01 Oct 2022

Fantastique! Kilkenny school children get to grips with new language initiative

A means for raising awareness among pupils of the range of languages used by their peers


Third class pupils from St Canice’s Co Ed NS

Over 75 third class pupils from St Canice’s Co Ed NS are taking part in the new Primary Language Sampler starting in February. 

The sampler module is a means for raising awareness among pupils of the range of languages used by their peers, in their schools and community.

Over 500 schools nationwide are taking part and offering modules in a range of modern foreign languages and Irish Sign Language. The module will introduce the pupils to French and be taught over a six-week period during the normal school timetable.

Tutor, Gemma Kelly, a teacher of French in a secondary school in Dublin for many years, is delighted to be involved in sharing her language and experience with the pupils.

Maria Comerford, Principal at St Canice’s School says: “I appreciate the importance of languages as a life skill, an opportunity for the pupils to think in a different way and build opportunities for the future. With more than 20 different languages being used by the pupils at our school, this module really helps to build awareness and celebrate the diversity within the school and community.”

The school chose French for this module, as it is a language taught in all local secondary schools, and they feel it will give the children an introduction to a widely spoken language abroad.

The module is being rolled out over three terms, with the support of Languages Connect and PPLI (Post-Primary Languages Ireland), a unit of the Department of Education. A suite of resources has been produced including lesson plans for teachers and tutors and ‘Language Passports’ for all participating pupils to show their family and friends.

Packs have been sent to participating schools to help support both the teaching and learning, but also awareness raising objectives of the module.

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