Primary school pupils celebrated European Day of languages and invited performance poet Matt Goodfellow to join them.

Five different European countries were studied at Ashton Hayes Primary School – Italy, Holland, Spain, Greece and Germany – and children learned words and phrases in those languages as well as cooking, fact-finding, craft and learning about the different cultures.

Modern foreign languages leader Julia Pond said: “It is so important that children have early and continued experiences of different languages and cultures. Only 30% of the UK are able to hold a conversation in a language other than their own, which is why children learn French from Reception at Ashton Hayes.”

Poet Matt Goodfellow working with a group of Year 4 and 5 children at Ashton Hayes Primary School

The school has also secured a grant from Erasmus+ in order to send staff to France on an Immersion Course to enhance their knowledge of French language and bring back ideas and information about French culture into the classroom.

The following day, the school invited internationally published poet and primary school teacher Matt Goodfellow to work with children on performance poetry.

After interactive morning performances, the children were treated to workshop sessions in class-sized groups, developing their confidence and ability to perform poetry and learning the techniques needed to create successful performances.

Headteacher Matthew Hover said: “We are passionate about raising reading and writing standards in our school in a way that will engage and inspire our pupils. Inviting Matt in to work with the children does just that and further raises the profile of poetry and performance poetry.”