Current projects with FIPLV involvement

Click on the following link, and you will find the past projects with FIPLV involvement.

Why Languages Matter!

(Funded by ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council) Festival of Social Science)

Multilingualism throughout the Sheffield City Region

Sheffield is a vibrant multilingual city, in which over 120 languages are spoken in our varied communities. These range from languages used in the home or learnt at school, to those spoken by the many visitors who are welcomed here for work or study. This project brings together the voices of Sheffield people in a display showing ‘Why languages matter!’ 

It is intended that this project will be developed by FIPLV members around the world so that we can obtain a rich picture of why languages matter in other countries.

‘Why languages matter!’ featured in The Guardian: Highlights from the British Academy’s Language Festival

LACS2: Empowering language communities
http://lacs.ecml.at

This project is funded by the ECML and the follow-up to the first LACS-project. The project site is in English, French and German and offers information about the project, the team and publications.

What is it about?
The project will mediate between ECML projects and language teacher associations and other networks at regional and national levels to those who can benefit: teachers, learners and policy makers. It will raise awareness of existing projects and seek to motivate people to adapt them to their local environment in order to facilitate widespread impact on learning and teaching.

Exchanges Project

Student Exchange between Mater Christi College (Melbourne, Australia) and the Lycée Jean Racine (Paris, France)

1          Background

Initiated in conversations in 2012 between Laure Peskine (APLV, France) – who asked if FIPLV could have a direct impact on students in classrooms – and Denis Cunningham (FIPLV), Laure Peskine sought expressions of interest from individual members of APLV (France) to establish direct student exchanges facilitated by FIPLV. This led to the meeting of Jean-Luc Breton (Lycée Jean Racine, Paris) and Denis Cunningham (Mater Christi College, Melbourne) in Paris on 3 July 2013.

2          The Proposal

It was planned to create an exchange of students between the Lycée Jean Racine and Mater Christi College. It was agreed that the first steps should be simple and manageable so that students of each school could have contacts in the other, as they had requested.

It was further agreed that:

  • involvement by students would be voluntary
  • students in seconde, première and terminale of the Lycée Jean Racine would be invited to be in contact with students of Years 9-12 (and possibly Year 8) of Mater Christi College
  • management of both schools would be informed of plans so that endorsement be granted by both administrations
  • D Cunningham would report to Mater Christi management and students upon his return to school (on 15 July)
  • Jean-Luc Breton would discuss the plan with management and students at the beginning of the new academic year (la rentrée) in September
  • the initial aim was to put students of one school in contact with those of the other
  • information profiles could be shared and exchanged
  • individual student contact would be left to their choice of platform (eg Facebook, email, etc)
  • further contact could evolve on an individual exchange basis (eg visits, homestays, etc)
  • aspects of the individual student exchanges could permeate into classroom activities, subject to student input
  • the preliminary stages could evolve into more formal arrangements over time, subject to student choice, teacher facilitation and approval by parents and school management
  • students participating in the 2013 Mater Christi trip to France would be invited to express interest in visiting the Lycée Jean Racine

3       Development of the Project

Following further discussion by email between Jean-Luc Breton and Denis Cunningham, the group of 48 Australian students of French arrived in Paris in September 2013. Divided into two groups of 24 students, Denis Cunningham requested volunteers to visit the French school. Sixteen agreed and were accompanied by two teachers to the Lycée Jean Racine. Greeted by Jean-Luc Breton, he took us to his class of 24 students of première. There, we let the students of both groups interact as they desired. Fascinating to witness, it became a natural gathering of teenagers from both ends of the globe. Discussion was rich, friendships were forged and contact continues from afar among some to this day. For some girls, this was the highlight of their two-week trip to France.

4          The Next Phase: Student Exchanges and Homestays

It was hoped that the exchange could reach a higher level – beyond personal encounters and Facebook interaction. Logistically more difficult, facilitating student exchanges and visits to the other country became more challenging. Despite the difficulties in identifying willing students and families, two direct exchanges have been accomplished. One of the girls from Mater Christi, Abbie, went to Paris late in 2014 to stay with Marion and her family. She attended classes and soaked up the cultural and educational differences surrounding her. Marion is now staying with Abbie’s family near Melbourne, attending classes with Abbie, experiencing subjects not available in her school in France and is sitting in on some of my French classes and expertly fulfilling the role of a voluntary assistante. Another French student, Hana, has also been south to Melbourne to stay with Elissa and her family. She thoroughly enjoyed the experience before returning home a few weeks ago. Elissa expects to be in Paris over the Christmas period, staying with Hana and her family.

There are other girls from Mater Christi patiently awaiting the rentrée in France, when Jean-Luc Breton can seek expressions of interest from his new classes. There are also the contacts made between the students from Mater Christi with the visiting French girls, which may lead to additional exchanges and homestays.

5          The Future

Through APLV and FIPLV, Jean-Luc Breton and I have established a direct exchange between schools and students. It may be that the students on the Mater Christi 2015 school trip to France return to the Lycée Jean Racine. It will be up to the teachers taking the students to decide. In the meantime, exchanges have been established, celebration of intercultural differences has been facilitated and the permutations and longevity of the contact is left to the will of the individual girls and their families.

Denis Cunningham

Teacher/consultant at Mater Christi College & Secretary-General, Fédération Internationale des Professeurs de Langues Vivantes (FIPLV)

8 August 2015

LUCIDE: Languages in Urban Communities – Integration and Diversity for Europe http://www.urbanlanguages.eu

LUCIDE, which is a project funded by the European Union, is a network which is developing ideas about how to manage multilingual citizen communities. We are building up a picture of how communication occurs in multilingual settings across the EU and beyond. We aim to help institutions (councils, schools, hospitals) and local and national economies make better productive use of diversity as an economic resource and to strengthen social cohesion by fostering better communication and mutual understanding. We also want to understand better how the cultural richness of these new cities can strengthen the “diverse unity “of the 21st century.

LATEST NEWS on LUCIDE

FIPLV has been an Associate partner in the LUCIDE Project, funded by the EU Lifelong Learning Programme. We are pleased to announce that the LUCIDE Toolkits are now available in 10 languages (Bulgarian, Croatian, Dutch, English, French, German, Greek, Italian, Norwegian, Spanish). The toolkits cover the following areas:

Language and Work
Multilingualism in the Health and Social Care Sector
Learning New Languages
Multilingualism in Education – Bilingual and Multilingual Learners
Languages and Public Services
Multilingualism in Urban Spaces

You will find them on the LUCIDE website at http://www.urbanlanguages.eu/toolkits

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