two weeks immersed in German language, daily life and culture.

Group leadership opportunities

Will learning a language abroad for a year make you fluent?

27 October 2017 (The Guardian)

There’s no right way to learn a new language; some people prefer poring over books, while others go for apps or traditional lessons with a tutor. Immersing yourself is a surefire way to accelerate the process, though, and a year abroad is an opportunity to do just that. Which is not to say that it’ll be easy. The road to fluency is long and likely to be littered with confusing – and often embarrassing – moments. Here’s a quick guide to help you get there.


GTCS Professional Recognition for LFEE Programmes

23 October 2017 (LFEE)

LFEE were delighted – and very proud - to collect a GTCS Professional Recognition Accredited Programme Award last month for our three-week French/Spanish Immersion Programmes and the 12-month Modern Languages Immersion and Methodology Programme. This is following on from having achieved course accreditation three years ago.

Representatives from ten Local Authorities from across Scotland attended the PowerLanguage conference to witness the launch of the NEW PowerLanguage Schools (PLS) website. Feedback from those present was extremely positive and the new site is now available to other practitioners!

Our “off the shelf” L3 in Mandarin was also very popular and will be available in Spanish soon.

Last but not least, we’re very excited to say that Caroline Gordon has joined our team 2 days a week and will be helping us with communication and social media amongst other things!

Contact us for information regarding any of the above projects. We look forward to hearing from you!
photo of LFEE staff with GTCS certificate of recognition


Inside the UK’s first bilingual English and Chinese primary school

7 October 2017 (Financial Times)

As a girl growing up in an English-speaking household in Singapore, Prema Gurunathan grudgingly studied Mandarin. Now a mother in west London, she is taking no chances with her own son.

When he turned one Ms Gurunathan insisted their household in Hammersmith speak Mandarin for half of each week. She recruited an au pair from east Asia (she prefers not to say exactly where, for fear of tipping off the competition). And last month, she and her husband enrolled the three-and-a-half year-old at Kensington Wade in London, Britain’s first primary school to offer full Mandarin immersion for its pupils.

“It’s intellectual, it’s cultural and it’s ‘future-proofing’, if you will,” said Ms Gurunathan, a self-confessed “tiger mom” and policy wonk, explaining her school choice. “And it’s fun.”


2017-18 Tianjin Scholars Blogs now live

6 October 2017 (CISS)

The first blog entries from a number of Tianjin Scholars are now available to read on the Confucius Institute for Scotland's Schools website.


10 of the best language with activity holidays around the world

5 September 2017 (The Guardian)

Spanish and tango? German and skiing? Or even Japanese and manga? Learn a language in the native country and add some extracurricular fun with these holiday courses that offer a skill or some culture, too.


New job profile on SCILT's website

18 August 2017 (SCILT)

The job profiles on our website cover a range of professions where languages are being used.

Our latest addition comes from Emma Gallacher, whose language skills have taken her from Scotland to the Costa Blanca, where she now works as receptionist for an established Real Estate firm. She firmly believes learning the language has enabled her to settle and integrate into the Spanish way of life.

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


Language immersion in Australian schools

4 August 2017 (ABC News)

Video report from ABC News on South Australia's Department for Education and Child Development's (DECD) language immersion programmes in schools.

The news story highlights that in just six months students at two schools have immersed themselves in the French and Chinese language.

See the video online on the DECD Facebook page, or read an earlier published news item 'Adelaide schools finding success with bilingual classes in French and Chinese' on the policy (ABC, 23 June 2017).


Are Chinese-English bilingual schools the future of primary education?

7 June 2017 (The Telegraph)

There are just two classrooms at Kensington Wade, a shiny new independent prep school opening in west London in September, and at a glance, they look the same. Colourful charts cover the walls, storybooks line the shelves, the odd toy lies around. Peer a little closer, however, and a certain difference becomes clear.

“There isn’t a word of English in here,” the headmistress, Jo Wallace, says as we pause in one of them. It’s true – the charts contain only Chinese symbols, the books are in Mandarin, and laid out are traditional oriental fans, scrolls and artwork. Even the school’s world map, which might normally have Europe at the centre of the picture, instead shows gives Asia and the Pacific the limelight.

“That’s what we mean by this being totally immersive learning,” Wallace says, “the children will switch as soon as they’re in here, and that’s how they’ll begin to think in two ways.”


Spanish language programme for teens at Malaca Instituto, Malaga

23 May 2017 (Malaca Instituto)

Making international friends, practising Spanish, participating in a great programme of social/cultural/sporting activities…. and all in the sunshine - what better way to spend a couple of weeks this summer?

If you are teaching 15-18 year olds and feel that some of them may enjoy a challenging programme like this in Malaga, at one of the world’s leading schools of Spanish, you might like to share the information in the attached flyer with them. 

More information is available from Bob Burger.

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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


Glasgow Gaelic School performs Christmas pantomime

16 December 2016 (BBC News)

A traditional Christmas panto would be nothing without the familiar catchphrases. But what do they sound like in Gaelic? BBC Scotland's very own fairy godmother, Aileen Clarke, has been to find out.


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.


Media Release: Confucius Classroom launches in Moray

29 November 2016 (All Media Scotland)

A facility dedicated to promoting closer cultural links between school pupils in Moray and their counterparts in China was formally opened today.

The Confucius Classroom is part of a growing network of hubs – currently standing at more than 20 – being set up across Scotland to help promote Chinese language and culture in schools.

The Moray hub is based at Elgin Academy and will be resourced for children and young people from across the area to study all aspects of Chinese life.

It will also serve as a base for two teachers from China who will work closely with a total of 14 local secondary and primary schools during the current session.

The teaching posts are funded by Scotland’s National Centre for Languages at Strathclyde University where the Confucius Institute for Scotland’s Schools is based.

Opportunities will also exist for teachers from Moray schools to undertake exchange visits to China, while pupils will also be able to take part in language immersion courses in Chinese schools.


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 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!


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.


Related Files

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.


Cultural Classes in China

25 August 2016 (Claire Smith / CISS)

For 2 weeks in July I had the opportunity to visit Beijing on a language immersion course with a group of 20 teachers from all over Scotland. We were there as guests of the Beijing Culture and Language University to learn Mandarin and experience the culture of this amazing and, at times, intense city.

Language classes were held every morning, with the focus on vocabulary, grammar, sentence structure and pronunciation. As Mandarin is a tonal language it is a challenge to learn but it proved useful when exploring a city where English is not widely spoken! In the afternoon cultural activities were organised. We visited the main landmarks of Beijing, including Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. A trip north took us to the awe-inspiring trip to summer palaceGreat Wall. On the afternoons when we weren’t sightseeing, we stayed on the university campus to learn calligraphy, tai chi and experience a traditional Chinese tea ceremony.

This fantastic opportunity to further my knowledge of Chinese language and culture has enabled me to develop calligraphy classmy practice – in both the teaching of Mandarin and China as an interdisciplinary topic. This term, I will also run a calligraphy class, where pupils will learn an ancient skill and the story behind the Chinese characters. For my own professional development, I am continuing to learn Mandarin through books and podcasts and in December I will take the HSK 1 exam.

This experience, along with the friendships I made and strengthened, is something I will never forget. Beijing is a city like no other – a mixture of ancient architecture and modern structures, of chaos and calm, of communism and capitalism, of east and west. At times it seemed daunting, but led by Meryl, Professional Development Officer from CISS, we were in excellent hands!

group photo on head teacher trip to China 2016

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.


Parents can help, but children take a DIY approach to learning language

17 January 2016 (The Conversation)

Parents can help children develop their language. But when it comes to building the linguistic structure that undergirds the language, new research shows that children would rather do it themselves.

Perhaps one of the oldest debates in the cognitive sciences centres on whether children have an inborn faculty of language. This faculty makes it possible for children to learn the language of their community.

Evidence for its existence comes from the richness of the system that language users come to have as compared to the finite set of sentences that any one learner is exposed to.


Hatching little Chinese speakers at Britain's first bi-lingual Mandarin-English nursery

31 October 2015 (The Telegraph)

At just two-years-old Barclay can already say “hello”, “bubbles”, “wash hands” and several other words in Mandarin. Ursula, also two, can say “fish”, “horse” and “more food” and her Mandarin vocabulary already stretches to more than 50 words.

But this isn't Beijing or Shanghai, and neither are Barclay's or Ursula's parents Chinese. Both children are English and this is a day care centre housed in a Welsh Presbyterian chapel in the City of London.

Welcome to Hatching Dragons, Britain's first bilingual English-Mandarin nursery.

Here children like Barclay and Ursula are just as likely to sing a Chinese nursery rhyme as an English one. Numeracy games are played with Chinese characters as well as Roman numerals and lunch includes not just sandwiches, but spring rolls and fried rice.


LFEE immersion courses new dates for 2016-2017

23 October 2015 (LFEE)

LFEE Europe has been an international course provider since 2002 offering structured Courses for Primary and Secondary teachers of French and Spanish. We run courses in Lyon, Salignac and Malaga for language teachers from all over the UK and the rest of Europe.

Funding for all our courses is available through the European Union Erasmus+ Programme (KA1) and covers course fees, accommodation, subsistence as well as travel expenses. All our courses are GTCS accredited.

Should you be interested in taking part in one of our courses in 2016-2017, please see the course brochure and visit the LFEE website in the first instance.


Magnifico! Italian language pupils are top of the class

31 August 2015 (Herald)

A pioneering project to teach primary pupils some of their lessons in Italian to boost language learning has had remarkable results. Seventeen pupils from the junior school of St Aloysius' College, in Glasgow, recorded A passes in their Intermediate 1 Italian language exams - qualifications which are normally sat by pupils in the third year of secondary.


Lost for words to dreaming in French - one week of language immersion in Lyon

20 May 2015 (Guardian)

Despite many attempts, I had never quite got to grips with French. But by the end of a week-long immersion I learned more than in 15 years of false starts.


Lefèvre funding for French exchange trips

23 April 2015 (British Council)

Develop the speaking confidence of your pupils in advance of oral examinations with a trip to France. The Lefèvre Trust is offering grants of up to £5000 to UK schools to facilitate reciprocal visits to their partner schools in France. Application deadline is 19 May 2015.

Visit the British Council website for more information about the funding programme and how to apply.


Is learning on the job the best way to master a language?

31 March 2015 (The Guardian)

From au pairing to serving ice cream, getting a job abroad can help language students improve their skills. But how do you know which job to choose?


French immersion days for secondary students

24 March 2015 (Institut français)

Bring your class to the Institut français for an exciting day filled with French immersion activities.

Choose between a film viewing or a workshop shedding light on a piece of French culture for your S1 to S6 students, with or without the croissants and juices.

For more information and to arrange a visit, see the Institut français website.


Face it: you probably won't become fluent on your year abroad

6 February 2015 (The Guardian)

It’s expected that language students will return having mastered our chosen language, but in reality this is often not the case.


Summer courses in Germany for secondary pupils 2015

21 January 2015 (UK-German Connection)

Do you have pupils who are interested in going to Germany this summer? UK-German Connection has two fantastic courses that might be of interest to them, both of which combine language learning with cultural trips and excursions, as well as staying with host families. The application deadline for both courses is 10 March 2015

German Pupil Courses: These two-week language and culture courses are part-funded and are for pupils in S5 or S3. Follow the link for further details and the online application.

German Scholarships Programme: This is a free four-week programme for excellent students of German in S5. Follow the link for further details and the application form.

There are also opportunities for teachers to act as group leaders on the German Pupil Courses.

Why I would choose an immersion course over a language degree

6 January 2015 (The Guardian)

After a disappointing four year degree in Arabic, it was only in an immersion course that Fred McConnell discovered the magic of language learning.


How my school integrates languages into the primary curriculum

10 November 2014 (Guardian Teacher Network)

Teacher Heather Martin on why integrating Spanish in every aspect of her school – such as assemblies, tutor time, history and geography – is the key to language learning success.


Professional learning opportunities from Cultural Organisations

8 September 2014 (SCILT)

A number of SCILT's partner cultural organisations provide language courses for teachers. These courses aim to train teachers in a new language or to upgrade their current language skills and can range from half-day workshops to immersion courses abroad.

SCILT has compiled a grid of the immersion courses available from our partner cultural organisations, with information on the required level of language for participants, the teaching stage for which the course prepares them and whether there is funding available. We have also provided links to the cultural organisations that provide language courses for teachers here in Scotland. 

Visit the Professional Learning pages in the School Managers section of our website to view the courses on offer.


Education Secretary Michael Russell – Celebrating language learning

28 March 2014 (Engage for Education)

This week I had the pleasure of meeting pupils and staff at Newton Central School in Auckland. Within the school there is the Te Whānau Rumaki O Te Uru Karaka specialist Māori immersion education unit which teaches all pupils Māori, in a similar system to our own Gaelic medium education units and schools.


LEAP: funded professional development courses 2014

21 February 2014 (LEAP)

Take advantage of funding opportunities to improve learning and teaching while expanding the European Dimension in your curriculum!

Language Education And Partnerships (LEAP) offers a range of professional development courses for staff in primary, secondary, further and adult education. Their courses focus on the development of Learning & Teaching within the delivery and development of languages.  Courses are available in France, Germany, Italy and Spain.

These immersion courses, which can be funded through the new Erasmus+ programme, are purposefully designed to enhance teaching practice while further developing language skills and intercultural understanding as a tool for generating original resources.

The deadline for funding applications is 17 March 2014, in respect of courses starting from 01 July 2014. Visit the LEAP website for more information, or simply contact the team on 01922 724993 or email


Erasmus+ French immersion courses for teachers

20 February 2014 (Institut français)

Primary and secondary teachers in Scotland are lucky as they have a great choice for immersion courses in France. Here is a selection of immersion courses specially designed for teachers. These courses are run by organisations which are accredited by the French Ministry of Education and are easy to recognise as they have the "label Qualite FLE".

Funding for all these courses is available through the new European Erasmus+ programme. Successful applicants will receive funding which covers all expenses - course tuition fee, accommodation, subsistence and travel.

See the attached spreadsheet for details of the courses available and how to apply.

Internationalising STEM

18 February 2014 (Inside Higher Ed)

Washington – The theme of this year’s Association of International Education Administrators conference is “Universalizing Global Learning in the 21st Century Academy,” and a session on Monday focused on broadening, if not universalizing, global learning experiences for students who have historically been underrepresented in study abroad: those in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

The barriers to study abroad for these students -- among them strict and demanding sequential course requirements and a lack of time or interest in foreign language study -- are by now legion. However, presenters described two ambitious programs, both modeled on the University of Rhode Island’s longstanding International Engineering program, in which students double-major in a STEM field and a foreign language and spend an entire year abroad.


Gaelic Immersion course for Teachers - GIfT

30 January 2014 (Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

Are you a qualified teacher considering a career in Gaelic-medium education? If you already speak some Gaelic, the Gaelic Immersion course for Teachers may be for you.  See the website flyer for details.

Deadline for expressions of interest extended to 17th February 2014.


Student blog – Peter Reid’s Pupil Immersion Visit to China, Tianjin Summer Camp 2013

30 January 2014 (Engage for Education)

Peter Reid was one of the senior pupils who represented the Edinburgh Confucius Classroom hub at the 2013 Pupil Immersion Visit to Beijing and Tianjin. This is an annual visit organised by the Tianjin Education Commission (TEC) and the Confucius Institute for Scotland’s Schools (CISS), based at the University of Strathclyde, which aims to develop young people’s understanding of Chinese culture and language. The group visits many Chinese, historic monuments and takes part in cultural lessons and intensive Mandarin language classes, for which the young people receive SQA accreditation.


2014-2015 Immersion Courses in France and Spain: Register now !

10 January 2014 (LFEE)

We have just published dates for our courses in France and Spain running between July 2014 and June 2015.  Download the attached document or visit our website to access course descriptions and dates.

What is the procedure for funding application and when can I start the process?

  • To attend one or more of our immersion courses or job shadowing programmes in 2014-2015, your school must apply for funding from the new European Union Erasmus+ Funding Programme for you and your colleagues before Monday 17 March 2014, 12h00 European time
  • One teacher can do one or more courses, or a group of teachers from the same school can attend the same course. The Erasmus+ grant includes: course tuition fee, accommodation/subsistence fee, travel expenses and an organisational support fee, the sum of which covers all expenses for the teachers taking part in our courses.
  • Application for Erasmus+ funding is done solely electronically, and the e-form will be available towards the end of January (we will keep you informed). Before you can apply for funding your school must be registered on the European Commission Authentication Service (ECAS) then get a Participant Identification Code (PIC) here. The British Council has produced a step-by-step ECAS guide to help you through the process. This is just a one-off process for your school and the registration will last until 2020. This can be done straight away so don’t delay!

Remember to get in touch with LFEE in the first instance to pre-register so that we can let you know when the e-form becomes available and give you further guidance:

Roslynn Main -

Tel: 0131 343 2222


Mandarin immersion course for teachers July 2014

10 January 2014 (CISS)

CISS will be running a Mandarin immersion course for teachers in Scotland this summer in partnership with the Tianjin Education Commission and Hanban. This course is suitable for primary or secondary teachers who are looking to teach beginners’ level Mandarin Chinese or introduce Chinese/China in their schools.

The course will take place in Tianjin between the 12th and 27th July 2014.

All costs for tuition, accommodation and food (3 meals a day) will be covered. In order to ease organisation, CISS will book flights and arrange visas for all participants but we will not cover the cost of this. The estimated cost for flights and visas will be roughly £1000. Participants will also be responsible for the cost of their own insurance.

To register for this course, please email by Friday 31 January.

A new route into Gaelic Teaching to be piloted

16 December 2013 (Bòrd na Gàidhlig)

Teachers currently employed in English-medium education have the opportunity to partake in an exciting new course that would enable them to develop their Gaelic language skills to such a level that they would be able to teach through the medium of Gaelic.

A Gaelic Immersion Course for Teachers (GIfT) will be piloted in 2014, offering a Gaelic immersion experience leading to advanced competence in Gaelic and professional development opportunities for qualified teachers with intermediate level Gaelic (Higher Gaelic or equivalent) wishing to work in Gaelic-medium education.


Immersion Courses in France and Spain for Primary and Secondary School Teachers

8 November 2013 (Le Français en Ecosse)

Le Français en Ecosse run series of Immersion courses in France and Spain during the summer. There are courses suitable for both Primary and Secondary teachers. Erasmus funding may be available.

To reserve a place on one of these courses please contact Ros Main on

Good practice resource - Languages at the heart of the curriculum: Springfield Lower School

24 October 2013 (Ofsted)

At Springfield Lower School, teaching Italian through an approach based on content and language integrated learning (CLIL) is firmly established. Language lessons use the current topic in the curriculum for their content. Links with Italy and its culture provide rich opportunities to develop the pupils’ understanding and appreciation of other cultures.

This is one of four examples, two primary and two secondary, where pupils make rapid progress in learning modern languages through a curriculum designed to extend opportunities to be immersed in the language studied.


This year’s Summer Bridge Pupil Immersion Camp in China

6 September 2013 (Engage for Education/CISS)

In July a group of 79 pupils and teachers from across Scotland set off on an unforgettable trip to China. Organised by the Confucius Institute for Scotland’s Schools, and funded by Scottish Government, Hanban (Confucius Institute Headquarters) and the Tianjin Education Commission; the trip gave pupils from Confucius Classroom Hubs the opportunity to spend an intensive 18 days studying Mandarin and experiencing Chinese culture in Beijing and Tianjin.

At the end of their stay they all obtained SQA accreditation and a YCT (Youth Chinese Test) Certificate. The Tianjin Education Commission were so impressed with the group that they have offered a number of scholarships to Scottish young people to study Chinese in Tianjin for a year. It wasn’t, however, all hard work, the group had the chance to meet some fantastic people, eat some delicious food and visit some famous sights, such as the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace and the Olympic Park. They also had the unique opportunity to spend time with their partner schools and in Chinese homes. The trip culminated in a closing ceremony for children from all over the UK. The young people performed in front of hundreds of people and participated in a poster competition in which pupils from the East Renfrewshire Confucius hub took first place. It was a memorable trip for all involved and goes a long way to strengthening existing relations between China and Scotland.


Easter 2014 immersion courses for teachers in France and Spain

23 August 2013 (LFEE)

Le Français en Ecosse/LFEE Europe have a few places still available on the following Comenius-funded courses being offered during Easter 2014. The deadline to apply to the British Council for the Comenius funding is Tuesday 17 September 2013. Successful applicants receive a grant award of up to €2,500 which fully covers the course fee, subsistence and accommodation, as well as travel expenses.

Easter 2014 Course Dates

(Courses run from Saturday to Saturday)

Course Title



Teaching French in the Primary School

(from elementary to advanced)

12 April – 19 April



Teaching French in the Secondary School

(advanced speakers)

5 April – 12 April

12 April – 19 April


Immersion en Bretagne:  A cross-curricular approach to the Learning and Teaching of French through contemporary French culture (from intermediate to advanced)


5 April -12 April



Teaching Spanish in the Primary School

(from elementary to advanced)

5 April – 12 April

12 April – 19 April



Teaching Spanish in the Secondary School

(from elementary to advanced)

5 April – 12 April

12 April – 19 April




For more details see the attached pdf file.

Please contact Roslynn Main at LFEE in the first instance for further information or to reserve a place on the course of your choice.

phone: 0131 343 2222

Related Files

The French Connection

9 August 2013 (TES)

Exchange trips to France, or further afield, were once a rite of passage for many British students, who returned with a stash of new swear words and tales of strange foreign food.  But in these risk-averse times the custom is under threat, as Irene Barker reports.


Immersion en Bretagne : a cross-curricular approach to the learning & teaching of French through contemporary French culture

17 June 2013 (LFEE)

LFEE has developed a new immersion programme aimed at Primary and Secondary teachers of French.  Scottish teachers are eligible for a grant from the British Council under the Comenius programme.


  • Focusing on Brittany’s rich cultural heritage, we will raise your awareness of contemporary France in general, and on the topic of health and well being in particular.
  • Through interactive workshops, we will incorporate history, geography, health and well being, music, arts and cinema to the teaching of French as a foreign language.
  • We will provide a platform for new resource development, including the use of ICT in the class, Internet/iPads-based activities.
  • Participants in this session will be joining us from Australia and Europe, giving us the chance to share pedagogy, ideas, resources and best practice across primary and secondary levels, in both hemispheres.

Level of French: Intermediate to Advanced

Dates: 5 - 12 April 2014

Place: Rennes, Brittany

Deadline for application: Tuesday 17 September 2013

For further information, contact Richard Tallaron ( or visit the LFEE website for details of alternative immersion courses which are available.


St Elizabeth’s Spanish Day celebrates Government’s 1+2 Approach to Languages Pilot

6 June 2013 (Engage for Education)

St Elizabeth’s held a Spanish Day to celebrate their involvement in the Scottish Government’s 1+2 Approach to Languages Pilot. Every class was timetabled to participate in a variety of activities which were either led by their teacher or by visitors supporting the day.


Learning holidays: Picking up a new skill on a break in Lapand, Italy - or the Maasai Mara

26 May 2013 (The Mail)

I decided 2013 was to be a year of acquiring new skills. So I signed up for swimming lessons at my local pool, enrolled for Italian evening classes and began a course in leadership for me and my dog - the idea is that I lead, and she follows, but it doesn't always work like that. I then started exploring options for learning holidays and soon discovered there is nothing you can't learn on holiday…language being a big sector.


Articulate Language Camps! Summer language and activity camps in Scotland for young people

30 April 2013 (Articulate Language Camps)

The Articulate Language Camp team are pleased to announce they have extended their offering for this summer and have a selection of options available for children to attend summer immersion camps full of language workshops, sport and adventure.

In addition to the International Camp (S3-S6) which will bring together learners from French, German and Spanish speaking countries to work on digital media projects and take part in sport and adventure activities together, there is also the opportunity to attend shorter camps:

  • Launch Camp (P4-P7, a one night stay at camp)
  • Edge Camp (P7-S2, a two night stay at camp)
  • Summit Camp (S2-S6, a two night stay at camp)
For full details and how to book, please visit the Articulate Language Camps website.


KENYON: While abroad, politeness, flexibility can bridge language gap

24 April 2013 (Daily Nebraskan)

“Gracias,” “Dĕkuji,” “Danke,” “Takk,” “Merci,” “Thank you.” Languages can be a lot of fun. They can also be challenging.


Edinburgh Gaelic Primary seeks bilingual janitor

16 April 2013 (The Scotsman)

The Capital’s first Gaelic primary school is to launch a drive for bilingual janitors and dinner ladies as part of radical moves to offer “total immersion” language-learning. Teachers at Parkside Primary – or Bun-sgoil Taobh na Pàirc – said they hoped its dining hall and corridors would soon resound to phrases such as “Cuir air falabh na truinnsearan agaibh!” (“clear away your plates!”) and Cus còmhraidh! (“too much chat!”).


Experience China 2013

27 March 2013 (CISS)

Hanban is pleased to announce that the application to the immersive teacher training course Experience China 2013 is now open.

The course will be running from July 22nd to August 9th this year for three weeks. It is an introductory course to Chinese language and culture, and is aimed at the secondary and possibly primary teachers who are looking to teach beginner’s level Mandarin Chinese in their schools (secondary placements will have priority.) All in-country costs are generously covered by the office of Chinese Language Council International (Hanban); travel and visa costs, however, are not included.

Please find more details and how to apply from the e-flyer attached. The course guide is available on the IOE Confucius Institute for Schools webpage from which you can also read about last year’s Experience China course.

Apply by 19 April 2013.

If you have any questions, please get in touch at or


Related Files

Immersion Courses in France and Spain for Primary and Secondary School Teachers - Autumn 2013

22 March 2013 (LFEE)

This is our 12th year working under the Comenius programme and our expertise in delivering Training Courses for teachers is now recognised by all European National Agencies. Our courses are fun and motivating, and take place in the UNESCO World Heritage city of Lyon, and in Malaga, the capital city of the Costa del Sol in Andalucía.

Participants are encouraged to speak in the target language as much as possible in social situations and on the cultural excursions. Different levels are catered for as the class is often broken into smaller groups.

Successful applicants receive support from the European Union Comenius Lifelong Learning Programme available through the British Council. The grant of up to €2,500 fully covers the course fee, subsistence and accommodation, as well as travel expenses.

There are still a few places available for this autumn, so take advantage of this opportunity now.  See the attached flyer for course details, dates and how to apply.

My Spanish students write their own plays to improve their English vocab

18 March 2013 (The Guardian)

Role play and interactive technology helped primary teacher Jeremy Dean increase his foreign students' English vocabulary at a language immersion school in Spain.  I work in Spain and teach English to Spanish six and seven-year-olds. No, I don't just teach them English, I also teach them science, numeracy, history, the whole primary curriculum, in English.


Chinese teaching growing in US, helped by Beijing

16 March 2013 (Arab News)

Susan Wang couldn’t speak English when she arrived in California from Taiwan, aged 16.
Now 49, she heads a school offering US children a similar experience, plunging them into a Chinese world.  And her establishment is part of a rapid expansion of “immersion” Mandarin language programs in the United States, helped notably by Beijing providing low-cost native-speaker teachers to cash-strapped US schools.


Related Links

China encourages language classes in US schools (Raw Story, 16 March 2013)

Immigrants to be banned from taking driving tests in foreign languages in bid to stop cheating and boost road safety

6 February 2013 (Daily Mail)

Immigrants are to be banned from taking driving tests in 19 foreign languages in a bid to stop cheating and boost road safety, it was announced Tuesday. As well as beating fraud and keeping unsafe drivers off UK roads, the move to end foreign translations and translators will increase ‘social cohesion and integration’ in Britain and cut costs, the Government said. Those learning to drive can currently take their theory and practical driving tests in any of 21 languages.


Sounds like a success in any language

11 January 2013 (TES)

Had I read "Buenos dias, bilingualism" (4 January) six years ago, I might have thought: "Here comes a crackpot idea that will cause chaos for 18 months, then be reformed or rethought for a further year, before being forgotten without fanfare." Now I think: "About time too. Why has this taken so long?" It's not as if reforms have been thin on the ground recently.


Related Links

Buenos dias, bilingualism (TES, 4 January 2013)

‘On location’ blogs

28 November 2012 (Radio Lingua)

Read the latest blog posts from those learning the language and culture in Germany, Spain, France and Italy.


Welsh parents speak out over bilingual 'enforcement'

23 November 2012 (TES)

Welsh-language primary and secondary schools must immerse pupils in the language and limit the amount of English they are allowed to speak if Wales is to become a bilingual nation, according to campaigners.


Articulate Language Camps in Scotland 2013

18 November 2012 (Articulate Language Camps)

Camp 2013 is open to all 14-17 year olds who are learning foreign languages and want a fantastic, fun camp experience to boost their confidence and language skills. Articulate language camps are open to all learners of English as a foreign language and English native speakers learning French, German and Spanish. By bringing together speakers of different languages from all over the world, we hope to encourage the real-life use of a foreign language whilst forging friendships that will last a lifetime. Visit the website for more information and how to book.


Even the boys wore woolly tights

17 November 2012 (Guardian)

After two memorable years I can say with certainty that no reading or even language lessons can prepare anyone adequately for a family move to a country as wonderful, complex and sometimes dark as Russia, and also marvel that we were so ready to take such a leap with our children.


European personalities urge EU leaders to back Erasmus

9 November 2012 (European Commission)

More than 100 European personalities from the worlds of education, art, literature, economics, philosophy and sport have signed an open letter to EU Heads of State and Government in support of the threatened Erasmus student exchange programme. The signatories come from every Member State of the EU and include the Spanish film director Pedro Almodovar, the president of FC Barcelona Sandro Rosell, Nobel Prize winner Professor Christopher Pissarides and several Olympic champions.


Related Links

Record Number of UK Students Study or Work Abroad in Europe with Erasmus (British Council, 16 November 2012)

Ruta Quetzal BBVA 2013

25 October 2012 (Consejería de Educación)

Ruta Quetzal BBVA is an “enlightening" and “scientific” journey of initiation in which culture and adventure come together. Thanks to this initiative, over the past 22 years nearly 8,000 young people from Europe, the Americas and countries such as Morocco, Equatorial Guinea, the Philippines and China have had the opportunity to discover the human, geographic and historical dimensions of other cultures. Successful participants will travel to Panama and different regions of Spain.

To learn more about the competition, eligibility and how to apply visit the Ruta Quetzal 2013 webpage.


University of Strathclyde Education Scotland British Council Scotland The Scottish Government
SCILT - Scotlands National centre for Languages