Skip to main content

Promoting the take-up of languages and student mobility

Mother Tongue Other Tongue Celebration Event

Home >> News >> Mother Tongue Other Tongue Celebration Event
Region: 
East of England

Wow, they were fantastic!!!

On Tuesday 13th December a record number of students, together with their families and teachers descended on Routes into Languages East, in our new home at Cambridge University.

The Mother Tongue Other Tongue project (originally devised by staff at the Faculty of Humanities, Languages and Social Science at Manchester Metropolitan University and Routes into Languages North West. Piloted in 2012, it has been adopted as a Laureate Education Project and shared with regions across the country) has grown and grown each year. This year of the hundreds of entries submitted to teachers, 64 school winners  (Year 7 - Year 12) from 13 schools were submitted to Routes into Languages East for the final judging. All the shortlisted poems were included in the printed Anthology, which each student was given as a prize (more copies are available here at £5 per copy - email ss2431@cam.ac.uk to request a copy).

The competition comprises 2 categories:

  • Mother Tongue – pupils whose first language is not English, or who speak another language at home, are encouraged to submit a poem or song in their Mother Tongue. This can be an original or a ‘remembered’ piece.
    It can be written in any language, except English. Entries will be judged on a short paragraph in which pupils will explain the piece and its significance to them.

  • Other Tongue – pupils learning another language in school are encouraged to get creative with their Other Tongue and submit an original poem for the competition. 

There was a huge wealth of wonderful poetry submitted this year and our panel of judges (consisting of language and poetry experts) often found it very difficult to select the winners. So difficult, in fact, that the original plan of a winner per key stage was abandoned and winners and highly commended prizes were awarded for each year group submitted:

1. MOTHER TONGUE

 

Year 7

 

 

 

1.

Saadia Joomun

Creole

Shoeburyness High School

HC

2.

Vlad Puntusov

Russian

St Ivo School

Winner

 

Year 8

 

 

 

3.

Rosanna Poll

Dutch

Comberton Village College

Winner

 

Year 9

 

 

 

4.

Pauline Przywara

German

Parkside

HC

5.

Denis Dorohoi

Romanian

King Edward VI School

HC

6.

Zeena Hadi

Arabic

Longsands Academy

Winner

 

Year 10

 

 

 

7.

Jiao Lin Chen

Chinese

Ely College

Winner

 

Year 12

 

 

 

8.

Jingqing Yu

Chinese

Ely College

Winner

 

2. OTHER TONGUE

 

Year 7

 

 

 

9.

Gabe Croft

German

St Ivo School

HC

10.

Izabela Romejko

Spanish

The Voyager Academy

HC

11.

Grace Futter

French

Norwich School

Winner

 

Year 8

 

 

 

12.

Mia Heffelfinger

French

Parkside

HC

13.

Dan Spinks

Spanish

Newmarket Academy

HC

14.

Dusty Morrison

French

Parkside

HC

15.

Ethan Ward

German

St Ivo

Winner

 

Year 9

 

 

 

16.

Fenella Henderson Chia

French

Gresham’s  School

HC

17.

Kai Laurence

German

St Ivo

HC

18.

Sophie Dubery

French

Longsands Academy

HC

19.

Tim Balitsky

French

Parkside

Winner

 

Year 10

 

 

 

20.

Zoe Postlethwaite

German

St Ivo

Winner

 

Year 12

 

 

 

21.

Claire Mordue

German

Parkside

HC

22.

Tom Scott

French

Gresham’s School

Winner

 

The 120 students, teachers and parents seemed to really enjoy visiting the the Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages at Cambridge University where the Celebration Event was held in the Little Hall lecture theatre. The programme included the awarding of prizes, with some poets performing their poems, as well as an amazing Poetry Slam, led by Slam Poetry UK Champion, Joelle Taylor (click on her name for a link to her website or here to see her performing her powerful poem, 'Last Poet Standing', one of the poems she performed at the Celebration Event), featuring young poets from a group of 14 Voyager Academy students from Peterborough, who had taken part in a workshop with Joelle on Language & Identity at the University in the afternoon. This was Joelle's second time headlining for Routes into Languages East and once again the students absolutely loved her!

The Celebration Event was great fun - well done to all the poets and their teachers!