Learning a foreign language is a challenging, yet fascinating journey to take. There are thousands of languages (around 6,500, in fact) spoken around the world. Understanding the nuances in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and contextualization are just a few of the hurdles students come across. In the spirit of language learning, here are some foreign language trivia facts you may not know!
Quantity Does Not Always Mean Quality
We all know that the English language has 26 letters in our alphabet. But did you know that Cambodia has 74 letters in their alphabet, while Papa New Guinea has only 12? And languages such as Chinese don’t even use letters, but rather a system of over 50,000 characters to communicate! There are also some cultures that use separate numbering systems as well, such as Korean and Japanese.
Foreign Language Trivia: Old vs. New
Sumerian is the oldest written language in the world and dates back to 3500 B.C! Other contenders include Ancient Egyptian, Aramaic, and Sanskrit. Conversely, Light Warlpiri (spoken by the indigenous people in Australia) or Afrikaans (spoken in South Africa) is debatably the world’s newest language, depending on who you ask.
Undoubtedly, there’s a diverse array of foreign languages spoken in the world today. And if you’re considering starting on the path to foreign language learning, be sure to stop by our online store to explore our vast selection of international children’s books, CDs, and DVDs to supplement your studies!