Latest News

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

Language Learning - Secondary

Have your say survey – Reimagining youth connections with Germany

23 May 2022 (UK-German Connection)

Calling all young people aged between 12 and 25! Want to have your voice heard on the future of UK-German youth relations? Have your say below!

So much has changed in the last few years. From lockdowns and learning from home, to travel restrictions and political upheaval, it’s affected us all, young and old, no matter where we are in the world.

Whilst the world may be a different place, connections between Germany and the UK are still important. That’s why we’ve put together our ‘Have your say’ survey to get your input on reimagining youth connections with Germany.


SCILT Digital Internship 2020-21 - applications open

9 March 2020 (SCILT)

Do you love languages?

Are you currently in S5?

Would you like to work with other young people and enhance your CV?

Do you enjoy sharing your news, views and opinions on social media?

Well, this role might be for you!

We are looking for committed, dynamic young people to join our team as SCILT interns.  This would see you using social media regularly and collaborating effectively with a team to demonstrate your love of languages and where they can take you.  This is an excellent opportunity for the right person to experience a professional work internship and enhance their sixth year at school.

Please note that interns will be home-based and the opportunity is open to young people across the country. This is an unpaid internship.

Successful applicants must attend a training day in Glasgow. Please note that the application documents state that the training day will be held in June. We now intend to run this training day in August 2020

Application details

Please download and read the Information Pack. It includes the Job Description and Person Specification.

Please download and complete the Application Form. Applications must be submitted with a letter of reference from your Faculty Manager or Principal Teacher of Modern Languages.

Completed applications must be returned to by Friday 24 April 2020.

Wondering whether to apply? Here’s what some of our previous interns have said about the experience:

  • “My highlights were getting to work with other people I hadn't met before, representing a national organisation, creating our own content and deciding ourselves how we wanted to run our social media accounts.”
  • “I loved producing high quality content and collaborating with the other interns. It was really exciting later on in the year when we started to get more interaction on Twitter.”
  • “Meeting new people who share my same passion for languages and coming together to create something valuable was a high point for me.”

Schools may drop foreign languages due to lack of teachers

11 November 2019 (Irish Times)

Some secondary schools [in Ireland] say they will be forced to reduce pupils’ access to foreign languages due to difficulties recruiting qualified teachers, according to a Department of Education audit.

The report also shows evidence of a class gap in access to language tuition, with students in fee-paying secondary schools much more likely to have a choice of languages to study.

By contrast, students in non fee-paying schools are more likely to have access to fewer languages, while thousands of pupils are not studying any foreign language at all for the Junior or Leaving Cert.


DfE seeks university language students to mentor year 9 pupils

23 September 2018 (Schools Week)

The government is turning to university students in a bid to plug the falling number of GCSE pupils taking modern foreign languages.


Runrig-inspired school resource launches in Gaelic schools

22 September 2018 (The National)

A new schools resource which celebrates the contribution Runrig have made to the Gaelic language and culture has been launched.

The unit focusing on the Scots band is from Gaelic educational resources organisation Storlann Naiseanta na Gaidhlig and is being hailed as a key addition to the Gaelic resource corpus.


Summer camps and intensive language classes

29 May 2018 (Institut français d’Écosse )

Institut français d’Écosse is offering summer camps and intensive language classes this July. Young people can choose from a fun drama and language camp, an intensive three day language course or a four-week long course this summer.

Concours de la francophonie 2018 - winners announced

5 February 2018 (Institut français d’Écosse )

The winners of Le concours de la francophonie 2018 have been announced. Please see attached file for the full list.

This competition was launched in 2016 to support and encourage teachers and learners in primary and secondary schools and to showcase their progress as teaching of modern languages in primary schools becomes the new norm. The competition was designed to encourage wide participation: schools need to submit a short video of a class production in French. The selection takes place in two phases, a semi-final at the council level, with a special semi-final for independent schools, and a national final, which took place on 1st February.

The international day of la francophonie is celebrated all over the world on 20 March to celebrate the French language.

Competition: German Olympics 2018 (IDO)

7 December 2017 (Goethe-Institut)

The German Olympics (IDO) is the biggest competition for the German language. Every two years over 100 students from all around the world meet to compete in their most beloved foreign language. We are happy to welcome the German Olympics for schools worldwide to the United Kingdom in 2018 for the second time. The final will take place in Freiburg, 15 to 28 July 2018. The United Kingdom are eligible to send two secondary school students born 2001 to 2004. The German Olympics promotes young people from all around the world to encounter one another thanks to the fact they all study German. They will become friends and build up an international network.


SCHOLAR online sessions - Higher Modern Languages

1 December 2017 (SCHOLAR)

SCHOLAR’s upcoming online sessions include:

Higher Modern Languages on Monday 4 December 2017 at 6:00 pm

Join a session and enter as a guest.

For more information on how to take part in our Online Sessions as well as upcoming sessions, please visit: SCHOLAR's Live Online Sessions.

Please note that worksheets will be available and should be attempted before some sessions.

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

Foreign languages set for less ‘harsh grading’

11 August 2017 (TES)

Move set to encourage take-up of subjects and create more language teachers.

The number of top grades awarded in modern foreign language A levels is likely to increase this summer, after a change brought in by Ofqual to help non-native speakers.

Exam boards have been asked to increase the proportion of students expected to achieve a grade A and above by one percentage point for French, German and Spanish A levels.

The exam regulator decided to intervene after carrying out research that showed native speakers were far more likely to achieve A* or A grades than non-native speakers.

If the ability of this year’s cohort is consistent with previous years, the uplift will be applied to the three A-level subjects.

However, relatively few candidates look set to benefit: a Tes analysis of last year’s A-level results suggests that an adjustment last summer would have resulted in around 200 extra A and A* grades being awarded.

The move from Ofqual has been widely welcomed across the sector, but headteacher organisations argue that it should not be the last word in solving what they see as a long-standing problem.


Word Wizard competition: Motivating young people in their language learning

26 May 2017 (SCILT)

S1-S3 pupils from across Scotland took part in the national final of Word Wizard at the Scottish Parliament on 12 May 2017. Word Wizard is a multilingual spelling competition for pupils learning French, Gaelic, German, Mandarin and Spanish. Forty-nine learners from nine local authorities and independent schools competed in the final in front of an audience of teachers, supporters and guests. Each year pupils and teachers report that the competition increases motivation, enhances language performance and improves attitudes to language learning.

A teacher entering pupils into the final commented: “Practice for the competition has seen pupils increase in their confidence and has allowed pupils to be competitive with each other in a different way.”

A pupil competing in the final said: “I liked learning new words; it gave me a head start in class.”

Another competing pupil said: “I enjoyed performing in front of the crowd, but most of all watching and listening to the other languages, which was inspiring.”

Word Wizard is organised by SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages based at University of Strathclyde, in partnership with the University Council for Modern Languages Scotland. In March 2017, 170 pupils from 20 local authorities and independent schools competed in semi-finals in Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee to battle it out for a place at the prestigious final.

Fhiona Mackay, Director of SCILT added: “It’s wonderful to see so many young people taking part in the Word Wizard competition representing a wide range of local authorities. Having an understanding of another language can really transform a person’s life and encourages the development of a whole range of important skills. Through such events, SCILT aims to offer teachers really motivating ways of enhancing the curriculum so that Scottish young people can reap the benefits of learning languages.”

Word Wizard supports the Scottish Government initiative, “Language Learning in Scotland: A 1+2 approach” by offering a diversity of languages as recommended by the report.

The targets laid out in the Scottish Attainment Challenge are about achieving equity in educational outcomes, with a particular focus on closing the poverty-related attainment gap. One of the key drivers is improved literacy. The competition promotes literacy skills amongst pupils and helps schools develop partnership working with universities.

Word Wizard is supported by the European Commission and the final was sponsored by Colin Beattie, MSP.

Full details of the winners and further information on the competition can be found on the SCILT website.



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.

Language Futures – opportunities for Scottish schools

25 April 2017 (Association for Language Learning)

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

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

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

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

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


Business Brunches 2017

28 October 2016 (SCILT)

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

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

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

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


Languages: GCE A-level

12 September 2016 (Hansard / They Work For You)

Question put to the Secretary of State for Education in the Commons asking 'what plans she has to encourage more young people to take A-level language subjects.'


SCHOLAR live online sessions

5 September 2016 (SCHOLAR)

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

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

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


Schools Modern Languages Question in the House of Lords

24 May 2016 (They Work for You)

Question put by Baroness Coussins in the House of Lords to ask Her Majesty's Government what is their response to the announcement by OCR that they are to discontinue GCSE and A-level examinations in French, German and Spanish.

See the transcript of the debate on the website.


Advanced Higher French resource: Silence de la mer

19 April 2016 (SCILT)

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

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

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


School language learning decline tackled by universities

3 December 2015 (BBC News)

A new scheme to help reverse a sharp decline in foreign language learning in schools in Wales has been announced by four universities.

In June, a report found the number of children studying a language at GCSE fell by a third between 2005 and 2014.

Under the pilot project, Aberystwyth, Bangor, Cardiff and Swansea undergraduates will be trained to coach school pupils on their language skills.

The scheme is funded by Welsh ministers' Global futures programme.

Prof Claire Gorrara from Cardiff University, the academic leading the project, said there was increasing evidence the drop in foreign language learning was limiting young people's educational, training and career opportunities.


Scottish Languages Review - latest issue published

1 June 2015 (SCILT)

The latest issue of the Scottish Languages Review has been published. Issue 29 includes:

  • a review of research related to language learning in the primary school, which is very relevant to the implementation of 1+2.
  • two opportunities to look back in time and examine Scotland’s language education from a statistical and qualitative point of view.
  • two discussions on language policy issues in other Anglophone contexts.

The Scottish Languages Review is THE electronic journal for language practitioners in Scotland and aims to provide language teachers, students, and researchers in Scotland with a strong voice in relation to all aspects of language teaching and learning; promote discussion amongst language practitioners across all education sectors about mutual areas of interest or concern;encourage greater debate between language learning theory and practice.


Revamped language GCSEs will see students discuss tattoos and German thrillers

13 April 2015 (Independent)

For decades GCSE language students have wearily committed to memory such vital vocabulary as “I eat a grapefruit every morning” in search of the skills to engage their French or German counterparts in sparkling conversation. But the era of “Je mange un pamplemousse tous les matins” is heading to the linguistic poubelle in favour of racier topics from tattoos to the Olympics as part of an effort to halt the dramatic slide in Britons learning a foreign tongue to 16 and beyond.


Learning how to love languages

6 September 2014 (Lancashire Evening Post)

Recent research on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills shows that the lack of language skills in the UK is costing the nation an estimated £48bn a year, while the latest A level and GCSE results showed a drop in the number of some modern language entries, sparking concerns over the lack of recognition of the need for foreign language learning. Education Reporter Sonja Astbury looks at some of the work being done in schools to reverse the trend.


How I quadrupled the number of pupils taking German in my school

27 August 2014 (The Guardian)

Award-winning modern languages teacher Sara Davidson explains why the most important language in Europe still has a cloud hanging over it.


Glasgow Schools Modern Languages Newsletter

31 March 2014 (Glasgow City Council)

The latest Modern Languages Newsletter from Glasgow schools has been published. This issue contains: 

  • Interdisciplinary Projects at Celtic Learning Centre
  • Eurozone Crisis IP at Bellahouston Academy
  • Louis Pasteaur languages / science project
  • Euroquiz 2014 in Thornwood Primary
  • Bannerman High's Chinese events
  • Italian events at St Charles' Primary

Making too much of Mandarin is a ‘fundamental error’

28 March 2014 (TES)

It is a “fundamental error” to make students learn languages such as Mandarin merely because they are perceived as being economically important, the director of a prominent European languages organisation has warned.

Young people need to have their own “intrinsic” motivation for learning languages to be successful in mastering them, rather than being driven by external factors such as economics or better job prospects, said Sarah Breslin, executive director of the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML).

“There’s been this idea of we should all be learning Chinese instead of, say, French, but that is a fundamental error, which overlooks the fact that learning any language is useful,” she told TES. “Young people respond to different languages in different ways – the key is to offer them choice. Schools should have the capacity to teach a variety of languages.”


Gaelic strategy

25 March 2014 (Teaching Scotland)

Bòrd na Gàidhlig has two key aims –to increase the P1 intake from 400 to 800 and see an annual rise of pupils learning the language in English-medium schools.

Download PDF of Issue 54. Article is on page 44.


Leeds school to teach English as foreign language

24 March 2014 (Guardian)

A secondary school in Leeds at which more than three-quarters of pupils do not have English as a mother tongue has introduced lessons for all pupils to teach them English as a foreign language.


German Language Adventure

7 February 2014 (Engage for Education)

On Tuesday 28th January, S1 pupils at Bishopbriggs Academy participated in the German Language Adventure.  This was organised and led by an enthusiastic team of native German speakers from the Goethe Institute, Glasgow. The German Language Adventure is a motivational game where participants work in teams to complete interactive challenges and win points. Pupils are able to visit up to fifteen stations and each station represents a city in either Germany or Austria.

German visitors encouraged

21 January 2014 (Herald)

Every year Germans head to the Highlands to indulge in their favourite past-times of hunting, shooting and fishing. Now efforts to attract them have stepped up a gear with the launch of the first German language website for the body promoting the activities.


CISS Newsletter Autumn 2013

12 December 2013 (CISS)

The latest edition of the CISS newsletter has been published. This edition highlights the promotion of Chinese language and culture around the country. Please download the newsletter if you'd like to find out more.

Related Files

'Our Europe' 2014 - film making competition for schools

26 September 2013 (SEET)

Back for its second year, Our Europe is an innovative competition run by SEET and supported by Radio Lingua. Teams from all secondary schools in Scotland are invited to take part in this competition with the opportunity of winning an iPad for their school.

Teams are asked to create a short film to raise awareness of the positive impact of European Institutions on the lives of young people in the EU.

Further details are available on the SEET website, which also contains a link to the dedicated Our Europe competition webpages, or you can download the attached flyer and information sheet. 

Submission deadline for first round entries is Tuesday 10 December 2013.


Chinese Pupils from Tianjin No.42 High School visit St Ninian's High School

2 August 2013 (East Dunbartonshire Council)

A group of 33 pupils and 5 teachers, led by the school’s Director, Mr Hongjie Liu, during their tour of the UK are visiting our East Dunbartonshire Council Confucius Hub, based in St Ninian's High School, Kirkintilloch. This visit will further deepen the partnership between the two schools, St Ninian's HS and Number 42 High School, Tianjin.


Bucking the languages trend

13 June 2013 (SecEd)

In the midst of a decline in foreign language learning in Scotland, some schools are inspiring young people to buck the trend. Sam Phipps finds out how.



Language Learning in Action: First ever National Modern Languages Spelling Bee in Scotland #scottishbee

31 May 2013 (Engage for Education)

On Friday, 31st May, S1 pupils from the Highlands to the Borders will take part in the grand finale of the first ever National Modern Languages Spelling Bee to take place in Scotland. In the spirit of “1+2”, finalists will battle it out in French, German or Spanish to an audience of proud teachers, parents, fellow pupils and invited guests. The event will take place in the Scottish Parliament, thanks to the kind sponsorship of Maureen Watt, SNP MSP for Aberdeen South and North Kincardine.


Why I became a languages teacher: to make my subject relevant to students

12 May 2013 (Guardian)

Head of languages Bertram Richter tell Emily Drabble how using Twitter and Skype has revolutionised his teaching and why he teaches in the UK rather than his native Germany.


Mandarin blossoms among Scots language pupils

29 April 2013 (Scotsman)

It's difficult, unfamiliar, and far from a traditional educational choice. So why are more Scottish pupils bucking the UK trend and venturing out of their comfort zone to study Mandarin?


The end of the school exchange trip? Council bans pupils banned from foreign homes despite NO evidence of abuse

23 March 2013 (Daily Mail)

Hundreds of schools across the country have banned pupils from staying with families on exchange trips abroad because of child protection fears.

British pupils can still visit the home of a French, German or Spanish student, but many are not allowed to stay there overnight. Instead they must stay in hotels or hostels.

Experts say fluency will not improve if pupils aren't fully immersed in culture.


Learn Languages with Arsenal FC

31 January 2013 (European Commission)

Arsenal Double Club Languages is the north London football club’s innovative education programme for children that are learning French, German, Spanish, Italian or Portuguese at school.

The programme uses Arsenal and football as a theme to inspire school children to learn a language. The Club produces fun, relevant learning materials in collaboration with specialist language partners including the Goethe Institute, Institut Français and the Consejería de Educación. These resources include colourful workbooks that are filled with language activities based around football, and also a DVD featuring one of the Gunners’ players speaking in their native language.


Vive la Francophonie - online competition for secondary schools

29 January 2013 (Institut Français d'Écosse)

Every year in March, French speaking countries throughout the world celebrate “La Francophonie”.

On Wednesday 6 March 2013 from 12:45 to 2pm, the Institut Français d’ Ecosse will be holding an online competition about “Vive la Francophonie" for S3-S4 pupils in Scotland.

Visit the Institut Français website or download the attached flyer for more information about the competition and how to enter.

Entries must be submitted by 25 February 2013.


Play with Languages – Using Languages in Computer Games

25 January 2013 (Routes into Languages blog)

On Friday 18th of January pupils from across Yorkshire and the Humber were invited to take part in a pilot event called ‘Play with Languages – using Languages in Computer Games’ at The University of Hull. As the name suggests, the main focus of the day was to motivate pupils and showcase how computer games can be played in different languages and how there are many careers which languages can lead on to, including the gaming world.


UK Linguistics Olympiad 2013

22 January 2013 (UKLO)

Want to develop critical thinking skills? Want to show that languages are fun? Why not consider entering your school in the UK Linguistics Olympiad. It's a competition for secondary students, aged 11-18, in which they have to solve linguistic data problems. It doesn't rely on knowledge of a language but on trying to find patterns in the data.

There are 2 rounds of competition and then a team is selected to represent the UK at the International competition. Round 1 is taken in schools any time week commencing 4th Feb 2013 and students can be entered at either foundation, intermediate or advanced level. Round 2 will be held at St Mary’s College, Twickenham in late March. If you want to find out more, enter your school or just register an interest, please visit the UK Linguistics Olympiad website.


Courses in Germany in summer 2013 for secondary pupils

18 January 2013 (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; the two-week German Pupil Courses and the four-week Scholarships Programme, both of which combine language learning with cultural trips and excursions, as well as staying with host families. The deadline for both courses is 11 March 2013.

For further information please see the websites.

For teachers

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

If you have any questions, please contact Marta Piwowarski (020 7824 1572 /


Linguatrivia 2013

15 January 2013 (Linguascope)

There is still time to enter Linguatrivia, the annual competition open to Year 7 students in England, Wales and the Channel Islands, S1 students in Scotland and Year 8 students in Northern Ireland. Its purpose is to stimulate interest in learning French and to identify and reward achievement on the part of students.

Visit the website for further information. Entries must be submitted by 15 February 2013.


Les Misérables

15 January 2013 (Mary Glasgow Plus)

With the latest Hollywood adaptation of the Victor Hugo novel now released, this article in French can be used to discuss the story in your language class. Different versions are available to suit all levels from P7 to the senior phase.


Intensive French exam revision courses for secondary school pupils

8 January 2013 (Institut français)

The Institut français d'Ecosse in Edinburgh is offering intensive revision courses for S4-S6 pupils from 11 - 15 February.  The courses are based on the skills needed for the SQA exams to boost pupil’s self-confidence in French.

Visit the website for further information on dates/times, course costs and how to enrol.


Revision Courses : Higher and Advanced Higher French

8 January 2013 (Alliance française)

As in previous years, the Alliance Française de Glasgow will be running Higher/Advanced Higher Oral Preparation courses during February for pupils who are sitting their French oral examinations in 2013.

Visit the website for further information on course dates, fees and how to enrol.  Deadline Friday 18 January.


Opportunities and resources from the Goethe-Institut

6 December 2012 (Goethe-Institut)

Resources for Primary German 
Presentations on German customs and traditions with Teachers’ Notes - newly added presentations ”German festivals and customs: Christmas” and “Birthday Celebrations”.

Promoting German for your school
A new DVD “The smart choice: German” is available free of charge from the Goethe Institut Glasgow.

"Vorsprung mit Deutsch”.  A website for German learners where you will find a lot of opportunities and ideas of how to take advantage, improve and make the most of your language skills. 

Roald Dahl gets the Gaelic treatment for schools

2 December 2012 (Scotland on Sunday)

His works have been translated into 34 languages but now a new market is opening up for Roald Dahl – Gaelic.


Spanish Christmas Songs

30 November 2012 (The Comprehensible Classroom)

Martina Bex’s favourite traditional Christmas songs from Spanish-speaking countries, as well as some Spanish-language-versions of English songs. Contains YouTube videos and lyrics.


Millionaire sports stars (resource)

28 November 2012 (Mary Glasgow Plus)

Read this article in Spanish about the richest athletes in the world. Different versions are available, adapted for use with pupils from P7 to S4.


CISS Newsletter Autumn 2012

27/11/2012 (CISS)

The first CISS newsletter has now been published. This edition includes stories on Chinese language and cultural activities and events in schools across Scotland, as well as information on the work that CISS has been doing over the past few months. I’m sure you will agree it is a great showcase of all the fabulous work being done across Scotland to promote Chinese language and culture. Many thanks to those of you who contributed.

You can download the newsletter from the CISS website.


French Christmas resources for primary and secondary classes

26 November 2012 (Institut français d'Ecosse)

The Institut français d'Ecosse has produced some new resources about Noël (Christmas) for use with primary and S1-S3 pupils.

The resources can be accessed from the Institut français website.


Related Links

Noël for S1-S3

Yu han competition

23 November 2012 (YCP)

Can you write a song or rap in Chinese?  Do you have the IT skills to make a video?  If so this is the competition for you.

To find out more and to register visit the website. 


Related Files

MFL - turn the key

23 November 2012 (TES)

Fairy tales can be as much fun to make up as they are to read or listen to. Their magic ingredients are quite simple and they use a lot of pattern and variation.
Start by giving pupils familiar tales like Cinderella in the language they are studying. Cartoon versions in French, German and Spanish are plentiful on YouTube. Show them Jean Cocteau's masterpiece La Belle et La Bete. You could give them key words and phrases in advance to listen out for.


Related Links

Spotlight on ... Twisted fairy tales (TES, 23 November 2012).  Listen to storyteller Vicky Parson tell the creepy original French version of what we now know as Little Red Riding Hood in a TaleTimesStories video.

Twilight in Berlin

22 November 2012 (Mary Glasgow Plus)

Feature in German about the premier of the new Twilight move in Berlin. The article is suitable for use in the secondary German classroom.


Une chanson sur les cadeaux de Noël

22 November 2012 (Mary Glasgow Plus)

Feeling Christmassy? Download this French resource about Christmas presents, which is suitable for P7-early secondary students. You will need to register to access the resource, but registration is free.


New approach to language teaching is unveiled

18 November 2012 (Falkirk Herald)

Bold plans to make language lessons a key part of every child’s classroom experience have been unveiled. The Scottish Government has announced it aims to introduce the European Union 1+2 method of teaching over the course of two parliaments. It will mean putting the resources in place to allow every child to learn two languages in addition to their own mother tongue and is driven by a determination to deliver equality for hundreds of thousands of young Scots


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.


MFL - the long and the short of it

16 November 2012 (TES)

Foreign-language media such as films and advertising can be excellent teaching resources - their use of characters and stories is great for engaging pupils' attention and making vocabulary memorable.

Learning is reinforced when pupils use the target language in role play and written work. If they create a cheesy advertisement with a catchy slogan in Spanish, for example, the vocabulary they use becomes an in-joke they will remember long after the lesson has ended.


English - MFL - singing their praises

9 November 2012 (TES)

Religion can be hard for small children to grasp as it involves abstract ideas. So it helps to have an activity that allows you to discuss world religions in a way that children of all faiths and none can relate to.

Start by asking pupils what problems people all over the world have. Put these words on the board and teach them in the target language.


Innovative secondary language projects

8 November 2012 (SecEd)

A total of 10 education projects from across England and Wales were awarded this year’s European Language Label, which recognises innovative and effective practice in language teaching and learning. The awards were presented at a ceremony at the European Commission’s UK office in London earlier this term and included seven secondary-based projects.  If you would like some ideas and inspiration, follow the link for more information on the winning projects.


Gaelic numeracy questions available in NAR

7 November 2012 (Education Scotland)

The National Assessment Resource now includes approximately 200 numeracy questions in Gaelic, which can be combined to form customised packages for assessment in the classroom at first, second and third level.


Be special: become our fourth partner school

7 November 2012 (Goethe-Institut)

We are happy to announce that the Goethe-Institut London is currently looking for a new, fourth partner school in the UK and invite secondary schools to apply.

PASCH stands for the "Schools: Partners for the Future” initiative. It’s a global network of more than 1500 schools which place a high value on German.

The objective is to build on the school’s achievements and expand German teaching offering cross curriculum and extra curriculum activities with the help and support of the Goethe-Institut London.

Schools who may be interested in working with the Goethe-Institut and would like to know more about this initiative can see further details on our website and should contact Zarife Soylucicek by 30 November 2012 to make an appointment with the senior management of the school. 


Les sports – French interactive wordsearch

6 November 2012 (MFL Sunderland)

Introduce a fun element to learning French sports vocabulary with this online interactive wordsearch from MFL Sunderland. 


Linguatrivia French Competition

6 November 2012 (Linguascope)

Linguatrivia is an annual competition open to Year 7 students in England, Wales and the Channel Islands, S1 students in Scotland and Year 8 students in Northern Ireland. Its purpose is to stimulate interest in learning French and to identify and reward achievement on the part of students.

Students are entered into the competition by their French teacher, and have to sit a 30-minute national test.

Sponsored by Linguascope, the competition offers a range of fabulous prizes. Every participant will receive a certificate and a prize!   For more information and to download an entry form, please visit the Linguatrivia website.


MFL - a darker vocabulary

2 November 2012 (TES)

When we learn a foreign language, we often deal with nice things such as buying ice cream and listing our favourite animals. But bullying is a topic that allows pupils to talk and write about darker things - and every pupil has opinions about it. Wearing a mask or adopting an "alter ego" can make it easier to tell the truth. Similarly, exploring this topic in a foreign language allows pupils to discuss painful things from a safe distance.


Strathclyde Language Ambassadors – Year 2

31 October 2012 (University of Strathclyde)

After last year's successful pilot, the School of Humanities at the University of Strathclyde are once again offering you the opportunity to have a team of Language Ambassadors visit your school. The aim of a visit by a team of Language Ambassadors is to raise awareness amongst young people of the opportunities on offer in Higher Education and in the world of work in general if you study languages. Through presenting their experiences of studying languages and living abroad we hope that our young ambassadors' enthusiasm will rub off on your pupils and influence their choices when thinking about their pathways.

The recruitment for the Ambassadors scheme has been very successful this year with a pool of nearly 80 students interested in taking part. A webpage for the Language Ambassadors scheme will be launched in the coming days and teams will be ready to travel from early November. In the meantime, if you are interested in setting up a visit to your school or want more information about what we offer, do not hesitate to contact Cédric Moreau.

James Bond – Skyfall (resource)

30 October 2012 (Mary Glasgow Plus)

Bring 007 to the classroom with this article in French about the new James Bond movie, Skyfall. Several versions are available, adapted for use with pupils from P7 upwards.


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