The Languages Learning Area staff team welcomes back students of Japanese, French and Italian to another year of learning how to communicate in another language. A special welcome to our Year 7 students, many of whom have never before learned the language they are now studying. At the recent High Achievers’ Assembly, seven of the top ten students had studied a Unit 3/4 Language in their VCE program. It is amazing to think that they too were once Year 7 students beginning secondary school with little or no knowledge of their chosen languages. We also want to commend those students who do a language outside of school, such as Greek or Chinese.
Italian Language Assistant
I am delighted to announce that OLMC will be welcoming an Italian Language Assistant, Ludovica, to join the Languages Learning Area team this year. She will arrive from Italy at the beginning of Term 2 and will be with us until the end of the year, as part of the Co.As.It. Italian Language Assistants Program. Ludovica will work with Italian students at all year levels, under the guidance of the Italian teaching staff.
How to increase students’ exposure to the language and culture studied
Parents often ask language teachers what additional activities their children could be doing outside of the classroom to improve their knowledge of the language. This is a great question to ask! There are so many enjoyable ways to increase exposure to the target language and culture. Here are just a few ideas (click on the links to find out more and note that not all activities listed below will be suitable for all age groups):
- Look at the Museo Italiano collection on Italian post-war migration
- Pay a visit to your favourite gelato shop such as Lavezzi and Pidapipo on Lygon St
- The Italian Film Festival (September/October)
- Follow some Instagrammers for language learning such as @italianonextdoor and @improveyouritalian or fun ones such as @matilde_vaccar and @nonnasilviofficial
- Annual Japan Festival at Box Hill Town Hall (21 May)
- Annual Japanese Film festival (December)
- The Japanese garden at Melbourne Zoo
- Visit a Japanese restaurant
- Alliance Française French Film Festival (March/April)
- Bastille Day French Festival Melbourne (July)
- Explore French Impressionism at the Lume Melbourne
- Enjoy a crêpe or a galette from a French crêperie such as Roule Galette in the city, or a French pastry from Laurent.
In addition, the Learning Commons has some great collections of Japanese, French and Italian books for students to borrow. Students can access Clickview from their school laptops to view movies in the target language. SBS and Netflix also have a range of movies and TV series in French, Italian and Japanese. Video clips of the latest pop songs in the various languages are available on Youtube. Then there are language learning websites such as Duolingo, Quizlet and Conjuguemos that can help students improve their language acquisition. For more ideas, students are encouraged to chat to their language teachers.