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Language development at KS3, KS4 and whole school cultural awareness at Bedford Free School
Start date: Jun 1, 2015, End date: May 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Through this project, we will improve a number of aspects of teaching within our school, ensuring that we are able to offer consistently good teaching up to A level and to support our pupils to achieve high standards in modern languages. We will • improve teaching and learning across our modern foreign languages department, • increase the spontaneous use of the target language within our classroom, • integrate target languages into our daily routine, • engage the interest of our pupils leading to better attainment in languages, • increase the use of ICT to effectively support pupils learning, • increase the uptake of languages at higher levels in our school. We will establish links with schools in Spain and France to inspire pupils, give them the motivation to learn foreign languages, offering them the chance to have regular contact with native speakers of their own age. We will find ways to support children with low basic skills and support pupils’ literacy development by finding new and innovative strategies to link languages to literacy teaching. We will offer support to our partner schools that are in the process of establishing language teaching in Key Stage 2 and involve parents and the local community more in the life of our school. Our one year project will involve training courses in Spain and France. We have chosen particular courses that are relevant to our needs. These involve; -intensive language learning with native speaker teachers, -language teaching methodology, -professional discussion of aspects of language teaching such as improving literacy through language teaching, -ideas for supporting colleagues in partner schools, -use of ICT and new technologies to support language learning, and -supporting pupils with special educational needs and low basic skills. We would like to involve two members of staff in these training courses. We intend that both members of staff will go to Spain and France during the length of this project. This will then mean that they are in a position to be able to establish a high-quality language provision within the MFL Department and disseminate skills and knowledge to other members of staff within the school. They will share the ideas, knowledge and resources gained with members of staff in other departments to share ideas relevant to them, and to develop more cross curricular work and cooperation across departments. Participants will experience an improvement in professional development and teaching strategies and methods, in language competence, confidence in their abilities and in their future career prospects. They will have a greater inter-cultural understanding post-course, and we will be able to experience and observe best practice in other countries. They will improve their communication skills, both verbal and social, and their wellbeing and lifestyle as teachers will be improved due to an increase in motivation and confidence. They will be more confident to use language spontaneously in the classroom and will be in a position to be more flexible within their teaching role as they will be able to teach both languages to a high standard. Attainment will be improved; we will be able to hold more cultural and international events in school to inspire pupils, with better resources and a more positive and engaging learning environment. Pupil engagement will be improved due to better teaching strategies, use of the target language and a greater awareness of other cultures. Students' horizons will be broadened by real links with students abroad and they will therefore have more self belief in the possibility to travel in the future. There will be an impact on the attainment of pupils with special educational needs as the courses will in part focus on how to best support these pupils through language learning. There will also be a positive impact on our local community. We will, as a result of our training, discover new ideas and materials to help us to develop a programme of multicultural events that will include the local community, parents and other people. We will share resources ideas and strategies through our MFL networks. We will encourage them to access materials through our school website and through the eTwinning portal.
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