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Enhancing motivation and new ideas for teaching languages
Start date: Jun 1, 2015, End date: May 31, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The background to this project is the fact that we tend to get more and more students who are unmotivated to learning languages, while at the same time, language skills and intercultural competence is increasingly emphasized. In addition to this, we feel that we need to keep up within a number of areas, from our own language skills to cultural studies, literature, new didactic methods, cultural events etc. Since we have an advisory group in modern languages whose intent it is to develop didactics and modern research, it feels urgent to get the opportunity to carry out skills development on a broader scale. This, we hope, will promote long-term effects on the language teachers’ professional development and hence on the quality of teaching. Purpose/Objective Our knowledge of the languages will be improved. The new knowledge in life and institutions, and new teaching methods like digital portfolio and ICT will be used in our teaching. As the teaching will be more varied with more up-to-date examples from life and institutions, the chances are greater that more students keep their language and fewer drop out. The courses below contain culture-specific elements that can make the lessons more enjoyable and also promote educational projects about famous musicians, cities, gastronomy and work of art. In addition to this, the courses deal with issues of current politics, health care, school systems, media and religion, areas in which a language teacher needs to be updated continually. Reading projects for increasing literacy among our students will be promoted. Reading literature can be motivating for the students. Tips on literature to teacher lead us to read ourselves, newly published novels in our target languages. This is a way for teachers to keep their language skills alive while at home in Sweden; by this teachers keep up to date with the history and culture of the countries of their target languages. Reading, grammar and language proficiency exercises are integrated with each other in the course content. As the courses focus on how to practice oral and written language skills, we hope to get new ideas for how we should work this out with the students in a better way. Participating teachers are: Bitte Rosengren teacher of French, Italian and Swedish, Helen Johansson teacher of Spanish and English, Yvonne Andersson teacher of German, Spanish and Swedish, Eva Horliz-Andersson teacher of German and English, Anders Jonsson teacher of Russian and English. Bitte Rosengren intends to participate in a course in language, education, culture, digital portfolios, gender and sustainable development organized by the Continuing Education Department at Uppsala University on 14.06-18.06. Helen Johansson intends to participate in “Español para profesores”, a course in didactics, shadowing, language and culture, literature. Yvonne Andersson intends to participate in "Österreich zur Sprache bringen" 03.08-14.08 in Graz and Vienna in Austria, a course in experience-oriented cultural studies, art and culture in teaching, Austrian literature, theater and media educational work, reflection on language , varieties of language, Austrian German, intercultural learning, innovative methodology and didactics for German as a foreign language. Anders Jonsson intends to participate in “Russian as a Foreign Language” Teacher Development Course 03.08-14.08 in Riga, Latvia, a course covering Elements of game in developing grammar awareness; Phonetic exercises for developing listening skills; Use of interactive methods and internet sources teaching Russian as a foreign language. Eva Horlitz intends to participate in "Leben in Berlin" 20.06.-27.6. a course in German experience-oriented cultural studies, the history, the cultural and ethnic diversity of Berlin.

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