English as an Additional Language
Team led by Jacqueline Heard (Inclusion Manager)
Almost 60% of our children have English as an Additional Language (EAL) and our children and adults speak over 40 different languages.
We are truly an international community, and we celebrate the richness of our cultural and linguistic diversity.
Throughout the year, we celebrate major festivals from many different religions and welcome the help of parents in preparing assemblies - either by bringing in artefacts, supplying special clothes, teaching us new songs or being willing to present a short 5-minute assembly.
Our wonderful parents have established a CHIPTA "celebrating diversity group". This has been very successful in helping parents to feel less alone and ensures there is always someone there if you need someone to talk to.
We also have our new English Club which runs on Tuesday mornings in the junior school library at 9:15am. It is open to both Infant and junior school parents and is a free weekly session for bilingual or multilingual parents, with English as an additional language. It replaces our LEAH club, which ran last year and is a great way to make new connections. It is delivered by two teachers who are also bilingual and provides a chance to discuss topics in an informal and conversational way. Please feel free to turn up with a friend, when you are able to.
November is our International Month and each child is encouraged to do a project at home about their family’s country or countries they visit regularly.
Parents are also invited to teach us about their home country and the children enjoy learning new facts about the different countries, on different continents around the world. The month includes International assemblies, where each class presents a song, dance or facts about a country they have been learning about.
The highlight of our International Month is our International Evening where parents and children dress up in their national costume, bring food, watch dance displays and musicians from around the world.
It is such a wonderful evening - as one of our teachers said….
“There is something really special about sharing home cooked food with the children and their families”.