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The new Routes into Languages website is currently in development and will be launching in the new year!


Promoting the take-up of languages and student mobility

West Midlands

Results - European Day of Languages Poster Competition 2012

West Midlands

A huge thank you to all the pupils who entered our first European Day of Languages Poster competition!


Our theme was "Why Study Languages?" and we were looking for eye catching posters using any foreign language (some English was allowed too) which encourage language study by pointing out key benefits.


We received over 1000 entries across Years 7 - 9 each providing their own depiction of this message using many different languages from across the globe. We were so very impressed by the level of creativity displayed, the amount and accuracy of foreign language used and the inspiring messages encouraging us all to continue studying languages. Deciding on just one winner and one runner up was incredibly difficult and we commend all pupils for their efforts.


The winners were those who the judges deemed to best encapsulate the answer to the question "Why Study Languages?", demonstrating an effort to use foreign languages and originality of illustration as part of a well presented and attractive poster.


Congratulations to winners and runners up in the categories below.


Winners will receive £20 vouchers for HMV and a certificate, runners up will receive £10 vouchers for HMV and a certificate. Prizes will be presented by student ambassadors in special school assemblies.



Winner: Lauren Southall, King Edward VI High School, Birmingham (this is a 3D poster)


Runner up: Beth Lang, Colmers Secondary School, Birmingham



Winner: Chloe Lane, Smestow School, Wolverhampton


Runner up: Salix White, Abbots Bromley School, Staffordshire



Winner: Anja Elliman, Sir Graham Balfour School, Stafford


Runner up: Helena Godfrey, William Brookes School, Shropshire




Year 7 Aeron McMillan, Queen Elizabeth College, Bromyard

Year 7 Jasmine Davies, Lordswood Girls' School, Birmingham

Year 7 Jacob Payne-Lunn, Bishop Perowne School, Worcester

Year 8 Maria Skaria, King Edward VI High School, Birmingham

Year 8 Nasema Begum, Small Heath School, Birmingham

Year 8 Emily Hobbs, Abbots Bromley School, Staffordshire

Year 9 Kirsty Graham, Sir Graham Balfour School, Stafford

Year 9 Nathan Sillito, Sir Graham Balfour School, Stafford

Year 9 Polly Pye, Sir Graham Balfour School, Stafford

Jour de fete - classic Jacque Tati film at Artrix, Bromsgrove - 7pm 22nd September

West Midlands

Showing at Artrix in Bromsgrove on 22nd September at 7pm "Jour de fête" (aka Festival Day, The Big Day) (1949) by the French director Jacques Tati.


Jour de fête tells the story of an inept and easily distracted French mailman who frequently interrupts his duties to converse with the local inhabitants and inspect the travelling fair that has come to his small community. Influenced by too much wine and a newsreel account of rapid transportation methods used by the United States postal system, he goes to hilarious lengths to speed the delivery of mail while aboard his bicycle.


In Jour de fête, several characteristics of Tati's work appear for the first time in a full-length film. The film is largely a visual comedy, though dialogue is still used to tell part of the story, at one point using a background character as a narrator. Sound effects are a key element of the film, as Tati makes imaginative use of voices and other background noises to provide humorous effect. The film introduces what would be a key theme in Tati films, the over-reliance of Western society on technology to solve its (perceived) problems.


For more information and to book, visit the website

European Day of Languages - 26th September 2012

West Midlands

European Day of Languages takes place every year on 26th September. Many schools have their own activities to celebrate languages in Europe and the World and to recognise and celebrate the many languages spoken in our own communities. Ideas we've come across at schools in the West Midlands include themed food in the canteen, foreign language labels around the school, teachers taking the register in a different language every day and some even teach subjects such as Maths or Geography in a different language. It can be wonderful exercise to find out how many different languages are spoken in your school amongst pupils and staff - you might be surprised!


We are able to offer support for your EDL events, we can send along a student ambassador to talk about their experiences with languages or native speakers who can teach taster classes in new, often lesser taught, languages. This year we are also holding a new competition for EDL. For more information on what we can do to help your EDL celebrations, see our Events page.


For even more ideas and fun games, the Council for Europe have set up a website with lots of fun facts, games and activities. To find out more visit

Why It Pays To Be Bilingual

West Midlands

Being bilingual provides a variety of perks. Aside from giving you the ability to impress your latest love interest by reciting foreign poetry, being bilingual also pays dividends – monetarily, cognitively, and culturally. See the graphic below to find out why.


Note to teachers, edubloggers and all those interested: Want to use this infographic in your class or share it on your blog? No problem! You’ll find a cool collection of classroom activities and sharing options below.


(click to enlarge image)


Creative Commons License


Use This Infographic In Your Class

We think that infographics are an awesome learning and teaching tool, so our creations will always be available for you to print out, use with your students and/or embed on your blog!


Warm-Up Activity

Before handing out the infographic, discuss the following question with your students: What are the advantages of being bilingual?


Speaking & Critical Thinking Practice

Questions to ask your students after presenting the infographic:

  1. What is the most surprising fact that you discovered from this infographic?
  2. Is the information in this infographic applicable in your own country or society? Give examples.
  3. Since beginning your English studies, what perspective have you gained on the advantages of being bilingual? Do you agree with the statement that there are cognitive, monetary and cultural benefits to being bilingual? Why or why not?
  4. Today, many people would say that English is the most important language in the world; if English is not your first language, then you should become bilingual in your L1 and English. Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not?
  5. If you agree with the statement in #4, do you think that another language will ever become more important than English?


Writing Challenge

After reviewing this infographic with your students, have them write an essay or blog post based on the facts from the infographic as well as their own findings. Encourage them to do their own research using the sources listed at the bottom of the infographic.


Article from


Foreign Language Films now showing at Artrix Community Arts Centre, Bromsgrove

West Midlands

The autumn 2011 programme of foreign language films at Artrix, Bromsgrove has just been announced.

Foreign language films at Artrix include:

Potiche/Trophy Wife (15) - French with subtitles - 25th and 26th September 2011

A Separation (PG) - Persian with subtitles - 27th and 28th September 2011

Elle s'appelait Sarah/Sarah's Key (12a) - French and English with subtitles - 3rd to 5th October 2011

La Piel Que Habito/The Skin I Live In (15) - Spanish with subtitles - 17th to 19th October 2011

Svet-ake/The Light Thief (15) - Kyrgyz with subtitles - 21st October (2.45pm) and 24th October 2011

L'homme qui voulait sa vie/The Big Picture - French with subtitles - 7th and 10th November 2011

For further details about any of these films please visit, all screenings start at 7.30pm unless otherwise stated.  Tickets can be bought on the day or in advance by phoning the Box Office on 01527 577330 or by visiting the website.

New opportunities for exchange visits in Madrid

West Midlands

The regional authorities of Madrid offer exchanges between schools in Madrid and schools in other countries in 2011-2012.

The students taking part in the exchange may stay:
• with Spanish families.
• at the CIE (School Exchanges Center)

Nr of participants: 15 to 50 students
Ages: 12 to 18
Length: one week
Cost: 62 € per person per week (at the CIE)
Applications deadline: April 20th 2011

For more information see the attached document. Please note this document is in Spanish.

VLE Languages User Group and Routes into Languages conference - Coventry University

West Midlands

On 16th March, Routes ito Languages and VLE Languages User Group at Coventry University held a joint conference aimed at  bringing together anyone and everyone in the languages community. The day was a great success with a mixed audience of academics from various universities, teachers from around the region and university students.


The workshops were exciting and engaging and we are delighted to be able to share some of them with you.


The key note speaker of the day was Gavin Duddeney. Gavin has worked in education since 1988, as a teacher, materials developer, IT manager and web/user interface designer. His blend of pedagogical and technical skills has taken him around the world - primarily for the International House World Organisation, but also for the British Council and other entities - helping them to bridge the gap between their training and teaching portfolio and their technical needs. Until the end of 2003 he held two posts: the first as Head of the New Technologies Department at International House Barcelona , and the second as Lead Developer for the online training centre Net Languages . In 2003 he left to set up the Consultants-E and has worked as the Director of Technology since then. His work involves project planning and delivery, as well as the EduNation presence in Second Life.


Apart from his work with the Consultants-E, he is the web manager for a wide range of educational organisations and is a past Cooordinator of the IATEFL Learning Teachnologies Special Interest Group, as well as editor of its newsletter - The CALL Journal. His other work for IATEFL includes the management of the Associates website and discussion form (PAL). In 2007 he was elected Honorary Secretary.


Gavin has published 'The Internet and the Language Classroom' (Cambridge University Press 2000, Second Edition 2007) and - with Nicky Hockly - 'How to Teach English with Technology' (Longman, 2007). He is also the author of numerous print and online articles.


To view his interactive session please click here


More materials and presentations will be uploaded soon.

Artrix, the community arts centre in Bromsgrove - screening French films

West Midlands

Artrix, the community arts centre in Bromsgrove, will be showing the following French films in May.


La nuit americaine (Day for Night) - PG certificate

Sunday 15th May at 7.30pm and Friday 24th May at 2.45pm

"Day for Night exudes all the enchantment, zaniness and transitory pleasures of the movie-making business."

"A gentle masterpiece of classic film making"

For more information and online booking please see

Des hommes et des dieux (Of gods and men) - 15 certificate

Tuesday 24th May at 7.30pm and Friday 27th May at 2.45pm

Monks in a French monastery in Algeria in 1996, leading a contemplative, gentle lives in harmony with their surroundings and local community, are drawn into the conflict between a corrupt government and extremists. Winner of the Cannes Grand July prize 2010.

For more information and online booking please see 


Prices are £5.50 (£4.50 concession) for matinee showings and £6 (£5 concession) for evening showings. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more people. Please contact the Box Office directly on 01527 577330 for more details.