Sometimes, it can be challenging when starting at a new school. Barriers of language might cause difficulty in understanding the school routines and with settling-in to school life. The Young Interpreter Scheme aims to teach existing students the tools and strategies needed to help new arrivals at our wonderful school.
At BIS HCMC we have a wide variety of languages, nationalities and cultures represented. This project will ensure that children’s home languages are recognised, celebrated and utilised appropriately in our multicultural environment. Knowing and speaking a different language is something for us to celebrate. The Young Interpreter Scheme will be another opportunity to celebrate our internationally-minded community.
The scheme was open to all students, regardless of nationality and languages spoken. Children who were interested had an opportunity to volunteer. 8 students from Year 2 were selected due to their positive characteristics which we look for in a Young Interpreter.
The selected children received four short training sessions from the help of members of the EAL department and wider school community. They developed their empathy skills and reflected on how it might feel to arrive at a new school without knowing the same language of instruction. The Young Interpreters learnt different strategies to help support new arrivals such as their ‘quick drawings’ or ‘communication fan’. For those who are multilingual, they are encouraged to translate and communicate in other languages. For those who only speak English, they are encouraged to be a kind, caring and respectful friend.
The Young Interpreters will begin supporting new Year 2 arrivals during the January orientation morning. We are very excited to see them get stuck-in with their new roles and look forward to seeing the positive impacts that this project will bring to the BIS HCMC community.
Mr Luke Neville/ EAL Assistant Leader