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Steel City Schools Partnership Staff Mobility to Spain
Start date: Jun 1, 2015, End date: May 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

To meet the requirements of the new KS2 curriculum, we need to introduce language teaching consistently across the schools in our Trust, increasing our staff’s confidence. We have a high percentage of teachers with little or no previous knowledge of Spanish. We need to offer them support across the Trust, allowing them to develop their language skills and cultural knowledge and encourage them to “have a go” and learn with the children in a fun and non-threatening way. We want to give our teachers the chance to discover lots of new, fun and exciting teaching methods and materials that they can use with our pupils. We also believe that it is vital to develop an international dimension across the curriculum in order to develop our pupils’ intercultural understanding, developing links between Spanish and other curricular subjects and using the language in an incidental way through daily/weekly routines that will make the language more meaningful to all. We also want to introduce Spanish into KS1 and Early Years. With the introduction of MFL in Reception we aim to immerse our children in the sounds of the language. Developing early listening and speaking skills helps pupils with pronunciation and retention of the language for learning at a more sophisticated level in KS2. We would also like to use this opportunity to improve our provision for our pupils with Special Educational Needs and low basic skills. Learning a language is a level playing field for all including those children who struggle academically. It is wonderful to see them thrive in language classes where they can shine just as brightly as their peers. Language learning raises self-esteem in these pupils, which then has a knock-on effect in other areas of the curriculum. Establishing links with a Spanish school will help us to show our pupils first hand the reality of life in Spain, improve their cultural knowledge and establish relationships to enable future projects to take place that will engage our pupils and add to their enjoyment of language learning. We would like to develop a collaborative project across the three schools of our Trust. We will work together and pool our skills and knowledge to establish a high quality language provision within three schools. To support this, we would like three members of staff from each of the three schools in our trust (nine in total) to take part in immersion training courses in Spain over the course of two years. These courses include intensive language learning, developing cultural knowledge, language teaching methodology and links with Spanish primary schools. This will result in great improvements in language provision. Language teaching will be more consistent with better teaching. It will be progressive and well-planned and attainment will improve as a result. Languages will be embedded into the life of the schools and into daily routines and other curriculum areas, reinforcing learning and impacting on attainment. Language learning will be introduced into KS1 and EYFS. The schools will be better resourced with improved and more authentic learning environments. There will be more extracurricular provision for pupils and more parental/community involvement in the life of the school. There will be even more collaboration between the three schools as a result of this project. Our pupils will have a much better experience of language learning that is more consistent, progressive and real with better teaching and better resources. This will lead to better outcomes and improved attainment. Through the link with the Spanish school, they will have the chance to develop friendships which could potentially impact on their future lives. They will understand much better why they are learning languages and will see the purpose of doing this. This will impact on their aspirations and future career goals.

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