Budding linguist says thank you, gracias and Aakun as he receives Bronze medal at Junior Language Challenge

Over the past year, budding linguists from St George's Junior School have been competing in the Junior Language Challenge against other children from schools all over the world.

In November the Junior Language Challenge came to an end with a magnificently multi-lingual contest at London's Olympia.

Year 6 pupil, Yuvan, who competed at every stage of the tournament, has written about his journey through the challenge. 

"Back in April, many Junior School Georgians signed up for the first round of the Junior Language Challenge, which was Spanish. The top 8 went through to the second round, to compete in Khmer (the official language of Cambodia), which started in June. We then had 9 weeks to practise for the live semi finals in September. After 2 heats and a final round, I discovered that I had made it to the Junior Language Challenge National Finals in London. I was over the moon! 

The third and final language we had to learn this year, was Kinyarwanda (the official language of Rwanda) which I had 5 weeks to learn before the finals in Olympia, Kensington. In each language there was about 250 words and phrases in 10 different categories. Each of the games had strict time limits.

On the 9 November I went to Olympia with my dad and was met by Mr Burchill, Curriculum Leader of French at the Junior School. The top 32 linguists from across the nation had assembled and the three heats were about to begin. To my delight, I came first in my heat and 2nd overall at the group stages, so was through to the grand finale! 

In this next stage I came 4th out of 16, but it was so close between the top 4 - with one point separating all of us - that we had a tiebreaker between the four of us, and I managed to finish above my rival and win 3rd place at the death. It was amazing! 

The most important thing, however, was that the Junior Language Challenge managed to raise over £12,000 pounds for children in Africa.

Having had a fantastic time throughout this whole competition, I would strongly recommend that all budding linguists at St George's participate next year and help raise even more money for children in Africa. This might just be your opportunity to shine."

Thank you, Gracias, Aakun & Murakoze.

(The scoreboard that shows just how close the final 4 were)

(This diagram gives an idea of what Yuvan had to learn about throughout the challenge)

9 November 2018

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