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Language Training
Start date: 01 Jun 2016, End date: 31 May 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The context for the project is the Scottish Government policy 'A 1+2 Approach to Language Learning' which has significant impact on all schools in Scotland, with the aim that every child will have the entitlement to an additional language (language 2) from Primary 1 by 2020, with a further language (language 3) to be introduced further up the school. In East Dunbartonshire all schools have made language learning a priority on school improvement plans. Language 3 is Spanish for Douglas Academy and its associated primaries.Information on the LFEE immersion course was made available to teachers via the modern languages development officer for the local authority, and the applicant was selected after discussions with her head of department and headteacher. The immersion course will give the candidate the opportunity to acquire new language skills in real contexts, engage in professional dialogue with fellow teachers and discover first hand aspects of life and culture in Spain.One objective of this project is to further improve the language skills of the applicant. She is already a fully qualified secondary school teacher of modern languages (French and Italian), and this 3 week immersion course would help her to significantly improve her spoken Spanish, an area she identified as a development need in her Professional Review and Development meeting. She is currently undertaking the 3rd (optional) year of an accredited Spanish course at the University of Strathclyde entitled Continuing Certificate in Education. This course is aimed at Modern Languages teachers to allow them to study and gain the necessary qualifications to teach a modern foreign language at both primary and secondary level. This course is recognised by the General Teaching Council of Scotland and completion of the course would allow her to teach Spanish at secondary school level. The day to day exposure to Spanish would have a significant impact on her spoken Spanish, would help her to confidently deliver her teaching in the target language and will help the school follow and fully implement the Curriculum for Excellence. In addition to this, the project will increase the flexibility and mobility of staff across the school curriculum via interdisciplinary learning. There is also a clear need to increase flexibility and choice for our learners and to this end we intend to introduce new courses and teaching methodologies. We wish to add to our certified courses, by introducing courses such as Languages for Life and Work, and to develop out existing elective courses in Spanish. In consultation and agreement with our associated primary schools we have agreed that Spanish will be our L3 (the second foreign language to be taught in all associated primaries). Therefore, to provide our learners with the opportunity to continue to learn Spanish and to build on what they learned in primary school, we intend to introduce Spanish as a language option further down the school. For this, the school will require fully qualified staff. The applicant is very keen to be actively involved in delivering Spanish language courses to colleagues in the primary schools to support the implementation of the Scottish Executives 1+2 policy. We believe that this course will help us to fulfill the above needs in the local authority, whole school community and modern languages departmentA high level of impact is envisaged from this project. The school intends to add to their existing partners within Europe and establish further links and practices with other European schools. High quality learning experiences will be planned within and beyond the classroom and opportunities to link with other schools, either through contacts made on the course or through eTwinning will be taken. This will encourage staff and learners to use ICT more effectively, to communicate with native Spanish speakers and to establish new practices with schools both within the UK and across Europe. It is hoped that both language learning and adopting an international outlook will be seen as something which should be valued and embraced by the school and the wider community.
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