image of a futuristic school

Our Future 2019: English exams competition

Success in an English exam could make a real difference to your future. Now it’s your turn to set the question. Our Future 2019 is the biggest English exams competition for school-age learners in Europe. 

Are you aged between 7-18 and can you imagine what your school will be like in the future? Can you show and tell us about your school in the future in a video? If the answer is yes, take part in this year’s Our Future competition.

Find out more below about Our Future 2019 including the theme of this year’s competition, how to enter, materials to download and tips for entering. 


For the second year, we are giving school-aged students and teachers in Europe a chance to work in a team and make their own English exam speaking question. Students and teachers can win fantastic prizes. The competition runs from 02 January 2019 to 30 April 2019. 

“[In this competition] it was very pleasant watching my students working, sharing their ideas and using the English language. And, of course, it was very satisfying watching them feel proud of themselves after finishing the project.” (Sofia Garyfalaki, English teacher Greece)


Work in a team of three to five and make your own English exam speaking question. The theme of this year’s competition centres on the question: What will your school be like in the future? You can draw a picture and record your group to tell us about your future school or you can make a video.

  • Submit your team’s entry as a video file.
  • Your team’s speaking question must be similar to one in your English exam.
  • You can include people, pictures, photos, music, animation or your own ideas.
  • Entries will be judged on content, creativity and presentation. 
  • Video entries must be between 30 seconds and 2 minutes in length.
  • Entries must be original work and not use any copyrighted material.


There are fantastic prizes for students and teachers. 

  • Students: Win a regional prize of a competition goody bag and a country prize from your local British Council examinations centre.
  • Teachers: Win a regional prize of a trip to the UK with entrance to the next IATEFL conference and a country prize from your local British Council  examinations centre.
  • Extra prizes for the most popular entry and the teacher with the most entries!
  • Certificate of participation for every student and teacher that takes part.


Our Future English exam competition is open to school-age students in Europe. There are two age categories. You can enter one of the categories.

  • Category 1 (7-12 years old)
  • Category 2 (13-18 years old)

Students and teachers wishing to participate must attend a school or institution that is a member of the British Council’s Addvantage member scheme. 

The following countries will take part in Our Future 2019: Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, France, Greece, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Spain. 


Teachers can use the online form to submit team entries between 02 January 2019 and 30 April 2019. Before entering the competition, please read the rules - or terms and conditions - for the competition. 

All the entries that meet the criteria will be shown on our competition video channel. Entries will be shortlisted and a panel of judges appointed by the British Council will choose one country winner and one runner-up for each age category. The country winners will then enter a regional final and judges will choose one regional winner for each category. Two special mentions for the most popular entry and the teacher with the most entries will also be awarded a prize. 

Download the competition flyerposter and web banner to tell students and teachers at your school about the competition. 

Have you got a question about the competition? Email us at 


You should prepare the content of your entry in relation to the competition theme. Show us all the English vocabulary and grammar that you know to talk about your school in the future. Your entry should include a question and an answer. The style should be similar to one in the Speaking paper of the English exam you are preparing for. For example: Pre A1 Starters, A1 Movers, A2 Flyers, A2 Key for Schools, B1 Preliminary for Schools, B2 First for Schools, C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency in Cambridge English Qualifications.

In this competition you can use your imagination and creativity. Any content, for example pictures or images, need to be original. Talk to your teacher and the other students in your group about your school in the future and share your ideas!

Remember that judges are also looking for presentation. Your entry needs to be a video file which your teacher will upload to the vimeo platform (see the terms and conditions for step-by-step instructions for uploading to vimeo). You can make a video or use pictures and an audio recording and make these into a video file. Test your recording or video to see if it is easy to see your task and hear your group talking. Make sure your group’s task is the right length (between 30 seconds and 2 minutes) before your teacher submits it. 

Download our teacher's pack for more examples and group work classroom activities for levels A1 to C2 to help students prepare for Speaking tests in their English exam and this competition. 


School-age learners and teachers in ten countries across Europe took part in this year’s competition. 

Find out this year’s regional winners, country winners and runners-up and special mention winners for the teacher with the most entries and the most popular entry.

Congratulations to all the winners, runners up and special mentions selected by a judging panel of Sophie Kopanos (British Council, LearnEnglish Exams tutor), Jenny Wilde (British Council, LearnEnglish Exams tutor), and Paul Doherty (British Council Exams Digital Manager Europe).

Well done to everyone that participated in viewing all the 165 entries on our vimeo channel and who ‘liked’ their favourite entry. There were over 20,000 plays and over 4,500 likes.

Teachers told us again this year how useful this competition was to help their students prepare for Cambridge English Qualifications. They also said how this international competition motivated their students across all levels from pre-A1 Starters all the way up to C2 Proficiency.

Coming soon we will share news of the prize giving and next year news of the winning teachers’ experiences of visiting the IATEFL conference taking place in Manchester in April 2020.

Meet the regional winners of Category 1, 7-12 year olds in Poland!   

Meet the regional winners of Category 2, 13-18 year olds in Romania!  

View the winning entries of the 2019 competition here!

Last year two teachers won the regional prize to visit the UK and attend the IATEFL conference which took place in Liverpool in April 2019.  

Sofia Garifalaki, the winning teacher in Greece, described the trip as ‘unforgettable’ and said: ‘It was a great pleasure to participate in such inspirational talks and be able to get in touch with people from all over the world with whom we share the love for teaching’. 

Yoganathan Sivatharshan, the winning teacher in France, told us: ‘I was particularly attracted and astonished by the virtual reality (VR) teacher training experience which demonstrated me the fact that a gigantic transformation in English Language teaching is going ahead. So, the IATEFL conference is a prime occasion to keep up with what's happening in the outside world’.

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