SNF Centre for Hellenic Studies releases the first in a series of new language apps to mark International Day of the Greek Language
To mark this year’s International Day of the Greek Language, the Rebooting the Greek Language Project Team working in the SNF Centre for Hellenic Studies has released a new app for the Modern Greek Language for Preschool (ages 4+). This is the first in what will be a series of new apps targeted at young learners, from preschool to late elementary.
Greek identity is closely tied to the language, and yet even as we celebrate the International Day of the Greek Language, Modern Greek is heard less and less throughout the Diaspora. Teaching materials and curricula are from a generation ago and do not reflect the reality of many of today’s young people. Moreover, sweeping changes in technology, education, and contemporary culture have radically changed the classroom environment - what worked before, no longer does.
That’s why the SNF Centre for Hellenic Studies has launched the Rebooting the Greek Language Project, a multi-year initiative to bring the latest advances in educational technology and pedagogical research to the challenges being faced by the Modern Greek Language in the Diaspora. Supported by a generous grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, the Project has brought together an international team of developers, linguists, designers, and language experts to work alongside young Greek computing science graduates.
This first release has been two years in the making, following extensive development and testing, with over fifteen select schools participating in pilots across North America and plans to expand to over thirty by the end of the pilot. Additionally, a special pilot will run in refugee camps in northern Greece. At the end of the project, the final suite of apps will be available free of charge, thanks to the support of the SNF. The Rebooting the Greek Language Project Team is currently partnering with local and international organizations and governments to support the distribution to community groups and parents, throughout the Diaspora.
I am making these apps as much as for my children as for the greater community; as a parent it’s important to me that they learn their heritage language and that they have the best tools possible. That’s why my team and I have been working with a sense of mission to deliver the very best content and platform for learning and teaching the Greek language in the Diaspora. ~ Costa Dedegikas, Technology Advisor, SNF New Media Lab