Fun and games on the road to language learning

3rd March 2006 at 00:00
Fun with French

Jouons Tous Ensemble (pound;16) comprises 20 French games to play with children to encourage and reinforce language and vocabulary. While having fun, pupils are practising their speaking and listening skills without realising it. It can be adapted to teach different French vocabulary and even other languages. The teachers' notes include key words, explanations on how to play the games and why they work, and extensions to stretch pupils as they gain confidence.

* Brilliant Publications Stand P2-K61

Getting it sorted

Sorted: Text! (pound;22.50, each additional licence pound;5) is a simple computer program that desequences text, presents it to the pupil as a puzzle to be solved, then gives feedback according to the accuracy of their decisions. After solving a few puzzles, pupils are rewarded with an animation according to how well they have done.

To kick off the activity, 50 samples at all ability levels are provided, including a range of texts in French, from nursery rhymes to sonnets, simple stories to dialogues. Sorted: Text! can also be used for sequence words, to form a sentence or practise alphabetical order.

The game can be played by individuals against the computer, by competing pairs and teams, or as a whole class activity using a whiteboard. Teachers can also add their own texts.

* Resource Education Stand IT-M90

Prize-winning activities

Nominated for a British Council Innovation Award 2006, L2's

Wordready Young Learner English, for ages 7 to 12 (price to be announced), covers more than 1,000 English words through multimedia activities. Each word has an illustration, examples of native-speaker pronunciation and a translation into the learner's own language. The system personalises the experience and adapts to the performance of each individual. French and Spanish versions will soon be released.

* L2 Stand SW-P31

The word is out

Berlitz's new sets of dictionaries, in French, German, Italian and Spanish, will be available from May in paper or vinyl covers. (Pocket: pound;2.99 paper; pound;3.99 vinyl. Compact: pound;4.99 paper; pound;6.99 vinyl.) Samples will be on display with atlases, globes and children's wall maps.

The Pocket Dictionary features more than 30,000 entries with bold, blue head words. In the Compact Dictionary, there are more than 45,000 entries capturing the core words of the language, including additional grammar information and the latest jargon. Both versions can easily be tucked into a school bag, briefcase or rucksack.

* Berlitz Stand H91

Building stronger ties abroad

The British Council's Strategy 2010 states that by that date it aims to be "a world authority on cultural relations, language teaching and the international dimensions of education and the arts", and to have built stronger ties between the UK and other countries.

Find out about their new projects, including the eTwinning awards, which reward schools working on ICT curriculum projects with partner schools in Europe, and the HSBC China Gap Year Scholars scheme.

In 2006 and 2007, five UK students each year will travel to China to spend half their time learning Mandarin and the other half on unpaid work placements with Chinese companies.

* The British Council Stand PZ-K20

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