Thursday, 17 April 2008

"Language teachers of the world!"

Inspired by several things & (more specifically) people - including the work being done by Jess McCulloch, Don Osborn and the International Year of Languages itself - I have decided it is time for me to try to contribute to the theme that "Languages matter!".

This all began with the creation of an ICT assignment for Year 9 Japanese. In trying to come up with something original and something related to UNESCO's Year of Languages, I decided to give them a scenario:

Japanese has become an endangered language. The number of people speaking it in the world has rapidly declined and it is in danger of becoming an extinct language (like many of our own country's Aboriginal languages). Your task is to help save the language.

In order to complete the above students were given various tasks, including making a movie or slide show depicting Japanese language and culture and what it means to them. However, it is the last part of their project(slightly adapted) which I would now like to assign to language teachers and any other bilinguals out there. The idea is to share our experiences with students to encourage them to persevere with their language learning.

As part of your task to promote the learning of language, you are to use voicethread to give your opinion on how learning language is important to you. Why should we study language? How can language learning help us to grow personally and where has learning a language taken us?

This is an invitation for all language teachers around the world to reflect and share with the students of the world why we continued with learning languages and what we have discovered on our language learning journey. I have created a wikispace entitled "Our Language Journey" and a voicethread for us to do this. It will take me a day or so to add my journey but I invite anyone interested in language - and encouraging our students to learn languages - to participate.

ありがとう、merci, danke ...


Jess said...

Hey Andrew!
What a great post and a great idea. I'd love to be involved. I'll check out the wikispace and the voicethread over the next day or so. I'll be in touch.

Don said...

Hi Andrew, I'm just catching up belatedly with your blog post (thanks for the mention!) and project. I've added the blog entry on a list of blogs that mention the International Year of Languages. I also posted a link to your Wikispace page on the Facebook group for IYL in the hopes that that helps get it more attention. All the best!