Latest News

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

Latest News

11 April 2024 (SCILT)

We’re delighted to announce the winners of our recent poster competition for school-aged learners of Italian of any level (including those with no prior learning). The prompt was ‘Cosa significa L’Italia per me’ – what Italy means to me – and we asked learners to include as much Italian language as they were able to. We received some fantastic entries across the four different age categories, and the S1-S3 category was especially popular, so we decided to feature some specially commended entries too. A big thanks to everyone who created a poster for the competition, and to their teachers who sent in all the entries!

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11 April 2024 (Goethe-Institut)

The Gimagine Award for young learners (aged 14-18) is finally here! Become one of the first classgroups to enrol in this new online programme to engage your students through fun German videos and bite-sized exercises. Enter your classgroup in the First Finisher’s Competition for a chance to win an invitation to the Sommerfest der deutschen Sprachen on 1 July, hosted by the German Embassy in London! Travel costs will be covered. Submission deadline is 9 June 2024. Please note only state schools are eligible for participation.

Visit the Goethe-Institut Gimagine Award website for more information.

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9 April 2024 (Goethe-Institut)

We are keen to expand our GEM (German Expert Mentors) programme and would like to offer teachers across the UK the opportunity to offer school-to-school support via coaching and training. We are currently looking for German teachers in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland who would like to work for us as professional development trainers for German teachers. On behalf of the Goethe-Institut they will be offering coaching and training courses for German teachers across the UK.

Along with several years of experience in teaching German as a foreign language at a primary or secondary school, applicants must have the support and approval of their headteacher confirming that the school supports their participation in the programme. 

Visit the Goethe-Institut website for full details and to apply by 3 May 2024.

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9 April 2024 (Consejería de Educación)

British/Irish teachers of Spanish can apply for a one-week immersion course for Summer 2024 in Ávila, Segovia or Santander (a good command of Spanish is required).

The grant covers the course, accommodation and meals, as well as the cultural programme. The grant does not cover the journey to Spain or the return to the UK. Travel and/or health insurance is also not included

This call is not for Spanish nationals.

Visit the Consejería de Educación website for more information and apply by 24 April 2024.

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28 March 2024 (DAAD/ILCS)

The DAAD/ILCS German Language Competition 2024 is now live! All levels of German learners are invited to take part, use their written German skills and have the chance to win some exciting prizes.

GLC 2024:

This year, the competition takes newspapers as its theme. Entrants are asked to put together the front page of a fictional newspaper in the German-speaking world. The catch: they are writing the final edition of 2024 and must select the most important stories of a year that has not yet finished.

Who knows what the year might bring? How is our understanding of events influenced by the way they are reported? By writing two or three short articles from different categories, participants have complete freedom to imagine how the year might unfold and bring their unique voice and perspective to the reporting. It allows entrants to explore the world of news and German-language media and play with different writing styles.

All winners will be invited to a journalism workshop and prize ceremony in London, with an overnight stay for those coming from outside of London! This will take place in October 2024.

Teaching materials:

We would especially like to draw your attention to the teaching and learning material which we have prepared to accompany the competition this year. A workbook can be found on our website with exercises on topics related to journalism for students at all levels, and which can be used both for classwork and individually. There is also a separate document which compiles background information on the press in Germany, a useful newspaper glossary, German media resources for learners to explore and further teaching materials designed by German organisations explicitly for use in schools!

How to enter:

You can find all information about the competition including the brief, instructions on how to take part and the teaching and learning material on the DAAD/ILCS German Language Competition 2024 website.

The closing date for entries to the competition is 6 June 2024.

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27 March 2024 (Scottish Book Trust)

According to the 2011 census, 1.5 million people in Scotland identified as Scots speakers, with a further 267,000 reporting that they could understand the language. After English, Scots was the most widely spoken and understood language across Scotland. UK-wide, more people self-reported as speaking Scots than either Gaelic (57,000) or Welsh (562,000), making Scots the UK’s most widely spoken minority language.

Despite this, there is often misunderstanding about the status of Scots as a language. 

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27 March 2024 (The Conversation)

Language acquisition in children is one of the most fascinating features of the human species, as well as one of the most difficult problems in linguistics and cognitive science. What are the processes that enable a child to completely master its native language in just a few years, and to a degree of competence that adult learners of a second language can almost never match?

[..] If it’s so impressive that a baby can learn even just one language, then how do we explain that it can go on to learn two, three or even more?

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25 March 2024 (TES)

The recent announcement that the University of Aberdeen has lifted the threat of compulsory redundancy from its languages staff and will continue to deliver joint degrees in languages was a rare moment of good news for the languages sector.

But the focus on universities hides a much greater opportunity to secure a sustainable future for languages. The curriculum review taking place following the publication of Professor Louise Hayward’s report, It’s Our Future, is a chance to reflect on what languages should look like going forward.

This is a critical moment. Global citizenship is intrinsic to the four capacities of Curriculum for Excellence (CfE), and since 2011 the Scottish government has signalled the strategic importance of languages by investing over £36 million in languages provision in the “broad general education (BGE)”. The introduction of languages from the age of 5 established language-learning as the norm, and many schools embraced it as an opportunity to revise their BGE provision.

But with the implementation and funding of the 1+2 languages policy now complete, there is a real danger that this progress will be squandered. 

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22 March 2024 (University of Strathclyde)

The online Certificate of Continuing Education (CCEd) in Mandarin at the University of Strathclyde is a qualification that, through live-streamed, evening classes, brings beginners to the equivalent of BA degree level (120 credits) over the course of three years. The course will, therefore, overtake the minimum 80 credits required by the General Teaching Council Scotland (GTCS) for teaching in a secondary school. For language teachers already in possession of a language teaching qualification accepted by the GTCS, the course will allow them to add Mandarin to the suite of languages they already teach. On completion of 80 credits, the course will include a four-week summer school in China (tuition, accommodation, and food provided) that will count towards the GTCS residency requirement for full registration. 

The course fees are £950 per year. For teachers who are currently employed in a local authority that hosts a Confucius Classroom hub (click this link for a list of participating local authorities), funding may be available to you from your local authority’s hub funding. Please ask your school/LA contact for details. Additional funding sources are currently being explored.

The university is currently accepting applications for the first three-year cycle of this new course, which will be delivered entirely online. Numbers permitting, the course will commence in September 2024. Further information and application details can be found on the University of Strathclyde website.

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22 March 2024 (SCILT / eSgoil)

SCILT is going to be offering two more online Languages and Your Career sessions before the summer and we'd love to see you there! These sessions will be different from previous ones offered as they will be tailored specifically to particular groups of learners. These will be:

Wednesday 15 May 11.00 - 12.00, a session aimed specifically at Secondary BGE learners (S1-3) which will explore the fun, transferrable employability skills associated with languages. We will examine together how these are a valuable asset in any learner’s skillset.

Tuesday 11 June 2.00 – 3.00, a session aimed directly at Senior Phase pupils just starting new courses. This will look further forward from the perspective of those who have already chosen languages and will include tips on making the most of the language learning experience in school and beyond.

Like previous sessions, these webinars aim to introduce learners to the importance of languages and their associated skills in the workplace, break down stereotypes of careers that use languages, identify appropriate career pathways, and hear examples of people who use languages in their daily work.

Both sessions will take place within the Languages and Your Career Glow Team. Registration is via e-Sgoil.

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21 March 2024 (Consejería de Educación)

Do you have a student currently enrolled in A-level / Advanced Higher Spanish with a brilliant academic record? You can nominate them for the 11th call for “Best Spanish Student Award in the United Kingdom" in collaboration with Junta de Castilla y León. The prize consists of a 3-day stay in Spain for two people.

Deadline for nominations: 5 May 2024.

Visit the Spanish Embassy Education Office website for more information.

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18 March 2024 (UK-German Connection)

Share your thoughts on UK-German school partnerships - whether you already have a long-standing partnership, have just started out, or would like to establish a link, UK-German Connection would like to hear your views. We are currently reviewing our opportunities and services that we provide to schools and teachers to determine how we can best support you and your UK-German school partnerships. 

The survey closes on 17 April 2024. Your suggestions will be anonymised and will help us tailor and develop our future offers and support services.

In the survey, you will also have the opportunity to register your interest in a partner-finder seminar with teachers from Germany, expected to take place in Autumn 2024.

Thank you for your participation!

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5 March 2024 (University of Strathclyde)

A reminder that the University of Strathclyde is currently inviting applications for the latest three-year cycle of the GTCS-approved Certificate of Continuing Education (CCEd) in Italian, due to commence in September 2024.

Details on the course can be found on the CCEd in Italian webpage and applications can be submitted via the online portal.

Any questions/informal enquiries should be addressed to paul.hare@strath.ac.uk.

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1 March 2024 (SCILT / Education Scotland)

Applications for Scotland's Languages Leadership Programme (SLLP) 2024-25 are now open!.

The SLLP builds leadership capacity to achieve a sustainable model for leading language learning and teaching for all. Applications are welcome from colleagues with 3 years' teaching experience or equivalent, who are interested in developing approaches to language learning and in implementing change in their own contexts.

This online programme is delivered jointly by SCILT and Education Scotland. It is free of charge to state schools and offers participants the opportunity to engage with the most up-to-date information from Education Scotland and other agencies involved in the delivery of Scotland’s languages policy.

Core professional learning days take place Friday 21 and Saturday 22 June 2024.

Would you like to know more? Sign up to our online information session taking place on Thursday 21 March

Follow the link below for more information about the programme and to submit your application. Deadline for applications is Monday 29 April

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29 February 2024 (British Council)

Hosting a Language Assistant helps enhance language learning, boost student results and build cultural capital. Flexible hosting options are available with different placement lengths and sharing possibilities.

Applications to host a Modern Language Assistant for the 2024-25 academic year are now open (29 February – 30 April). To guarantee a Mandarin Chinese Language Assistant, you must submit your application by 28 March.

Our team is well-equipped to support you and we would love to hear from you if you would like to discuss how we could help make it work for you in 2024-25. To speak to a colleague, please email LanguageAssistants.UK@BritishCouncil.org

Visit the British Council website to find out more. 

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30 January 2024 (SCILT)

SCILT, in partnership with Qatar Foundation International, is opening registrations for schools who would like to take part in our Discovering the World of Arabic programme in session 2024/25.  

For the coming session, schools will be able to access our traditional courses which run from September to March, or select our shorter introductory courses to offer an experience of Arabic as an L3 to their learners. 

All participating schools will receive: 

  • A dedicated live online lesson delivered every week via Glow Teams for each individual school (time to be agreed with each school) 
  • Asynchronous materials to consolidate and further explore Arabic language and Arab cultures 
  • Ongoing support from the SCILT team  
  • Schools that are new to the programme will be eligible for a start-up grant of £2000, while all participating schools can bid for funding to provide resources and experiences that enhance the language learning and promote a positive experience of Arab cultures 

The collaboration will provide an opportunity for local authority secondary schools to offer L3 learning experiences in Arabic language and cultures. BGE and Senior Phase courses have been co-created by the SCILT team and specially commissioned writers, with language lessons delivered online by teachers of Arabic. Both courses focus on developing conversational Arabic which will enhance learners’ understanding of Arab cultures and, in the Senior Phase course, their employability skills.  

Discovering the World of Arabic is aimed at beginner learners who are seeking to enhance their language learning experience and develop their portfolio of skills. The lessons give learners the chance to explore aspects of Arab cultures as well as providing a solid linguistic foundation for learning the world’s fifth most spoken language. 

Places are limited for this opportunity, so if you would like your school to be considered to take part, please complete the note of interest form by Friday 26 April 2024. Responses given on the note of interest form may inform the final selection of schools for this opportunity. 

Please contact SCILT if you have any questions.  

30 January 2024 (SCILT)

SCILT, in partnership with Qatar Foundation International, is looking for local authority primary schools in Scotland who would be interested in opening the door to the Arab world through our Discovering the World of Arabic programme.   

The collaboration will provide an opportunity for primary schools to offer L3 learning experiences in Arabic language and cultures. For learners in local authority primary schools the course will be offered as a ten-week interdisciplinary block of learning and is aimed at P5-P7 pupils. The course is delivered online, through a mix of live and recorded classes, with supplementary materials being shared via Glow Teams.  

The lessons give learners the chance to explore aspects of Arab cultures as well as providing a solid linguistic foundation for learning the world’s fifth most spoken language. 

Live classes will be scheduled on Thursdays or Fridays. Schools will have the opportunity to opt for lessons in term 1 (September to December) or term 2 (January to March).  

All participating schools will receive ongoing support from the SCILT team and a loan box containing a range of artefacts. Schools that are new to the programme will also be eligible for a start-up grant of £2000, while all participating schools can bid for funding to provide resources and experiences that enhance the language learning and promote a positive experience of Arab cultures. 

Previous participants have told us: 

‘The materials that were provided to the schools were great, the workbooks were very useful throughout the course. The mix of live and recorded sessions was a good idea.’ 

‘We really like the box of resources. We liked learning about the different colours and clothes. We enjoyed using the genial.ly websites.’ 

Places are limited for this opportunity, so if you would like your school to be considered to take part, please complete the note of interest form by Friday 26 April 2024

Please contact SCILT if you have any questions. 

26 January 2024 (SCILT)

Are you a Secondary PGDE student, NQT or ECT of Languages? Would you like the chance to network informally with others in the same boat across the country to share ideas and strategies, and even to chat in other languages from time to time? Then come along to our monthly drop-in sessions! These take place online on the last Thursday of each month.

Remaining dates for this academic year are as follows:

  • Thursday 29 February 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 28 March 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 25 April 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 30 May 4.30 – 5.30pm

These sessions will take place on Corporate Teams. Visit our Eventbrite page to book; see you there!

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15 December 2023 (SCILT)

Calling all primary teachers across Scotland. We are hosting three online Tuesday twilight workshops with invited guests in February, March and April 2024.   

These workshops are free and open to all primary teachers and primary education students in Scotland. 

The sessions will be hosted on MS Teams and will not be recorded.  

Registrations for all workshops are open now via the links above. Please also see attached flyer which can be shared with your networks. 


Related Files

31 August 2023 (SCILT)

Are you a Secondary PGDE student, NQT or ECT of Languages? Would you like the chance to network informally with others in the same boat across the country to share ideas and strategies, and even to chat in other languages from time to time? Then come along to our new monthly drop-in sessions! These will take place online on the last Thursday of each month, starting in September.

Dates are as follows:

  • Thursday 28 September 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 26 October 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 30 November 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 25 January 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 29 February 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 28 March 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 25 April 4.30 – 5.30pm
  • Thursday 30 May 4.30 – 5.30pm

These sessions will take place on Corporate Teams. Visit our Eventbrite page to book; see you there!

Read more...

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