Monday 15 February 2010

MYLO Ambassadors Meeting: CILT, 8th February 2010

A lot of us MFL teachers met on 8th February at CILT to find out more about MYLO and offer practical feedback. The language teachers included Joe Dale , Wendy Adeniji , Lisa Stevens , Jo Rhys-Jones, Mark Pendleton , Louise Crossley , Lesley Welsh , Valerie McIntyre , Helena Butterfield , Simon Howells , Suzi Bewell , Esther Hardman and Andrew Balaam .

In the midst of what can be a depressing climate for languages, especially for secondary language teachers who have seen their role within the curriculum shrink year on year, the day turned out to be extremely positive and -I think-invigorating for all of us.

What is MYLO?

MYLO stands for MY Languages Online. MYLO aims:

*to provide 11-16 year olds with a new approach to learning languages that will engage their interest in exploring languages in an independent manner;

*to give teachers access to a range of flexible, compelling and innovative techniques and content to motivate learners in and out of the classroom.

The Key Partners in the MYLO project are :

The core learning for MYLO will be delivered through the “challenges”. A range of challenges will be developed, based on topics that 11-16 year olds have identified as of interest to them, such as art and design, sport, citizenship and music. The challenges I looked at included designing a menu in French, making a superhero in Spanish, designing a video game... and they all made references to real events and locations.

MYLO considers 3 strands of motivation: self-motivation, peer-driven and teacher-driven.The idea of the MYLO approach is to get the skills to complete the challenge through step-by-step activities and practise the new skills using a suite of multiplayer games in a competitive environment.

MYLO has a social networking facility to enable students to be part of a MYLO community, the MYLO "leagues",which means that they will be able to take the challenge on an individual basis or share work with peers, collaborate on and review each other’s work. Participation is also rewarded by "Kudos points" that count towards students' position in the MYLO leagues.

A lot of support material will also be available like a phrase book, a dictionary, research notes providing cultural background information and what I thought were very focused and engaging language-learning strategies videos. All the resources provided to prepare for the challenges will also be downloadable.

What does a MYLO ambassador do?

Ambassadors are a point of contact for local MFL teachers, giving advice on the use of MYLO and reflecting on the experiences of other thus disseminating good practice.

How can I find out more?

Go online to see things for yourself-but be aware this is pretty much work in progress right now. This is largely due to the feedback that is being given by different groups of secondary teachers involved with MYLO, including early pilot schools and MYLO ambassadors. As maximising the use of the resource is a key priority, piloting and feedback from the classroom are essential and everybody at the meeting seemed very impressed with the depth of the consultation process.

Sign up for MYLO newsletter at MYLO will be launched in Spring 2010 for French, Spanish, German and Mandarin at Breakthrough and Preliminary Levels.


Graham Davies said...

Useful, Isabelle! I've added a link to you blog in my blog thread about MYLO:


Isabelle Jones said...

Thank you for the link Graham! As MYLO is pretty much work in progress, it is a good idea to compile all the information we have as it is released.There is no secrecy involved wth the process, just a desire to get it right for students and teachers via proper consultation-it takes time but it will mean that we have some ownership, always a good start...