SLASPs and Inspiration

When I was doing my teacher training our course tutors spoke mainly French, German and Italian, but as it was an MFL PGCE we all had a variety of levels of these languages, plus Spanish. Once or twice a year we would have a language specific session (I can’t quite remember what the LASPs initials stood for, but the S is for Spanish) and the lady that did the Spanish sessions for my cohort was inspiring – Ceri Bacon –  who went on to be a Head of Department, and then an Assistant Head (last I heard).

Why was she so inspiring? Well, the way she taught, for one. She was a true St Martin’s teacher, teaching in the target language and giving pupils a reason to speak. Some of you have heard me talk or read what I have blogged about and the wacky ideas that I love to implement in the classroom. To be honest, 80% of those ideas are not mine! They come from the way I was trained to teach and I am just carrying the torch forwards. I believe in a communicative approach to language learning in the classroom and I have been lucky enough in recent years to have been asked to carry on where Ceri left off once she became Assistand Head and I now offer the SLASPs session at the university every year.

Although I very much enjoy showing/demonstrating/getting trainees to take part in a variety of activities that they can put to good use in their own classrooms, I also love sprinkling a little bit of ICT into the mix. On Monday I will be doing a series of activities and songs with them, all with relevant audiovisual material made in powerpoint, slideshare, word, voki and audacity. I will also take along my bag of toys which include fly-swatters, cuddly toys, bells, a bicycle horn,easi-speak mikes and flip video cameras. I have blogged before about how I use this bag of tricks (see here and here) so I won’t repeat myself, but I am looking forward to surprising the trainees with my round dice!

This evening has been spent preparing my lesson on Monday and I have decided to re-use the wikispace that I made last year. It has a few tweaks, but it contains all of the resources I will use for the Key Stage 3 session (KS 4 to come later) and some of you may like the resources, the songs, the vokis and the links to ideas and webpages, especially if you are relatively new to teaching still. Enjoy!

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