The learning of a Languages allows students to appreciate that cultures have different ways of perceiving and expressing reality. At the same time a new language gives these students a wider perspective from which they might view the world and their places in it. Language study can promote an appreciation of the diversity and richness of a pluralist society such as Australia and can promote in students a feeling of being participants in the global community.
Learning a Language, then, is about communication. Communication is about negotiation of meaning, and in terms of this key learning area, involves comprehending and composing a language other than English in written and spoken modes. A knowledge of German has distinct advantages in areas as diverse as international commerce and banking, scientific and technological research, education, diplomacy, the arts, and tourism.
Students use their existing understandings of the target language and cultures to further explore societal views and norms, and how these are enacted in the functions, conventions and patterns of each language. They develop their repertoire of process skills and strategies to acquire and manipulate the verbal, non-verbal and written features of the target language. They recognise the importance in contemporary society of learning additional languages and using intercultural skills.
Students learning Asian, European and other languages expand their understanding and appreciation of the diversity expressed in languages and the influence of language on culture.
Students learning Indigenous languages also understand that Australian languages and cultures are diverse and are inclusive of Aboriginal languages and cultures, Torres Strait Islander languages and cultures, and their associated creoles and dialects, including Aboriginal Englishes.
Students use the essential processes of Ways of working to develop and demonstrate their knowledge and understanding. They explore a range of text types in the target language, noticing how communication needs and contextual challenges are responded to for different purposes and audiences, and they communicate in a range of controlled contexts on known topics, collaborating with peers. They reflect on their learning and language choices in relation to purpose, context and audience.
Students select and use tools and technologies, including information and communication technologies (ICT), in purposeful ways. They make use of the potential that ICT provides to inquire, create and communicate in the target language.