Category Archives: Languages

Falkirk Staff Online Spaces for Sharing Resources and Collaboration

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer within the Curriculum Support team of Service and School Improvement, Falkirk Council Education Services, has been supporting many central staff and staff within educational establishments across Falkirk Council to set up shared online spaces for making available resources to colleagues working in Falkirk Council, and to provide them with tools to collaborate.

These online spaces provide a means to share resources within the education community of all Falkirk Council establishments and can be accessed from here: http://tinyurl.com/pvmjx92

Each site provides at least one document store, and in many cases multiple document stores for making accessible resources in different formats, as well as picture galleries for sharing examples of practice, a discussion area for asking questions or sharing ideas, a news area for updates, and a weblinks area for quick access to related material elsewhere online.

Some of these sites are for sharing centrally sourced resources, some are for providing the means for staff in establishments to share with others, some provide a means to share with specific colleagues in different establishments, some provide structured professional development combining reading material, presentations and video, space for reflective comments with colleagues undertaking the same professional development and making use of video-conferencing spaces, and some provide a common space for clusters of schools to plan together and to pool resources for activities across multiple establishments.

These shared online spaces include Active Learning, Active Literacy, Art Teachers Network Falkirk, Bilingual and Traveller Pupil Support Service, Denny Cluster (including for Mathematics and for Outdoor Learning Network), Education Communications, Education Matters, Employee Review and Development, Curriculum for Excellence Experiences and Outcomes Expanded for all curricular areas and for all levels, Falkirk Confucius Classroom Hub, Falkirk Headteachers, Good Practice Network, Graeme Cluster Good Practice Network (including cluster transition event planning), ICT in Learning and Teaching, Instrumental Music Service for Falkirk Council, Interdisciplinary Learning in Falkirk Council, Numeracy and Mathematics, Physical Education, Primary Language Learning 1+2 Resource Bank, Specific Learning Differences, Storyline, Teaching for Deep Learning, and the To Lead or Not to Lead programme, amongst other online spaces specifically for staff working in Falkirk Council.

Staff within Falkirk Council Education Services can access the above spaces by clicking on this link.

Interactive tools for supporting teaching Modern Languages in the Primary School

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in the Curriculum Support Team of Falkirk Council Education Services, led a guided hands on exploration session with primary class teachers on interactive tools for supporting teaching Modern Languages in the Primary School.

Most of the resources explored can be used in many contexts and this session looked at how they can be adapted to supporting teaching modern languages in the primary school.

Resources

Audacity – free downloadable software which lets you record and edit audio – pupils can record their spoken voice, reading words, phrases or sentences. And they can take words and re-order them to create listening activities for each other  (e.g. cutting individual words or phrases and pasting them out of sequence in the audio for other pupils to correctly re-sequence the words). Any audio files created in Audacity can also be turned into mp3 files so that they can be shared online, such as on a school website or class blog: http://glo.li/gJxmOi

Little Bird Tales – free online tool which lets pupils create stories combining voice, text and images. The teacher creates an account and provides pupils with a login code for that class – work of pupils can be seen by teacher but only made public if & when pupil feels it’s ready and teacher chooses to make it public. Other safety features include having the PC microphone enabled, but not webcam, so only audio is recorded. Pupils can upload images, or can use Little Bird Tales art editor online tool to draw own images on screen to illustrate a story or sequence of vocabulary or phrases. Pupils can create pages, building up sequence of pages, all of which can be saved at any time for future editing – and can be embedded online elsewhere – and the teacher can make content visible to the public on the Little Bird Tales website. http://glo.li/rsrAzz for description, guide and video of use.

Photostory 3 – free downloadable software which lets pupils sequence a series of photographs (adding panning and other effects as desired) to engage with texs and demonstrate their understanding of the text. Pupils can create videos to illustrate vocabulary, phrases, poems or songs.  https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/2011/03/09/photostory-3/

Hello Mylo – free online tool incorporating games-based learning with badges to recognise progress. French, German, Spanish and Chinese available. The learner has choice of games, vocabulary tools and challenges – each provides visual, textual as well as audio feedback, with nugget-sized tasks providing scores on achievement. It can be used without any need to register but registered schools can set tasks for pupils (in groups or as a class) and get feedback on the progress of their pupils. Collaborative work can be seen only by the class, until the teacher chooses to publish it after reviewing it with the learners (if desired to be made public). http://glo.li/RqNj0r

Create word-cloud images for wall display, blog, or website. Pupils could create a word cloud of vocabulary on specific topics. Or they could connect foreign word and English word in Wordle by adding a tilde (~) between the words, or omit the connection and use as lesson starter for pupils to connect each word and translation with a pen on an interactive whiteboard http://glo.li/f2Ifx9

Interactive Whiteboard activities – using resources created with Smart Notebook inbuilt Lesson Activity Toolkit interactive tools, and browsing, downloading and adapting resources created by other eductors worldwide from the Smart Exchange website. http://glo.li/rQ3eRl

Comic Creation Tools – pupils sequence stories in chosen language, or annotate conversations with images and speech bubbles for visual story-telling. Free online Comic-creation tools and resources here: http://glo.li/eEkUjo

Google Translate – Use Google Translate to translate any text by copying and pasting words/phrases, paragraphs or a whole document or website. Use the speech feature to hear the text spoken with the accent of the chosen language. Translate class blog or school website. http://translate.google.com/

Lingro – Highlight words on any website in chosen language, Listen to the words spoken, Translate, then play flashcard games with all words chosen – all within the Lingro toolbar along the top of any website you choose. http://glo.li/hNnhFk

Song Videos with Lyrics – Online videos with printed lyrics to follow http://chansons-fr.com/ – may provide inspiration for pupils to create own videos http://glo.li/gTmdzS (for resources about using Flipcam-type video cameras). Lyrics-gap Songs on video with choice of level of missing words for pupils to select from words while listening http://www.lyricsgaps.com/

Classtools: Online class gaming tools already created for French or German. Easily add own arcade-type games with own questions/answers http://www.classtools.net

Quiz-creation tools – create self-correcting quizzes, provide feedback on what has been learned by pupils, pupils creating quizzes motivates & helps embed learning. One of many tools described is Zondle which lets the teacher detrmine the content to be learned by pupils, and the pupil chooses the game which then draws in the teacher-chosen content and presents it in the pupil-chosen game format.  http://glo.li/g73CnR

Further Online Links

Teaching Ideas – a series of crowd-sourced ideas shared by teachers http://www.teachingideas.co.uk/foreignlanguages/contents.htm

Cybrary Man links to resources by category http://cybraryman.com/foreign.html

Education Scotland MLPS resources – vocabulary and phrases for several languages with support materials to support teaching modern languages in the primary school.

Creativity – What Is It?

Gayle Martin, Arts & Culture Officer, Curriculum Support Falkirk Council is working in partnership with Stirling and Clackmannanshire Council to develop Creative Learning.  Gayle recently attended a presentation by Sheila Paige of Education Scotland who is leading Creativity Across Learning, which is a creative review across a range of education establishments in Scotland.  The review will complete in June and results will be published in September.  As part of this Sheila was able to share how Education Scotland has defined Creativity, which is listed below:

 Definitions of Creativity

 Creative skills, sometimes referred to as capacities, include being:

  • Inquisitive
  • Open-minded
  • Able to harness imagination
  • Able to identify and solve problems

 We also define people who have well-formed creative skills as being:

  • Confident in their right and ability to influence change

 These organisers are used to describe more fully those key learning behaviours which will support the development of these skills and capacities.  The following list aims to expand these concepts.  It is not exhaustive but includes:

  • Being curious
  • Registering patterns and anomalies
  • Drawing on previous knowledge
  • Researching productively
  • Formulating good questions
  • Defining problems
  • Exploring multiple viewpoints
  • Functioning with uncertainty
  • Lateral thinking
  • Hypothesising
  • Synthesising and refining multiple options and viewpoints
  • Inventing
  • Crafting, delivering and presenting solutions
  • Applying discipline and resilience
  • Evaluating impact and success of solutions
  • Identifying next steps in refinement or development of process

We would also expect children and young people to become increasingly:

  • Motivated and ambitious for change
  • Confident in validity of their own viewpoint
  • Able to apply a creative process to other situations
  • Able to lead and work well with others

ICT to Support Modern Languages in the Primary School

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in the Curriculum Support Team of Falkirk Council Education Services, presented a session with primary class teachers on a variety of ICT resources to support teaching Modern Languages in the Primary School. 

Resources

Audacity – Record pupil voice with Audacity, create and edit audio as pupil listening activities (e.g. cutting individual words or phrases and pasting them out of sequence in the audio for other pupils to correctly re-sequence the words) , turn into mp3 files (such as recitations or songs of individuals or groups of pupils) for sharing on school website, class blog or Glow group: http://glo.li/gJxmOi  

Little Bird Tales – Pupils create stories combining their voice with text (of vocabulary, phrases or sequence of sentences) and their images (either uploaded or created online with an artpad within the Little Bird Tales site) http://www.littlebirdtales.com/ and http://glo.li/rsrAzz for description, guide and video of use. 

Use digital video cameras for pupils to engage with texs and demonstrate their understanding of the text. Create stop-motion animation to illustrate vocabulary, phrase, poem or song. Resources here for video cameras: http://glo.li/gTmdzS. Resources for editing video: https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/2010/09/16/video-editing-with-windows-live-movie-maker/Resources here for making videos from still image photographs: https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/2011/03/09/photostory-3/

Hello Mylo for Games-based learning, has online badges reward pupil progress, teacher account provides pupil progress reports. http://glo.li/RqNj0r

Create word-cloud images for wall display, blog, or website. Pupils create a word cloud of vocabulary on specific topics. Connect foreign word and English word in Wordle by adding a tilde between the words (~) or omit the connection and use as lesson starter for pupils to connect word and translation with pen on interactive whiteboard http://glo.li/f2Ifx9

Comic Creation Tools – pupils sequence stories in chosen language, or annotate conversations with images and speech bubbles for visual story-telling. Free online Comic-creation tools and resources here: http://glo.li/eEkUjo 

Google Translate – Use Google Translate to translate any text by copying and pasting words/phrases, paragraphs or a whole document or website. Use the speech feature to hear the text spoken with the accent of the chosen language. Translate class blog or school website. http://translate.google.com/

Lingro – Highlight words on any website in chosen language, Listen to the words spoken, Translate, then play flashcard games with all words chosen – all within the Lingro toolbar along the top of any website you choose. http://glo.li/hNnhFk 

Song Videos with Lyrics – Online videos with printed lyrics to follow http://chansons-fr.com/ – may provide inspiration for pupils to create own videos http://glo.li/gTmdzS (for resources about using Flipcam-type video cameras). Lyrics-gap Songs on video with choice of level of missing words for pupils to select from words while listening http://www.lyricsgaps.com/ 

Classtools: Online class gaming tools already created for French or German. Easily add own arcade-type games with own questions/answers http://www.classtools.net 

Quiz-creation tools – create self-correcting quizzes, provide feedback on what has been learned by pupils, pupils creating quizzes motivates & helps embed learning http://glo.li/g73CnR

Further Online Links

Teaching Ideas – a series of crowd-sourced ideas shared by teachers http://www.teachingideas.co.uk/foreignlanguages/contents.htm

Cybrary Man links to resources by category http://cybraryman.com/foreign.html 

Comments from participants included

“Made me keen to try sites with my class.” 

“Really useful, easy to understand and well presented.”