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Local schools celebrate language and culture at UCLan

29 September 2015

Lyndsey Boardman

Annual European Day of Languages event attracts more than 200 pupils

Pupils from across the region have come together to celebrate languages and cultures from around the world as part of the University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) European Day of Languages event.

More than 200 Years 10 and 11 schoolchildren and sixth form college students from Lancashire and Greater Manchester came together for the University’s annual event which has continued to grow in popularity. It encourages young people to take taster lessons in a variety of foreign languages and sample dishes from around the globe cooked by UCLan’s international students from countries including China, France, Italy, the Czech Republic, Germany and Japan.

In addition, the visitors were able to hear first-hand of what it is like to study abroad from UCLan students fresh from their placement year as well as learning about UCLan’s Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) course.

Alex Nairne, a 14-year-old pupil at Hodgson Academy in Poulton-Le-Fylde, commented: “I’ve really enjoyed the whole experience, particularly hearing from the students who have lived and studied abroad. It’s been a very insightful day.”

“Events such as this really make the students realise what benefits learning a foreign language can bring and how much it can broaden their horizons.”

Penwortham Girls’ High School pupil Erin McLernon, 14, said the visit had made her think about studying a foreign language at higher education level. “It’s definitely something I would consider. The Chinese and Korean taster sessions were the most difficult but also the most interesting.”

Sandra Waterhouse teaches French and German at Penwortham Girls’ High School. She said: “This is the first year we’ve attended UCLan’s European Day of Languages celebration and everyone has really enjoyed it. Events such as this really make the students realise what benefits learning a foreign language can bring and how much it can broaden their horizons.”

Senior Lecturer from the School of Journalism, Language and Communication, Silke Engelbart, organised the celebration. She commented: “The schools that come back each year say their pupils really engage with the event. We want to inspire these young people to embrace other cultures and languages and see the many opportunities that learning a foreign language can bring.”