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2021 Speaker Programme

The 2021 virtual Language Show is now over.

You can watch recordings of all the 2021 Language Show’s talks by clicking on the individual talk below and then clicking the “Watch video” link.

For people who love languages

Talks, entertainment and insights.

Friday 12 November

Friday 10.30-12.15: The Future of Languages: 360 degrees.

Join co-hosts John Worne CEO CIOL and Bernardette Holmes MBE in conversation with Debora Kayembe, leading Human Rights Lawyer and Rector of the University of Edinburgh about the value of languages to global democracy. Hear from Lt Col Matt Sharp MOD and Major Dean Wilson about the central importance of languages and cultural skills to building positive international relations. Discover perspectives from the USA from leading academic and languages advocate, Dr Bill Rivers on how languages and cultural skills affect economic development, national security and national wellbeing. Find out more from Professor Antonella Sorace FBA on how multilingualism contributes to transversal skills. Be inspired by Matt Brown and Hugo Griffin Co-founders of the Civil Service Languages Network and hear about the new Languages Project in the Government Skills and Curriculum Unit, Cabinet Office. Be reassured that machines will never transcend the human.

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Friday 12.15-13.00: Can I have a quick word? a voyage of discovery into the world of vocabulary.

If you have ever studied a foreign language, you may have asked yourself how many words you’ll need to know in order to speak it fluently. You may also have heard rumours that certain languages have fifty words for snow. But what is a word, anyway? Where do they come from, and how are they created? And how does borrowing words from other languages fit into the bigger picture of language change, and ultimately language death? Following on from her very popular talks on linguistics at previous editions of The Language Show, Dr Rebecca Mitchell of the University of Cambridge will answer all these questions and many more. Whether you’re interested in language structures, sociolinguistics or historical linguistics, there’s something here for you! No prior knowledge of linguistics required.

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Friday 14.15-16.00: What next for language policy in the UK?

A panel discussion chaired by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Modern Languages. Three years on from the publication of the APPG’s National Recovery Programme for Languages, the APPG joins a panel of leaders in education, business, government and society to discuss developments in recent language policy, current challenges and proposals for the future. The session will be co-chaired by two Vice Chairs of the APPG. Tonia Antoniazzi MP. Tonia is an MFL graduate, former Head of MFL in Greater Manchester and Labour MP for Gower. Baroness Garden of Frognal. Baroness Garden is an MFL graduate, former teacher and Liberal Democrat life peer. She is a former Government Whip and Spokesperson for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Higher Education) and the Department for Education. They will be joined by David Blow, Executive Head of South East Surrey Schools Education Trust. Emma Cayley, Chair, University Council of Modern Languages (UCML). Neil Kenny, Lead Fellow for Languages at the British Academy. Susannah Poulton, International Trade Adviser, Life Sciences and Healthcare, Department for International Trade (DIT). Thomas Bak, Reader in Human Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Edinburgh. Andrew Jack, Global Education Editor, Financial Times.

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Friday 15.30-16.15: Linguist or Global Graduate? A Matter of identity.

Presented by Jocelyn Wyburd, Director of the Language Centre at the University of Cambridge and former Chair of the University Council of Modern Languages, this talk will explore how linguists may need to rebrand themselves in relation to their global competences when progressing from formal language study to employability in order to demonstrate their relevance in language understood by employers. It will explore the difference in identity between a ‘linguist’ as a student of languages and linguistics and that of ‘professional linguists’ as translators, interpreters, teachers and academics, in turn distinct from that of ‘global graduates’ with languages. It will also argue why language skills are essential to the profile of a ‘global graduate’.

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Friday 16.15-17.00: Do bilingual people carry two identities?

In a presentation about bilingualism and creating reality with one language while reading or translating, lecturer, translator, chartered language specialist for the Macedonian and Slovene languages and volunteer translator in international human rights, Ana Ilievska Zavrsnik, addresses the question of whether bilingual people carry two identities as well as two languages, if foreign language creates emotional distance and whether words create identity. 

Video unavailable.

Saturday 13 November

Saturday 11.15-12.00: Is life too short to learn German?

Oscar Wilde was apparently convinced that life is too short to learn German but he was wrong. Once you understand how German works, you will realise that it’s a very logical language and if you already speak English, you have a clear advantage, because both languages belong to the same language family. Learning German is not only a good idea from a linguistic point of view, but also in terms of economic opportunity, networking potential and cultural gains. The aim of this presentation is to spark passion for this amazing language and give you an insight into the Austrian culture. Presented by Dr Barbara Gräff, a language teacher and intercultural competence trainer based in Salzburg.

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Saturday 12.15-13.00: How to optimise your language learning with the 80/20 rule.

Learning a foreign language usually requires quite a lot of effort. But what if it turned out that 80% of your success in language learning was the result of about 20% of your effort? Or that 80% of the conversations you’ll have in your target language will only use about 20% of the vocabulary you learn? The concept is called the 80/20 rule and it influences many areas of our lives – including language learning! Michele Frolla, London-based Australian Language and Travel blogger and ‘guide’ behind The Intrepid Guide, will show you how you can apply the 80/20 rule to your own language learning so you can make it more efficient and progress faster.

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Saturday 14.45-15.30: Passion Power: Unconventional and creative ways to learn Italian or any foreign language.

How can you learn a foreign language in an engaging, motivating and joyful way? Is going abroad the only fun option to get immersed in the language you love? Not really! In this presentation, I will share my own story about how I have learned different languages (English, Spanish, French, etc.) in addition to my native Italian, by connecting them to my passions. I will provide ideas and strategies to help you learn a foreign language in fun and creative ways. Presented by Ermy Pedata, certified language coach with a Neurolanguage coaching® qualification, a PGCE, a masters degree in translation (Warwick University), and almost 10 years of experience teaching Italian as a foreign language.

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Saturday 17.15-18.00: Positive Education - How to enhance wellbeing in the language classroom.

Positive Education is a fast-growing field. More than ever wellbeing and mental health are keys for the development of our students. This seminar will introduce to language teachers how positive interventions in the curriculum can enhance student wellbeing, motivation and engagement. The talk will include examples of in-class activities aligned with the CEFR from A1 to B2. Presented by Geraldine Bourgeon, a Senior Lecturer in French with over 20 years’ experience. Geraldine has taught in the UK but also in France, Italy, and China and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Applied Positive Psychology at Anglia Ruskin University.

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Sunday 14 November

Sunday 10.45-11.30: How to “wing it” when learning languages and suspend your disbelief.

Even the strongest linguist will at some point hit a wall when they feel they just can’t ‘get it’ and be tempted to give up. For the adult learner who thinks they have ‘never been good at languages’ this can stop them from carrying on. This presentation by Jessica Bonnard, who has created a method of learning that has helped thousands of adult learners build confidence in spoken French, Spanish & Italian despite not always understanding why they’re saying things the way that they do, will show you why it’s crucial to be content to ‘wing it’ for a while.

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Sunday 14.15-15.00: Powerful strategies for learning Spanish.

This presentation for language learners and enthusiasts will explore and discuss the language input and learning activities that are most effective for speeding up the development of the four language skills (speaking, listening, writing, and reading). Presented by Maria Blanco Hermida, Senior Lecturer in Spanish at the University of Westminster, language learning strategies specialist with more than 20 years of experience teaching Spanish to students and training language teachers and author of “How to Learn Spanish: A guide to powerful principles and strategies for successful language learning and self-empowerment”

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For language teachers

CPD for teachers in primary, secondary, HE, FE, adult, EFL/ESOL

Friday 12 November

Friday 10.00-10.45: The Life of Lu Xun: A primer.

This seminar, aimed at teachers and learners of A Level Chinese, will focus on the life of Chinese author Lu Xun and how elements of his life apply to his novel “Hometown” (which is on the A Level Chinese syllabus, as well as being a common learner’s text.) The seminar would act predominantly as a knowledge booster for Chinese teachers who might be teaching about Lu Xun for the first time but could also be a revision lesson for students studying “Hometown” or an introduction to one of China’s most famous authors for enthusiasts of Sinophone literature. Presented by Darren Lester, a classicist with a Master’s in Applied Linguistics who has taught MFL in primary and secondary for over 14 years.

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Friday 10.45-11.30: Institut francais's support for schools and teachers of French in the UK.

The French Embassy in the UK / Institut français du Royaume-Uni will present the various opportunities provided by the Institut français and its French education partners to support schools and teachers of French across the UK, including new online and onsite resources and activities for the classroom, exchanges for schools, and training programmes for teachers. Presented by Romain Devaux, French language Attaché at the Institut français.

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Friday 11.00-11.45: How to stand out as an online language teacher.

Can you be successful as an online English teacher or an online Spanish teacher? Could you market yourself online in a way that attracts new students? Yes, of course you can. But unless you teach a particularly rare language that no one else teaches, you will most likely have competitors. Which means you need to try and stand out. In this talk, Anneli Haake – a Language Teacher Rebel who has run her own business teaching Swedish online for 15 years – shows how the concept of ‘why’, ‘micro niches’ and ‘culture add’ can help online language teachers finding ways to stand out and attract more students.

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Friday 12.00-12.45: Myth-busting and meaning making – important ideas for classroom-based language teaching.

All of us as language teachers or leaders have to account for what we choose to teach when, and in what order. To do our best for our students we need to be well-informed and clear-thinking about the principles involved and prepared to question long-accepted practice in the light of new ideas.  This session starts from the KS3 pedagogy review and the new GCSE Subject Content, looking at what they do (and do not) mean for our classroom practice, busting a few myths and showing how they support the communicative goal of meaning making. Presented by Dr Rachel Hawkes, past President of the Association for Language Learning (ALL), an experienced Head of Modern Languages, AST and SLE, co-author of several textbooks and currently Co-Director NCELP, the newly established National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy.

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Friday 12.30-13.15: The World of Languages and Languages of the World - bringing linguistics and a deeper understanding of languages into the primary and secondary education.

Constructed for pupils in KS2 and KS3, ‘WoLLoW’ is a programme that provides free schemes of work and resources for pupils and teachers to encourage a curiosity about language and languages, to help pupils understand how languages work in terms of grammar, to develop the capacity to learn languages by encouraging thought about etymology, to link the teaching of languages with other aspects of the curriculum and to enable pupils who have a rich linguistic history to bring that history into the classroom. Hear how it fills an important gap in the teaching of languages from one of its authors, Abigail Dean, a teacher of German and French in Norwich.

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Friday 13.30-14.15: Surviving your MFL training and Early Career Years as an MFL teacher.

Presented by Juliette Claro, Assistant Headteacher and Head of MFL at Gumley House School with 21 years experience as a language teacher and Imogen Hamilton, an Early Career Teacher at Gumley House, this talk will look at what retains language teachers in the profession after the National bleeding of MFL teachers post Brexit. It will provide ideas on how to make life easier with planning, marking, workload, behaviour and engagement in the classroom and is relevant to school leaders looking at staff retention and resilience. The talk will be split in two between Juliette, with her research based on consultation with other schools, and Imogen, who is thriving as a passionate MFL teacher.

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Friday 14.00-14.45: Tackling transition between primary and secondary schools for languages.

This session focuses on presenting findings from ASCL’s SixIntoSeven Modern Foreign Languages pilot where 10 secondary schools and their feeder primaries have shared professional judgements on their pupils’ progress in languages. This is a unique first step in tackling transition at pupil level with the information used to inform planning and teaching in year 7, to support setting, to raise the profile of languages in line with other subjects and to improve collaboration and dialogue between phases. Presented by Suzanne O’Farrell, MFL Consultant for the Association of School and College Leaders and previously, 27 years experience in secondary education before becoming ASCL’s Curriculum and Inspections Specialist.

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Friday 14.45-15.30: Metacognition ...self help in the language classroom.

We spend a lot of time planning resources and delivering amazing lessons which are always the best planned lessons in secondary schools, says Juliette Claro, Assistant Headteacher and Head of MFL at Gumley House School with 21 years experience as a language teacher. So how can we get quick wins in the language classroom, from sentence builders to grammar techniques, to help students recycle the language we teach? Tips and ideas to make things easier for them, and for us!

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Friday 15.00-15.45: Developing linguistic and vocational skills and promoting cultural awareness through virtual projects and activities.

This presentation by Lorna Price and Simone Pfliegel at the Goethe-Institut London, will look at the positive ways in which virtual projects and activities can enhance young people’s lives, providing them with a rich cultural and linguistic experience whilst giving them vocational skills for life. The presentation will be based on the virtual projects and activities offered by the Goethe-Institut London but is applicable to all languages.

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Friday 16.30-17.15: How AQA designs assessments for students in GCSE Languages.

A presentation on how AQA designs papers to help all students perform to the best of their ability, how questions are set in listening and reading exams to ensure that papers differentiate between students of different abilities and how AQA reviews and improve question papers year on year. Presented by Ian Rodmell, Curriculum Support Manager in the languages team at AQA, formerly editor of Authentik en français and also a head of MFL.  Ian has taught A-level and GCSE French, German and Italian in both the Sixth Form and secondary sector in England.

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Friday 17.00-17.45: Teaching Spanish Post-Pandemic: What now? Reassessment of approaches in teaching, learning and assessment in HEIs.

The abrupt arrival of the COVID 19 pandemic had an undeniable impact in the way we conceived and delivered language teaching. HEIs and language teachers had to rethink their teaching strategy as well as designing and implementing new methods of assessment with the goal of achieving set learning outcomes while catering for the needs of our students in the new university context. But what are the lessons we have learnt? In this talk presented by Nazaret Pérez-Nieto, a Lecturer in Spanish at the School of Modern Languages in Cardiff University, we will analyse and reflect on the different teaching and assessment methods designed and applied to Spanish language modules in Cardiff University incorporating both the teachers’, and the students’, perspectives.

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Friday 17.15-18.00: Using ‘literature’ to support primary language learning.

This session will consider why ‘literature’ – stories, poems and rhymes – is a great way to support language learning. Whether as a way into a topic, to support phonics or prosody, as a sample text to be adapted or as a way to support inclusion and challenge insularity, allowing learners to see themselves in their learning, literature is a powerful tool in our toolbox. Presented by Lisa Stevens, a Primary languages educator who teaches at two contrasting Birmingham primary schools and has consulted on various language, creativity and ICT projects for the British Council, CILT and the BBC, including The Lingo Show for Cbeebies. Lisa is a member of ALL Council.

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Saturday 13 November

Saturday 10.00-10.45: Thinking hard in language lessons.

Aimed at KS2, KS3 and KS4 practitioners, a presentation that will encourage language teachers to incorporate linguistic creativity to challenge and differentiate pupils’ journey via the world of  languages. Ways of stimulating students’ interest, how to make language lessons cross-curricular and how to make learners think hard. Presented by Witold Wozniak, Lead Practitioner for MFL at Coombe Girls’ Academy, teaching and mentoring in both primary and secondary schools and member of the Kingston-Merton PMFL network group.

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Saturday 10.15-11.00: The world universities’ response to COVID-19: rising magnificently to the challenge.

With the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, educational institutions throughout the world had to turn to the remote delivery of their programmes in order to replace classroom teaching. In a presentation that looks at 23 case studies of the technological and methodological solutions used in 21 world universities from 18 countries and 5 continents, its authors provide insight into the ideas and processes involved that led them to conclude that their profession rose magnificently to this challenge. Presented by Ass. Professor Nebojša Radić, University of Cambridge, Professor Anastasia Atabekova, RUDN University, Moscow, Russia, Ass. Professor Maria Freddi, University of Pavia, Italy and Professor Josef Schmied, Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany.

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Saturday 10.30-11.15: The future of language teaching: what can be learnt from 4000 hours of online language tutoring experience.

Starting with no experience at all of online teaching in 2013 and ending with early morning breakfast sessions teaching the next Ambassador to Slovenia, this presentation by CIOL Council Member and Chair of its German Language Society, Romana Sustar, focuses on her experiences, learnings and progress of being a language teacher for over 20 years and the transition to online. She will discuss the shift from in-person to online face to face tuition, and the recent trend for multi-person webinar communication platforms highlighting best practices, do’s and don’ts, and successful strategies in planning, executing and recording online training for qualified professionals and groups.

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Saturday 11.00-11.45: Creating animated gifs to instruct and inspire in the languages classroom.

In this session, Joe Dale will explore many ways in which animated gifs can be used to bring language learning to life, by reinforcing sentence structure, practising dialogues, modelling grammar use and giving personalised feedback. You will see how easy it is to produce your own mini-animations to embellish your presentations, connect with your students and make learning stick! Joe is an independent languages consultant, former SSAT Languages Lead Practitioner, recognised expert on technology and language learning and the man behind the #mfltwitterati.

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Saturday 11.30-12.15: 30 ideas to be a primary language coordinator like no other...

Presented by Witold Wozniak, Lead Practitioner for MFL at Coombe Girls’ Academy, teaching and mentoring in both primary and secondary schools, 30 practical tips for being an effective and efficient MFL coordinator in primary: how to find the right scheme of work, how to raise the profile of languages in your school, how to meet new Ofsted criteria and many other ideas that will help you change a potential burden into an enjoyable experience.

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Saturday 12.00-12.45: Not babies and bathwater, but culture and creativity.

Language and culture are two sides of the same coin; closely related, there cannot be one without the other.  This session offers a practical and holistic view on language and culture in classroom language teaching, showing how culture combines easily with phonics, vocabulary and grammar teaching, providing students with a strong linguistic and cultural foundation, encouraging them to ‘step beyond familiar cultural boundaries and develop new ways of seeing the world’.    Particularly relevant to the proposals for the new GCSE Subject Content, all ideas come with freely available resources in French, German and Spanish, which are new for this session. Presented by Dr Rachel Hawkes, past President of the Association for Language Learning (ALL), an experienced Head of Modern Languages, AST and SLE, co-author of several textbooks and currently Co-Director NCELP, the newly established National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy.

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Saturday 13.15-14.00: Exploring virtual reality with Google tools and more in and out of the languages classroom.

This session will explore how different online tools can promote collaboration, independent learning, creativity and intercultural understanding. Attendees will have the opportunity to see how Google My Maps, Google Earth and a variety of other free web resources have the power to take students on a virtual journey visiting places around the world and practising their language skills. Presented by Joe Dale, independent languages consultant, former SSAT Languages Lead Practitioner, recognised expert on technology and language learning and the man behind the #mfltwitterati.

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Saturday 13.00-13.45: 5 More Weeks of low and no-prep fun in the language classroom.

In a sequel to last year’s popular talk, Janina Klimas, who has taught languages for over 20 years on 3 different continents, speaks 6 languages, has a BA in Theatre Arts and Foreign Languages and an MA in the Teaching of Languages, offers 25 new, fun, low- and no-prep activities from gaming, drama, music, art and technology for modern language classes. Easily adapted to different languages and levels and providing opportunities to learn grammar, verbs and vocabulary through active engagement, these activities can help learners gain confidence in a new language and have fun at the same time.

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Saturday 13.30-14.15: Making the most of your NQT year.

Delivered jointly by the British Council Languages Teacher Training Scholarships team and the Association for Language Learning, this presentation will focus on the needs of NQTs and early career teachers of MFL, and help in identifying sources of support, CPD and networking. The aim is to provide helpful pointers to those entering MFL teaching, particularly following what may have been turbulent training year. Speakers will talk about publications, training sessions, projects and programmes available, to support and inspire new entrants to the teaching world, highlighting opportunities and guiding prospective recipients on how to get involved in their new professional world.

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Saturday 13.45-14.30: Assessing children in KS2: keep it simple and effective.

This session will look at what to assess, covering the three pillar of language learning, phonics, vocabulary and grammar as well as the four skills, listening, speaking, reading and writing. We will also consider when you should assess and how you can keep it simple and manageable as a busy teacher. Presented by Wendy Adeniji, a primary MFL specialist and headteacher who has previously inspected for Ofsted. She is also the co-author with Juliet Park of the new book “The ultimate guide to primary languages”.

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Saturday 14.15-15.00: Evidence-informed practice at the very heart of effective teaching and learning.

Successful implementation of the Rosenshine’s Principles of Instruction in the MFL classroom. How our memory works, what types of memory we have and how learning happens, with the main focus on demonstrating how each of the 10 principles apply to languages teaching. Practical examples that are low effort for the teacher and high impact for the student. Presented by Silvia Bastow, Subject Leader for Languages at Ercall Wood Academy, 16 years experience in teaching languages, a SLE at Salop Teaching School, a Research Lead, a member of the ALL council, a GCSE examiner and a Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching.

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Saturday 14.30-15.15: Google Apps for the Modern Language Classroom Post-Covid

During periods of remote learning, education relied heavily on technology. Apps evolved even more rapidly than usual leaving us with easy access to tools to find and build engaging, active, immersive activities for learners. In this talk, 25 activities from Google Apps for modern language classes will be shared. Activities like using apps to host guest speakers from anywhere in the world, Google Forms for communicative activities, creating movies, games and speaking projects using Google Slides, cultural and linguistic immersion using Google Chrome for video, reading, interactive games and more. Presented by Janina Klimas who has taught languages for over 20 years on 3 different continents and speaks 6 languages, has a BA in Theatre Arts and Foreign Languages and an MA in the Teaching of Languages.

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Saturday 15.00-15.45: Learning by doing: Engaging students through bilateral consecutive interpreting.

Many of us may have been in situations (in a restaurant, in a shop) abroad or at home in which we, as the only one with language skills had to become interpreters to help others. Becoming a professional interpreter is complex but we can provide our students with basic interpreting skills and in doing this engage them in learning by doing. Presented by Carmen Garcia del Rio, teaching materials author, Learning & Teaching Languages Coordinator at the University of Dundee and with 20 years experience teaching Applied Spanish, this session will examine how these basic skills can be acquired and how bilateral consecutive interpreting could be implemented in the language classroom.

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Saturday 15.15-16.00: Language Knowledge Organisers: a teacher's guide.

Modern Foreign Language Knowledge Organisers (MFL KOs), also known as parallel texts, sentence builders, speaking mats or even vocabulary lists, organise knowledge required to be proficient in a foreign language. Some see the KO as a new phenomenon with its own pedagogy and place in the MFL classroom, others see them as a ‘new name, same thing,’ albeit still a useful way of engaging students, supporting MFL teaching and learning and reigniting MFL pedagogy. In this talk, Richard Mark, secondary head of MFL and founder of Facebook group, MFL Knowledge Organisers (8K followers), presents the KO model as an effective alternative, but also an optimal enhancement of colleagues’ current practice in the languages classroom. He proposes a whistle-stop tour of the definition, logistics and practice of MFL KOs, backed by the current metacognitive science of learning, as well as what a typical sequence of lessons looks like, including language chunking, retrieval practice, choral repetition, self-quizzing, pronunciation practice using KOs.

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Saturday 15.30-16.15: Supporting language teachers to form and develop international partnership work post-Brexit.

This session will highlight the many different ways in which you can enhance your current language learning offer with links to international partners. From virtual partnerships to face to face visits, come along and find out about the many opportunities still available to you. Presented by Suzi Bewell, language teacher for over 20 years, language teacher trainer (previously PGCE MFL course leader at University of York) and a SSAT Lead Practitioner for language, with Vicky Gough, languages lead at the British Council.

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Saturday 15.45-16.30: Languages for Pupils with SEND - the alternative to disapplication.

Languages are part of a balanced curriculum. Criticism from Ofsted on this point is leading many schools to reconsider their policies on disapplication. A practical session, informed by brain research, showing teaching techniques and resources that have been successful with classes and individual pupils and presented by John Bald, languages/SEND expert for 30 years, member of the DfE GCSE content review panel and, formerly, member of the Teaching Schools Council Languages Pedagogy Group and Ofsted panel on inspecting MFL.

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Saturday 16.00-16.45: Fill your backpack with resources for Spanish class.

The Consejería de Educación (Spanish Embassy Education Office) provides a wide range of resources and launches different activities and initiatives to support the teaching of Spanish in the United Kingdom: online, face-to-face, and immersion training activities for teachers, publications and didactic and promotional materials, links with Spanish schools. Keep updated with all these professional opportunities with this presentation by Javier Ramos Linares, Spanish Language and Education Adviser at the Spanish Embassy Education Office.

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Saturday 16.15-17.00: No origami skills required!

Presented by Nick Mair, French and Spanish teacher at Dulwich College, former Chair ISMLA, Vice Chair ALL-London and Trustee CIOL, this is a hands-on session making a simple rectangular tumble wing and delivered using French. Resources are given for Spanish and easily transferred into other languages. No origami skills required and within the skills of all pupils and teachers, a single telephone directory would provide sufficient paper for many years. The essential idea is to elicit active language from pupils, not to have a lesson off. Perfect for language teachers facing a STEM day etc.

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Saturday 16.45-17.30: Micro-habits in language learning. Tips to help students create a language learning habit.

As teachers, we’re all aware that little and often works better than occasional bingeing, but how exactly are we encouraging students to do this? Inspired by James Clear’s Atomic Habits, this session dives deep into the importance of tiny, micro-habits in language learning, focusing on practical ways students can gain exposure and confidence in MFL. This goes beyond vocabulary drilling apps and revision techniques. Instead, we will establish relevant and engaging methods to encourage students to turn language learning into a lifestyle and life-long skill, rather than a mere ‘chore’. Presented by April Beturin, former ESL and MFL teacher (French and Spanish) who is currently building an app to encourage the speaking of languages.

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Saturday 17.00-18.00: Language Teachers 'Show & Tell’.

A very popular and regular feature of the Language Show, hosted by Helen Myers and Joe Dale of the Association for Language Learning London Branch. Teacher participants of all levels and all languages are invited to speak for a maximum 5 minutes about their ‘top tip’ for classroom practice including teaching ideas, pupil activities and resources and what really works for them.

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Sunday 14 November

Sunday 10.15-11.00: The 20% Primary School.

This presentation shows how the average child at the average primary school spends just over 1% of their time involved in language learning. It then takes teachers on a tour of affordable and manageable ways to increase this to 20% and begin to make a difference. It still leaves us a long way from bilingual or “50%” schools but it’s a step in the right direction, says presenter Stuart Rubenstein, a language educator for over 30 years who has owned and run language schools and is currently the owner of language business, Speak Like A Native.

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Sunday 10.30-11.15: Engaging, enriching, inclusive: ensuring a primary MFL curriculum which delivers for SEND pupils.

How can we remove barriers to learning and ensure that SEND pupils are able to access the full scope of the KS2 Programme of Study? From visual stimuli and multi-sensory approaches to scaffolding and grammar strategies, discover practical advice and tried-and-tested ideas for supporting SEND pupils in the primary MFL classroom. Presented by Ellie Chettle Cully, primary practitioner, specialist French teacher, Languages and International Lead at a Leicester inner-city primary school, PGCE student trainer, organiser of the Leicester ALL Primary Hub and primary-languages blogger.

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Sunday 11.00-11.45: Motivating language learning with cultural experience.

Language learners must be exposed to a wide variety of cultural experiences in their language learning journey if they are to be fully motivated. Exploring culture should not be a mere add-on but form an integral part of teaching through the use of rich, inclusive and diverse resources. Speakers Danièle Bourdais, language materials author, consultant and tutor and Suzi Bewell, a well-known languages teacher and trainer, both strong advocates of culturally-rich language learning, present a whistle stop tour of such resources which can open classroom doors onto the global French-speaking and Spanish-speaking world.

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Sunday 11.15-12.00: Make it with minibooks!

Find out all about lots of different kinds of minibooks that you and your students can make to present writing in new and creative ways. I’ll be showing you how you can encourage reading, independent writing and dictionary skills using mini-books in all their forms. You’ll be able to take away lots of practical and creative ideas that you can use in your next lesson. Presented by Clare Seccombe who has taught Spanish and French in Sunderland primary schools for 12 years, having previously spent 14 years as a secondary languages teacher and AST. Clare also trains teachers and trainee teachers, writes for publishers and makes award-winning resources.

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Sunday 11.45-12.30: CLILing in primary classrooms: sharing practical examples.

As primary teachers work hard to embed language learning in the crowded primary curriculum, it is essential that we explore imaginative ways to enhance the language learning of our pupils. The Content and Language Integrated Learning approach (CLIL) is well developed in several other countries. We need to learn from them. In this session we will share practical examples in Spanish of things we have tried out in Hackney schools. Presented by Bernadette Clinton, currently implementing the ‘Spanish as the First Language Initiative’ across all Hackney schools for Hackney Education. She also teaches on the primary PGCE and BA Ed courses at Middlesex University and is a British Council Schools Ambassador. And Raquel Tola Rego, who teaches at Parkwood Primary School in Hackney, was instrumental in the school gaining International Spanish School status and has pioneered the CLIL approach in her own school and across Hackney. She is also a Consultant and a British Council Schools Ambassador.

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Sunday 12.00-12.45: What? When? How? Why? Teaching students to ask questions.

The ability to understand and ask questions is fundamental to meaningful interaction. In a time-limited classroom language learning context, what is the most effective way to teach questions to our students, so that they can initiate and respond without a written script, and so that they are making clear progress towards asking what they want to ask? How does the ability to ask questions ‘off the top of your head’ relate to learner motivation? This session shares resources for developing the core knowledge needed for independent spoken interaction over the three years of KS3. Presented by Dr Rachel Hawkes, past President of the Association for Language Learning (ALL), an experienced Head of Modern Languages, AST and SLE, co-author of several textbooks and currently Co-Director NCELP, the newly established National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy.

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Sunday 12.15-13.00: Self-publishing vs working with a publisher.

Are you a language practitioner who likes developing your own teaching materials and thought about publishing them? As a follow-up to the talk on textbook writing two years ago, this seminar will look into the pros and cons of self-publishing vs working with a publishing house. It will give useful guidance on how you can organise your materials in a coherent way, approach a publisher, tips on how to get into self-publishing and what you need to be aware off when publishing yourself. Presented by Heiner Schenke, an experienced author who has written language and grammar courses for Hodder/Hachette, Routledge, Pearson and Langenscheidt and is principal lecturer in German at the University of Westminster.

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Sunday 12.30-13.15: Ideas to help students make the most of vocab books.

Presented by Danièle Bourdais, a UK-based award-winning and internationally recognised author and consultant with extensive experience of publishing materials for A level, IB diploma, IGCSE and UK curriculum, this talk will look at creating opportunities to revisit vocab in all four skills, manipulating vocabulary through meaningful chunks and sentences, increasing awareness of specific linguistic features and encouraging fluency and increasing speed of retrieval. The ideas will be of most use to those learning French at upper secondary level but can be applied to all languages.

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Sunday 12.45-13.30: Ways with words: the pillar of vocabulary.

Which words should you choose, and how can you present them to children and then practise them to create a solid basis for further work? This session will examine how to select the vocabulary for your scheme of work, and how children can expand this vocabulary by using a bilingual dictionary. We will also talk about the importance of practising and embedding this vocabulary so that children can use it confidently and creatively, and how this process might change over the four years of Key Stage 2. Presented by Clare Seccombe who has taught Spanish and French in Sunderland primary schools for 12 years, having previously spent 14 years as a secondary languages teacher and AST. Clare also trains teachers and trainee teachers, writes for publishers and makes award-winning resources.

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Sunday 13.00-13.45: Retrieval, interleaving and spacing in the MFL classroom.

We all know what retrieval practice, interleaving and spacing are but what does that look like in practice in our day to day lessons and in our schemes of learning? Rationale for incorporated retrieval, interleaving and spacing as well as a range of practical examples will be shared in this talk. Presented by Jennifer Wozniak-Rush, Assistant Headteacher for Teaching and Learning and Specialist Leader of Education in T&L and MFL at The Hollins in Lancashire, who has a wide experience of teaching French from KS1 to KS4.

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Sunday 13.30-14.15: Coventry, City of Languages. Fostering a lifelong love of languages.

With Coventry awarded the UK City of Culture for 2021, its MFL Hub, a core group of committed and passionate primary and secondary teachers, joined forces with the city’s two universities and its MPs to create Coventry City of Languages. With languages becoming ever more marginalised in the curriculum and yet large numbers of children in the city whose first languages were not English not recognised or celebrated in schools, the aim is to celebrate all languages spoken in the city whilst improving transition, uptake and provision in a post-Brexit world. The project launches in Autumn 2021 and two of its founders, both MFL teachers with over 30 years experience, share the vision and journey so far.

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Sunday 13.45-14.30: Blended learning: giving pupils super powers!

The recent lockdowns have up-skilled teachers as never before. Such skills integrated in traditional teaching present a great opportunity for blended learning in languages. This seminar will explore the rational behind blended learning in the MFL classroom, how it can be successfully achieved and lots of practical tools and ideas to make it happen so we give pupils super powers! Presented by Esmeralda Salgado, Head of MFL and Digital Lead at the Cambridgeshire independent school, King’s Ely, provider of workshops and webinars on the use of technology in MFL and author of educational blog https://mflcraft.blogspot.com.

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Sunday 14.00-14.45: Giving clear and meaningful feedback that can be acted upon and leads to progress.

Presenting a system that uses categories to give feedback on writing and speaking tasks (answers the question, uses a negative…) and targeted questions + specific examples (Can you add a negative? On the topic of food: je n’aime pas le/la/les…) that mean students can correct their work mostly independently. For ks2-3-4 teachers. Presented by Caroline Guitton, MFL teacher for more than 10 years, former HoD, currently a PGCE and NQT mentor.

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Sunday 14.30-15.15: Let's talk!

If a language is meant to be spoken first, how do you encourage pupils to speak as much as possible in the target language, build confidence and make pupils realise that it is okay to make mistakes? This session will present a range of engaging strategies that encourage pupils to speak spontaneously in the target language not only with the teacher but also between peers. Presented by Jennifer Wozniak-Rush, Assistant Headteacher for Teaching and Learning and Specialist Leader of Education in T&L and MFL at The Hollins in Lancashire, who has a wide experience of teaching French from KS1 to KS4.

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Sunday 15.15-16.00: Developing Speaking skills in the MFL classroom: from modelling to fluency!

Oral fluency is the main goal in language learning and the biggest motivating factor for learners. However, it can be difficult to achieve with the current curricular challenges and lack of time. This seminar will explore lots of practical ideas to make oral fluency a reality at all ability levels. Ideas and tools will involve all stages in the learning process: from modelling to the planned fluency stage: let’s make students speak! Presented by Esmeralda Salgado, Head of MFL and Digital Lead at the Cambridgeshire independent school, King’s Ely, provider of workshops and webinars on the use of technology in MFL and author of educational blog https://mflcraft.blogspot.com.

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Sunday 15.30-16.15: Engaging games to practise and embed vocabulary and phrases.

Presenting lots of games I play with my classes, which can be used in primary and secondary, and work on spelling, translation and/or pronunciation + supporting apps! E.g.: pointless game, poker, pop it (on genially), spelling bee, quizlet app, splat, beat the teacher, hangman, create your own crossword, wordsearch, translation maze, sentence chaos…+ creating efficient kahoot / blooket online games. Presented by Caroline Guitton, MFL teacher for more than 10 years, former HoD, currently a PGCE and NQT mentor.

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For language professionals

Interpreters, translators and those who want to put their languages to work.

Friday 12 November

Friday 10.15-11.15: Linguistically torn: which is it for me? Translating or interpreting? The written word or the spoken word? Or both?

Both translators and interpreters are professional linguists whose job is to transfer ideas from a source language into a target language. Despite this common mission, translating and interpreting are two separate professions. Drawing on their own professional experience, a panel of EU staff interpreters and translators will explore what unites and what separates these two forms of multilingual communication. They will discuss the skills and competences required by each and outline opportunities for professional linguists in the EU institutions.

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Friday 11.45-12.45: How did I get here? Many paths lead to interpreting. A linguist’s progress to the booth.

The paths leading to the interpreting booth are multiple and varied. Listen to testimonies, advice, as well as tips and tricks from staff interpreters working in the European Parliament, the European Commission and the Court of Justice of the European Union.

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Friday 13.00-13.45: Diversification for Translators.

This panel addresses the question of diversification for translators. What services can translators offer over and above text translation? Who is buying those services? Where can translators access CPD in order to acquire the necessary skills? A panel of speakers working in subtitling, voice-over, editing and sports translation will be present for moderated discussion and a Q&A session. Chaired by Lindsay Bywood, Senior Lecturer in Translation Studies at the University of Westminster who teaches translation, audiovisual translation, and professional development for translators at postgraduate level.

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Friday 13.15-14.00: Practical tips for growing your language teaching business.

For language teachers running their own businesses, attracting new students has always been the hardest part of the job. When the pandemic hit and online competition skyrocketed, standing out from the crowd got even harder. As the CEO of LearnCube, a leading online teaching platform, Alex Asher sees these challenges daily. His desire to help the community has generated over 100 webinars, podcasts, and articles offering his online marketing expertise. In this talk, he will share the essential building blocks of a marketing strategy and provide relevant examples, inspiration and practical ideas you can implement to grow your business today.

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Friday 13.45-14.30: Negotiating terms and conditions for remote working!

The Pandemic catapulted many language professionals backwards into working from home (WFH). In the future, we will have to be not just interpreters but tech savvy interpreters as we embrace this new world of hybrid working – a mix of on site and WFH. Our existing terms and conditions urgently need revamping to cover, amongst other things, liability for loss of internet connections and data and getting paid for tech trials as well as for the actual assignments themselves. The presentation by CIOL Council member and lawyer linguist, Sue Leschen, will highlight which terms and conditions you need to have in your interpreter tool kit in order to protect yourself and your business.

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Friday 14.30-15.15: Introduction to subtitling.

Are you a fan of Nordic Noir? Montalbano? Dark? Have you ever used subtitles for D/deaf and hard of hearing people? Have you ever wondered who makes the subtitles? How do they get on the screen? How do you get a job working in subtitling? This introduction will cover the various types of subtitling, how they are created, how the industry is set up and how to train and get work as a subtitler. Presented by Lindsay Bywood, Senior Lecturer in Translation Studies at the University of Westminster who teaches translation, audiovisual translation, and professional development for translators at postgraduate level and who, before becoming an academic, worked for many years in the audiovisual translation industry.

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Friday 15.45-16.45: New technologies in interpreting: a brave new digital world?

The Covid-19 crisis has accelerated the uptake of interpretation platforms and hybrid meetings to enable the EU institutions to function, despite travel restrictions and lockdown measures. What are these new technologies and what new challenges do they present for the interpreting profession? What is the future for conventional multilingual meetings? And what are the EU interpreting services doing to influence the development of these platforms to ensure optimal conditions for both interpreters and meeting participants? A panel of staff interpreters from the European Parliament, European Commission and the Court of Justice of the European Union will discuss.

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Saturday 13 November

Saturday 10.45-11.30: How to boost your translation career in 2022.

Whether you are a freelance translator or looking for a full-time translator job, in order to boost your career you need to avoid certain mistakes and take action on others. How your career will shape up will depend on the actions you take. This is the time not to get complacent. Join this session presented by Levent Yildizgoren, MD and co-founder of translation and localisation company TTC wetranslate and visiting lecturer in MA translation, interpreting and subtitling at University of Essex, and find out how you can boost your career, turning threats into opportunities.

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Saturday 12.30-13.15: Using your language skills to make a career as a translator in the EU institutions.

A description of the work of translators in the European Commission and on the career paths involved in working for the EU institutions as a translator, including language and subject matter knowledge and eligibility rules following Brexit. Presented by John Evans, translator at the European Commission.

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Saturday 12.45-13.30: How to be successful dealing with different cultures.

Culture affects everything we do as we live in a multi-cultural society and we do business across cultures. Successful collaboration depends on understanding and respecting others’ cultures. For example, silence by the other party during a conversation has different meanings in different cultures. Firm handshakes versus soft handshakes. Interpreting these wrongly can harm your relationships. Join this session presented by Levent Yildizgoren, MD and co-founder of translation and localisation company TTC wetranslate and visiting lecturer in MA translation, interpreting and subtitling at University of Essex, and find out how to be successful in cross-cultures.

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Saturday 16.30-17.30: Interpreting, a lifelong learning profession.

Interpreters at the EU usually start their career with two languages but they are strongly encouraged to learn more languages throughout their careers. This is an enriching and attractive part of the job. Learning new languages involves travelling, making a host of new friends and being challenged by a new cultural perspective. Each language learnt is an intense and stimulating intellectual project. Enabling multilingual communication amongst global experts and politicians requires a mastery of the subject matter which is also an intense learning experience. Interpreters are constantly learning new subjects as they prepare for each meeting and broadening their understanding of the underlying issues and their vocabulary. In short, being an interpreter at the EU means that you will be learning new and exciting languages and subjects all your life. Come and meet some EU interpreters who will share their learning paths with you.

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Sunday 14 November

Sunday 11.30-12.15: Using your language skills to make a career as a translator in the EU institutions.

A description of the work of translators in the European Commission and on the career paths involved in working for the EU institutions as a translator, including language and subject matter knowledge and eligibility rules following Brexit. Presented by Paul Kaye, translator at the European Commission and, formerly, language outreach officer at European Commission Representation in London.

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