The well-established Chinese Language Assistant programme run by the British Council provides Chinese language assistants (CLAs) to UK schools. The CLAs are experienced teachers, or graduates in teaching Chinese as a foreign language, with at least one year’s experience teaching overseas. Their experience means that they can support existing provision in schools or introduce Mandarin to pupils for the first time. CLAs spend one year in the UK, teaching and supporting the teaching of Chinese language and the culture. There are 65 CLAs in total for 2018/19, all of whom come from China and are working in primary and secondary schools in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Each year, the IOE Confucius Institute organises and delivers teacher training for the CLAs for best practice Chinese language teaching, as well as specific training on working in UK schools. At the beginning of November this year the IOE Confucius Institute, led by National Network Coordinator Xiaoming Zhu, conducted the annual three day training event for the new cohort of CLAs. The November training covered a wide range of topics including strategies in teaching language skills, effective classroom management, teaching and engaging primary school pupils, use of target language, using objects in the classroom, making the most of the online resources and many others. The CLAs found the training extremely useful and will be able to use all aspects of it in their schools and in their teaching.
See below for some of the things the CLAs expressed about the three day training event:
I really enjoyed it! I have learned a lot from it.
Thank you so much for the arrangement of the different courses. I have learned a lot and really appreciate it.
Thank you very much for giving us this chance. I have got so many gains (ideas) and they will be very useful to my teaching.
The IOE Confucius Institute visits the CLAs in their schools throughout the year to monitor their progress.