Conferencia Plenaria: “BE/CLIL: A Time of Opportunity”
Plenary Conference: “BE/CLIL: A Time of Opportunity”, by Prof. Richard Johnstone, (Professor Emeritus, University of Stirling – UK).
Presented by: Prof. Mª Elena Gómez Parra, Universidad de Córdoba (Spain).
It has been a great pleasure to give a plenary talk at each of the preceding three annual Córdoba conferences (2015-2017), and an equal pleasure to have been invited to speak at the forthcoming fourth in the series. I mentioned to the organisers that, if possible, I would prefer to give my talk at a fairly late stage in the conference, since this would allow me to try to accommodate some insights from the distinguished earlier speakers into my narrative. What exists at present therefore is a skeletal outline of the input that I have in mind, into which I will try to blend the aforementioned further insights arising during the conference. Since I have to leave early on the (final) Friday morning, the Thursday evening is perfect for the occasion. I think there is every good reason for thinking that with BE/CLIL we are entering a ‘Time of Opportunity’, hence the title of my talk, and indeed my talk will strike a positive tone. Of course, opportunities don’t grow on trees – they have to be created and grasped. As I discuss what the opportunities might be and how they might be created and grasped, my narrative will be organised round a mixture of questions of the following sorts: What …? Who …? How …? When …? Where …? Why …? and will draw on evidence from several countries and cultures. Achieving a good ‘emotional tone’ will be a leitmotif as I proceed. Sometimes, attempting to implement BE/CLIL can feel like ‘From Agony to Ecstasy and back!’, but fluctuation between these extremes can be disabling, and so, following a centuries-old Chinese philosophical tradition of valuing ’harmony’ and ’balance’, I will be trying to commend a philosophical pathway that follows ‘the Middle Road’.