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.

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.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

South Ayrshire

All senior pupils in South Ayrshire schools studying a language or languages are going to be involved in a business venture involving various local, national and international companies. The event will be held at Prestwick Airport on Tuesday September 28th.

Share your ideas for EDL!

Visit this EDL2010 Wiki and share your ideas, experiences and good practice.

St Ninians Primary in Livingston, West Lothian

St Ninians Primary are celebrating EDL on Wednesday 29th September. Watch this space!

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

St George's School, Edinburgh

St George's School write...

Our celebrations will run from Monday 27th September-Friday 1st October.

We will be holding a Teach a Friend a Language Week in our Junior and Lower schools (from P3-S1) and a series of lunchtime language tasters in languages not normally at taught at St George's in Upper School (S2-S6) delivered by a combination of staff from all parts of the school, and some students. On Friday 1st October we are hoping to hold a 'Chatterbox' session in our Upper School Hall with a series of stations where students can sit and chat in a number of different languages with other students and staff. We will hopefully kick the week off with an assembly on the Monday morning.

Ideas to celebrate EDL

Our sister organisation in Northern Ireland, NICILT, has some great ideas that you might like to use to celebrate EDL 2010:

Or you could visit the EDL pages on the NICILT website.