Tag Archives: Learning and teaching

No Travel No Problem! -Bringing Languages Alive During a Pandemic-Seneca MFL Conference 10 October 2020⤴

from @ My Languages

 I had a great time at the Seneca Virtual MFL Conference today.

Here is a copy of my slides:


More resources from the conference can be found here.


"Music, Rhythm and Grammar-Supporting Recall", TM Modern Foreign Languages Icons event, Saturday 26 September 2020⤴

from @ My Languages


I had a great time at the TM Modern Foreign Languages event this morning. There certainly was a great variety of topics and presenters and now I am truly buzzing with new ideas...

Please find a link here to my presentation on " Music, Rhythm and Grammar-Supporting Recall" :

Really looking forward to try in my classroom all the new ideas that were shared!

Music and Technology: Making Language Learning Memorable, a TiLT Webinar-Thursday 29 August 2020⤴

from @ My Languages

I have always been a strong advocate for using music in the Languages classroom and was delighted to be offered to present a TiLT Webinar for ALL London on this topic.

I have been a member of ALL, the Association for Language Learning for as long as I can remember and their programme of free Webinars to support language teachers during the pandemic has simply been amazing. Co-hosted by ALL London chair Helen Myers and ICT expert Joe Dale, there are now more 50 TiLT Webinars that can be accessed through the ALL London website and Joe's YouTube channel.

In my webinar, I shared a range of tools and ideas for integrating music in activities in and outside the classroom. We looked at streaming platforms like Spotify, recording tools and apps as well as sites to source free beats and loops to support pupils' creativity and memorisation of language.

I also presented tools to use melody, rhythm and song lyrics to enhance pupils' enjoyment, motivation and support their recall of key language structures.

I showed different resources to develop teachers' knowledge in order to link music and song lyrics to the culture of the Target-Language countries.

Last but not least, I shared how specific websites, apps and social media can support teachers in discovering new artists and tracks from a range of Target-Language countries.

My slides can be downloaded from here

A copy of the chat discussion and the recording of the webinar  is available from ALL London website and Joe Dale's YouTube channel

The following collaborative Wakelets were started in the session:

Do join in and share your favourite songs to teach languages....

Episode 25 – An EduBlether with Haili Hughes (John Catt Educational Series)⤴


Our first episode in the John Catt Educational Series.

In Part 1 of our John Catt series we interview Haili Hughes on her new book ‘Preserving Positivity’. This is a wide-ranging discussion all about how best to keep experienced educators in the classroom, as well as looking at the reasons why so many teachers leave the profession. We discuss some of the similarities and differences between Scotland and England to identify the similarities and differences. While dealing with complex and challenging aspects of teaching, the book is pragmatic and optimistic, as was this conversation.

This episode is kindly sponsored by
John Catt Educational http://www.johncattbookshop.com

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and Modern Languages Options: What is it and What is the point?⤴

from @ My Languages

The EPQ is not a new qualification but discussing it with Nick Brown, Head of Languages at Lincoln Castle Academy, I started to understand its real potential to promote languages…

I first came across the EPQ at my previous school. Like in many schools, it was used as a way to enrich the curriculum in the VI Form. As such, it is a way to get learners to get a Level 3 qualification as well as develop their research skills and engage with content that is within and beyond the curriculum.

Full details about the qualification can be found here and the Future Ready website but the main feature of the qualification is that, following their own in-depth study, students are asked to produce a project with ONE of the following outcomes:

  •         A dissertation
  •         An investigation or a field study
  •        A performance
  •        An artefact

The work submitted for assessment must be produced in English but-and this is VERY important for language teachers-the research and supporting notes can be in ANY language, which would naturally occur by listening, speaking, reading and note-taking in the language.

If the project is used to complement A Level teaching and learning, the topics can be inspired by some of the A Level work, provided it does not replicate their Independent Research Project (IRP).

The project can also allow students to explore their cultural heritage or the cultural heritage of other people in the community as well as offer them an opportunity to pursue an interest outside of the curriculum. This could be of particular interest for EAL students, as a way to celebrate their cultural heritage, enhance their literacy in English as well as gain a recognised Level 3 qualification. 

Examples of projects for MFL could include:

Has French cinema been a major influence on the world stage? (dissertation-extension from A Level film study)

Is Colombian Spanish a better dialect than other forms? (dissertation)

What trends can be seen in the use of slang words by modern day German teenagers? (investigation/field study)

Interpretation/Performance of a play

Short film in the style of a specific director (artefact)

Self-published book of new translations of poems (artefact)

If you would like to register your interest in the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) or find out more information about MFL-focused titles, click here.  

And there is more…. 

The EPQ is also available for KS4 pupils as a Higher Project Qualification (HPQ, Level 2 qualification) and a Foundation Project Qualification (FPQ, Level 1 qualification). Like the EPQ these qualifications aim to develop learner’s transferable skills and preparing them to the world of work by making them more organised and independent.  More details here

Teaching Walkthrus⤴


I was looking for a new book to read and was recommended this by a friend. It is excellent value, only £3 on kindle! A really good book and I loved reading it – the kind that you just want more and that motivates you to pick it up each time.

The book is structured into three main sections as outlined below in the sketchnote. For those interested in pedagogy, this book is for you. I particularly enjoyed the section called ‘Why?’ which delved into the research and theory behind high quality learning and teaching.

There are many many books out there all promoting high quality learning and teaching and at times it is difficult to know which one you are actually looking for or going to benefit from. This one is the one for me. It has handy top tips that are broken down into smaller ‘how to’ sections. I can easily see this being the focus of a faculty or whole school meeting.

Also, trying to engage all teachers should be an easy prospect, however not all teachers have the time or know where to begin. The focus on short sharp overviews if research really helps everyone to engage in research without become too overwhelmed.



If you have a spare few minutes this summer, purchase this book for the kindle.


Episode 24 – An EduBlether with Patrice Bain (Powerful Teaching – Unleash the Science of Learning)⤴


In this episode of EduBlether, we welcome Patrice Bain, co-author of the book ‘Powerful Teaching – Unleash the science of learning’. We discuss knowledge, critical thinking, assessment, curriculum and lots more.

It was a fascinating discussion with some great practical ideas for how to begin using these research-informed strategies or ‘power tools’ in your classroom.


Listen: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/edublether-episode-24-an-edublether-with-patrice-bain

Episode 23 – Digital Learning⤴


In Episode 23 of EduBlether we discuss Digital Learning. We think about Pedagogy, the SAMR model, equity, access, professional learning and so much more. Let us know your feedback on Twitter @edublether

What is your experience of Digital Learning been? Why do you think we have not made the advancements in Digital Learning that we could have done up until now? What will happen to Digital LEarning when we return to ‘normal’? Let us know what you think.

Listen: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/episode-23-digital-learning

Episode 22 – Nurture and Inclusion – An EduBlether with James Kidd⤴


On this Episode of EduBlether we discuss the very large and complex issue of Nurture and Inclusion with James Kidd. James is passionate about Inclusion and Nurture, and his rich and varied experiences across different schools and local authorities make him a perfect person to have a discussion with about the vast themes explored in this episode.

Listen: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/episode-22-nurture-and-inclusion-an-edublether-with-james-kidd

Episode 21 – Cognitive Science and Retrieval Practice⤴


In this Episode we have a discussion about retrieval practice and developments in cognitive science. We look at the implications for teaching and learning, as well as what this means for the role of Education in a wider debate. We have many tangents in this episode discussing hegemony, knowledge, politics and much more. I hope you enjoy as much as we did.

Listen: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/episode-21-cognitive-science-and-retrieval-practice