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The EU actively promotes language learning and linguistic diversity across Europe as well as innovative approaches aimed at enhancing the linguistic competencies of European citizens: in particular, the Content and integrated language learning (CLIL) emerged as an educational approach for teaching a subject through the medium of a non-native language. The bilingual education is being increasingly implemented at the different levels of schools in Europe.
In the case of STEAM (a paradigm which merges the STEM and the Arts as a whole providing highly valuable opportunities to explore creativity and develop social interaction related skills), the Inquiry-Based Science Education (IBSE) and Engineering Design Process in Science Education (EDP) are tackled jointly the bilingual approach and the inclusive perspective. In this context, the SeLFiE project born with the ultimate aim of facilitating the acquisition of a second language (English, Spanish or French in the first stage) through STEAM topics and active pedagogies.
The main objective is to improve the bilingual Primary teachers´ competencies and their trainers; moreover, to improve the science teaching and foreign language competence of Primary children. The integration of the CLIL, IBSE and EDP in Primary Education will be analysed in order to define a bilingual teacher profile, training and supporting in-service and pre-service teachers in the new methodologies and models developed for learning a second language through STEAM topics.
The radically innovative potential of SeLFiE is its ability to integrate the Scientific language – which is simpler and easier to understand than the literary language, and rich in life-related and practical lexicon – and the CLIL framework in ages between 4 and 12. It also gives continuity along the whole compulsory education maintaining the consistency of the learning and teaching processes. SeLFiE develops of a joint methodology for CLIL and science education, being that a field to explore needed for further implementation and revision. SeLFiE is coordinated by the University of Burgos and the consortium is comprised of three academic partners (the mentioned one, the University of Malta and the University of Granada), the International Trilingual School of Warsaw and a network of public schools (CFIE Burgos) and an SME, expert in communication, social impact assessment and development of website and eLearning platforms (Kveloce I+D+I – Senior Europa S.L.).
The most important result is a new method for teaching science within bilingual contexts sustained on 3 Intellectual outputs:
- Toolkit: revision of good practices in the fields of CLIL, IBSE and EDP; compilation of OERs and educational materials, including co-teaching guidelines. This toolkit will include a methodological framework, based on research results in CLIL and science education by inquiry.
- ScienceL2 Series: will include brief comments on methodology, and the complete teaching plan (including resources, rubrics, evaluation guidelines, complementary reading, etc). The series will be developed for different contents, included in the curriculum of the partners.
- ScienceL2 Online repository of materials
In addition, one learning activity and one multiplier event will be conducted:
- C1: Training course
- E1. Final conference on innovative practices for childhood and primary scientific and bilingual education
SeLFiE project strengths competitiveness and innovation potential of partners involved through giving new evidence-based tool to schools and networks engaged and new opportunities for exploitation and for knowledge transfer and exchange, fostering collaboration at European level.
SeLFiE facilitates a more comprehensive integration of a second/foreign language within the official curricula in host countries through influencing decision-makers and policies and optimising the second language learning in formal education through a more effective linguistic immersion thanks to a practice-based approach. SeLFiE is able to bring project-based learning and the acquisition of linguistic competencies together meanwhile enhancing the learning experience on both topics. Moreover, this enhancement will be evidence-based and validated, facilitating the access to interesting resources for promoting autonomous learning.