Lifelong Learning Programme

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Title of the Project
Brief description
Language teachers from Selby College Yorkshire and local schools got together to discuss how to motivate Year 8 pupils. They obtained help and sponsorship from local businesses, the University of Hull and the University of York. The result was Eurofest, a simulated international trade fair with a languages focus.
During the last term of Year 8, pupils from five local schools worked in language lessons to create products to sell at the event. One group was chosen from each school to present their product at Selby College in June and another group to answer questions on a ‘tourist information stand.’

On the big day, pupils answered questions in French and German from a range of visitors, from local business people to university language students. At the end of the day, prizes were given for the best use of French, German and enterprise skills.

Teenagers also had a chance to chat to university languages students and spend time in Selby College – the main local provider of education post-16. This year the project is developing to include taster classes in Mandarin and Japanese and Q&As with local businesses.
United Kingdom
Target Language
French, German
School Education
Transversal (more sectors addressed)
Further Information



Language teachers from Selby College in Yorkshire and local schools got together to discuss how to motivate Year 8 pupils. They enlisted help and sponsorship from local businesses, the University of Hull and the University of York. The result was Eurofest, a simulated international trade fair with a foreign languages focus.


- to promote the use of modern foreign languages in a realistic business setting
With a view to increasing takeup of MFL at GCSE level
- to raise the profile of MFL in schools and the community
- to raise the career aspirations of younger learners
- to develop linguistic competence and confidence – speaking, listening and writing (giving information, selling products, writing down orders)
- to have fun communicating with adults in one or two foreign languages
- to develop business enterprise skills – design, marketing and sales skills
- to highlight the usefulness of language skills in business today
- to foster closer relationships between schools, college, universities and business.


A simulated 'trade fair' was organised at the local further education college so that students would be in a new common environment. Specially planned lessons were used across the five schools to enable the students to prepare the materials and language needed to 'sell' their respective products. The group with the best product was chosen to represent the school at the fair


On the day of the Eurofest fair, the selected groups 'sold' their products at their stands, answering questions from the various people from the local community attending. Buyers were represented by Business Language Champion company personnel, governors and parents and friends of Selby College and the Town Twinning Committee. Staff and students from Hull University, ‘Routes Into Languages’ programme provided additional input with a presentation and student mentors. This gave the secondary school students and their 'customers' a feel for the use of the languages in the real world. One of the teachers said "“Getting ready for Eurofest and making materials gave our 3 groups at Sherburn High a real buzz. 90 students of French and German were fully engaged in the activities and lessons were busy and students really engaged in their work. The 3 teams chosen to represent our school were really excited before and on the day. The day was also exciting and challenging, they all enjoyed it and it has given them a lot more confidence not only in using a language, but also in their general behaviour when working with others in the classsroom and at other events. An excellent event - so motivating and challenging for young linguists".
To help other schools carry out similar projects, a detailed pack was produced containing guidance and useful materials that could be used to set up a similar language fair and the preparations for it.

Why the European Language Label?

The project was innovative and involved students in both classroom work and an event outside the classroom, given them a chance to relate the languages to real life. For the community, few of whom had experience of foreign languages, it was a way of demystifying language learning.

Activities following the award of the European Language Label

The students and schools involved felt proud of the fact that their efforts had been recognised. They were also awarded the Euro London Appointments Business Language Prize. The Eurofest fair was repeated in following years.

Assessment of the Impact of the European Language Label

Important acknowledgement for Selby College, which organised the event and for Routes into Languages, and encouragement to continue with such projects

Recommendations for future applicants for the ELL

none mentioned


Consistency with European Policies in the field of Language Learning

European policy seeks to promote the learning of foreign languages and their practical use.

Consistency with European, National and yearly priorities

The priorities for the year 2008-20089 were 'intercultural dialogue' and 'languages for business. The project, especially the idea of the fair, fitted in very well with these priorities



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Comments on this Case Studies

Your comments are welcome

Date: 2014.08.19

Posted by Pekka Virtanen (Finland)

Message: Local business and networks were involved in the project which a plus for the activities. The students got the opportunity to simulate real language use situations. Transfer of the innovations of this project was made easier by creating a pack containing materials and information; the sustainability of the project methods and ideas was thus supported.

Date: 2014.07.15

Posted by Richard Rossner (UK)

Message: This was one of those excellent projects that pushed learners to actually use their foreign languages in a real world setting potentially relevant to their future careers. The fact that youngsters of 15-16 had to actually present and answer questions at a simulated trade fair added a dimension to their learning which would not have been feasible in class.

21 December 2014

Audio- video presentation of the NELLIP project

An audio- video presentation of the NELLIP project has been created and made available in the Information section of the NELLIP portal. To access the presentation please click here: