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Free talks, tasters and performances

2020 Speaker Programme

For people who love languages

Talks, performances & demonstrations.

Friday 13 November

Friday 11.30-12.15: 1400 years in 40 minutes: a high-speed history of the English language.

If you’re reading this, then you must be a speaker of English – but despite its enormous richness and variety, the universal familiarity of English in the modern world sometimes makes us take its intriguing and turbulent past for granted. Have you ever wondered how people really spoke in Shakespeare’s time? Or why English looks so unlike other Germanic languages? Maybe you’re curious as to why English didn’t die out after 1066. And if you’re a learner, you’ve probably asked yourself why English is so difficult to spell! 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 history, there’s something here for you! No prior knowledge of linguistics is required.

Friday 11.30-12.15: How to Improve Your Vocab Memory.

If you have repeated a million flashcards and SRS apps but the words aren’t sticking, and you find yourself losing track and freezing up when you want to talk, then Kerstin Cable would like to help. In this session the native German speaker, polyglot (10 languages, favourite Welsh), host of the Fluent Show podcast and author of the Language Habit Toolkit, Fluency Made Achievable and The Vocab Cookbook, will reveal the hidden reason why you may be sabotaging your skills, how you can create a vocabulary routine with ANY tools and why it’s easier than you think to create a super-effective word memory.

Friday 12.30-13.15: Why learning foreign languages is not a waste of young people's time despite a world dominated by English.

Whilst English appears increasingly to be a global lingua franca, young native speakers of English are wrong to be complacent. They are competing in a global labour market where the advantage of speaking English will diminish as foreigners become ever more fluent in English. The best way of selling to others is to speak their language. And knowledge of foreign languages is a prerequisite for a deep understanding of other parts of the world. Presenting the arguments concisely will be speaker of 5 foreign languages John Swales, a Cambridge languages graduate and official of the EU Commission for over 35 years, who heads up the English interpreting unit at the European Commission.

Friday 13.30-14.15: Unlocking the hidden meanings of everyday words.

Everyday words have hidden meanings and ancient connections. Etymology has left us a trail of clues to follow that help us uncover the linguistic legacy left by our ancestors. Come prepared to open your minds (and ears!) to the surprising semantic links that span centuries and continents. Let’s take a look at how “chocolate”, “chilli” and “avocado” conquered the world from their homeland in Mexico, how “salaam” travelled the seas and how English “timber” has a long-lost cousin in German “Zimmer”! Presented by Brian Loo Soon Hua, globe-trotting polyglot (8 languages), translator and author and Emily Martyn, Languages Manager at language-learning company uTalk.

Friday 15.45-16.30: Activity-lead online language teaching ideas for community language schools.

Lockdown closed all community language schools with little warning. However, quite a few of them moved straight away to online teaching and have since developed a large variety of language sessions for children and youngsters of all ages. The emphasis is on having fun, keeping in touch and jointly engaging in interesting projects – all, of course, in the heritage language. In this talk Charlotte Schulze, chair of the Association of German Saturday Schools, presents a wealth of ideas and lesson plans for children from 2 years to their late teens from the network of German Saturday schools and language clubs.

Saturday 14 November

Saturday 10.30-11.15: Dream >> Believe >> Achieve. A minimalistic approach to maximize your life.

Polyglot and traveller, Art Balsam, changed his life almost completely in the last few years, from hoarder to minimalist, fat to fit, office slave to (half) digital nomad, and comfortable to happy. 3 years ago he made a list of 15 languages he wanted to speak whilst living in each of those countries. With possessions reduced to the size of hand luggage, living mainly in Spain after the first half of his life in Poland, the other half in Germany, last year he travelled to 18 countries thanks to the mobility he gained and is currently learning his fifth language. Describing his life’s journey as something that has grown from a craziness through a fascination to a way of life, come and be inspired by Art’s experiences. 

Saturday 11.30-12.15: The true spirit of Amar Ekushey, the Bangla language & the International Mother Language Day.

21st February has been declared as the International Mother Language Day by UNESCO and on this day in 1952 in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), some protesters were killed by police firing while they were demanding that Bangla be made one of the state languages of Pakistan. In this talk, Shehzaad Shams, a British-Bangladeshi polyglot, describes how this was a unique moment in history when passionate speakers of a language sacrificed their lives to ensure the honour of their mother tongue – Bangla/Bengali in this case – and why there is a need to ensure the practice and preservation of all world languages.

Saturday 12.30-13.15: How to Learn Languages Like Crazy. Even if you have a Crazy Life!

I’m busy, you’re busy, we’re all busy. So, how do you learn that foreign language you’ve always dreamed of when you never seem to have the time. It might seem like there just aren’t enough hours in a day, but Michele Frolla, London-based Australian Language and Travel blogger and ‘guide’ behind The Intrepid Guide and author of the book ‘How to Learn Italian Fast’, is going to show you how you can optimise the time you already have so you can finally learn any foreign language. This session is full of practical tips, strategies, and tools that will kickstart your journey to success.

Saturday 13.30-14.15: Foods and Words: Can our appetite motivate language learning?

Dr Jieun Kiaer, Dr Laurence Mann and Niamh Calway of Oxford University’s Faculty of Oriental Studies are working to promote and celebrate linguistic and cultural diversity in the UK through the looking glass of the languages of food and drink in the English language, particularly those with foreign heritage. In this talk they tell the history of some staple British food of foreign origin and introduce basic linguistic principles to understanding their names.

Saturday 14.30-15.15: Why Italians are always late.

If you have an Italian friend, you know what I am talking about, says Italian languages and culture student, Dalila Porta. She claims that Italians don’t run late because they want to, it’s the circumstances. They share with South Americans and Latinos the passion for chit-chats. If on their way they meet a friend, they will need to have a little chat. If they meet ten friends… well, you know. In this presentation, Dalila will reveal which cultures tend to be punctual and which ones can’t help being late. We will also understand how to properly schedule appointments with our Italian friends.

Saturday 15.30-16.15: Why study Dutch?

Learning a new language is entering a new world. Studying a new language is discovering a new you. But why study Dutch? In this interactive talk Kris Van de Poel, Secretary General of the Dutch Language Union, will explore some of the finest characteristics of the language that has a shared past with English. The talk will take a closer look at the diversity of people speaking it in different continents and the wealth of social structures and cultural products arising from it. It will become clear that it is worth considering the Dutch language and culture as more than a throat disease, windmills, good food, and communicative people.

Saturday 16.30-17.15: Teaching Arabic language and culture through story telling, music and dance.

A performance brought to you by the British Council and Qatar Foundation International who are working together to encourage the teaching and learning of Arabic language and cultures in schools, including a traditional Arab story told by a story teller, a musician and a dancer.

Sunday 15 November

Sunday 12.30-13.15: Socially active language learning with the aid of technology and savoir faire.

Nowadays more than ever language learning and, by extension, language teaching, have had to adapt rapidly to the post Covid-19 world. How are we adapting and what new ideas are happening right now to the virtual and old classroom? This talk will help the independent motivated learner to the language teacher to choose a more blended learning strategy. An action plan with practical solutions and multimedia materials are what you need when considering the new reality. Presented by Dr Martin Pickett, linguist, language teacher, director of LANACOS Languages with nearly 30 years in the language industry who has done extensive postgraduate research on motivation to learn a foreign language.

Sunday 15.30-16.15: Russian culture in Russian films and cartoons.

To explore the arts of a culture means to experience its present, past and future. A piece of art helps to discover various aspects of life of one generation created for another generation. In this presentation by Maria Selezneva, linguist and translator with a PhD in Modern Languages, she will introduce Russian cities, music, folk traditions and cultural symbols used in famous Russian films and cartoons of the modern and Soviet times. Each film/cartoon will shed the light onto the Russian humour, classic literature and music. The presentation discusses allusions that Soviet cartoon-makers created in their pieces, nostalgic motives of the Russian past and why phrases from the Soviet films are still popular in the modern Russia.

For language teachers

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

Friday 13 November

Friday 10.30-11.15: Arsenal Double Club: Using Football to Engage Pupils with Language Learning.

Using football-themed learning resources, Arsenal Double Club aims to make language learning fun and engaging for all – especially the more reluctant learners. In this seminar, we will demonstrate how our materials can enhance your school’s modern languages provision, using our free digital resources, plus pupil workbooks and more. The session will be suitable for teachers of French, German and Spanish. No prior knowledge of football or Arsenal is required to teach or learn from the materials, nor is it only for football or Arsenal fans.

Friday 10.30-11.15: Rhythm, rhyme and choral speaking in the MFL classroom - Lynne Brackley.

Lynne Brackley will use her 35 years in theatre in education to show learners and teachers how they can build confidence and have fun with rhythm, rhyme and choral speaking activities suited to beginners as well as those with more experience. Adaptable for use with any language, these exercises show an approach to learning as well as providing a few instant ‘take-aways’. Opportunities for participation but no acting experience required!

Friday 10.45-11.30: Technology-facilitated oral homework (TFOH) - David Shanks.

Presented by David Shanks, this seminar will consider how technology can be leveraged to support students in developing their oral confidence by inviting them to record themselves speaking the target language outside the formal classroom environment. Reflections from a 2019 MA dissertation case study involving Year 9 learners of French will be drawn upon to provide insights into the benefits and challenges of establishing TFOH. Practical tips and ideas for setting up TFOH in your context will be included. David Shanks is Lead MFL Consultant for the Harris Federation in London and a subject specialist for the National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy. He has delivered professional development on a range of initial teacher training courses and is an active member of ALL. @HFLanguages

Friday 12.30-13.15: Bring the world into the classroom with the British Council - Vicky Gough.

School exchanges and international school partnerships can be very motivating for pupils, however the numbers of schools doing school exchanges has declined dramatically over the last 20 years. This session will give information on the support and guidance available for schools to plan successful school partnerships, including visits and exchanges that include intercultural encounters as well as suggestions on how to provide an international experience “at home” for pupils. It will also include information on funding programmes available to support these initiatives and information. Presented by Vicky Gough, Schools Adviser and lead for MFL at the British Council and a teacher with experience of school partnerships.

Friday 12.45-13.30: Language learning in lockdown - what positive lessons about the use of technology can languages teachers take away from this experience? - Suzi Bewell.

In this session, Suzi Bewell, language teacher for over 20 years (currently St John Fisher, Harrogate) and language trainer (previously PGCE MFL course leader at University of York) and Nikki Beardsley, Head of German at Ulverston Victoria High School in the Lake District, talk about some of their key learning from lockdown including how, when used in a creative and inspiring way, technology in languages lessons can be highly motivational and allow teachers to extend their teacher toolkit beyond classroom walls. Examples will include many free to use materials such as online newspapers and magazines, break out room tasks, Thinglink, Google forms quizzes, Kahoot, Loom and much much more. Lots of practical and easy to implement ideas and materials that can be put into practice immediately with little or no preparation.

Friday 13.30-14.15: Utilising COVID-learnt teaching skills when back in the classroom - Darren Lester.

Teachers have learned a lot of new skills very quickly in order to adapt to distance learning. From remote conferencing software to exploiting YouTube to organising treasure hunts, they have moved language teaching and learning out of the classroom and into the world. But how can these skills be put to use when we’re called back into the classroom? This talk by Darren Lester, MFL teacher in primary and secondary for 13 years with a Master’s in Applied Linguistics, will explore different things that can be done in class (regardless of the technology held by the pupils) so that teachers can make the most of these new skills in the future.

Friday 13.45-14.30: Embracing cultural identity in educational contexts - Helena Ground & Juan Echepares-Riera.

A presentation on how cultural differences are celebrated at a school and how its unique model of EAL teaching embraces cultural identity and promotes multiculturalism whilst raising students’ aspirations and engaging with Peterborough’s diverse communities. It will include a flavour of the successful projects involving the school’s Roma students and the wider community. Presented by Helena Ground and Juan Echepares-Riera, who both teach at Peterborough’s Queen Katharine Academy.

Friday 14.30-15.15: World class teaching: teaching the UN Sustainable Development Goals through languages - Suzi Bewell.

At Leeds Development Education Centre, Suzi Bewell has worked alongside secondary languages teachers to develop free teaching resources which focus on the UN SDGs. Jointly, they have produced free lesson plans and ready to use materials for 20 lessons (each) in French, Spanish and German to help KS3-5 languages teachers to deliver quality lesson content on the 17 SDGs in a relevant, engaging and cross curricular way. In the session Suzi, language teacher for over 20 years (currently St John Fisher, Harrogate) and language trainer (previously PGCE MFL course leader at University of York) will outline the project aims, share some sample lessons and direct delegates to where to download the lessons for free. 

Friday 14.45-15.30: The IELTS “Short-Course”: Some design considerations - Louisa Dunne.

This workshop will look at ways teachers and schools can determine and manage student expectations about the time required to achieve specific IELTS scores. It will then discuss which aspects of IELTS preparation are ideally teacher-led and ways to encourage and support IELTS students’ independent study. Finally, it will look at two suggested IELTS short course outlines and the sources of material available for classroom and independent IELTS preparation. Presented by Louisa Dunne, EFL teacher and teacher trainer who works as an examinations academic support manager at the British Council in Paris.

Friday 15.30-16.15: Introduction to the German Quiz Challenge: A free motivational online assessment app for Secondary Schools - Emma Whittle, Domini Stone & Lorna Price.

Are your pupils learning German? Are they aged between 13 and 16? Then check out the GERMAN QUIZ CHALLENGE! Come and meet five young skateboarders from Munich who will help test your students, whilst they learn about a wide range of topics from the environment to the alternative music scene. This online application assesses your pupils’ abilities in reading, listening and writing and all without a minute’s marking. The session will guide you through the app whilst offering advice and ideas on how to integrate it into the curriculum. Presented by Emma Whittle, Domini Stone and Lorna Price from the Goethe-Institut.

Friday 15.45-16.30: Revisiting the three Ps: presentation, practice and production - Rachel Hawkes.

This session is based on reflections after two years of work with NCELP (National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy) and includes 10 practical ideas teachers can use immediately in their lessons, and access to a wealth of free resources for the languages classroom. 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.

Friday 16.30-17.15: ELTS Writing Task 1: dealing with a 2-diagram - Sarah Philpot.

When faced with two diagrams in IELTS Academic Writing Task 1, the question students most frequently ask is ‘Where do I start?’. This seminar will try to address this question, by setting out some simple steps to break down and analyse the two diagrams, and look at the similarities and differences between them. Armed with this information, test takers will be better able to work out the best starting point and the important information to include in their description. Presented by Sarah Philpot, IELTS teacher and teacher trainer for the British Council and published author with OUP.

Friday 16.30-17.15: Teaching MFL and STEM through robotics and coding - Simone Pfliegel.

Looking for ideas on how to connect MFL and STEM subjects, and motivate learners of any level or age group? With the help of the humanoid robot NAO you will get to know a variety of different activities concerning robotics and coding with any MFL subject, although the focus in this talk will be on German. All of the ideas and tasks showcased such as robotics and storytelling, using songs and dance moves, and many other activities are easily adapted to other MFL subjects and for different ages, both primary and secondary. Presented by Simone Pfliegel, Coordinator for the Goethe-Institut of Northwest Europe for the PASCH School network and 14 years previous experience as a teacher of A-Levels in German, English and Philosophy at a school in Bavaria.

Friday 16.45-17.30: Teaching Mandarin by Zoom - Rosa Wang.

During the lock down, schools closed but the teaching continued. Here are some engaging tools for making Zoom lesson works well in teaching Mandarin, presented by Haiyun Rosa Wang, founder and headteacher of WenLin Chinese School.

Friday 16.45-17.30: It’s all in the planning - Rachel Hawkes.

Whether planning an individual lesson, a sequence of lessons or a whole scheme of work, there’s no doubt that excellent teaching stems from excellent planning.  In this session, we focus on the planning principles for a whole languages scheme of work, whether at primary or secondary level. Examples are informed by research and practice, and taken from schemes of work that are freely available on the NCELP resource portal. 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.

Saturday 14 November

Saturday 10.30-11.15: Make them LISTEN like no other! - Witold Wozniak.

More than twenty KS2 to KS4 listening strategies that boost students’ confidence and understanding of vocabulary. Cross-curricular resources that can be easily adapted, assessed and differentiated plus some ideas for a listening homework. Presented by Witold Wozniak, Lead Practitioner for MFL at Coombe Girls’ Academy, teaching and mentoring in both primary and secondary schools, part-time lecturer at Roehampton University, AQA GCSE marker and a popular past speaker at the Language Show.

Saturday 10.45-11.30: Practical tips for succeeding as both language teacher & edupreneur - Alex Asher.

COVID19 has accelerated emerging trends by several years, the most obvious being live online education. Many teachers & schools have already found how to teach online but aren’t necessarily succeeding with it. Alex Asher, CEO of online teaching platform LearnCube, co-author of forthcoming book Langtech, the future of online language education, and regular webinar speaker on the future of language teaching believes the ingredients for success include correctly identifying a niche, marketing to that niche, creating a standout experience and adding value to your service. In this talk he shares his insights and offers practical advice.

Saturday 11.30-12.15: Meeting Ofsted's requirements for an effective KS2 MFL curriculum - Wendy Adeniji.

This session will look at excellent practice in primary language teaching and learning, and how to plan and be able to describe the impact of your curriculum so that it meets the requirements of Ofsted. Key features will include how to commit languages effectively to memory, how to develop children’s cultural capital through modern languages and how to measure children’s progress through age-related expectations. Presented by Wendy Adeniji, Principal of Trinity Academy, Doncaster, a trainer, teacher, author of MFL resources and an inspector for Ofsted. The KS2 primary scheme of work and resources that she wrote with Juliet Park are used in many British primary schools.

Saturday 11.45-12.30: Remote language learning reconfigured: A pedagogical paradigm shift? - Joe Dale.

In this practical session, Joe Dale will explore how the global language teaching community has risen to the challenge of moving their teaching wholly online and how attitudes to educational technology may have changed as a result. Joe will provide some timely advice on ways in which language teachers can enhance their remote teaching repertoire further with many practical examples. He will also share a comprehensive resource including advice and tutorials to support you during these unprecedented times. Joe is an independent languages consultant, former SSAT Languages Lead Practitioner, recognised expert on technology and language learning and the man behind the #mfltwitterati.

Saturday 11.45-12.30: GCSE recovery, revision and catchup for Year 11s - Juliet Park.

This session will demonstrate how year 11s can prepare effectively and efficiently for the GCSE exams through a holistic, blended learning approach.  It will bring together the best pedagogical practices, through face to face teaching and independent learning, to develop their vocabulary, grammar, reading, listening, writing and translation skills. Presented by Juliet Park, MFL consultant, Director of Languages for the Share Trust and lead trainer for AQA.

Saturday 12.45-13.30: More than words - Lisa Stevens.

This session explores the notion that learning a language is about so much more than lists of words and grammar. Drawing from the speaker’s own observations and experiences as a lifelong language learner as well as a teacher and mother, we will consider the importance of context, culture, communication, celebration and connections in nurturing learners with an enduring passion for language(s). Presented by Lisa Stevens, a Primary languages educator and consultant who teaches at two Birmingham primary schools and who has consulted on different language projects including The Lingo Show, Pacca Alpaca app, Rising Stars French KS2 scheme, BBC Primary languages Bitesize website and the BBC Schools Radio series ¡Mi Madrid!. Lisa is a member of the ALL Council.

Saturday 12.45-13.30: Certificate in Languages for Business: Boosting employability prospects for sixth formers and undergraduates - Juliet Park..

An increasing number of students are studying for a business qualification in French, German or Spanish. This is the perfect qualification to take alongside ‘A’ levels or vocational qualifications, both for enrichment purposes but also as a Duke of Edinburgh skill. An increasing number of schools have introduced this qualification (either face to face or online) to boost their students career prospects and to counteract the decline at A level. Find out how to introduce the course and hear from other teachers who are successfully delivering it. Presented by Juliet Park, MFL consultant, Director of Languages for the Share Trust and lead trainer for AQA.

Saturday 13.45-14.30: Harnessing the power of Bitmojis and Google Jamboard to engage learners in and out of the languages classroom - Joe Dale.

In this session, we will look at a variety of ways teachers can use Bitmoji avatars to create talking avatars to practise speaking, practise writing through digital storytelling and narrated dialogues and make your own virtual classroom. We will also see how to use Google Jamboard to model grammar points, play collaborative games, create sorting activities, practise word order and brainstorm ideas. Presented by independent languages consultant, former SSAT Languages Lead Practitioner, recognised expert on technology and language learning and the man behind the #mfltwitterati, Joe Dale.

Saturday 13.45-14.30: Get involved with Spanish: Challenges and training opportunities for Spanish language teachers in the UK - Javier Ramos Linares.

Changing times demand greater flexibility and innovation to face unprecedented challenges in the Spanish classroom, to meet the needs and expectations of students and to maintain their motivation. The Consejería de Educación (Spanish Embassy Education Office), provides a wide range of online resources for teachers and has recently activated some brand-new, online training options open to all UK Spanish language teachers, to equip them better to respond to the current situation. Javier Ramos Linares, Spanish Language and Education Adviser at the Spanish Embassy Education Office, provides an overview.

Saturday 14.45-15.30: Creative translation to raise aspiration - Charlotte Ryland.

Is translation just a transaction? Can it do more than check understanding and grammar? Despite translation being more prominent on the MFL curriculum than it has been for years, its full potential for enthusing language learners and enriching teaching is not currently being realised. In fact, it sometimes feels like the curriculum, and in particular the mark schemes, are turning teachers and learners off translation more than ever before. This presentation by Dr Charlotte Ryland, Director of the Stephen Spender Trust and founding Director of the Queen’s College Translation Exchange (Oxford), organisations dedicated to promoting language-learning, multilingualism and translation, shows how structured translation activities can raise aspiration for language-learning, bring creativity into the classroom, and teach and consolidate grammar and vocabulary.

Saturday 14.45-15.30: Differentiation in the primary KS2 classroom - Juliet Park.

Many schools have the challenging task of not only delivering languages through teachers that are not confident linguists, but they also have mixed aged groups with varying experience. This session will show effective ways to keep all age groups engaged so that every learner can be stretched and challenged, no matter what age group are combined. The workshop will also demonstrate effective ways for children to work collaboratively and to develop fluency in French or Spanish. Presented by Juliet Park, MFL consultant, Director of Languages for the Share Trust and lead trainer for AQA.

Saturday 15.30-16.15: How to find students online as a self-employed language teacher - Anneli Haake.

Anneli Haake, a Language Teacher Rebel who has run her own business teaching Swedish online for 15 years, as well as creating and marketing language teaching materials, will talk about how to create useful content about yourself, what you offer and how you can help people. She will discuss how to create a lead magnet, pillar content, photos/videos, and what you should focus on to quickly find new students online and via social media.

Saturday 15.45-16.30: Making the most of your training year - Cameron Davies, Anna Lise Gordon & Juliette Claro.

This seminar will enable trainees who are at the start of their MFL teacher training year to hear from expert speakers, including a practising teacher with advice, resources and contacts to support them. There will also be advice and information from the British Council on useful resources. Presented by Cameron Davies, Programme Manager Language Teacher Training Scholarships, British Council, Professor Anna Lise Gordon, Director, Institute of Education, St Mary’s University and Trustee for the Association for Language Learning and Juliette Claro, Head of Languages, Gumley House School.

Saturday 16.45-17.45: Language Teachers 'Show & Tell' - Helen Myers & Joe Dale.

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 (MFL and TEFL) are invited to speak for a maximum 5 minutes about their ‘top tip’ for classroom practice including teaching ideas, pupil activities and resources.

Saturday 17.30-18.00: Ditch the textbooks and teach MFL through culture and authentic resources - Juliette Claro.

During lockdown MFL teachers have learnt to reinvent the wheels of learning languages. It has been a learning curve for many, trying to keep students motivated and finding resources that are engaging remotely. This workshop is designed for all the teachers out there torn between the rigours of the curriculum and the cultural and fun aspects of learning languages who wish to offer a learning journey full of enriching authentic elements. Presented by MFL teacher of 20 years, Juliette Claro, Assistant Head at Gumley House School.

Sunday 15 November

Sunday 10.30-11.15: 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 resources and activities for the classroom, virtual exchanges for schools, and distance training programmes for teachers. Presented by Benoît Le Dévédec, French Language Attaché. 

Sunday 10.45-11.30: Transition - the missing link - Suzanne Ofarrell.

How can we create a successful bridge between foreign language learning in primary and secondary, which acknowledges and builds on the variability of pupil progress and time allocation in primary schools, and acknowledges that pupils may have studied a different language to the one they will learn in secondary? In this talk, Suzanne Ofarrell, MFL Consultant for the Association of School and College Leaders and previously, a secondary school headteacher before becoming ASCL’s Inspection specialist and then Curriculum specialist, outlines the ASCL’s KS2/KS3 Flexible Transition Toolkit, developed with ALL’s primary steering group, which provides primary leaders with an expert overview of the knowledge and skills that can equip their learners for a good start in KS3. 

Sunday 10.45-11.30: 5 Weeks of Low-Prep Fun in the Language Classroom - Janina Klimas.

Infuse your classes with these 25 easy-to-prepare, engaging activities and resources that get students excited about learning languages and through some of the rough parts, all while having fun. Activities from drama, gaming, card games and play will be shared to expand the language teacher’s repertoire. Most activities can be adapted to various difficulty and proficiency levels, as well as to numerous themes and languages. Presented by Janina Klimas who has taught languages for over 20 years on 3 different continents and speaks 6 languages. Janina has a BA in Theater Arts and Foreign Languages, and an MA in the Teaching of Languages. 

Sunday 11.30-12.15: How to Improve speaking skills in the digital age - Dominique Böert.

Digital technology has become a part of our everyday lives. It offers a great variety of tools – especially for foreign language teaching. The focus will be on developing and improving speaking skills, including how to meaningfully formulate ideas and opinions in a foreign language in this digital age. This presentation will look at how digital resources can be used for innovative teaching and learning. It will tackle how to ensure that both the learner’s needs and the requirements of the national curriculum are met. Presented by Dominique Böert, a qualified language teacher and advisor at the Goethe-Institut in London, promoting German language and culture at schools in the UK.

Sunday 11.30-12.15: 3 cups, 3 balls - Nick Mair.

Most young people would like to be able to perform a magic trick – and all the better if it requires no props beyond 3 disposable coffee cups. Presented by Nick Mair, French and Spanish teacher at Dulwich College, former Chair ISMLA, Vice Chair ALL-London and Trustee CIOL, this session is a practical session that looks at how this well known (and impressive) magic trick can be used to make pupils present a piece of oral work which includes self presentation, facts, an opinion, 3 tenses and a negative. You will learn how to deliver this class so if you can, bring 3 paper cups and two napkins. Examples in French, Spanish and (poorly pronounced) Chinese!

Sunday 11.45-12.30: Why you should use film in the KS3 and KS4 languages classroom - Judith Rifeser.

20 reasons on the importance of using film and 20 practical ideas on how to use film in the languages classroom to teach not only vocabulary, grammar and enhance all four skills but to nurture and celebrate diverse representation, intercultural understanding and empathy. Presented by Dr Judith Rifeser, Lecturer (ITE Secondary Languages) at Goldsmiths, University of London, MFL teacher (Spanish, German, Italian and EAL), and ALL London Committee member.

Sunday 11.45-12.30: Language Knowledge Organisers: a teacher's guide - Richard Bellworthy.

Modern Foreign Language Knowledge Organisers (MFL KOs), aka parallel texts, sentence builders, speaking mats, writing mats, mindmaps 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 Bellworthy, secondary head of MFL and founder of Facebook group, MFL Knowledge Organisers (6K 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.

Sunday 12.30-13.15: How to build confidence in listening! - Jennifer Wozniak-Rush.

Listening is often the skill where pupils struggle the most as they tend to feel apprehensive about it. How do you build students’ ability to understand and react to language at speed, all in a safe and highly engaging way? This session will give you a range of activities and tips you can use with all your classes to build confidence in listening. Activities can easily be adapted for all languages. 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.

Sunday 13.30-14.15: Motivation and engagement in the MFL classroom: let’s play, let’s speak! - Esmeralda Salgado.

This seminar will look at different practical classroom techniques which have proved to enhance motivation and engagement. It will focus on the use of traditional structured and scaffolded games, short timed competitions, music, IT tools such as QR codes, as well as profile raising mechanisms in schools (talking walls and scratch cards) and project based learning. From basic, little tasks to more elaborate, collaborative assignments via Etwinning and Erasmus, as tools to increase confidence, make languages relevant to learners and, therefore, extremely engaging. Presented by Esmeralda Salgado, Head of MFL and Digital Lead at the Cambridgeshire independent school, King’s Ely, and provider of workshops and webinars as part of the London ALL branch on the use of technology in MFL.

Sunday 13.45-14.30: Translating is fun! - Jennifer Wozniak-Rush.

In this session, Jennifer Wozniak-Rush will be presenting a range of fun and engaging activities for translating that she uses with her pupils from Y7 to Y11. Oral and written translation are both very important. As always, building confidence is key so starting slowly with short translation to translating longer passages. It will be explained how it is incorporated in her planning. Jennifer is 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. 

Sunday 14.30-15.15: "We Are Multilingual”: Identity-based activities to promote and enhance language learning - Linda Fisher and Karen Forbes.

This seminar presents the free, research-based “We Are Multilingual” (WAM) teaching resources for primary and secondary schools. These resources, developed from research with over 2,000 students, aim to help students to reflect on what language learning means for them, their school and their community, and to ultimately encourage them to identify as multilingual. This, in turn, can help to promote and enhance language learning in schools. Resources are currently available in French, German and Spanish. Some are also available in English for use in a whole-school context (e.g. assemblies, PSHCE lessons etc.). Presented by Linda Fisher and Karen Forbes on behalf of the Multilingual Identity in Education group at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge.

Sunday 14.45-15.30: Self-publishing vs working with a publisher - Heiner Schenke.

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

Sunday 14.45-15.30: Stickability beyond the classroom: delivering high impact lessons via the use of IT tools - Esmeralda Salgado.

Teaching remotely has opened a new field of IT resources that will continue in face to face teaching and learning. This seminar will explore how to plan and deliver high impact and memorable lessons via the use of simple IT tools in order to enhance motivation, especially in reluctant learners, and to maximise learning. It will explore how platforms such as Wheel of Names, LearningApps, Flipgrid, Flippity, Padlet, innovative use of Bitmojis and YouTube, among others, can assist teachers in the task of creating high impact and sticky lessons for our pupils. Suitable for for all stages but particularly KS3/4. Presented by Esmeralda Salgado, Head of MFL and Digital Lead at the Cambridgeshire independent school, King’s Ely, and provider of workshops and webinars as part of the London ALL branch on the use of technology in MFL.

Sunday 15.30-16.15: Make 'em speak! Strategies to get your students speaking in language lessons - Maria Florencia Nelli.

Teachers often struggle to make their students speak in class and find the task so unrewarding that in many schools they reduce the speaking part of their lessons to a minimum. Many students are simply shy, teenagers are particularly difficult to engage due to embarrassment and peer pressure and older students can find it hard to talk as they feel self-conscious and worried about making mistakes. In this seminar Dr Maria Florencia Nelli, Director and Language Projects Coordinator of The Communicate Project CIC and a language teacher of many years teaching at primary, secondary and higher education levels, will have a look at strategies that will help you engage those unwilling students, helping them to gain confidence and flourish in their language learning adventure.

For language professionals

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

Friday 13 November

Friday 11.45-12.30: Top tips to thrive as a freelancer - Jaquelina Guardamagna.

In this talk Jaquelina Guardamagna, founder of translation, interpreting and internationalisation consultancy ‘Translator in London’, member of CIOL Council and Chair of ‘The Linguist’ editorial board, will explore those strategies that help freelance translators and interpreters run their business with the right priorities in mind. Using concrete examples, case studies and tools; from planning to communication with clients, effective negotiation strategies, and self-management techniques, this seminar will give you a holistic view of how to grab hold of the different aspects of your business as you progress your career as a freelance translator or interpreter.

Friday 12.45-13.30: Human content in virtual times - Paola van Cappellen.

Over the past few years, global brands have gradually been changing towards a more human approach to online consumer communications. Then COVID happened – making the digital space more important but also more crowded than ever. How are brands responding to this? What are the opportunities for language professionals and how can you help your clients ensure their content is meaningful to local customers back home? An introduction to human content adaptation in times of crisis when relevance and empathy are key to getting it right. Presented by Paola van Cappellen, who started out as a linguist with a background in translation studies and is currently Account Manager at Creative Culture, a cross-cultural consultancy for international brands.

Friday 13.45-14.30: Diversification for Translators - Lindsay Bywood.

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, transcreation, 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 project management for translators at postgraduate level.

Friday 14.30-15.15: Get into teaching languages - Katrin Sredzki-Seamer & Cameron Davies.

This session will provide information about all the different routes into language teaching in England, information about the Modern languages SCITT (school-centred initial teacher training) as well as information about the British Council Language Teacher Training scholarship and other bursaries. Presented by Katrin Sredzki-Seamer, Director of SCITT, Sheffield Teaching School Alliance and Cameron Davies, Language Teacher Training Scholarship Manager at The British Council.

Friday 14.45-15.30: Keeping the UK safe – what part can language professionals play? - Mark Lewis.

Every day police officers across the UK interact with victims, witnesses and detained persons who speak little or no English. They also interact with people who have hearing loss or are deaf. Without the dedication and support of thousands of interpreters, translators and transcribers, the police would be unable to investigate and victims would not be heard, those accused of crime would not get to put their own version of events and witnesses would be unable to assist in discovering the facts. Hear from Leicestershire Police’s DSI Mark Lewis, former hostage negotiator and counter terrorism officer, on the type of police work undertaken by language professionals and the requirements for linguists wishing to undertake police assignments in the future.

Friday 15.30-16.15: Introduction to subtitling - Lindsay Bywood.

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 subtitling industry.

Saturday 14 November

Saturday 10.45-11.30: New ways of conference interpretation (platforms, hybrid meetings, Interactio etc).

Work has been underway developing platforms for remote interpretation and corresponding ISO standards for several years now. However, the Covid-19 crisis has precipitated the introduction of such platforms and hybrid meetings to enable business to continue in the EU institutions despite travel restrictions and lockdown measures. What are the new challenges for the profession? What future for conventional multi-lingual meetings? Will these platforms eventually replace the interpreting booths and meeting rooms as we know them?  What are the 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 European Court of Justice will discuss.

Saturday 12.30-13.15: Using your language skills to forge a translation career in the EU institutions - Paul Kaye.

A look at the different routes into working for the EU institutions as a translator with the Commission’s translation service, one of the largest in the world. Whether on staff, as an intern or freelance contractor. Presented by Paul Kaye, translator with the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Translation.

Saturday 13.30-14.15: The challenges, scope & future of local authority interpreting - Atul Ramanuj.

This talk, presented by Atul Ramanuj, Head of M-four Translations, Manchester City Council’s in-house communications and language support service and one of the largest local authority managed services within Europe, addresses a range of issues facing local authority interpreting. Can ESOL or Talk English remove the need for Interpreters? The role of private sector providers in public and local authority interpreting. The lack of a unified approach to quality, qualification and training. The shortage of rare/new languages interpreters. The availability of affordable training and qualifications for these languages. The scope for digital and audio-visual medium for Interpreting. 

Saturday 14.30-15.15: Revaluing the human contribution to the translation business - Hayley Harris.

In times of accelerating technological developments, this seminar reassesses the value of human translators in the translation business. It draws on recent international business research to take an alternative view of language and translation and provides new ideas and practical suggestions of how everyone in the translation business can enhance the value of translators. Presented by Dr Hayley Harris, freelance translator since 2002 and awarded a doctorate with the University of Leicester for research into cross-lingual communication in the workplace.

Saturday 15.45-16.30: Looking after your most valuable business asset - yourself. Health tips for linguists - Ignaty Dyakov.

Presented by Ignaty Dyakov, author of Russian language textbooks, chartered linguist, member of the CIOL and UK Society of Authors, language teacher for 18 years, certified life coach, naturopath and Ayurvedic consultantI, in this talk he will be sharing his holistic health model, inspired by modern science and traditional Ayurveda – MEALS (movement, eating, application, love, sleep) – to enhance one’s wellbeing. Simple steps one can take to be healthy, have enough energy throughout the day, and minimise risks of getting chronic diseases.

Saturday 16.30-17.15: 9 mistakes freelance translators should avoid - Levent Yildizgoren.

On issues including discounting and talking regularly to clients,  joining a professional organisation and having a specialist subject, 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, offers his advice for freelancers based on 25 years in the industry.

Saturday 16.45-17.30: English in Brussels/EU: no future?

There is the mistaken view that Brexit will lead to a fall in demand for English interpreters in Brussels or that British interpreters will no longer be eligible to work for the EU. An EU staff interpreter will outline trends in interpreting demand and demographics and demonstrate why more than ever EU Institutions need to attract bright young graduates into the interpreting profession regardless of nationality.

Sunday 15 November

Sunday 10.30-11.15: Languages in the RAF - Jim Solly.

A presentation about language learning in the Royal Air Force; why they have linguists and what languages they study. How to become a linguist, the differences between a ground-based or airborne linguist, and details of the RAF’s In-Country-Language-Training (ICLT). Presented by Sergeant Jim Solly, an RAF linguist for over 20 years who has flown on the Nimrod R1 and RC-135 Rivet Joint aircraft and has been deployed to many places worldwide using his languages in his role.

Sunday 12.45-13.30: Keeping the UK safe – what part can language professionals play - Mark Lewis?

Every day police officers across the UK interact with victims, witnesses and detained persons who speak little or no English. They also interact with people who have hearing loss or are deaf. Without the dedication and support of thousands of interpreters, translators and transcribers, the police would be unable to investigate and victims would not be heard, those accused of crime would not get to put their own version of events and witnesses would be unable to assist in discovering the facts. Hear from Leicestershire Police’s DSI Mark Lewis, former hostage negotiator and counter terrorism officer, on the type of police work undertaken by language professionals and the requirements for linguists wishing to undertake police assignments in the future.

Sunday 12.45-14.30: A SWOT analysis of translation and interpreting in the time of COVID-19.

A panel of experienced translators and interpreters including Deborah Chobanian, Maria Cecilia Lipovsek, Marie Lecarlier, Pat Wheeler and Pamela Mayorcas will address the opportunities and threats that their profession has faced, in the past few months, and how people have dealt with them. They will also talk about the strengths needed by professional translators and interpreters in order to face the challenges of the pandemic, and the weaknesses that need to be overcome, in order to maintain one’s business presence and income.

Sunday 13.30-14.15: Using your language skills to forge a translation career in the EU institutions - Paul Kaye.

A look at the different routes into working for the EU institutions as a translator with the Commission’s translation service, one of the largest in the world. Whether on staff, as an intern or freelance contractor. Presented by Paul Kaye, translator with the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Translation.

Language tasters

Introductory classes to over 20 languages

Friday 13 November

Friday 10.30-11.00: Hindi
Friday 11.15-11.45: Spanish
Friday 12.00-12.30: French
Friday 12.45-13.15: Arabic
Friday 13.30-14.00: Italian
Friday 14.15-14.45: Portuguese
Friday 15.00-15.30: Mandarin

Presented by the Wenlin Chinese School

Friday 15.45-16.15: Japanese

Presented by the Japan Foundation

Friday 16.30-17.00: Indonesian
Friday 17.15-17.45: Korean

Saturday 14 November

Saturday 10.30-11.00: Macedonian and Slovenian
Saturday 11.15-11.45: Mandarin

Presented by the Wenlin Chinese School

Saturday 12.00-12.30: German
Saturday 12.45-13.15: Modern Greek
Saturday 13.30-14.00: Bangla/Bengali

Presented by Shehzaad Shams

Saturday 14.15-14.45: Swedish

Presented by Daniel Lind

Saturday 15.00-15.30: Spanish
Saturday 15.45-16.15: Japanese

Presented by the Japan Foundation

Saturday 16.30-17.00: Dutch
Saturday 17.15-17.45: Welsh

Sunday 15 November

Sunday 10.30-11.00: Russian
Sunday 11.15-11.45: Italian
Sunday 12.00-12.30: Thai
Sunday 12.45-13.15: French
Sunday 13.30-14.00: Polish
Sunday 14.15-14.45: Ancient Greek

Presented by Florencia Nelli

Sunday 15.00-15.30: Esperanto
Sunday 15.45-16.15: Turkish
Sunday 16.30-17.00: Danish
Free tickets

Book your free tickets now.