Recently the teaching of modern languages to young learners
has become an integral part of widely spread practice in Europe and beyond.
This is the reason why various projects at ECML have focused on this topic
over the last decade.
Consensus has been achieved on the advantages, on the
basic principles of teaching modern languages at an early age, and on
the types of materials, tasks and assessment practices. However, no attempt
has been made to explore how effectively these findings are integrated
into teacher training programmes and implemented in actual classroom practice.
TEMOLAYOLE will contribute to this area by implementing a research and
Although a lot of effort has been put into actually
teaching young learners and training their teachers in Europe, comparable
data are not available on either the processes or the results. It is known
that in a number of European countries there is a shortage of teachers,
or of teachers who are appropriately prepared to deal with the target
age group. Also, although learners tend to start earlier, teaching in
the long run is often less effective than expected. Presently it is unclear
what happens in early start programmes, how good practice - including
assessment and self-assessment - is implemented and what young learners
The appropriateness of time and focus of the proposed
project is further supported by recent discussions commissioned by the
European Commission Directorate-General for Education and Culture concerning
language skills indicators. There is a need to identify what the realistic
achievement targets may be for early language instruction along the levels
defined in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages:
Learning, Teaching, Assessment (CEFR) and how early language programmes
may contribute to plurilingualism and lifelong learning.
The project involves several target languages, among them languages less
widely taught in Europe: English, French, German, Greek, Italian, and
AND OBJECTIVES _____________________________
The TEMOLAYOLE project aims to involve teacher
educators and their in-service trainees over a period of four years. Our
aim is to develop, pilot and implement an innovative programme for teachers
of modern languages to young learners to promote plurilingualism, to encourage
systematic collection and analyses of classroom data and reflective practice.
The project will establish a network of teacher educators who wish to
integrate classroom observation focusing on good practice and assessment
into their in-service teachers' professional development in different
target languages (English, French, German, Greek, Italian, and Spanish).
The project includes a central workshop with teacher educators from all
the member states of the ECML, a series of expert meetings and continuous
networking via email, an international regional conference, and an edited
volume on the outcomes.
Expected outcomes are described in terms of processes
and products. The series of activities proposed in the project will result
in the following products:
- A flexible syllabus will be developed and piloted
in a few educational contexts. This syllabus will be later adaptable
to pre- and in-service teachers' needs and distance or on-site programmes.
Also, some innovative tools and techniques for computer-based distance-learning
will be developed at the University of Umea in order to facilitate in-service
training for teachers outside university areas and also in order to
reach new target groups for teacher training to meet the shortage of
properly trained teachers in many countries. The expected users are:
teacher educators of pre- and in-service teachers.
- New tools will be developed: structured and piloted
observation schemes, questionnaires, and interviews for teachers and
teacher educators to reflect upon, evaluate and where necessary, improve
their own practice. The expected users are: teacher educators and researchers.
- A network of researchers on teacher education will
be established and maintained over the four years. The expected users
are: teacher educators as researchers.
- Structured research data will be collected on good
practice, assessment practices, and what young learners can do along
CEFR criteria in young learners' classrooms.
- The proceedings of an international conference (regional
event) will become available in 2007 for teacher educators involved
in the project, other teacher educators in different programmes, researchers,
pre- and in-service teachers, decision makers, testing experts, and
- An edited book will be published on research findings
- Some research projects will be made available
on the web or CD or in print.
January to June
Preparation of materials and activities for central
workshop in June/July.
Preparatory expert meeting for five team members:
- to share views,
- to discuss issues to design tasks and
- a questionnaire for potential participants in the
June-July central workshop to gather data on teacher education programmes,
curricula, syllabi, teachers' needs, and national priorities.
29 June - 3 July
Central workshop at ECML in Graz.
For teacher educators involved in curriculum design and implementation
for early language instruction at higher education institutions in European
Participants include the five members of the project team and
one participating member from teacher education institutions from each
country of the partial agreement responsible for training teachers of
young learners. Participants should have the right, opportunity and willingness
to contribute to the development of a new syllabus and to implement innovative
Team members present findings on data collected for the central workshop.
Team members involve participants in an overview of the issues based on
filled in questionnaires. All participating representatives will present
their curriculum and syllabus. Focus will be first on currently used curricula,
syllabi, content, procedures, and needs. A comparison of curricula and
syllabi along questions like the following: What do the programmes involve?
How are theory and practice combined? How can in-service teachers be characterised?
What are their needs in terms of methodology and language? What is the
role and place of school practice in the curriculum? What instruments
(published materials, realia, etc.) are used for what purposes? What research
is available on YLs? What are the achievement targets? What levels do
learners actually achieve?
August - December
Follow up activity:
A synthesis of results; participants in the workshop are expected to participate
in the design of a new syllabus with team members and in the work of a
new network of participants formed in the workshop. Synthesis will be
based on data collected before, during and after central workshop. Contact
with all participants will be maintained by email and through ECML's TEMAYOLE
Team members and active members of network formed in central event.
Discussing the first version of syllabus and designing a second version
of the syllabus to be piloted in the fall.
Expert feedback on module from all ECML countries and other stakeholders.
Expert feedback will be required from all participating member states;
then, team will finalise syllabus for piloting.
September - December
Piloting syllabus for one semester in volunteering institutions (including
Universities of Pecs, Umea, Zagreb, and Aristotle University of Thessaliniki,
and Kildare Education Centre) We leave it open in case some can't. Their
role in the meeting in January is to benefit from the pilot phase in the
institutions where the piloting takes place.
Discussion and evaluation of feedback on pilot; guidelines
on how adaptation of syllabus and secondary products need to be updated.
All these activities will happen on the internet (email and ECML's TEMAYOLE
homepage) with all participants in the pilot phase.
Members of the project team and one participant of pilot phase from members
of teacher education institutions from participating countries including
in-service teachers in teacher education programmes.
To finalise updated version of syllabus and instruments before we make
them available to a wider audience to use in their institutions in fall
2006. Syllabus will need to be implemented in the target languages in
which the participating in-service programmes train teachers. We also
need to discuss feedback on uses of syllabus and to prepare for the conference
and the publication of papers.
Expert meeting - conference organisation
September - December
Updated syllabus becomes available for implementation in all volunteering
institutions and on the TEMAYOLE website.
International conference involving other sponsors, e.g., ELTeCS, teachers'
associations, and participating universities. The venue will most probably
be at one of the universities of the team members.
all members of the project (including team, participating members from
teacher education institutions from each country, volunteering in-service
teachers involved in the project in teacher education programmes at participating
institutions, teacher educators, pre- and in-service teachers and researchers
applying to open call.
As this event will hopefully attract many more participants from all over
the world, we hypothesise that participation fees will cover part of the
June - October
Editing volume on TEMOLAYOLE.
Editing meeting for preparing the publication.
Publication of book by ECML.
Evaluation of TEMAYOLE project
As every year more participants will be involved in the project, this
design will partly take care of dissemination of the results. Apart from
involving teachers, educators, decision makers and researchers, we will
make all materials available on the internet; the conference will serve
as an event where outcomes can be shared with an international audience;
and the publication of papers will make both the syllabi for various target
languages and studies on their implementation available to a wide audience.
As a result, participating teacher educators/researchers will develop
and refine research questions, tools, procedures, assessment framework
for project; participating teachers will work and reflect on classroom
research projects; teachers' awareness and practice will improve; teachers'
self-confidence will be enhanced; language teaching to young learners
will be more appreciated as a professional activity; and a network of
participating teachers will be established.
The working languages of the project are English and French. Simultaneous
interpretation will be provided for ECML workshop only. Participants are
expected to communicate in writing and speaking in English throughout
the project, and in English and a language shared by participants in the