A Look Back: World Languages Day 2007

student with Javanese Dancers

students with Bucky

Anime and Manga

Using French in the Professional World

students relax after WLD

Using French in the Professional World

On April 19, 2007, around 700 students and teachers from 25 Wisconsin high schools came to World Languages Day to attend a day of workshops on languages and cultures.  Participants got a taste of what it’s like to be a UW-Madison student, with each participant attending sessions given by UW-Madison faculty, staff and students according to a personalized schedule. 

48 sessions were held throughout the day with titles ranging from “Ancient Tibetan Chants” to “Yoruba Greetings”.  Sessions highlighted the university's rich offerings in languages and cultures. In many cases, presenters looked at language through a cultural lens: Swahili clothing, Filipino hip-hop music, food of Scandinavia, Russian fairy tales, French film, to name a few topics. In other sessions, basics of a language were taught, with sessions on Vietnamese, Urdu, Japanese, Quichua, and Hmong, to name a few.

WLD participants were welcomed by keynote speakers Gilles Bousquet, Dean of International Studies, Director of the International Institute, and Professor of French; and Magdalena Hauner, Associate Dean of the Humanities in Letters & Science and Professor of Swahili. 

Lunchtime entertainment was provided by members of the UW Band and by Bucky Badger.  The band offered rousing renditions of music played at UW athletic events, while Bucky mingled and charmed the crowd.

This year, teachers could choose among the sessions attended by students or from among sessions particularly designed for the educator.  “Bring the World Home” offered a way that teachers might incorporate information from WLD into curricula at their schools. 

Concerts by Atimevu Drum and Dance, playing music of West Africa, and PoongMool! Korean Folk Drummers, offered a relaxing, and sometimes exciting, close to a rich and interesting day. 

We look forward to World Languages Day 2008!

World Language Day is a program of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Language Institute. It is made possible with the generous support from the Anonymous Fund; The Evjue Foundation; the Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC) and the following UW-Madison Area Studies Programs: African Studies; Center for East Asian Studies; Center for European Studies, Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia; Center for South Asia; Global Studies; and Latin American, Caribbean and Iberian Studies.

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Students and Teachers Share Their Comments about World Languages Day 2007

I just want to say Thank You to you and all of your staff and
helpers for a GREAT World Languages Day!  This was our first time and everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves and learned many new things. My students all wanted to share with their classmates upon their return to our school.
--Teacher

I enjoyed seeing the diversity of languages across the world and learning to read Latin from an established professor.
--Student

We all had a great time at WLD.  My students came away with renewed energy to keep on studying, with lots of food for thought for the future.  It was quite an exceptional experience for many of them, partly due to finding themselves among other same age peers who share their interests and concerns.
--Teacher

I really liked how well prepared the speakers were and the information they presented.
--Student

What did I like best about WLD? The chance to learn about cultures I knew nothing about. Something more than the most common languages.
--Student

I enjoy seeing some of the reactions of my students to new ideas and languages
--Teacher

WLD participants relaxing

UW Band at lunch

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World Languages Day 2013 was funded in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Humanities Council, with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Wisconsin Humanities Council supports and creates programs that use history, culture, and discussion to strengthen community life for everyone in Wisconsin.

 

 

 

World Languages Day is a program of the UW-Madison Language Institute
Robert Howell, Director

 

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