Russian for Teachers´s archives ↓

Your comments, ideas, and resources. Competition for teachers of Italian, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish!

Go to, apply for login, and upload teaching or learning ideas and resources.

Comment in any language on the blog entries here for the other competition ‘Why learn more languages?’

Prizes will be awarded on the basis of a lottery (24th November), your name will go in to the draw each time you comment on the blog or upload to the Resources section of our website.

First prize is an iPAD2, second and third prizes are iTunes vouchers.

Art and Literature Competition “The World Around Me”

For native Russian speakers and students of the Russian language including adopted Russian children, children with one or both parents who are native Russian speakers

The competition is supported by the Russian Embassy in Ireland. Prizes will be awarded in two categories: “Best drawing or painting” and “Best story/essay”

For more information and entry forms click here

Please complete a quick questionnaire about target language use in the classroom!

Dear Teachers,

I am trainee Spanish Teacher at UL, completing a final year research project about Teacher?s perceptions about target language use in the classroom.

It would really help me if you would kindly complete a survey which you can access through this link;

It won?t take long (about 10 minutes!) and is completely anonymous.

Thanks in advance,

Róisín Donohoe

All you need to know about ICT conference

If you could travel to the UK, and are interested in using more ICT in the classroom ICT Links into Languages weekend event will showcase all you need to know about ICT in the MFL classroom.

Whether you want to find out how to use blogs and wikis to trying out digital voice recorders, you?ll be inspired to try something new! A range of speakers will demonstrate tried and tested models for different skill levels. You don?t have to be an expert in ICT to attend.

It’s on a Saturday and Sunday so would be possible to make it even if you have to work Friday and Monday… there are direct flights from Dublin to Southampton.

For lots more info click here

News from Russia

Dr Sarah Smyth, Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies (TCD), was awarded the Pushkin Medal  by President Medvedev for her contribution to the promotion of Russian language and culture in the world. This medal is awarded annually by Presidential decree to ten people from the fields of culture or education. The award ceremony was held in the Kremlin palace on 4th November, the Russian national holiday. In her speech , Sarah made reference to encouraging new developments in Irish-Russian relations, and looked forward to both sides building on newly strengthened foundations. In the current year other visitors to Russia from Ireland include Bono, on the occasion of a U2 concert in Moscow, and President McAleese, who accompanied a trade and education mission in September. In addition to Sarah’s work in Trinity and further afield, she has been a member of the management committee of the Post-Primary Languages Initiative since its inception and has made an enormous contribution to the work of introducing Russian in our schools.


What can we do to promote Russian?

I know that some of you have mentioned in the past the need to do more promotion in relation to the importance and value for students of learning Russian and maybe we could do this next year. We would really welcome any ideas you may have in relation to possibilities for such a project. I will also try to make some time to visit some of you in your schools and classes early next year so that we can discuss further but in the meantime, all suggestions and comments welcome!

Change your awful avatar!

These awful avatars are generated automatically I promise! So no, you are not stuck with this awful face Susan!!! I wouldn’t want to look like this:

  • Go to My Account at the top left of home page
  • Click on Profile
  • Edit My Profile
  • Change Avatar and upload any gorgeous pic you like :)

Practical Considerations

There are different types of blog but basically, at least in the beginning, in terms of the learners, I see this as a blog where students can get writing practice, have what they have written read by other students and then with the comment features of the blog, more interaction and communication in the target language is promoted.

It is probably a good idea to begin by asking your students to write on a specific activity or topic, providing them with guidelines in the form of some questions they could answer. This will motivate them and help them to focus, at least in the beginning. Expressing opinions via blogs has also been shown to help with language learning because being able to express themselves online increases their level of confidence (see this this link for a useful discussion of how language learning takes place by blogging).

You could give also give them a project to do that would, for example, develop writing and research skills, and the blog would then also be used to showcase their work as well as providing an online resource for use by others. You can post different specific ideas here that would be appropriate for the different levels of students you have and that would also reflect the needs of the curriculum.

Another way you could use the blog with your students would be as an on-line personal diary for students, a place where they could write an account of their learning via the blog. We know from the research that when students monitor and evaluate their learning they learn better, and that they also learn better when they when  keep a written record of what they do.

Specific activities you think you could use for language learning via this blog please!