2nd July 2015
Writing: Tom Spencer (Year 12)
In this rapidly globalising world, foreign language skills have never been of more relevance to today's increasingly competitive, global employment market. Yet while learning a language may bump up a salary in the long term, the process of acquiring this skill is also a deeply rewarding, intellectually stimulating experience, allowing a student to fully immerse themselves in a foreign culture.
It was this passion at the earliest stage of education that the Building Young Linguists Program sought to inspire within primary school students. With the help of Year 12 Dr Challoner's French and German students leading a series of miniature lessons, the program taught children from a variety of schools across the local area basic words and phrases in the target language. These short, snappy lessons consisted of games, props and small competitions, all designed to be as interactive and as fun for the students as possible.
Despite the challenge of teaching for the very first time, all of us throughly enjoyed the experience in seeing a group of children so engaged in a subject that many of us feel passionately about. This was perhaps heightened by the fact that when leading sessions at Chalfont St Peter Church of England School, the boys were teaching children their first ever words in German. A handful of us enjoyed participating in this program so much, that some are now even considering a career in teaching.
The most important aspect of this program, however, was instilling a restless passion and desire for knowledge, a vital aspect of any student’s early learning experience, regardless of their future choices. To be able to have participated in this process – in the smallest possible way – was an incredibly rewarding feeling for all involved, and we would love to do the same again next year. Thanks go to Miss Whittle for organising this.