26th September marks the European Day of Languages, an event which has been celebrated every year since 2001 by the Council of Europe and European Commission.
The day is designed to celebrate and promote linguistic and cultural diversity across Europe, a continent which is home to 24 official languages, but in which over 200 languages are actually spoken!
The European Centre for Modern Languages (Council of Europe) have put together some fantastic resources for the occasion, which can be used in the classroom, at home, or just for personal enjoyment! These range from posters to challenges to jokes and quotes. You can have a look for yourself here.
We particularly love these posters which show some amazing facts about languages in Europe and across the world! They are also available in various languages at the link above.
What will you do to celebrate European Day of Languages 2022? You could:
Watch a foreign-language film (with subtitles)
Read a book or article in a foreign language or in translation
Learn a few phrases of a new language
Send a message to a friend in another language and see how they respond!
Try/cook some food from another culture that has always intrigued you
Have a look at the resources we’ve linked to above!
The Prismatic Jane Eyre Schools Project (2021–2022) has now come to a close. This was an AHRC-funded joint project between the University of Oxford and the Stephen Spender Trust.
On 30 September 2021 — International Translation Day — the nationwide competition was launched. Entrants were asked to compose a poem in a language other than English inspired by a selected passage from Jane Eyre. The competition accepted submissions in any language, and 136 entries were received in 26 languages — including Sindarin, a form of Elvish devised by J. R. R. Tolkien.
Up to 100 entries to the competition have been included in an anthology, which will be published online and in print in September 2022.
The Project drew on translation as an educational tool to explore how Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel has been translated since its publication in 1847 and how its plots and themes can be used as a springboard for new creative works. It comprised of three core activities: a series of translation workshops; a nation-wide translation competition (as mentioned above); and a bank of resources for teachers and pupils.
The bank of resources aims to allow more young people to enjoy creative translation activities based on Jane Eyre. Initially developed to support entries to the competition, these resources now provide a lasting legacy for the Project.
Three types of resources are available:
A handout that outlines an approach to creating a poem from a passage of prose (all languages)
PowerPoint workshops for teachers to deliver in school with accompanying worksheets (Arabic, French, Polish, Spanish)
The Project’s resources are available here and here. To accompany these resources, we’ve created a short video explaining what creative translation is, and why it’s important. The video is available to view below.
A blog for students and teachers of Years 11 to 13, and anyone else with an interest in Modern Foreign Languages and Cultures, written by the staff and students of Oxford University. Updated every Wednesday!
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