Earlier this week, Portsmouth High School was delighted to host ten visiting primary schools for its fifth Festival of Languages. The Festival was an opportunity for the Languages Department at the school to share its passion for languages and to celebrate some of the languages spoken by pupils in the school.
Senior School pupils joined specialist languages teachers in leading the sessions to teach a carousel of ten taster lessons ranging from Japanese, Korean and Portuguese to Russian, Italian and German.
According to research, people who speak at least one other language have 8% more earning power than those who only speak one language.
‘This event provides many opportunities,’ said Head of Languages, Miss Susie Humphreys. ‘Opportunities for our pupils to get a chance to share their love of languages, opportunities for other schools to hear different languages spoken and an opportunity to showcase the joy of languages around the world.’
The event was for local primary and junior school pupils in Years 5 and 6 and the morning was designed to ignite a love of languages and also to celebrate the rich diversity of languages spoken by pupils in schools across the county.
Research shows that the best age to start learning a language is seven and this can help the brain to grow and develop.
‘The Portsmouth High School girls have been inspirational and to have peers teaching peers is absolutely wonderful.’
The visitors had fun with a language themed treasure hunt around the school before taking part in a carousel of ten minute taster language lessons which were taught by senior girls and specialist language teachers from Portsmouth High School.
‘It has been so interesting to hear all the different languages being spoken,’ said Mrs Best, a teacher at St Jude’s Primary School. ‘The Portsmouth High School girls have been inspirational and to have peers teaching peers is absolutely wonderful.’
‘My day has been so much fun,’ said Minh Nguyen from Oakwood School. ‘It has made the day so much fun being taught by other girls.’
Lowena Hull, 14, from Portsmouth High School, was leading a taster lesson in Japanese. ‘It is a very logical language. I just love the way it sounds when spoken,’ she said.
It is thought that there are 7,000 different languages spoken around the world. More than half have no written form. All the visitors had a taste of a few of those at Portsmouth High School.