The European Day of Languages (EDL) aims to celebrate linguistic diversity by showing people across Europe how important languages are and what fun can be had learning them. The European Day of Languages is 26 September. It was set up by the Council of Europe and was first celebrated in 2001. It’s getting bigger every year, with 45 countries now involved. Schools across Scotland will be celebrating the European Day of Languages 2010 in Septmber. This is a snapshot of what’s happening.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Kilmarnock Academy

Kilmarnock Academy celebrated European Day of Languages on October 4 in style with a range of activities for pupils from S1 to S6. The Academy became part of the Eurozone for the day and their rate of exchange was €1.00 = £1.00! The Assembly Hall was decorated with flags and banners made by S1 pupils and French delicacies were on sale in the foyer during break – the “pains au chocolat” proved very popular indeed and quickly sold out!   In the Assembly hall at lunch time crêpes were on sale, made by the very talented pupils in the hospitality class!
There was a Fancy (European) Dress Competition with prizes for S1-3 and for the seniors, with judging in the hall at lunchtime.  Chloé Richmond won a prize for looking very French!
During break and at lunchtime pupils took part in, and watched, entertainment by very talented performers doing a traditional French Pierrot Mime act (Vanessa Wilson in S5) and Salsa dancing (Rosi Tudhope and Kimberley Marshall in S6). Music in all different languages was also enjoyed by pupils and staff.
French classes were held in the hall where a variety of activities took place. S3 and S4 took part in a Euroquiz to challenge their general knowledge on languages and Europe. S1 enjoyed some games in French including ‘Jacques a dit’, in which they became particularly skilled at listening carefully to the traditional ‘Simon Says’ game all in French (“Jacques a dit “Regardez!  Taisez-vous!”), followed by elimination dancing games, singing songs and learning tectonic dances in French.

The day was a great success thanks to Mrs Shona Stables (and her colleagues) who organised all the activities and preparation for the EDL.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

St Ninian's Primary School

St Ninian’s Primary School in Livingston celebrated EDL over 3 days.
Pupils from Primary 4, 5, 6 and 7 had a range of activities organised for them in their French period starting with a PowerPoint on facts and figures about languages and an introduction on what was going to be happening over the course of the lesson.
This was followed by a session on Language Tasters including 3 words (Hello, Goodbye and Thank you) in Italian, German and Spanish. Pupils listened to the word and were invited to come and click on the smartboard to hear the word spoken, which they then repeated as a class. Some of the children were surprised to hear the similarity in words from different countries.
After the language tasters, the children participated in a bookmark competition where they had to design a bookmark to depict what European Day of Languages meant to them. They were given maps and flags and some vocabulary to give them ideas. Each bookmark had to include the words ‘European Day of Languages’ and the pupils used their imagination, combined with use of coloured pens and paper to create some colourful bookmarks which were to be judged later in the day.
A Smartboard Challenge on identifying words and phrases used in the English language with foreign origins really tested the children as they took turns to come up to the smartboard and guess the country of origin for commonly used words. Do you know what countries the words baklava, faux pas, pretzel and mosquito come from?

Primary 1 and 2 looked on Euroclubsschools' website and learned some facts about the Eiffel Tower and the French flag, learning exactly what each colour meant. They then got on their feet and danced and did actions to La Danse Des Canards to the tune of the birdie dance. They finished off by colouring in and decorating bookmarks with the French flag on them.
At lunchtime the pupils enjoyed dressing up in traditional costumes from European countries, sampling some European food and talking in different languages to each other. Some of the parents came in to introduce the children to a little Spanish, German and Polish. This ‘Chatterbox Café’ was fun for all with tasty croissants to sample!

Pupils at St Ninian’s learn French from P1-7 with their teachers, Jane Keegan and Julie Caskie and P7 also learn Spanish. Parents Annie Dryden and Mary Jane Ewins, come in to help with French and Spanish respectively. The children of this multicultural school were enthusiastic and very excited by their first time celebrating European Day of Languages and the day was a great success, enjoyed by pupils and staff alike.

Glenrothes High School

Glenrothes High School celebrated EDL on Friday 1st October with a lively and fun packed day, which was the highlight of a week of events, which included a European staff quiz, a poster competition for S1-S3 and taster sessions of different languages. On the day itself, each classroom in the Modern Languages Department had a different country as its theme and a cafe reflecting this. On offer was an abundance of food for everyone to try, which they did very successfully, at the same time enjoying the different music of each country. S4 pupils made an excellent job of painting younger pupils’ faces with European flags, and staff and pupils dressed in costumes to reflect different countries . The atmosphere was fantastic, and it was a joy to see so many people celebrating other cultures. Roll on next year!

Monday, 4 October 2010

Culloden Academy, Inverness

Culloden Academy celebrated the diverse cultures and languages spoken in their school with lots of cultural events held in the school on Friday 1st October. It was a hugely successfull day!
Here is how they celebrated:
  • Bollywood Dancing Dispay
  • Spanish Singing Workshop-
  • Guess the Language (11 pupils and staff recorded a small piece in their native language, pupils had to guess their language)
  • Mini language taster- Russian and Polish was on offer for pupils
  • TAFAL- Teach a Friend a Language - A range of bi-lingual pupils from S1-S6 taught other pupils and staff a language. We had Korean, French, Italian, Afrikkans and Bengali.
  • We also had Country Information displays where staff and pupils brought in their own personal objects that belonged to the country.
  • Sign Language Workshop
  • European Cooking - The Higher Spanish class cooked a range of European Treats - Patatas Bravas, Pizza, Spanish meatballs, Empanadillas, Quiche and Pan con tomate. Delicious!
  • S6 pupils- Name the Country Quiz
The school canteen also got involved and produced a fantastic European Menu for the day. We had French Onion Soup, Chicken Paella, Meatballs and Pasta, Bean Goulash and finally a delicious Tiramisu from Italy.

Farr Primary, Inverness

We are starting a multinational project with 15 other countries this month so it was an excellent opportunity to send out a message saying,
Greetings from Scotland. We are looking forward to working with you and finding out that “We all came here from somewhere.”
Our partners replied in their own language and the children found the country on a map of Europe and drew a flag to match. They used these to test other classes on their knowledge.
It was a really good introductory activity.
Lauren P6 said, “It looks as if it would be harder to do spellings in Polish”
Euan P7 said, I can’t wait for us to find out more about these places. Can we meet these folk?”

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Douglas Academy, Milngavie

Pupils at Douglas Academy, Milngavie, celebrated EDL in advance, in the week beginning 20th September, culminating on Thursday 23rd when there were special continental dishes prepared by the dining centre staff for lunch. The pupils were entertained all week by listening to songs with foreign words in the titles played on the school radio network. This formed the basis of a competition in which all pupils were invited to take part. 
On Thursday, S6 pupils raided the dressing up boxes and appeared as citizens of Spain and France collecting donations for one of the charities supported by the school.
S1 had “off – timetable” lessons entirely devoted to EDL in which they learned many interesting facts about languages and language learning including some UK dialects.  They thoroughly enjoyed trying their hand at languages they had never heard before  -  in some cases never heard of…The lesson ended with a quiz which tested their listening skills to the max. Teachers played clips of well-known songs in 10 different languages and then pupils had to try and guess what they were listening to. They did well considering Xhosa is not often heard in Douglas!
In addition, the school ran three competitions:
  • Spot the Foreign Song
  • Senior essay writing competition (an essay in a foreign language about the importance of learning a language)
  • S1 poster competition ( a poster about the importance of learning a language). 

Teachers across the school wrote the date on their boards in any foreign languages they know which ranged from Lithuanian to Arabic, Ancient Greek to Hindi!  The PE department also changed the language on the exercise machines into French.
Liz Scott, from SCILT, visited Douglas Academy, and said, 'At the end of the day, I very much enjoyed listening to S3 debate the pros and cons of why it’s desirable to learn foreign languages.  They certainly convinced me, and the final part of each speech in either French or Italian was very impressive. Language learning is alive in well in Mrs Fisher’s department!!'

Edinburgh City Council – Piccolingo Day of Languages

Over 50 parents and early years staff attended Piccolingo: Day of Languages at St Thomas of Aquins High School on Wed 29th September.  The event had been organised by Edinburgh City Council, Bilingualism Matters, Scottish CILT, Edinburgh EAL Service and Edinburgh Beltane, with the support of different Consulates, to celebrate early language learning, and to promote the resources and opportunities available to support early language learning.
For more information on the event, and to see photos, visit the Piccolingo blog.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Wellington School

Wellington School celebrated EDL 2010 on Monday 27th September.
Visit the EDL pages of Wellington Schools website to see how they celebrated.  The photos show some of the Comenius group at the Iron Curtain Memorial in Budapest and the S1 pupils doing their EDL quiz, prepared by the S2s and S3s.

St George's School, Edinburgh

The EDL- inspired Languages week at St George’s was launched on Monday 27th September, at morning assembly. Louise Campbell, Head of the Faculty of Languages, showed a powerpoint containing interesting facts about language learning and went on to highlight to the assembly why being able to speak even a little of another language is one of life’s essential skills.
Throughout the week in the modern languages faculty, there are lunchtime language taster courses, where pupils will have the opportunity to learn Swahili, Portuguese, Russian, Finnish, Ga, Afrikaans, “cool” Spanish & even  Aussie English!
In the junior school , many of the plurilingual girls are contributing to the “Teach a friend a language” week, where no less than 15 diverse languages will be taught by pupils.
The school’s EDL week will culminate on Friday 1st October, with a lunchtime “Chatterbox” event, where all pupils and staff are invited to come along to various language classrooms and have a chat in French, Spanish, German, Chinese or Italian. In a bid to recruit as many people as possible through their doors, the languages staff will reward all “Chatterbox” participants with a snack which is typical of the country whose language they have chosen!

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Colquhoun Park Primary, East Dunbartonshire

On 28th September, Colquhoun Park Primary held a Japanese themed morning assembly. The whole school took part and were able to show off their Japanese language skills by saying ‘hello’, ‘good morning’, ‘how are you?’ and other Japanese words and sayings.
The school split into teams and took part in different Japanese-themed challenges – the Chopstick Challenge, the Calligraphy Challenge and the Gambarimasu Challenge.  Scores were counted in Japanese! There was also a Japanese Quiz, and pupils had to go around the school to collect the answers.
Global Education and Languages are merged within the school's everyday approaches to teaching and learning, and EDL 2010 was an opportunity to celebrate this. On 28th September, in addition to the Japanese Assembly, pupils celebrated languages and global education in other ways.  One class sourced and tried different Spanish foods. Another class learnt some Marshall Arts. Primary 7 did mental maths in Gaelic, and the corridors throughout the school were decorated with posters in different languages, including French and Bulgarian.
More information on languages and global education at Colquhoun Park is available from the school website.

South Ayrshire schools at Prestwick Airport

S5 & S6 pupils studying a language were invited to Prestwick Airport on 28th September for an event organised by South Ayrshire Council and Ayrshire Chamber Of Commerce.
The event aimed to promote the relevance of languages in the workplace, and to encourage pupils to consider studying languages further at school and beyond.
Employers involved included:
• NATS (Air Traffic Control)
• PR/Marketing Company – Write2Promote
The day began with an ice-breaker activity where pupils worked in groups and to develop a presentation on why you should visit France or Spain.  Pupils were then given the opportunity to work with an employer on tasks in the language they are studying at school.  These tasks included:
• Role play
• Developing visual media in the language
• ‘Guess who’ and Pictionary
The aim was to develop pupils’ confidence in using the language, as well as to encourage them to see the relevance of learning a language.
Merron Watkins from IBM said they are are big supporters of EDL, and were delighted to be involved in this event.  Languages are crucial in the work they do, supporting customers across Europe.
This is the first event of its kind in South Ayrshire, but organisers hope its success will mean the event can become an annual event.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

EDL visits

Scottish CILT will be visiting the following schools to celebrate EDL 2010. Look out for our photos!

  • Douglas Academy on 23rd September
  • St George's School on 27th September
  • Colquhoun Park Primary on 28th September
  • South Ayrshire schools at Prestwick Airport on 28th September
  • St Ninian's Primary on 29th September
  • Kilmarnock Academy on 4th October

Thursday, 16 September 2010

EDL Calendar - Council of Europe

The interactive EDL Calendar of Events shows all the EDL events happening across Europe.
If you are organising something to mark the EDL 2010, why don't you add it to the calendar? Or, if you are looking for ideas, have a look at some of the other events organised?

Monday, 13 September 2010

Farr Primary School, Inverness

Farr Primary write...

We hope to celebrate European Day of Language around 26th September using greetings to pupils from our 14 partners in their national tongue saying:
Greetings from ________________ we are looking forward to working with you and finding out that “We all came here from somewhere.” (the title of the project).
Then we can mark their position on a map of Europe and have a bubble with the greeting in it.
We will toast the project in our special spiced fruit punch.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Buckhaven High School

Buckhaven High School write...

On Friday 24th September at Buckhaven High School, for our European Day of Languages Celebrations, we will be running a number of activities:

Whole School Event:
This will take place at lunchtime in the Assembly Hall. Pupils from S1-6 are invited to take part in a language/culture quiz and food tasting activity. There will be a variety of language/culture "stands" run by staff and pupils that have a background in / knowledge of another language. These stands will provide the answers to the quiz. We have a variety of European and Asian Language this year.
The Home Economic Department runs their "foods of the world" demonstration in conjunction with this. Hospitality pupils prepare dishes from around the world. Pupils are asked to give their opinion of these foods in the language of it's country of origin.
These events are publicised by senior pupils at assemblies in the week leading up to the event itself.

In MFL Class
Pupils will have a mini-lesson in another language for 10-15 minutes. Other language include, German, Portuguese, Dutch, Italian and Spanish.
This is followed by a music quiz. This uses popular artists that had recorded some of their popular songs in English and other language.
Finally, there is an interactive "who wants to be a millionaire" game.

The Dining Hall staff will provide a EDL menu. All dishes are written in their original language. I have attached a copy of a previous menu for you to look at.

Institut Français d'Ecosse - Quiz and resources

Institut Français d'Ecosse have developed a Quiz and some resources for teachers to use to celebrate EDL 2010.
For more information, visit Institut Français d'Ecosse EDL webpages.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Wellington School

Wellington School write:

We will have a whole school assembly in the morning which will be written and led by our Comenius group who intend to present their work to the school.

In the afternoon, P7 and S1 pupils will do a quiz on French and German-speaking countries in Europe. S2 pupils prepare posters on towns in these countries and we make up a quiz based on their work.

Glenrothes High School

Glenrothes High School write...

We intend to celebrate the day on Friday 1st October. There will be a German and French cafe, the opportunity to have a taster of another foreign language, sampling of Spanish and Italian food and the staff of the department will be wearing traditional national dress of other countries. The corridor will be decorated with all things language related and there will also be a European quiz for staff. A poster competition for S1 and S2 has also been organised, with prizes for the best effort. The posters are advertising the event.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Kilmarnock Academy

Kilmarnock Academy write...

We plan to sell croissants, pains au chocolat and crepes at break and lunchtime. There will be French flavoured entertainment at lunchtime and during pupils' actual French classes, S1 and S2 pupils will be playing games in the assembly hall in French and S3 and S4 pupils will be enjoying a cultural and vocabulary quiz. The assembly hall will be decorated with the flags of all the European nations (made in class by S1 and S2 pupils) and we will also be singing and dancing along to some French songs.

We featured on the "Politics Show" on the BBC last year so we hope this year will be just as successful.

We are planning on holding our European Day of Languages on Monday 4th October.

EDL Posters from LTS

Download posters to celebrate EDL from LTS.