Languages Staff    
Faculty Leader Priscilla Lynch French
TIC Te Reo Waiana Jones Te Reo
TIC Chinese Daniel Ting Chinese
TIC Latin Jo Fahey Latin
Teachers Linda Johnson French
  Frances Quirke French
  Julie Harvey French
  Melissa Spragg Latin
  Janet Angelo Chinese
  Oscar Mardell Classical Studies


Ko toku nui, toku wehi, toku whakatiketike, toku reo

My language is my greatness, my inspiration, that which I hold precious

Languages are part of the core junior programme at St Mary's College.

Year 7:

All students take a 13 week taster course of each of three languages (French, Latin and Te Reo Maori) for 5 periods per fortnight.

Year 8:

All students select two languages – three periods per fortnight for the whole year.

Year 9:

All students select one language – five periods per fortnight for the whole year.

Students are then free to continue their language study in Years 10, 11, 12, and 13 and gain credits at Levels 1, 2, and 3 of the National Qualifications Framework.

Why learn a second language?

Please click here to read about the benefits of learning a second language.

Communicate across cultural boundaries

Electronic media, immigration, and ease of travel are making the world (and New Zealand) increasingly international and bringing you into contact with people from other cultures. This means that being able to communicate across cultural boundaries is more important than ever.

The single most important step you can take towards doing this effectively is to learn another language. In many countries, learning more than one language is the norm.

Friends, family connections and more

You might choose to study a language to which you have an existing cultural, family, or community connection, but there are many other reasons to study a language. For example, as well as communicating effectively with family members who do not speak English, you might be interested in:

  • Talking to friends from around the world via social networking
  • participating in cultural and sports exchanges
  • travelling overseas and learning about other cultures
  • learning about celebrations, festivals, and cuisines of other cultures
  • enjoying films, fashion, music and the popular culture of another country
  • learning more about how languages work.

Satisfaction, pleasure and work

Learning a second language can bring a great deal of personal satisfaction and pleasure. It can also open up a much broader range of future work opportunities by:

  • Making it easier to work, travel, and study in other countries
  • better understanding business culture inside and outside New Zealand
  • developing the skills to work across cultures
  • providing access to a wider range of ideas and knowledge
  • generally strengthening literacy skills.

Learn about yourself and your own culture

Learning a language is not just about opening up opportunities for work and travel – it is likely to prove a journey of personal discovery. Experience of other cultures can help you understand and appreciate your own.

In the broad picture, when you learn a second language you acquire knowledge, skills, and understanding that are important for the social, cultural, economic, and environmental well-being of New Zealand.

Which language shall I learn?

Learning any language is worthwhile, but the reason for learning a second language will vary greatly from student to student.