THERE was a continental feel to lessons when schools across Bolton celebrated European Languages Day.

Primary and secondary school children were introduced to different languages while learning more about the different cultures and traditions of the countries which make up Europe.

Kearsley Academy invited children from nearby St Stephen’s CE Kearsley to mark the day and develop an interest in learning another language, which has huge benefits for children.

Karen Greenwood, teacher at Kearsley Academy, said: “European Languages Day continues the work, to raise public awareness of the languages used in Europe, to promote cultural and linguistic diversity and to encourage people — schoolchildren and adults — to learn languages.”

Research has shown that maths and verbal SAT scores climb higher with each additional year of foreign language study, which means that the longer you study a foreign language, the stronger your skills become to succeed in school. Pupils at Kearsley Academy study Spanish and this year the school had its first ever Spanish GCSE option group because of the growth and importance of the language.

The day is organised annually to encourage more children to take up a language.

Mrs Greenwood said: “I would hope that all students got a taster of working with another language and hopefully raised their awareness of other European countries.”

And youngsters gave the day the thumbs up.

Daisy Hannon, aged 10, said: “When we went to Kearsley Academy we didn't know any Spanish at all, but by the end, we could say and write sentences in Spanish. We had a great time.”

Macey Calderbank, aged 10 added: “I learnt Spanish. The best part was when we wrote our name and three other facts about me. I love European languages.” Lewis Crook, aged 10 said: “When I went to Kearsley Academy, I learnt Spanish. I learnt numbers and some names of places. Miss Greenwood was amazing.”