Woodheys Case Study
Spanish speakers for a global future – Woodheys Primary School
“We all approach each task with the words of our school motto in mind, ‘Together everyone achieves more’ … our whole ethos … is to educate children to be pro-active Global Citizens of the future”. The words of Laura Daniels, Head of Woodheys Primary School in Trafford.
Helping to meet that ethos is a Spanish teacher from la Academia, Melody Valois. She has been supporting the school with Spanish lessons for several years, in line with the Primary Modern Foreign Language (MFL) Strategy.
The children were consulted about which language to learn and Spanish was the clear winner. In the short term it means they can translate for their parents when they’re on holiday in Spain. In the long term, it means they’ll have a real head start in our global economy: Spanish is the second-most-spoken language globally—beating English into third place—and one of only six official languages of the United Nations.
For la Academia and for Melody, it’s not just about the language; it’s also about Spanish culture. The children have investigated the art of Joan Miró, Spanish surrealist; taken part in Spanish dancing; learned about their counterparts in Spanish schools and built pen-pal and Skype friendships abroad.
The teachers are involved too—three of them visited the primary school San Juan Bautista – La Salle in Cantabria, Spain. This visit was part of the Comenius project funded by the British Council and the European Union. And it was la Academia’s Melody who co-ordinated the writing of the bid for this project.
When she’s not teaching, Melody has made Mexican biscuits for the school’s Christmas Fair, taken the children to see her own Spanish dancing troupe, put Spanish signs up and contributed to the school’s website. Oh—and she runs KS1 and KS2 Spanish after-school clubs too. It’s no wonder that Laura Daniels calls Melody “Part of our community.”
Moss Hey Primary Spanish Case Study
Spanish after school clubs teach KS1 and KS2 a natural Spanish accent
Holy Trinity Case Study
Holy Trinity CE Primary School—Spanish classes helping to challenge the children
“Lo que bien se aprende, nunca se pierde. What is well learned is never lost.” Spanish proverb
Mark Kenyon, Head Teacher at Holy Trinity, is quietly passionate about the vision he has for his school and for the children there. As he talks you can feel his energy. “Five years ago this was an average school. We’ve rebuilt, invigorated, re-staffed and rebranded—there’s a buzzy atmosphere now…We encourage a wider view than straightforward academic subjects— though these are important—our aim is to make sure the children are challenged.” The goal for each child is simple—to be “Responsible, cultured, independent; someone who will add to society when grown up.”
Teaching the children Spanish fits right in with Mark’s vision for the school. For the past two years la Academia has provided Spanish lessons for every class, from year one on Their success lies in making learning about the Spanish and their language fun. La Academia provides a tutor who adds— in Mark’s words—‘extra oomph’ through the Spanish language lessons.
One of the most successful ways in which La Academia brings that extra value is by holding regular Spanish themed days where the children dress up, learn to dance Salsa and prepare and eat some tasty Spanish tapas.
La Academia’s tutor is “part of the staff, I trust her.” Mark is convinced that the 45 minute weekly Spanish lesson la Academia provides to each class achieves a huge amount and “at a very competitive price”. So much so that some of the children will be visiting Spain to use their language skills—a testament to Mark’s vision, his teaching staff’s commitment and that little bit of Spanish ‘oomph’ provided by la Academia.