6th January 2006 at 00:00
Primary languages continue to dominate the new MFL products on offer and this year a variety are available which will again appeal to specialist and non-specialist teachers.

Petit Pont 1, launched last year, featuring a virtual reality French town and delightful graphics, sees a new version for interactive whiteboard (from Pounds 65), while Petit Pont 2 will soon be launched. This is a superb piece of software, covering a wide range of topic areas and mixing the four skill areas plus grammar in a package which will enthral and engage primary pupils.

Primarily designed for English key stage 1 lessons, Making Creatures (pound;59 Granada Learning) reinforces French and Spanish vocabulary for parts of the body in a fun way which should appeal to primary language learners. The "listen and make" activity features target language instructions on how to create bodies from the wonderful body parts on offer.

Eurotalk and Sherston have ventured into the primary languages business with Chatterbox Primary French, Chatter Chatter German and Spanish (pound;93.94 inc VAT). My Talking Dictionary (pound;25 + Vat, book and CD-Rom) should make searching for vocabulary more exciting with its lively presentation and games.

Boardworks (from pound;149) content for interactive whiteboards continues to impress - resources are available for KS2 French, as well as KS3 and 4 French and Spanish. Revised versions offer more audio and interactivity, while KS3 products have also been revised to match the MFL Framework.

GridClub's Klik French and Spanish products (pound;3 per pupil per annum) feature a range of games, and high-quality graphics contribute to making this a great product, which would work well on a whiteboard.

Espresso (from pound;3 to pound;6 per pupil per year) continues to produce high-quality, video-rich resources that support teachers and definitely motivate pupils. A variety of audio and video files, news items, multimedia games and more is available, with weekly updates. Le Monde has been added to the KS2 French resource, which features age-appropriate videos and activities.

A number of major publishers have developed their ranges of software to use in conjunction with, or separately from, textbooks. Heinemann's Electro range (from pound;562 + VAT) now features products for Expo, Echo andListos!, combining high-quality presentations and great sound files.

Equipe nouvelle avec TaskMagic (pound;150 + VAT) combines topics from the textbook with the popular games program which provides numerous opportunities for practice.

As part of Nelson Thornes' blended learning resources, the Just Click CD-Roms (pound;400 + VAT) for Na Klar!,Asi! and Voil... can be used in all aspects of MFL lessons. The high-quality CD-Roms provide a variety of images, animated songs, video clips, multiple-choice activities and more.

Avance! info is a series of CD-Roms (pound;200 + VAT each) to accompany Hodder Murray's KS3 French course, again combining animated presentations and a variety of interactive activities tailored to the Framework objectives.

Birchfield Interactive's popularity in schools continues to grow, and its range of French software Myself, Family Friends 1-4 targets GCSE pupils.

Very high-quality CD-Roms for the program (pound;129.95 each) include a wide variety of practice activities for the four skill areas with video clips, sound files and much more to support learning, plus an in-built assessment feature. German and Spanish versions are available.

Melvin (pound;100 per computer for teachers, from pound;12 each per student computer - subscriptions are available) is a product to aid presentation of vocabulary, featuring pictures and text together with a variety of whole-class games which can be played in teams, for 21 European languages. This product could really liven up the KS4 vocabulary marathon.

Clipbank (three-subject yearly school licence pound;675) from Channel 4 is a searchable library of 250 digital TV clips from the popular language series, featuring a variety of topics and grammar in French, German and Spanish. Rosetta Stone has pioneered e-language learning and the company's high-quality products are available in 28 languages. Prices start at pound;147.22 per copy and the range is distributed through Ramesys.

Finally, take a look at the future of language learning with a visit to the ACTIVA Solutions, Sanako Tandberg and Televic stands and admire the range of multimedia language laboratories on offer. (More on these products and Rosetta Stone at Web Extra,)

Don't miss

Petit Pont Eclipse Books Stand PZ18

Producer of Petit Pont 1 for standalone computers and interactive whiteboards, plus audio CDs, pupils' books and teachers' guides to accompany the CD-Rom. This virtual reality tour through a French town with stunning graphics and a great variety of activities, will enthuse and motivate all primary pupils.

Tel: 0870 242 2269

The Myself, Family Friends range for French, German and Spanish Birchfield Interactive Stand Z56

This software should capture the attention of all KS4 learners, who will undoubtedly enjoy the wide range of activities and make great progress.

Teachers will appreciate the high-quality resources which can be inserted into presentations and work.

Tel:029 2052 7000

Melvin ic language ltd Stand SW24

This program can transform the KS4 vocabulary marathon through its fun presentation and variety of games that will entice many learners.

Tel: 01685 879542

Other contacts

ACTIVA Solutions Stand Z120

Boardworks Stand F70

Channel4Learning Stand D42

DfES Stand X60 Espresso Education Stand D64

Granada Learning Stand E40F40

Harcourt Education Stand Y10

Hodder Murray Stand X28

Mantra Lingua Stand SW54

Nelson Thornes Stand C70

Oxford University Press Stand B60

Ramesys Stand Z50

Sanako Stand M33

Sherston Stand SH52E60

Televic UK Stand L42

TEEM Stand SW7

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