• Blaine Pike

GCSE Speaking workbooks, idiom posters, #Ramadan2021, MFL proposals, differentiation in MFL and more!

Happy Friday!

Hope you're ready for the Bank Holiday weekend!

Here's what I've packed into the MFL Weekly today:

  1. MFL proposals

  2. #Ramadan2021

  3. GCSE Speaking workbook

  4. Idiom posters

  5. The Noun Project

  6. Differentiation in MFL

  7. May the force...

  8. Line of (classroom) Duty

Grab a coffee and enjoy!


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MFL proposals

The Linguistics in MFL team has published a response to the current GCSE MFL proposals.

The response addresses a number of important issues, such as:

  1. Dynamic vocabulary lists (do words like "pandemic" feature in any of the currently available vocabulary frequency lists, and/or will the lists be compiled from written language only?)

  2. Geographical varieties of languages (will the proposed read-aloud task accept international accents, or, somewhat problematically, demand European "standard" variants?)

  3. Cultural awareness and understanding (will there be formal assessment of any wider cultural or literary awareness, as in other "theory vs. practice" subjects like music and PE?)

The Linguistics in MFL group is part of MEITS (Multilingualism: Empowering Individuals, Transforming Societies).

You can read the full response in the group's blog post here.



We are now halfway through the Islamic 9th lunar month of Ramadan – the month dedicated to sharing, understanding, empathy, self-awareness and self-reflection.

There are lots of interesting resources available about Ramadan, including this super simple thread on Twitter (which provides one of the quickest and most informative overviews I've seen).

Here are some resources that you could use for more cultural capital:

📂 DOWNLOADS GCSE Speaking workbook

Although the speaking exams aren't taking place for year 11 this year (even if they seem to be taking place in many schools in everything but name), this GCSE speaking workbook will provide an excellent resource for your current year 9s and 10s.

This 37-page workbook was designed to support students taking AQA GCSE Spanish, but it could easily be adapted for other languages (and/or exam specifications) that you teach.

Big thanks to @j_st_88 on Twitter for this hugely time-saving resource.

💡 CREATIVITY Idiom posters

As well as being funny (or just sometimes plain odd!), the use of idiomatic expressions in students' speaking and writing can really help elevate the quality of their work in KS4 and KS5 in particular.

The languages department at Forest Gate Community School have come up with a way to engage students in idioms: get them to research and design a poster for homework!

The beauty of this is that everyone can unleash their individual creativity to complete the task – whether on paper or digitally – and learn from one another's work!

🖥 WEBSITES The Noun Project

If you're a fan of dual coding to support student engagement, make sure you Bookmark or Favourite The Noun Project to source uniform icons for all of your resources!

Whether you're looking for sporty icons, school stationery images or breakfast food pictures - you'll find lots of clear icons to put straight into your PowerPoints, handouts or wall displays right here.

💬 THINKING Differentiation in MFL

How can differentiation be used to proactively motivate students in MFL?

Esmeralda Salgado has published a wonderful blog post about this. In it, she talks about the "anchor effect" and the "Goldilocks effect", and also suggests a number of practical approaches to applying scaffolding when doing listening, writing or oral activities in class.

Find out more about the importance of the "growth mindset" in MFL, and why Esmeralda chooses to introduce elements of GCSE grammar at KS3, and A-Level materials at KS4.

💪 MOTIVATION May the force...

With more and more year 11s beginning assessment season, here are a few words of encouragement for teachers and MFL students alike...

As a starter activity, could your weaker students work out the different parts of the phrase? And could your stronger students think of any other forms or uses of the subjunctive in French?

(Thanks @MrDavisMFL!)

😂 AND FINALLY... Line of (classroom) Duty

Ahead of the big finale on Sunday night...

(Thanks @MissMcKerrMFL!)


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Hope you have a great Bank Holiday weekend 😀



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