A talk about the importance of language learning

On Friday 8 November, we were delighted to welcome Sonja from the University of Manchester who spoke to our Year 9 and 12 pupils about the importance of language learning. Pupils were surprised to learn that only 5% of the world’s population are native speakers of English, dispelling the myth that ‘everyone speaks English anyway’. She also emphasised the importance of language learning for businesses, who are looking for French, German and Spanish speakers in particular to develop their contacts abroad. She also highlighted that there is a whole variety of careers available to pupils and that they would not be restricted to teaching or translating. Pupils reflected on how language learning can open our minds to cultural differences, by looking at how the noise a bee makes is communicated in different languages. They also had the opportunity to ask questions and enjoyed finding out more about Sonja’s experiences as a native German speaker, living in Manchester.