Learning from the Classroom

Learning from the Classroom is a new ALL initiative to connect and share research and practice by teachers for the benefit of members. There is growing interest in evidence-informed practice in the teaching profession as a whole, with calls for more research into the teaching and learning of languages in the UK context (Teaching Schools Council, 2016). As leaders of learning, teachers use external research, combined with their own experience, to identify what works best in their setting (Buck, 2016). Learning from the Classroom is an opportunity to learn what other language teachers are doing and to reflect on insights which might inform our own work.

Engagement with evidence-informed practice is an expectation for teachers (DfE, 2012) and is a central component of the new Mentor Standards (DfE, 2016) as well as other professional accreditation routes e.g. NPQSL. Evidence-informed practice is part of the routine work of many teachers and ALL supports its members by providing easy access to a range of articles by teachers who are willing to share their classroom-based research. This could emerge from Masters or other postgraduate study, but contributions drawing on other non-accredited research and development work, as well as collaborative inquiry, are also welcome.

Currently, ALL provides updates, short features and practitioner- focused pieces via ALLNet and the Languages Today magazine, as well as more detailed articles of international relevance in the Language Learning Journal. These are important ways to share knowledge and ideas, and Learning from the Classroom is intended to provide a further medium for sharing classroom-based interventions, inquiry and small-scale research.

Learning from the Classroom is an exciting way to celebrate the amazing work taking place across the country to enhance learning opportunities for children and young people in schools. Learning from the Classroom allows teachers to stand back from their busy lives, share learning and reflect on potential impact in a different context.

Let’s share our learning together and fly the flag for languages!

Read the latest submissions

Culture teaching and motivation in the Languages classroom

With a lack of student motivation being described as ‘the greatest challenge facing FL teachers in the UK’ (Barton, 2014: 11), to what extent can explicit culture teaching during starter activities motivate GCSE students of Spanish with their language learning? ...

Driving motivation and spontaneity: an enquiry into the interaction between authentic materials and speaking skills in an all-girls Year 8 class

by Annelies Baneke. This paper assesses authentic materials as a source of cultural and social insight; elements which can drive more meaningful learning in MFL. It explores humour, intercultural understanding and communicative confidence, and suggests that carefully mediated resources can effectively underpin motivation and spontaneity.
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