Young Interpreters is a scheme aimed at both Primary and Secondary school children, and involves a group of children who display an empathetic outlook. These children at Toftwood are responsible for welcoming new arrivals to the school and supporting them during their transition. They are also able to assist with ongoing social situations around school.
At Toftwood a group of children from Years 1 – 6 have been trained in becoming a Young Interpreter, around 3 from each year group. These children have received training of either 4 or 5 sessions and are enjoying becoming confident with what they have learnt.
The children wear a badge around school to show their role and are proud of this responsibility.
Some of the Young Interpreters at Toftwood are monolingual and others have simply been chosen for their understanding and compassionate manner.
The Young Interpreters meet 2/3 times a half term and will continue to hone and develop their skills throughout the year, or if they choose to, throughout their time at Toftwood.
Training – Year 1 and 2
The children in Years 1 and 2 had 4 training sessions to become a Young Interpreter. The children thought about how they felt when they started school, and how daunting this would have been. Some children shared their own experience, Clara for example said that she was worried she would not make any friends. Some children shared their experiences with other languages and how this could help them to be a great Young Interpreter. The children then shared different ways that they could greet people, learning Hello in lots of different languages!
When the children received their Young Interpreter book they were able to see how useful pictures were to people who do not speak the same language as them. Bachir thought this was a good idea, so that the children could see what he is talking about. The children then combined all of these techniques and had a go at giving tours of the school to each other. The children enjoyed this, and liked showing each other their classrooms and the important places in the school, like the hall and the playground!
Communication Fans – Year 1 and 2
During the Young Interpreters training they created communication fans. In each fan are the different strategies that the children have learnt which can help them to be a Young Interpreter. They have recorded strategies such as: draw in your notebook, keep eye contact, give a tour of the school and use facial expressions. The Young Interpreters will continue to add to these fans in their fortnightly Young Interpreter sessions.
Shared Reading – Year 1 and 2
The Young Interpreters had a trip to Reception! They wanted to practice communicating with different kinds of children and were lucky enough to go and visit the youngest in the school.
They each chose a book to read with a reception child and were very happy to sit and share this with them. They read fiction and non-fiction books. Lily (Year 1) used the pictures to explain her story to her Reception child and Seren (Year 2) even had a go at using some actions to explain the story further! Just like we had learnt to do in our Young Interpreter training.
They really enjoyed this experience and thanked the Reception children for letting them read to them. They also thanked Miss Gold and Mrs Partridge for letting them into their class.
Well done Young Interpreters!