Deputy principal Vivien Corrie-Wing
More than 50 primary and secondary teachers, school leaders and modern languages experts attended the first national Language Futures conference at Linton Village College (LVC) recently.
Language Futures was introduced at LVC in 2009 and is now in its fourth year.
Instead of being directly taught a language, students learn the language of their choice through a combination of modern technology and contact with volunteer community mentors who are native or fluent speakers.
Students in year eight are currently learning Italian, Spanish, Russian and Mandarin Chinese.
The scheme has recently been extended to Castle Manor Academy in Haverhill and Swavesey Village College.
The conference, held on October 25 and supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, brought together a large number of language teachers to share ideas and resources and discuss ways of introducing the Language Futures methodology to their schools.
Delegates attended workshops and keynote speeches, and enjoyed tea and cakes with LVC students while talking about their experience of learning languages through the Language Futures programme.
Vivien Corrie-Wing, deputy principal of LVC, said: “It was wonderful to have the opportunity to share this innovation with colleagues from across the country.
“We hope that this conference will have sparked interest for other schools to become new field trial centres so that we can develop this creative model of language learning further.”
LVC is currently recruiting volunteer community mentors to support students in French, Spanish, Italian, Mandarin and Russian.
Mentors are asked to keep in touch with students by e-mail, attend some lessons and help with lunchtime clubs.
Anyone who is interested should e-mail Tina Rice at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For all the latest news see Thursday’s (November 22) Echo.