The Rationale for MFL Departments in the Irish Context
(cited from JCT Documentation)
The rationale behind the creation of MFL Departments in the Irish context is drawn from the Framework for Junior Cycle (2015), which recognises:
“the importance of professional development and collaboration between teachers for informing their understanding of teaching, learning and assessment and their practice in the classroom.”
Good practice in the teaching and learning of modern foreign languages should not be confined to any particular language. Furthermore, the new curriculum specification for Junior Cycle Modern Foreign Languages presents itself as a framework to be used for teaching all the Junior Cycle languages. Therefore, establishing a Modern Foreign Languages Department is vital for schools to fully embrace and implement the new MFL specifications in relation to teaching, learning and assessment.
How do we use this resource?
This resource should be seen as a recipe of the all the elements necessary to build a successful MFL team. However, it also recognises that every school context and every teacher is different and so should not to be seen as prescriptive; it is for teachers to decide how they want to work for the benefit of their students.
The resource is a collection of team-led training activities that collectively will help you to establish a successful, visible and effective MFL department.
Each activity lasts up to 40 minutes and will enable you to develop different facets of your team.
How are the resources structured?
All resources are grouped into 5 sections and should be seen as part of the cyclical process of establishing, monitoring and evaluating where a department continually seeks to improve its approach and practice.
|Foundations||These activities are designed to bring language teachers together to form common goals, outlooks and visual identity.|
|Leadership & Management||These activities are designed to collectively manage your department.|
|Teaching & Learning
||these activities will help you to design departmental policy to support teaching and learning in the classroom.|
||these activities will help you to identify the needs of your team and how to address them.|
||these activities will help you to review your progress as a department and how to overcome challenges.|
||these activities are designed to help you evaluate your progress as a department and areas for improvement.|
How do we get started?
The first step is to know what you need as an MFL Department. Download your needs analysis profile grid based on a Red, Amber, Green or RAG system:
- Red We do not do this as a department and do not know how to implement it.
- Amber We do not do this as a department but have started to implement it.
- Green We do this as a department and feel confident that we do it well.
Simply go through each of the statements and decide whether your department is RED, AMBER or GREEN. Type R/A/G into the first column
The statements that you choose as AMBER or RED will display a link to the appropriate training resource, which you can then download and use.