This is a PowerPoint presentation made by Russian Primary pupils. Click on the link below to download it.
It seems that some external factors such as race, culture, religion and family we are born into define us. However, despite of our individual identity we all share the need to belong.
Belonging generates a feeling of acceptance and connection.
In Angus schools we have a diverse community of nearly 700 pupils with English as an Additional Language (EAL) and about 37 languages spoken by them collectively. We all learn from each other and this makes the environment in the schools vibrant and exciting.
The EAL Parent Group has offered support to the class teachers, as well as to the children an opportunity to learn how to sing Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes in POLISH.
Głowa, ramiona, kolana, piety(Polish)
Głowa, ramiona, kolana, piety,
kolana, pięty, kolana, piety.
Głowa, ramiona, kolana, pięty,
oczy, uszy, usta, nos!
Head, Shoulders, Knees, Heels(English)
Head, shoulders, knees, heels,
Knees, heels, knees, heels.
Head, shoulders, knees, heels,
Eyes, ears, mouth, nose!
Definitely this learning experience provided an opportunity to all pupils a wider sense of community and belonging. It links to Polish language, culture and their community. Besides, we had lots of fun and it was a good exercise for everyone.
Our schools in Scotland are a growing multilingual environment, where each child should have the right to learn a second language or a third one according to the 1+2 approach to modern languages.
As a matter of fact, a school in Angus is piloting a project with a Parent Group of EAL ( English as an Additional Language) which one of aims is to ensure and explore parental engagement and support the use of other languages in the school. This project also includes consideration of the role of the students’ home language(s) as part of the process of language acquisition and development.
Our project is based on school integration and social participation of parents whose children have English as an additional language in a variety of activities, such as in the classroom, playground, assemblies or school events. We understand that parents’ participation affect children’s sense of identity, belonging and their ability to make friends and cope within the new culture and ethos of the school.
Having sampled four different languages, Polish, Russian, Sinhalese and Mandarin over four weeks the children are saying:
‘It is fun.’ ‘I enjoyed it.’ ‘I am looking forward to using the language.’ ‘I might use the words if I travel to Russia or if I meet a person who speaks the language in the school.’ ‘I felt hard how to pronounce the words’ ‘It was pretty cool.’ ‘It was tricky.’ ‘I feel pretty good sharing my language.’ ‘It is a good opportunity to learn Polish.’ ‘It is a good thing to have someone who speaks the language.’ ‘It is helpful to learn three languages.’
What are parents saying?
‘It’s very positive.’ ‘The pupils were smiling and trying to say the words.’ ‘I feel pleased to see that they were interested.’ ‘They were asking questions and they wanted to write their names in Russian.’ ‘It was amazing the questions pupils asked, ‘why do write different?,’ ‘how many letters are in Polish language?,’ ‘how many languages have you learned?’
And the teachers:
‘It was really good to have dual language books and read the same story in different languages. It is achievable and fits within 1+2 languages approach.’ ‘I enjoyed having mums in class. It gives you confidence as they can speak and read in their language and in English.’ ‘It is great to see the children so enthusiastic.’ ‘It made the class busy.’ ‘It was great to have more adults in class.’ ‘We had lots of fun.’ ‘It was exciting.’ ‘I felt relaxed.’ ‘I loved it.’ ‘It was flexible and met the interests of the pupils.’ ‘The text and the repetition of the words worked really well.’ ‘The pupils were able to pick up the language easily.’ ‘Pupils broadened their view of the world.’ ‘It is hands on through experience.’ ‘Now it is less alien to everyone.’
The EAL Guidelines are based on:
HMIe Inclusion and Equality Part 4:
Evaluating Educational Provision for bilingual Learners (2006)