Content and Language Integrated
Learning (CLIL) is where all or part of another subject in the
curriculum is taught through the medium of the new language. In
order for this to be effective, both language and content need to
be carefully planned. The focus is often very much on developing
children’s comprehension of the new language.
This method of embedding language into other
subjects requires a certain level of language competence on the
part of the teacher, as well as a good understanding of the primary
pedagogy of the other subject to be taught. CLIL therefore often
works well when class teachers work collaboratively with a
specialist language teacher, as in the featured clip, planning
units of work carefully and ensuring that both teachers have a
sound understanding of the content and language to be covered.
When done well, CLIL can be extremely
motivating for learners, enabling them to engage with the new
language and to revisit and explore new areas of knowledge in the
other subject. It also makes best possible use of time available in
- Do you feel in a position to use the CLIL
method? If so, in which subject area can you see this working
- What are the challenges posed by the CLIL
- What support could you draw on to help you plan
and deliver a CLIL unit of work (e.g. specialist staff, local
authority adviser, published resources, online
Choose a subject area and topic (e.g. maths,
geometric shapes) and plan a simple lesson in the new language.
- What language will you need to deliver the
lesson in its entirety (both subject related and for classroom
- What is the core language that you would
expect the children to be able to produce by the end of the lesson
(e.g. names of 6-8 shapes, ‘side’, ‘corner’, ‘The shape
- What kind of questioning will you use to
ensure that children have understood?