- Languages Week highlights the benefits of language learning
- Video project examines the importance of language to Western Australians
With more than 240 languages and dialects spoken in Western Australia, there is good reason to celebrate Languages Week which runs from today (August 6) to August 12.
Languages Week aims to raise awareness of the benefits of language learning and highlight the linguistic diversity in our society.
Schools across the State will be holding activities during Languages Week, but everyone can use the opportunity to explore and celebrate language learning.
This year, the Office of Multicultural Interests (OMI) has partnered with the WA Museum to deliver the Four Words project, which explores the personal meaning languages have for 11 Western Australians who speak a language other than English at home. Some of the languages showcased include Noongar, Arabic and Auslan.
The inspiring videos will be showcased on public screens in Northbridge and Yagan Square throughout Languages Week, and are available on the OMI and WA Museum websites.
A learning resource for teachers and parents has also been developed to complement the videos, which details the languages spoken in WA and provides activities to make language learning fun and easy.
The State Library of Western Australia will showcase its multilingual and multicultural print and heritage collection, which is an invaluable resource for community language and modern language teachers. This collection is supported by the State Government through OMI's Community Languages Program.
To learn more about Languages Week and find out what events are happening, visit http://www.omi.wa.gov.au and http://www.museum.wa.gov.au
Comments attributed to Citizenship and Multicultural Interests Minister Paul Papalia:
"Language skills are essential in today's increasingly connected world.
"Language ability unlocks a wealth of career opportunities and increases WA's competitiveness at a global level.
"Language skills also allow us to be more connected as a community by improving understanding of the different cultures that make our diverse State so exciting.
"Western Australia's rich tapestry of languages means everyone has the opportunity to explore the option of learning a language."
Comments attributed to Culture and the Arts Minister David Templeman:
"Sharing language through the arts is one of the many ways Western Australians can find out about themselves, their identity, their heritage and their world.
"State organisations like the WA Museum, State Library and our theatres offer wonderful programs and experiences for people of all cultures and language groups to come together and share stories about our interconnected world.
"Language is a great connector that draws people together, builds communities and unites Western Australians with tourists from international destinations.
"Learning new words and phrases helps people to feel welcome and understand more about the people and cultures of our world."
Citizenship and Multicultural Interests Minister's office - 6552 5600
Culture and the Arts Minister's office - 6552 5400