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Didactic Competences in the Multilingual Classroom: a research and training initiative (COMPASS)

Within the SMS 2.0 project activities, the initiative Didactic Competences in the Multilingual Classroom (COMPASS) was launched in 2020. The initiative aims to support teams of teachers of German and Italian-speaking schools in making the most of the increasing linguistic heterogeneity of their classes and to accompany them on their way towards an increasingly inclusive and participatory plurilingual didactic practice. COMPASS is aimed at teachers of all subjects: every subject, in fact, has a language dimension, and teachers of non-linguistic subjects are also faced with the challenges posed by the increasing linguistic diversity of their classes.

The teaching teams involved in the COMPASS initiative will be accompanied for two school years starting in autumn 2021. This accompaniment will consist of a series of workshops and opportunities for reflection and exchange, partly in person and partly online. The meetings will be supported by the use of an online platform on which supplementary material will be provided and through which teachers will be able to communicate and collaborate asynchronously. All meetings will have a practical component and will therefore provide teachers with the necessary tools not only to manage linguistic diversity in the classroom, but also to make it an asset and an opportunity for growth for all pupils.

The COMPASS initiative is also a research initiative. The SMS 2.0 team will thus collect data on the effectiveness of the activities promoted within COMPASS, e.g. through questionnaires and interviews with the participants, with the aim of investigating their effectiveness and sustainability in the medium to long term.