Professional learning

Bitesize CLPL

From September 2020 to March 2021 the SCILT Professional Development Officers are scheduling a series of themed on demand and live professional learning sessions that will be open to all in-service and student teachers in Scotland.

Some months, the theme will be applicable to both primary and secondary teachers, in other months the theme will be sector specific.  

Around the middle of the month, we will post a film or a piece of reading (c.15 minutes) on the SCILT website. Registration will open for the live drop-in on the same theme.

At the end of the month, the PDO team will host a live drop-in to discuss the bitesize stimulus and the theme in general. The session will last 45 minutes and will feature examples of current practice. Registration is free and open to all teachers and student teachers in Scotland.

Themes will be revealed in the first SCILT e-bulletin of the month, so sign up to get all the latest details straight to your inbox.

If you do join in live or on demand, why not keep the professional learning conversation going on social media by following and using these hashtags #SCILT_CLPL #SCILT_bitesize #SCILT_dropin.

Under new restrictions, the gathering of evidence to show how learners are progressing with their language learning has been brought into sharp focus. This month, we try to understand more about this important issue – why not join the debate?

In this month’s video, we talk to Lisa Waygood, Faculty Head of Ancient and Modern Languages at St Columba’s School in Kilmacolm, about gathering evidence and making sure it is robust and fit for purpose. She shares her school’s approach, and talks about how evidence is gathered and moderated to support judgments about learner progress.

The strategies discussed relate to general principles of evidence gathering, at all levels and stages of secondary.

Watch the video, then join us for a drop-in session to discuss on Wednesday 28th October!

Things to think about before you come along to the drop-in session…

  • Why do we need to collect evidence?
  • What does a package of robust evidence look like?
  • What is your process for gathering evidence?
  • How do you know if your evidence is enough?

You can keep the conversation going by:

  • Sharing the link to the bitesize with colleagues.
  • Follow and use #SCILT_bitesize on Twitter, tag @scottishcilt and post questions and comments related to teaching languages during lockdown.
  • This month, the drop-in will take place on Zoom between 4pm - 4:45pm on Wednesday 28th October.
  • Register for the drop-in

Lessons learned from lockdown bitesize:

In this film, five teachers working in primary schools across Scotland share some of the lessons they learned about teaching languages during lockdown. Liz and Joe made use of Twitter to set regular challenges for pupils and families. James established his own YouTube channel. Mel and Gillian both taught live lessons as part of the SCILT/eSgoil national school as well as providing interactive materials for children from their own schools to practice consolidate target language vocabulary at home.

For a secondary perspective, we hear from Linda who taught through lockdown both with her own school and with the SCILT/ eSgoil online national classes. Linda explains her experiences of online teaching and shares her insights about how this has changed her as a teacher.

While approaches may have differed for our teachers, several common themes come through in the clips:

  • The opportunities afforded by different technology
  • Differences between live and recorded lessons: the benefits and drawbacks
  • Routine and structure to lessons, chunking the content.
  • Active and interactive content – singing, dancing, cooking.
  • Delayed feedback and evidence of interaction from pupils.
  • Engagement from siblings and families too.
  • The difference in preparing materials for online classes
  • Encouraging interactions in listening and talking
  • The possibilities using a virtual classroom can offer to secondary learners
  • The challenges and successes experienced

Reflective questions:

  • To what extent do the experiences of the bitesize teachers resonate with your experience of teaching languages during lockdown?
  • What platform(s) did you use to teach languages during lockdown?
  • Is there anything you will continue doing/using in your language lessons?  Why?
  • Is there anything you will stop doing/using in your language lessons?  Why?
  • Is there anything you would like to start doing/using with your pupils?  Why?

You can keep the conversation going by:

  • Sharing the link to the bitesize with colleagues.
  • Follow and use #SCILT_bitesize on Twitter, tag @scottishcilt and post questions and comments related to teaching languages during lockdown.
  • There will be separate online drop-in sessions for primary and secondary teachers facilitated by SCILT Professional Development Officers. Drop-ins are an opportunity to share your thoughts on the bitesize resource and/or share your own experience on the lessons from lockdown theme. This month, the drop-ins will take place on Zoom between 4pm - 4:45pm on Wednesday 30th September. 

Register for the drop-in for secondary teachers 

Register for the drop-in for primary teachers

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