Secondary Languages in Action

Secondary Languages in Action

By Natascia Servini, Julien Violette, David Shanks, Luma Hameed

Published 06 Dec 2024

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With more than 50 years of current teaching experience between them, the authors of Secondary Languages in Action have created an accessible summary of research and thinking on approaches to MFL teaching, cutting through the noise of online debates and keeping the focus on application in the classroom.

Each chapter guides you through different elements of MFL teaching, covering all the skills but also tips on how to increase engagement, make the case for languages and enrich the curriculum, with clear examples of a range of activities and projects. The book considers how the strategies can be adapted and applied to any classroom, whatever your level of experience or teaching context.

Whether you're beginning your journey into teaching training, working as a language assistant, or are an experienced teacher looking for new inspiration and ideas, this is an essential guide for all MFL classroom-based staff.
Natascia Servini is an assistant headteacher at a secondary school in East London and has been teaching French and Italian for 13 years. During her career, she has been a head of department and lead practitioner for languages across an academy trust. She also taught English as a foreign language for a year in Italy. In 2015, Natascia won the Association for Language Learning's Secondary Teacher of the Year award for her work in reviving languages in her inner London school, significantly increasing take-up of languages and improving outcomes at GCSE and A-level.

Julien Violette is a lead languages consultant in French and Spanish who has been teaching languages for 14 years. Before completing his PGCE at Goldsmiths, University of London, he studied translation at University Charles de Gaulle 3 in Lille, France. Julien has taught French and Spanish at secondary level across all key stages and German at KS3, and has led languages departments in two London comprehensive schools. His main areas of expertise are curriculum development, assessment and promoting languages studies. Other interests include long-term memory strategies, maximal use of target language by students and teachers, and effective questioning.

David Shanks has been teaching French in a range of inner-city contexts for the past 14 years. He works for Harris Federation, teaching French, supporting language departments and delivering training. Before completing his PGCE in French and EAL with the UCL Institute of Education, David taught in Norway and worked as a language assistant in France. His interests lie in assessment, creativity, use of technology, teacher development and the Association for Language Learning. His MA in education with King's College London included a dissertation on technology-facilitated oral homework, a summary of which was published in the 2021 Innovative Language Pedagogy Report.

Luma Hameed is an author of curriculum resources and the founder of Yalla Arabi online active books ( She has delivered teacher training across a wide range of topics, nationally and internationally, and is a principal examiner at Cambridge University. Luma has a BEd, a PGCE and an MA in Education: Language, Culture, and Identity. She taught Arabic and German at a secondary school in London and is passionate about promoting creative language learning and intercultural understanding. Luma is associate lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, and the leader of the Arabic Teachers' Council in London and Southern England.
  • Author Natascia Servini,Julien Violette,David Shanks,Luma Hameed
  • ISBN 9781915261892
  • No. of Pages 160
  • Format Paperback
  • Publication Date 06 Dec 2024