GDST Languages community comes together

Today over 120 Year 7 to 10 students from across GDST schools gathered at Sydenham High School for the annual Modern Foreign Languages Festival. The event was held during Language week and celebrated languages with collaborative and competitive activities.

Simon Piesse, our Trust Consultant Teacher for Modern Foreign Languages (MFL), selected this year’s theme of ‘the Joy of Reading’, as the event also coincided with World Book Day. The event was focused on celebrating the joy of reading in a foreign language and the benefits this brings to the reader and society.

“When you read in another language, you open one box, which opens a million more!” – exclaimed Jorge Garriz as he opened our uplifting GDST Festival of Languages 2024.

The day began with keynote speaker, Jorge Garriz is the founder of Romancero books, Spanish language books and poetry, who shared his love for Spanish and how he promotes Spanish literature in England and helps Hispanic authors to get their work translated in English. The pupils then participated in various activities, from spelling bee competitions to poem recitals and literary texts in French, German, Italian and Spanish. It was truly a fun and engaging way to incorporate foreign languages into the mix.

One student commented: “As a result of the festival, I have been encouraged to learn beyond the classroom and embrace my chosen language’s culture.”

Many girls explained that the festival had built their confidence and enthusiasm for languages and deepened their appreciation of the subject area. Merci! Danke! Grazie! Gracias! – to all the talented pupils from across our family of schools who joined us and congratulations to Bromley High School, overall winners.

Encouraging languages at GDST schools

We nurture and encourage our students to learn languages. The GDST MFL Festival is one of many Trust-wide events that bring together students and staff from across our family of 25 schools. Our students value the opportunity to meet pupils from other schools, work as a team with new people, and grow their interest and passion for life-long learning.