Europe celebrates its Day of Languages

The Commission celebrates this year's European Day of Languages, 26 September, for almost a week. The centrepiece will be a conference on Early Language Learning. There will also be the inauguration of the Business Platform on Multilingualism, the premiere of a video "Interpréter pour l'Europe" on the theme of "French, a rare language?", a conference on "How technology can help translators", a panel debate on Multilingualism. There will also be multilingual activities aimed specifically at children in Brussels.

On 24-25 September, in Brussels : A conference on Early Language Learning, with a speech by Commissioner Orban. The European Commission launches the campaign called “Piccolingo”, addressing the parents of two to six year old children, focusing on the potential benefits for children and how parents can find information and support.

The target audience of the conference will be experts, authorities working in this field and delegates from relevant associations of stakeholders such as educators and parents. The main themes will be the state of the art of research on language acquisition in early childhood, existing good practice in early language learning and language learners with special needs.

The celebrations organized for this week will also include the following:

Tuesday 22, Brussels : The inauguration of the Business Platform for Multilingualism, where public debate will be encouraged. The platform creates a forum for exchange of best practices for the business community, involving social partners, trade organisations, chambers of commerce, trade promotion organisations, schools and education authorities.

Wednesday 23, Paris : The Commission's Directorate General for interpretation, confronted with an expected penury of interpreters, has launched an awareness campaign, entitled "French, a rare language". It is noticeable already that there are relatively few applying for and succeeding in competitions to become interpreters.

The premiere of the video "Interpréter pour l'Europe", aimed at encouraging young French speakers to study interpretation will be shown in the DG COMM Representation from 11h00  to 12h30, 288, boulevard Saint-Germain.

Thursday 24, Luxembourg : A conference-debate entitled "How technology can help translators" on how different media deal with publishing multilingual news material, to be held in the Jean Monnet Building in Luxembourg (Room M6) at 11h00.

Friday 25, Brussels: A Press Conference with Commissioner Orban at 12:30, followed by a Technical Briefing on Early Language Learning and a demonstration of a computer game on languages called LinguaGo , available on the EuropaGO website.

There will also be a debate on multilingualism in the media, where representatives of international TV channels, European-wide radio networks and multilingual websites will present how they deal with multilingual content and journalism in many languages.

Throughout the day in Place Jourdan, Brussels :, Activities aimed at children, with the presence of Commissioner Orban. The theme will be "Story telling in different languages" with music and dance by the Yehudi Menuhin Foundation and a multilingual comic strip workshop. There will be games, magic tricks and musical entertainment for visitors.

Europe's commitment to multilingualism and translation services for the future is clear: recently, it has launched the EMT Network (European Master in Translation), which aims to encourage the exchange of teaching methods and experiences in training in translation.