Last night’s #MFLTwitterati chat was on listening, on which most of the participants noted they had never had any formal training.
Advice from participants included:
Referring to transcripts
Focus on phonics
Choral reading of transcripts
Scaffolded listening activities exploiting gap fills
Performing transcripts as a roleplay
Constant exposure to listening tracks
Recycling of language
Removing words from transcripts (with or without multiple choice)
Using target language as much as possible from the beginning so students tune in
Using YouTube and auto subtitles for sixth form (sometimes correction is needed...)
Creating your own listenings and sharing
Blacking out unnecessary words on transcripts
Predicting ahead of listening
Looking out for distractors
Using the GCSE workbooks and revision guides
Tracks from old exam papers
Expensive subscription services
Focus on speaking and writing from legacy specification
Students not realising the importance of the skill
The speed and lack of thinking time for students
Students focusing too much on little things and failing to see the big picture
Students too concerned with knowing every word and missing out the small part they could’ve understood which answered the question
Students being able to put everything together - decoding, vocabulary knowledge, grammar, comprehension all at once
The difference between hearing a live speaker and a recorded voice
The possibility of the GCSE/A level exam eventually becoming video based to make it more natural
The issue with the ‘mixing’ of skills - e.g summary question at A level - is this about listening or writing?
The first #mfltwitterati chat took place on Wednesday 21st February, 8.30-9pm. The topic was vocabulary learning. The below is a summary of what was discussed:
Q1) What are the main obstacles to vocabulary learning?
Lack of repetition.
Lack of integration into daily life.
Lack of basic English literacy onto which to hook L2.
Students not learning until 2 minutes before test.
Stuudents not recognising the importance.
Students not having a good understanding of the concepts in English.
So much content.
Q2) What have you tried in the past that wasn’t as successful as you’d hoped?
Students making their own lists and self testing in class - not getting into a routine.
Single word vocab tests.
Anything when not consistent.
Q3) What has worked for you?
Verb of the day with 3 time frames.
Learning in context.
Including time frames.
Testing to use the learned vocab in a sentence.
Highlight 5 words in a lesson they know they’ve seen before but can’t remember.
Learning genders by hanging lists in different places.
Link to Gianfranco Conti blog:
Q4) What do you plan to try in the future?
Learning in chunks.
More retrieval practice.
Regular repetition across topics..
Weekly quizzes with high expectations.
Make into chunks, manipulate for homework and apply in class to prove it has stuck.
Build up vocab over time - start with 2 or 3 verb common words and later return to the topic to add more.
Back to flash cards, look/cover/write/check, self-quizzing
Q5) What topics would you like to discuss in #mfltwitterati chat in the future?
Tech in MFL
Recruitment to GCSE and A Level
Last time I blogged about the CTeach programme I talked about the Professional Development plan I had written and what I am planning on working on throughout the year. I am going to have my first call with my mentor tonight to talk about this plan and what I might want to change before I submit the final version. This plan isn't formally assessed in terms of what I have written and how, my mentor just has to sign off to confirm that I'm thinking of my development, it's realistic and it has a range of formal and informal development opportunities. It's up to me to keep it updated throughout the year and make sure I am making progress in the areas I have identified. I will be assessed on the reflective journal entries that I submit along the way.
One very interesting part of the programme is the Online Debate. I won't go into the topics here, but we had a choice of three - all of them looked really interesting. Then we have been provided with suggested readings and an expert webinar to help us form our ideas. We then have to give our response to the debate topic and reply to at least two other participants. The only thing I'm finding hard about this is that I can't get it done when I might like to as I have to rely on when the other participants respond. That's not really an issue though, unless they all do it at midnight on the last day!
The next thing I need to do is start thinking about my Impact Portfolio - 1 change I have made that has had a positive impact, and one that hasn't worked out how I would've hoped. I've got some thinking to do about how to approach this one, luckily the first deadline isn't for another month. We then get to peer review someone else's submission before redrafting which is a really interesting idea. Of course, it's always a good idea to read other people's work, but to have a peer review as part of the assessment is a different approach to anything I've experienced in the past. I'm just trying to think about the changes I'm going to write about, the Impact doesn't only have to be on student progress so I'm considering changes I've made that colleagues might be able to comment on. That's tomorrow's job once I've planned my lessons for next week!
I'm also pleased with how the workload has been spread out so far. The deadlines have all seemed reasonable and tasks have been broken down into chunks where necessary. As the title says - so far, so good.