Languages are an essential part of education at ISP. "We recognize that international education requires exceptional language learning through which students are able to communicate effectively, develop their cognitive abilities, discover their own identity and share that of others." (International School of Paris, Strategic Plan, Guiding Statement 6).
Since 2009, the Primary School has organized an annual event to celebrate the many languages that our community speaks. It started as a Mother-tongue Day, but since many of our families have several mother tongues and also speak other languages fluently, the name evolved to Languages Day.
This has been a very successful and appreciated event, in which the parents have generously donated their time and energy, and organised various activities to introduce the languages they speak. This has highlighted the value of the students' home languages, as well as given everyone an opportunity to learn more about their peers' languages.
The event has grown over the years, and fitting everything on one day was becoming more and more challenging. This year the school decided to turn the day into a week, and spread the event over multiple days in late October. According to Cross Cultural Coordinator Marianne Freire the atmosphere was calmer and more organized with this arrangement. Students were able to concentrate and reflect better for each session, and this enhanced the learning that took place over the three days that we used this year. Also, the parents' schedules were less busy, allowing more flexibility in each session. It seems like the Languages Week is here to stay!
Our wonderfully engaged parents delivered approximately one hundred 15-minute-long sessions during the event. More than 70 parents participated in these sessions, introducing over 20 different languages through activities like interactive games, songs, learning numbers, exploring different writing systems and alphabets, stories, crafts, wordplays, sounds, vocabulary, jokes and much more.
A special thank you to all our parent volunteers, as well as to Cross Cultural Coordinator Marianne Freire for organizing this event.