“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” ~Nelson Mandela
Being OPEN-MINDED is about respecting the differences in others and listening to other people’s thoughts and ideas. This trait is one we are focusing on at West Hills this month. Feb 21st was International Mother Language Day, a day that celebrates over 7,000 languages spoken around the world. At West Hills, we make a point of celebrating the linguistic diversity in our own community. Check out the slides showing on our digital screens to help students learn about the 35+ languages spoken by West Hills families! If your home language is not represented there, please email email@example.com.
This week, Madame Potier’s French students learned with guest speaker Mathieu Lippé, who uses slam poetry to celebrate French language. At West Hills, Lippé facilitated a slam poetry program for our students, sponsored by the Centre de la Francophonie des Ameriques.
8th grader Marquis Hall shares, “I like how he used French but actually showed us visuals to understand him. And at the end he let us use our own French sentences to say what we love.”
How can you celebrate diverse languages and cultures at home, especially if your home language is English?
Rent a movie in another language that has subtitles in your home language.
Say “I love you” to your child in another language, perhaps your mother language or a language from your ancestry.
Read a book with your child that has some words from another language.
Ask your child to teach you some words in French, Spanish, or another language.
Remind your child that there is an International Fiction section in the West Hills library that includes books written in English that take place in or use words from other countries.
IB Teacher Leader, West Hills Middle School