# CLIL UNIPI CA TEACHER TRAINING COURSE April - June 2014 Report on the CLIL activity carried out at Liceo Classico e Scientifico «Euclide» Cagliari May.

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CLIL UNIPI CA TEACHER TRAINING COURSE April - June 2014 Report on the CLIL activity carried out at Liceo Classico e Scientifico «Euclide» Cagliari May 2014 Teacher: Marco Pani Class: III D Scientifico Students n. 17 Age of the students: 16-17 Title of the project: Relazioni e funzioni – una proposta di modulo CLIL per la Matematica

The project that is going to be presented here has been thought as a path through which the students will be led step by step from the basic concepts of a relation between two sets and of a function, to the notion of an analytical function. Starting from the very basic notions above mentioned, the students should acquire the fundamental competences that will make them able to deal with the most common analytical functions. Even though the project includes four phases, only the phase n. 1 (3 hours) has been carried out because of the little time available in the current school year.

Before starting each lesson, the classroom was set up and organized in order to make students work in small groups (4 people), since cooperative learning was the main strategy used in this phase. Classroom setup

First of all, a glossary was handed out to the students, who had to match the English words listed in a column with the words in Italian listed in another column of a table. The phonetic transcription of each word was also included in the glossary. The materials containing examples, definitions, instructions for the group activities and exercises were created and prepared by the teacher of Maths in cooperation with the teacher of English.

Using the IWB, a video taken from the Web was presented in order to highlight the main concepts that had been previously introduced. Then, the teacher started a discussion with the explicit purpose to encourage all the pupils to express their opinions on the topic of the video lesson. Watch Watch the video lesson

The students have been given different exercises to test their comprehension of the concepts they have been exploring, discovering and defining during each item of the activity. The students had to express themselves either in a written or in an oral form, for example doing cloze tests, writing definitions or answering questions asked by the teacher.

While carrying out this sort of tasks, the focus has always been centered on the contents. Therefore the communication in L2 among the students and between the teacher and them rose up and developed in a spontaneous way, without paying too much attention to grammar or accuracy. Only on a few occasions some corrections concerning the use of English have been made by the teacher.

The questionnaires. Students’ expectations and results In the following slides some graphs will show at what extent the students’ expectations of the course have been met by the carried out activities. The answers to some questions that the students found both in the initial questionnaire and in the final one have been compared. The numbers on the right in each graph express at what extent the respondents agree with the statement in the question, from 1= «I don’t agree at all» to 5= «I totally agree». The values in the vertical axis indicate the number of students who expressed their opinion at the respective extent.

Initial questionnaire. Question n. 6: I think studying this way is a good idea. Final questionnaire. Question n. 2: I think that studying this way has been a good idea. At the end of the lessons, more students than those at the beginning agreed at a large extent with the opinion expressed in these items of the questionnaires.

Initial questionnaire. Quest. 8: I’ll have to face some difficulties in learning a topic that is going to be taught in English. Final questionnaire. Quest. 6: I encountered some difficulties in studying and in understanding notions which were taught in English. It is easy to observe that the final situation is better with respect to the expectations of the students.

Initial questionnaire. Question n. 7: I shall take pleasure in attending these lessons. Final questionnaire. Question n. 3: I enjoyed these new lessons. The expectations of the students were good and at the end of the course the majority of them really enjoyed the lessons.

Init. questionnaire. Quest. 9: I think that my teachers will help me. Final questionnaire. Quest. 7: I had help from my teachers. It can be stated that the students felt that the teacher had been helping them during the lessons, even more than they expected.

Initial questionnaire. Question n. 11: my English will get better. Final questionnaire. Question n. 10 : my competences in English have been improved. The perceived results don’t seem to be perfectly in line with the expectations of the students.

The class context. As far as regards the social and cultural features of the class group, there are not any relevant differences among the students. All of them have been studying English in the secondary school for almost three years, 3 hours a week. As it concerns the competences in the second language, the average level of the students is referred to as sufficient as far as regards their abilities, even though they haven’t still reached the expected results in the skill of speaking. The general attitude of the students towards their teachers’ proposals is mostly positive and cooperative.

Added value of the CLIL activity. As a result of the observation above, it seems that one of the most relevant needs of the students involved in the activity is to improve their speaking skill in L2. Although there was not enough time to carry out all the planned activities, exception made for the phase 1 (3 hours), it has been possible to notice that the communication abilities and the speaking skill of the students have been effectively stimulated principally by:  using the cooperative learning strategy ;  focusing the attention on the contents of the subject taught in L2.

As far as regards the cognitive skills related to the non- linguistic subject (Maths), it may be observed that the practical approach chosen for carrying out the planned activity (use of worksheets, several examples, exercises) have had some important outcomes, since the students have showed:  a good degree of comprehension of the concepts;  a sufficient level of precision and clearness in expressing the ideas and the definitions related to each topic.

Conclusions. The first part of the project have been carried out for three hours, as it was planned. Although the students have been exposed to the CLIL method for so little time, some conclusions like those mentioned in the previous paragraph can be drawn either from the direct observation of the activity in the classroom or from the results of the questionnaires that were handed out to the students. The students showed a high degree of participation in the lessons and in the activities. Moreover, they enjoyed working in group and having a quick feedback on their learning, which is definitely a considerable advantage of this teaching method.

A part from the lack of time, speaking in general terms, the impression on this experience with the students is positive and it is also confirmed by the students in their logbooks of the course. In particular, the students highlighted the following points:  learning several words regarding the topic which they deal with during the lessons;  working in group in an organized and effective way;  listening to and watching a video lesson on Mathematics in English;  feeling themselves involved in an English speaking activity regarding Maths;  having suitable materials and support from the teacher to overcome the difficulties that they encountered. Back to Back to the results of the questionnaires

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