Practical Ideas for the Secondary CLIL Classroom in Exeter, UK

English Teachers at the DCG in Exeter

Four teachers of English at St. Stanislav’s Institution, The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium – Alenka Battelino, Eva Pišljar Suhadolc, Valerija Lah Peternel and Lily Schweiger Kotar – attended a CLIL course (Content and Language integrated learning) for secondary teachers from 20th-25th April 2015, which took place in International Project Center, Exeter in England, as a part of KA1 learning mobility of individuals . The group was joined by another History teacher from Jerez, Spain. The purpose of attending such a course was to acquire knowledge and specific know-how from good practice in the UK and with an enthusiastic and understanding teacher, develop our own competences and increase the relevance of our teaching. Last but not least we wanted to increase knowledge of social, linguistic and cultural matters as well.

During the entire week we tried to grasp the implications for the CLIL classroom, which include critical and creative thinking, code-switching, collaborative and active learning as well as including the so-called lower order thinking skills (LOTS) and higher order thinking skills (HOTS).

Taking part in the course meant constantly implementing CLIL elements in our everyday work as well, which resulted in a practical demonstration of skills acquired by the teachers involved. One group of teachers presented a science task including features of CLIL, the other group presented in a similar way female British writers set in different historical, social and geographical context. The acquired skills and language teaching methodology were implemented to regular schoolwork at home, informing first other teachers of English at school, the headmaster and the School Development Team. One of the most beneficial aspects of CLIL’s approach is teaching language and content at the same time as you have to pay attention to language as well as content. /Lily Schweiger Kotar/