Throughout February and March, over 200 Year 8 pupils visited the University through the ‘Routes into Languages’ initiative to participate in a series of cultural events aimed at broadening their horizons and showing languages in a real world setting.
Pupils were able to try out tai chi, calligraphy and language workshops as well as joining Aston students to celebrate Chinese New Year. The days were led by native speakers of countries as far and wide as Mexico, Guadeloupe, Congo and Austria and pupils learnt about languages in a global context.
Routes into Languages is a major national initiative aimed at increasing and widening participation in language study in the 14-19 age group. Aston’s School of Languages & Social Sciences is the lead institute of the West Midlands Regional Consortium and also actively participates in the National Network for Translation.
The language days enabled LSS to showcase the programme and Aston University to a number of distinguished guests from the Goethe Institut, DAAD, the Cervantes Institute and the Spanish and French Embassies.
There are more events and projects planned over the coming year to increase enthusiasm and participation in language learning. Watch this space!
Words by Kat Stevenson and Louise Russell