Communities

Arsenal and Emery show language is no barrier

8 Feb 2019
CC

How the Arsenal Double Club is giving young people the skills and confidence to broaden their education

Speaking a foreign language is something many young people find daunting.

So how about trying out your basic Spanish in a packed press conference as you ask Arsenal head Unai Emery questions in his native tongue?

That's what pupils from Skinners' Academy in Hackney had the chance to do recently as they showed how the Double Club programme run by Arsenal in the Community has given them the confidence and the skills to speak new languages.

"How many people can say they have had the Arsenal head coach speaking to them in their language when they are learning Spanish?" says Arsenal languages co-ordinator Steve Eadon.

"It's something they will remember for the rest of their lives so hopefully that will then translate into an enthusiasm for languages and hopefully taking it at GCSE and beyond."

Players’ positive influence

After the press conference, Emery dropped in to watch the Double Club class in action, seeing how the youngsters worked with Arsenal branded learning resources and online materials featuring first-team players.

"Languages is not always perceived as the coolest thing to be good at," said Eadon.

"The young people see professional footballers, many of whom speak multiple languages from travelling around in their careers, and that's the most important thing with learning a language - you have someone to look up to and aspire to be like."

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