#ThinkLanguages 2023 a success

#ThinkLanguages Week

#ThinkLanguages Week

Over 15,000 students across 180 schools celebrated the sixth year of #ThinkLanguages last week, hosting their very own festival of languages and cultures.

Taking place across across the week of Monday 27 November to Friday 1 December, #Thinklanguages 2023 was a huge success for all who took part. Students, teachers, partners and friends got involved, each taking a moment to celebrate the many benefits of language learning through line ups of live workshops, speaker talks, cultural fairs, quizzes and much more.

Schools kickstarted their events with an action packed opening ceremony, where speakers such as Dancing with the Stars pro Ervinas Merfeldas, TikToker Ciara Walsh, and EU parliament representative James Maher providing an insight into their experience with languages and how they are important to them.


Enthusiasm for the festival-style event grew throughout the week with schools posting lots of updates and capturing their day on social media using #ThinkLanguages. The national ‘language inspired’ quiz, which took place twice a day each day of the week, was also a big hit again this year with 1,500 teams from schools across the country battling it out!

The standard of entries for the Champion Team Competition this year was exceptional. Finalists have now been announced. To find out more click here. 

Higher Education Institutions

 A hugely successful addition to this year’s celebrations was the involvement of the #ThinkLanguages partners with students engaging in a range of activities from Business in the Community Ireland, The Irish Film Institute and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) across the country. The activity within the HEIs proved to be a highlight for many with a diverse range of activities taking place on campus for TY students to engage in. In excess of 1000 students enjoyed the activities, with many more gaining insights into third-level life, with talks from student languages ambassadors who visited individual schools. 

DCU kicked of the celebrations on Monday 27th November with Spanish, German and French taster classes as well as a Salsa dance tutorial for schools from across Dublin. They continued hosting workshops for 190 students across the entire week of #ThinkLanguages, with taster sessions such as French comics, Japanese etiquette, and Kung Fu workshop. 

University of Limerick hosted a talk by the TikToker Killian Sundermann on the importance of languages for over 160 students as well as giving them an insight into what it’s like studying languages on UL campus. They also provided student language ambassadors to schools to visit throughout the rest of #ThinkLanguages Week. 

University College Cork hosted over 200 students throughout the week, with workshops such as a taste of Italian Christmas with interactive language lectures for students, language taster sessions and tours of the picturesque campus. 

Maynooth University hosted over 150 students across the week providing campus tours, an introduction to languages at university, as well as taster sessions in Chinese, French, German and Spanish.

South East Technological University put on a show for over 110 students with international music from around the world. They then hosted an Italian, Chinese and Brazilian cookery demo for the students.

University of Galway provided a number of workshops for 150 students in Spanish, German, Italian and French before hosting a language based treasure hunt and campus tour for the students. 

UCD hosted over 370 students during the course of #ThinkLanguages Week with meetings with final year language students to discover more about the opportunity to study abroad on Erasmus as well as Arabic, Korean, Russian and Swahili workshops giving the students a plethora of options!

The Irish Film Institute

Another highlight for many proved to be The Irish Film Institute with cinemas nationwide showing foreign language films during #ThinkLanguages week, offering students the opportunity to see some of the best movies in the language they are learning – and a few mystery ones! Films were also available to stream directly into classrooms for any schools who were unable to make to the cinema. In excess of 6,000 students watched foreign language films throughout #ThinkLanguages Week. 

Movies that were streamed on #ThinkLanguages week included:

  • Sixteen/16 ans – Senior Cycle French
  • The Little Gang/La Petite Bande -Junior Cycle French
  • Run Lola Run/Lola Rennt – Senior Cycle German (25th Anniversary)
  • Too Far Away/ Zu Weit Weg – Junior Cycle German
  • Schoolgirls/Las Ninas – Senior Cycle Spanish
  • Uno para todos/One for All – Junior Cycle Spanish
  • A mystery film in Korean was also on offer for students to select!
Students also reached out to their school and local community to help shine a light on the many cultural personal and social benefits of foreign language learning, using this year’s #ThinkLanguages themes of “Think Global, Act Local, to be inspired by the many languages and cultures that surround them daily. Dates for #ThinkLanguages 2024 will be announced in the New Year so keep an eye on Languages Connect social channels.