Too many languages’ classes in La Tour?

By Eva Dubourg
November 5 th , 2018

La Tour has built an ambitious program promoting languages’ classes. Today,
everyone in La tour has the choice between 8 languages at different levels including bilingual
sections. This program is recognized in France and abroad, attracting more and more
students. But does this priority to languages jeopardize the other subjects?

This education is part of the global project of la Tour. Its purpose is not all about
being able to speak the language but also to become familiar with the culture. Celia a
student in 1er underlines that in the anglophone section she has the opportunity to learn
about American, English but also Canadian, Indian and Australian culture and literature. The
establishment project published in 2017 and translated from French to English, states that
“L’institut de la Tour offers at every student, with the help of the languages, an opening to
the world and to the others.” Exchanges and travels are another way to enlarge horizons.
Alix another student born 2002 went on a trip in Washington, she built a strong friendship
with her partner and see her every summer. For almost every language, there are classes
with different levels which allow every student to progress at his own level and rhythm.
Anna a native Spanish speaker can consolidate her level thanks to the just opened Spanish
bilingual section.

Generally speaking, students are thankful to be able to put in their curriculum that
they can speak many languages. However, it is a huge investment for them: the average
number of hours dedicated to three foreign languages in France is five hours and a half per
week, while in La Tour it is ten hours. Besides personal work is crucial to learn a language.
Marc Antoine in 1erS is learning Chinese as a third language and sadly admits that he has no
time to practice it. He even wonders if there is point continuing it. Learning different
languages at the same time can also be contra-productive. We asked Thomas to talk about

his experience. He was learning Italian and Spanish and mixed both of them. He had to stop
the Italian classes two years ago and is still confused
The importance given to languages could also reduce the weight of other subjects.
For instance, coding which could also be considered as a language is under developed in La
Tour while it is becoming more and more important in a Digital world.

Form young students to the global world implies an excellent knowledge of languages
and a real opening to other culture. The language program of la Tour is a perfect answer.
However, each one has to find a good equilibrium between all subjects.

All names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of students.

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