Australian Federation of Ethnic Schools Associations Inc.
Australian Federation of Ethnic Schools Associations Inc.
1. Languages support
2. Approaches and models for languages provision
3. Building student and community engagement in languages
4. Languages research
5. Whole school languages planning tools
6. FAQ about languages education
One of the Australian Government’s role in languages education is to provide national policy leadership and to encourage and facilitate innovation and the implementation of national priorities by States, Territories and non-government education providers.
Knowing the languages of our key regional partners will assist Australian children to succeed in an increasingly competitive world. The Australian Government is working to revive the teaching of foreign languages in Australian schools with the goal to ensure that at least 40 per cent of Year 12 students are studying a language other than English, with a focus on Asian languages, within a decade.
In 2008, the School of Languages and Linguistics and the Asia Institute in the Faculty of Arts at The University of Melbourne began to reform the language curriculum to more readily face the professional, global and cultural challenges of the new millennium. The new language curriculum is based on international best-practice models. It integrates the teaching of language and culture in a proficiency-based model cares for students from all backgrounds and from across the University.
The new curriculum will be introduced in 2012 and 2013 for the 9 languages offered by the two Schools.
The language curriculum is based on a sequential progression of proficiency levels from 1 to 10 that is designed for learners at any stage, from total beginners to advanced. Each semester constitutes one step in the sequence of subjects. Students can enter at different points, depending on their language proficiency. All learners from total beginners to post-VCE students, as well as students with an advanced (native or near-native) command of the language, will be placed in the sequence at the commencement of their studies and then progress sequentially through the levels.
Starting in 2012, new placement tools will help each student enrol. Placement tools in Arabic and French will be available in 2012. Placement tools in other languages will be available in 2013.
Language students at The University of Melbourne have access to unparalleled learning opportunities, including exchange programs, mobility scholarships, language clubs, exciting cultural events, worldclass facilities and highly experienced, internationally focussed academic staff.
The Languages Learning Area is an essential part of a broad and balanced education
for all learners. Learning another language extends the cognitive and conceptual
development and problem-solving skills of learners. It increases their awareness of
how language works and can assist signiﬁ cantly in developing literacy. The language
and cultural understandings developed promote cross-cultural relationships, thereby
contributing to social cohesion.
With the introduction of the Australian Curriculum, teachers will be using the two curricula; Australian Curriculum and the NTCF to teach, assess and report.
In 2012 the Learning Area Achievement Standards for the Northern Territory were developed to enable a consistent assessment and reporting methodology using the two curricula.
Teachers are required to use the following learning areas until they are replaced by the relevant Australian Curriculum learning area or subject.
1. The Australian Curriculum: Languages will be designed to enable all students to engage
Languages education is an integral part of a balanced school curriculum. It plays an important role in preparing students for effective participation as global citizens of the 21st century. School communities work collaboratively to increase levels of participation, engagement and achievement in languages programs from primary school through to Year 12. The main languages taught in Western Australian public schools are Aboriginal languages, Chinese, French, German, Indonesian, Italian and Japanese.
These languages have a unique place in Western Australia's heritage and in its cultural and educational life. They are fundamental to strengthening identity and self esteem and provide a focus for the development of intercultural understandings and reconciliation. Approximately 16 different Aboriginal languages are taught in public schools across Western Australia.
Community organisations play an important role as complementary languages providers through the Community Languages Program. Currently, more than 30 organisations receive funding from the Department to support the delivery of over 20 different community languages.
What are the benefits in language learning?
The benefits of language learning include the ability to communicate within and across cultures, an understanding of, and respect for, diversity and difference, an extension of literacy skills and the development of cognitive and critical thinking skills. Competence in a second language can also enhance employment and career prospects.
The Asian Century
The Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians reiterates the continued status of Languages in future curriculum provision, citing the particular importance of Asian Languages. The White Paper, "Australia in the Asian Century", (October 2012), states the need for Australians to build 'Asia-relevant' capabilities to raise our productivity performance and enable effective participation and contribution in the Asian century.
The Australian Curriculum: Languages
The Australian Curriculum: Languages is due for completion in 2013. It is being developed on the assumption that all students will learn a language across the Foundation to Year 8 span, and that the curriculum will provide for continued learning through to the senior secondary years. A national curriculum will provide opportunities for greater collaboration and access to quality resources across the States and Territories of Australia.
For more information about the Australian Curriculum: Languages refer to the ACARA website.
The Languages curriculum provides opportunities for learning which incorporates a range of perspectives.
Literacy and numeracy can be taught through the languages. Each language provides a unique field of knowledge which assists students to work towards achievement of outcomes in these areas.
Incorporating Aboriginal, multicultural, environmental and ICT perspectives assists students to develop values and understandings about languages and culture in a social and cultural context.
Learning in each of the languages should cater for all students, including those with SPECIAL needs. Learning experiences can be adapted to suit students' physical, intellectual, emotional and developmental needs.
Jump into Storyboarding: Narrative elements (links to literacy)Introduce the elements of narrative as a starting point for understanding the way that stories are structured. Click here to download the English version of the resources, changing the text in italics to the language you are teaching. The following languages are already available:
The resources could be used in Language-only lesson, or in collaboration with the classroom teacher, during literacy lessons.
Note: If you are having trouble downloading the resources, right-click on the link and select 'Save Target As'. In the drop-down menu at the bottom, select 'Save as type: All files', then add .notebook to the end of the file name.
To access COGs for specific languages, follow the links below
The Languages Unit has created IWB resources in nine Languages to support connected classrooms as well as the 42 Language Learning Centres across New South Wales. Each IWB resource has teacher's notes to show the intended outcomes.
Our experts can offer quick and informal advice to regions, teachers and parents through phone or email about:
• current languages curriculum issues and research
• practical strategies in curriculum implementation, planning, programming and assessing
• materials and resources for teachers
• professional learning events
• tertiary institutions and universities.
We can help set up and support curriculum networks by:
• developing and delivering needs-based workshops and presentations
• reviewing resources and professional learning programs
• developing curriculum support materials
• mentoring teachers and establishing teacher networks.
Research on language acquisition/use can be divided into first and second language learning settings. The literature on first language learning is most relevant to child development while second language learning pertains primarily to adult learning, although most general theories of language learning apply to both. While it is not clear whether different psychological processes are involved in first and second language learning, there are differences in the way children and adults learn and this has important implications.
Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics
Artistic Experiences Enhance The Way People
How maintenance of first language helps in English language and cognitive development
For teachers and other professionals working with multilingual families
Languages and literacy
For children's books and other resources in various languages: http://en.childrenslibrary.org/index.shtml www.library.act.gov.au/library_services/multicultural_serviceswww.mylanguage.gov.au/languages-in-libraries.htmlwww.omniglot.com/links/bilingual.htm#kids
“Your Fabulous Bilingual Brain!” ABC Radio National – All in the Mind podcast: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/allinthemind/your-fabulous-bilingual-brain/2997632
The Languages and Multicultural Education Resource Centre (LMERC) is a specialist resource centre for schools across all sectors.
LMERC has been providing services to Victorian teachers and other school staff for over twenty years. Each year up to 1000 teachers, educators and pre-service teachers borrow around 20,000 items. These include books, posters, CDs, DVDs, policy documents and realia (cultural artefacts). This service is available at no cost.
The centre collects materials in the following areas:
Co As It
Level 2, 189 Faraday St,
Carlton 3053 VIC