It has been a busy year for the VLN Primary School ALLiS Project, and we are gearing up to grow participation in Asian Languages in 2017. Make the most of this FREE opportunity to get on the learning pathway with Mandarin, Korean, Japanese language and culture. Watch Reuben's Mandarin Learning Journey! Here are some snippets from our MoE milestone:

"We had 22 schools and 16 online programmes on the weekly timetable, including Asian Inquiry Project. 5 of our schools have Chinese programmes face to face  with a MLA (Mandarin Language Assistant). 5 of our schools also provide face to face asian language programmes in addition to online programmes. Tagalog classes are being taught by senior students from Rosmini College, and in 2017 will extend to 3 more classes and other dialects."

"Senior students are keen to participate and facilitate global connections for our younger students and to teach & tutor our students directly. There have been some successful connections with Korea that are set to continue into 2017. Geoff’s Korean students presented with him at ULearn in October, with the purpose of encouraging more teachers to participate.

Having an MLA (Yue) as part of our programme has boosted schools cluster participation and interest in Chinese. We have been able to include Yue in our online classes and she has worked with Halfmoon Bay, Stewart Island throughout the year. First with the whole school in the first semester and then with a smaller group of students who elected to continue in Semester 2. This was noticed and mentioned by Prime Minister Key in the house during a debate on CoOLs."

"Our languages curriculum has progressed really well with the assistance of Jeanne Gilbert and the collaboration of our Lead Teachers. A Languages Curriculum statement was finalised, with key features that are unique to the way the VLN Primary works. This is the overarching document for our languages programmes, and is underpinned by language progressions and specific languages programme planning. We held three workshop days throughout the year with Lead Teachers, and teachers to co-construct the curriculum, and align to planning and practice.
We have just introduced the planning tool iUGO to ensure that we are better able to maintain consistency, transparency and can collaborate and share more easily.

Our Asian Language teachers are part of our appraisal process and this has provided opportunities to reflect on practice, discuss pedagogy and planning, student learning outcomes & next steps for PLD."

The ALLiS Project has been really beneficial for our school, not only in extending the participation of more students in Asian languages, but by allowing us to invest time and resources in upskilling our cluster teachers. Although it is challenging not to have the resource to include our other language teachers in this opportunity (especially our te Reo Māori teachers), there is a flow on effect in the development of curriculum, planning and assessment systems and knowledge, that will benefit our language programmes as a whole.

We would like to promote this opportunity for more NZ schools.