Spanish practice

It began last year with just the senior pupils at Stanecastle School in North Ayrshire. "But they responded so well that we brought it down the school," says Angela Edwards, headteacher. "Right down to the nursery, in fact. Now we've got the whole school doing Spanish."

Stanecastle's pupils range from 3-18, since it is a special school with a mainstream nursery. But not many special schools take their pupils to tapas bars and foreign cities. "We are organising a visit to Barcelona. It'll be our first-ever trip abroad with the kids."

Spanish is more motivating for Stanecastle pupils than French, says Ms Edwards. "Research shows that kids with language difficulties find Spanish easier to speak than French - and easier to guess words they don't know.

The kids are really keen. You hear them as you walk along the corridor saying 'Hola' to each other. We emphasise spoken language and activities, rather than written work."

See p12-13

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