We are very lucky to have such a diversity of languages in Scoil Bhríde (Cailíní). Such a rich, linguistic environment , helps to develop the children’s awareness of language and to foster interest and curiosity, not only in their own language, but also in the language of others.
Interestingly, Professor David Little, Professor Emeritus of Trinity College, Dublin, has written that ‘…languages should be taught in relation to one another rather than in isolation.’ (Little, 2008). This is borne out in the New Language Curriculum, being introduced to all Primary schools. It is well recognised and established that the linguistic concepts and skills, acquired in one language, are readily transferred to another.
So we would ask that all parents encourage their daughter to look for the connections between their home language and any other languages they may be familiar with or that are being taught in school. We would also encourage you to read to your daughter in her own language and to explain any area she may be having difficulty with in school, in this language, so that connections can be made and understanding enhanced.
Your daughter’s ability to converse in her own home language, is so important on many levels. Not only will it enable her to communicate and connect with her wider family community but it is equally important to remember, that her own language is an integral part of her cultural heritage and of who she is. It must therefore be cultivated and cherished and passed on as a precious family gift, from generation to generation.