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Languages in a nutshell – family and intergenerational language learning

3 December 2018 (SCILT)

Pupils and parents from three primary schools in North Ayrshire joined a group of senior citizens at the Harbour Arts Centre in Irvine on 15 November 2018 to celebrate family and intergenerational language learning. The event opened with keynotes from Education Scotland and The National Parent Forum of Scotland (NPFS), and marked the launch of the new “Languages in a Nutshell” leaflet, which has been produced by NPFS in partnership with SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages.

Pupils and parents/carers from Springside and Loudoun Montgomery Primaries in Irvine and St Winning’s Primary in Kilwinning, together with a group of senior citizens who have worked with St Winning’s pupils to learn Spanish, enjoyed a programme of interactive workshops supporting family and intergenerational language learning.  The event was organised by North Ayrshire Council in partnership with SCILT and NPFS.

“Languages in a Nutshell” is one in a series of Nutshell leaflets produced by NPFS. Aimed at parents and carers, this leaflet explains how the Scottish Government’s 1+2 Approach to language learning will be put into practice and why learning other languages is so important.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “My congratulations to The National Parent Forum of Scotland and Scotland's National Centre for Languages on the launch of this new ‘Languages in a Nutshell’ leaflet, focusing on the 1+2 language policy and the significance of language learning.

“Languages open up a world of opportunities to young people; having the ability to communicate with others is key to individual future success and in our increasingly globalised economy. That is why the Scottish Government is committed to ensuring that all young people receive their full entitlement to learning two additional languages between primary one and their third year of secondary school.”

Fhiona Mackay, Director of SCILT said: “All parents and carers want the best for their child.  Language learning contributes to building stronger, more cohesive communities in which our children can flourish.  It offers youngsters a new way of thinking and exploring the world around them and helps lay the important building bricks that will support their learning throughout their life.”

Angela Noble, North Ayrshire Council said: “North Ayrshire is delighted to host the launch of ‘Languages in a Nutshell’. Family learning is at the heart of everything we do and parental engagement in children's learning makes a difference.”

Scottish Government's ambition is to expand and improve language learning by 2021 so that young people are equipped with the skills and competencies they need in an increasingly globalised world. From 2021, every child will be entitled to learn a first additional language from P1 and a second by P5. This entitlement continues until the end of S3. This ambition contributes significantly to the Scottish Attainment Challenge agenda.

Scottish Government’s National Improvement Framework states that parental and family engagement is a key factor in helping all children and young people achieve the highest standards whilst reducing inequity and closing the attainment gap.

Posted in: Family learning

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