Language awards reward innovative learning and teaching

Excellence in language teaching has led to awards for schools and education groups in the East of England, West Country and West Midlands.

Eleven awards for excellence in language teaching have been made this year by the CfBT Education Trust.

Successful projects received a European Language Label to reward innovative teaching and learning.

Trust director Kathryn Board said she hoped the awards would lead to a revival of language teaching.

Northgate High School in Norfolk produced programmes in Spanish and German for students also taking courses in ICT, mathematics and science.

Comberton Village College in Cambridgeshire and Northgate High School received The European Language Label for work bringing languages to life and were both involved in making a foreign language film with Anglia Ruskin University.

Comberton College held a spelling competition to help Year 7 pupils to improve their memorisation techniques.

It was so popular that it was taken up by other schools throughout the UK.

Bedford Borough School Improvement Service designed materials for language learning for students specialising in mathematics and science.

Parents of Italian bilingual children in Cambridge designed activities that could be worked on jointly with primary schools they had developed contacts with in Italy.

Gloucestershire College ran a programme for local schools where cookery training was given to budding masterchefs in Italian.

'Global citizenship'

Devon Development Education (DDE) focused on the geography and people of Mali in French.

Sharon Tanner, project coordinator for DDE, said: "We hope it illustrates the value and importance of education for global citizenship and intercultural understanding."

Four schools in the West Midlands combined language learning with skills needed in the fashion industry.

More than 250 students saw the value of language skills in business, manufacturing, design and events management.

Ms Board, from CfBT Education Trust, said: "At a time when there is so much negative news regarding language learning in the UK, it is heartening to have so many examples of innovative and creative work."

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