International Mother Language Day

International Mother Lanugage Day 2020 logoThere are about 6,500 languages in the world, and 200 languages spoken in Manchester at any one time.

Celebrate the rich diversity of your words for International Mother Language Day in Manchester from 20-22 February with free events taking place across the city.

Dig deep into the meaning of your favourite poems; move your body to the language of Indian rhythm; experience live performances of Bangla poems and dance and work out how to say ‘Our Kid’ in Kurdish.

Activities include fun, family-friendly crafts and performances, discussions and workshops across Manchester – Britain’s city of languages, where half of all adults and 4 in 10 young people in the city are multilingual.

“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”

Nelson Mandela

And we are already planning International Mother Language Day for 2021! Do you or your group have a suggestion for an event or want to put one on? If so, please contact us by email.
 

Manchester: a UNESCO City of Literature

 

International Mother Language Day 2020 events

Chinese visitors to Elizabeth Gaskell's house

North, south, east and west: International Gaskell

Elizabeth Gaskell’s House, 20 February 2020

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Two boys playing with an interactive picture on an easel

How do you say ‘our kid’ in Kurdish?  And other questions

Multilingual Manchester at Manchester Museum, 20 February 2020

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Adults lead a drum roots session at the forum library.

Forum Library International Mother Language Day celebration

Forum Library, 21 February 2020

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Children playing in tents supervised by adults

Home is our happy place

North City Library, 21 February 2020

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Children and adults enjoying crafts around a table

Longsight Library International Mother Language Day celebration

Longsight Library, 21 February 2020

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A young boy reading from a piece of paper - photograph by Daniel Morrell

Multi language Mushaira

Longsight Library, 21 February 2020

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An international mother language celebration event - a women painting a girl's face

International Mother Language Day celebration at Manchester Central Library

Manchester Central Library, 21 February 2020

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Young people under a Jodrell Bank astronomy umbrella

Jodrell juniors celebrate International Mother Language Day

Pakistani Community Centre, 21 February 2020

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A poetry exchange event - three people sharing poetry

The Poetry Exchange in association with Manchester Poetry Library

Manchester Central Library, 21 and 22 February 2020 – FULLY BOOKED

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Photograph of the PowerHouse Library

Dual language storytimes

Powerhouse Library, 3, 10, 17 and 24 February 2020

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Mother Tongue Other Tongue poetry competition

 

Are you in Years 4 – 13 and feeling creative?

Take part in the Mother Tongue Other Tongue poetry competition – free to enter poetry competition for Years 4 – 13.

Youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner and education activist, Malala Yousafzai, again officially endorses this year’s Mother Tongue Other Tongue Competition.

This national multilingual poetry competition has already inspired over 30,000 pupils and aims to celebrate cultural diversity and the many languages currently spoken in schools across the UK.

Mother Tongue Other Tongue is a free to enter competition open to pupils aged between 8 and 18. Mother Tongue asks pupils, who do not have English as a first language, to write about a creative poem or song in their native language, while Other Tongue asks pupils to create an original poem in a second language they are learning at school (French, German, Spanish, Italian, Arabic, Urdu and Mandarin).

Closing date: Friday 15 May 2020.