City Library launches modern languages children’s section

Galway City Library will launch a new section in its children’s Library devoted to a collection of books in French, Spanish, German and Italian.

The new section will be launched in the library tomorrow at 11am by the Mayor of Galway Declan Mc Donnell. It will coincide with European Day of Languages which is also celebrated annually on September 26.

The launch is the culmination of several months of collaboration of Aoife Winston, regional co-ordinator with the Modern Languages in Primary Schools Initiative (MLPSI ), senior executive librarian Bernie Kelly and County Librarian Pat Mc Mahon.

The number of schools participating in the MLPSI in Galway has greatly increased in recent years and subsequently so has the demand for storybooks, songs, and rhymes in the four target languages taught; French, German, Spanish, and Italian.

Schools participating in the initiative receive 90 minutes’ tuition in a modern language each week and children are encouraged not only to learn and communicate in a new language, but also to gain an appreciation and a love of language learning in general.

Research on the impact of children’s participation in the MLPSI has been extremely positive with 98 per cent of teachers involved in the programme saying that they believe their pupils benefit greatly from this opportunity to learn another language.

Similarly high percentages of teachers felt they too had benefited greatly personally from their involvement. Recent research outlined that principals saw noticeable improvements in pupils’ self-esteem, attitude, and enjoyment of the learning process, as well as increased cultural and language awareness.

The mayoral launch of the new Modern Language section of the Children’s Library will be attended by children from Scoil an Linbh Íosa and St. Nicholas’ NS, the Claddagh, who are learning Spanish and French as part of the MLPSI.

The children will perform songs and will participate in language games and quizzes to showcase their knowledge and obvious enjoyment of language learning. They will be treated to a variety of Spanish tapas provided by JP Mc Mahon of Cava Spanish Restaurant and Tapas Bar.

For further information on the MLPSI visit www.mlpsi.ie

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