A group of Year 10 linguists took part in an amazing project with the University of Reading this week.

Designed to give them an insight into career prospects within the world of publishing and translation for linguists, the students were tasked with pitching a translation of a French children’s book to a panel of industry specialists.

To begin the day, students took part in a webinar, introducing them to the world of translation. The students quickly picked up the themes and messages of a children’s book called ‘L’ennemi’, analysing the differences between copies translated into American English, Italian and Spanish. They impressed the University professor with their insightful ideas and observations.

Then, the group visited the University campus, where they had the opportunity to meet representatives from the world of publishing and translation.

Working with students from other schools, they took on roles such as editors, marketeers and translators to put together a pitch. All of the students did a fantastic job at presenting their ideas to the industry panel, with Annabel and Clara forming part of the winning team ‘La gente contra la guerra’.

Most impressive was seeing all the students face a daunting task, but rising to the challenge and having a brilliant time!

This is what the students had to say about the day:

“Today was a really useful day out which was great for practising our presentation and communication skills as well as just delving deeper into our languages.”

“Personally, I really got a lot out of this trip. I’m really grateful for the opportunity to increase my confidence and collaborative skills with people I do not know. It certainly pushed me out of my comfort zone but in a way that by the end I realised I can network in a more confident manner than I ever thought so.”

“I think that I really loved getting involved in a task instead of just learning about it because I feel getting creative and involved really helps getting a sense of what the translating and publishing world is like. I learnt so much about translating books because initially I thought they just translated the book word for word but when I discovered there is so much more than that it really interested me and inspired me as well. It certainly felt nervous at first but I felt as my group continued we started to get more comfortable and I enjoyed the process. It definitely gave me a clearer idea of careers in languages and was so so interesting for me. So overall I definitely joined the experience and would love to see more careers in languages in the future.”

“Thank you so much for the amazing opportunity yesterday – it was really eye opening and informative as to what translators get up to, and what makes a good pitch. I thought that it really pushed my friends and I out of our comfort zones and  increased our confidence as we got to meet new people and work together under pressure. I really enjoyed the experience.”

Here are some photos from the trip: