What CLIL can do for your classroom?
In many cases, CLIL can increase your students’ motivation to learn what you’re teaching them. This can enable students to progress more quickly and solidly than they would with deliberately separated subjects. There are very few instances in the real world in which black and white don’t mix, so letting two subjects paint a broader picture of reality for students is a great advantage of CLIL. Just make sure that the content-specific subject is the primary objective and that your linguistic goals are secondary – this provides consistency and sturdy scaffolding on which to build linguistic progress.
Because CLIL is so strongly associated with both a content area and a foreign language, it’s naturally imbued with cultural and societal significance. Your students will develop a stronger understanding of a foreign culture as a result of CLIL instruction and will be more likely to “see the big picture” in terms of the relationship between language and society.
Even in CLIL lessons, it will become apparent that some skills and knowledge are applicable to a wide range of subjects in a variety of languages. Students will gain a healthy appreciation for these types of skills and may be more motivated to improve them.
By challenging your students with CLIL, you’ll be able to help them build confidence in their abilities. The best part of this is that their confidence won’t be inflated – the legitimate cognitive and academic skills encouraged by CLIL are widely recognized and valued.
What do you think? Have you used CLIL in your classroom? How successful has it been?