There are approximately 6900 languages in the world today. That’s right – six thousand, nine hundred! That’s A LOT of different languages! How many of them can you speak?
We all learn a language when we are born. That’s our ‘mother language’ – we pick it up from our family and friends, and learn it without too much effort. Some New Zealanders speak English as their mother language, some speak te reo Māori or New Zealand Sign Language, and others speak one of those thousands of other languages. To quote that well-known song, Aotearoa New Zealand really is a great big melting pot of cultures!
UNESCO’s International Mother Language Day (21 February 2017) is a chance to celebrate the different languages we all speak, and to encourage people to read, learn, and share ideas in their native language.
Here at Christchurch City Libraries we have heaps of resources you can read in your mother language – books, newspapers, magazines, online resources, you choose! Our World Languages collections have books and magazines in languages from Afrikaans to Vietnamese.
Check these resources out, and maybe by next year you’ll be able to say you speak one more language than you do now!