Lingua franca23 Mar 2011
In the Gymnasium schools in our state, students start learning a second foreign language (after English) in grade 6. The schools we looked at all offered a choice from Latin, French and Spanish. The public schools all required a choice upon enrollment in the 5th grade, over a year before the courses would actually begin.
In Christopher's private school, they don't need to choose until April 1 of their 5th grade year. After winter break, the students had a chance to try out all 3 languages for a couple of days to help them make their decision.
The result for Christopher is... he wants to learn all 3, Latin, French and Spanish, and preferably Russian as well, but that's not a choice. :-) So here we are one week before deadline, and we haven't made a decision yet.
Spanish will be offered as a 3rd language starting in 10th grade, so he can start that later. So now he's trying to decide between French and Latin, and he can't make up his mind. We'd prefer that he take a language that's spoken rather than most written, given his stutter, but he's not willing to let us decide for him.
I took a quick poll on Twitter the other night. The approximate counts were 8 for French, 5 for Latin (although a couple of votes seemed facetious), 2 for Spanish. One joke vote for German was not accepted. We'll let you know how it turns out.