Training teachers to use the European Language Portfolio
---------Former les enseignants à l'utilisation du Portfolio européen des langues

Glossary | Glossaire

Booklet | Brochure




Integrating the ELP with language curricula and textbooks;
using the ELP to go beyond the textbook

Relevance of topic

Communicative activities play a key role in the ELP. They appear in the language passport and in many language biographies. The main stages in any activity are design, execution and assessment. Here the focus is on the design of an activity, since part of the work with the ELP is concerned precisely with designing communicative language activities. Generally speaking, activities have to be designed whenever a descriptor is a subject of learning and a communicative activity is therefore the starting point for learning operations. This then raises the question of how to make the progression from a descriptor of a communicative activity to the activity itself, in other words how to design a successful activity.

Why in fact should ELP users design tasks? Learners managing their ELP will assess themselves using checklists of communicative activities (as in the case of the Swiss ELP). Following self-assessment, they will set themselves learning objectives, of the "communication activities" variety. How will they achieve these activity objectives? What can they do? Other learners working with their ELP may find that their school textbook (or even the curriculum) fails to cover all the learning objectives, and that the book does not offer activities that might illustrate them. They must therefore design these activities, taking the activity descriptors as their starting point. Alternatively, teachers may discover that a school curriculum emphasises the common reference levels in terms of communicative activities – in other words is directly based on the ELP – but that there are no textbooks adapted to this type of objective. They must therefore "teach" these activities to their students or pupils.


Working methods

Plenary input followed by two workshops concerned with exploring and developing ideas.


What we want to achieve

Familiarisation with and exploration of a particular tool, such as a table or model, for designing communicative language activities and assessing communication or learning tasks that already exist, for example in textbooks. In working with this tool account is taken of the main aspects of a particular task that emphasises communication (comprehension, processing/negotiation and expression of meaning) but is also of value in learning and teaching the language. This tool can be used to prepare and adapt classroom activities in response to the learners' reactions and to help pupils/students overcome learning difficulties and develop their individual learning capacities.

    The ELP beyond the textbook, Dick Meijer

The communicative task: Establishing the link between the ELP, the CEFR and school textbooks, Hans-Peter Hodel

Language communication tasks / joining up the ELP, the curriculum and the schoolbook - handout

A model for describing tasks

Workshop task: Using a sample text book unit with the ELP
(English only)