If you’ve ever used or worked for a translation company, or you’re just a linguistics fanatic, you’ll want to get your calendar out. Planet Word, opening in Winter 2019, should be in your vacation plans next year! The museum will offer various exhibits that people who speak all languages (and translators) will enjoy. There will be no need for interpreting services here. The museum will aim to explore the words we use on a global level to, as the museum says on their site “joke, sign, speak, read, and write every day.”
Translators: These are Your Next Vacation Plans…
Planet Word won’t just be interesting for translators and interpreters, though. The museum will offer exhibits that are fun and engaging for all age groups. Through physical activities, hands-on projects, music, multi-media presentations, and more, Planet Word will educate children and adults on the magic of language.
One of Planet Word’s biggest missions isn’t just to be on the itinerary for everyone’s next vacation trips. It’s also to combat the growing trend of illiteracy and Limited English Proficiency (LEP) and general disinterest for reading in the US. For many in the US, it’s not a matter of a need for translation services, but an actual inability to read at a functional level. Unfortunately, 21% of adults don’t have the inability to read things like instructions, emails, important forms and documents, even just medicine and food labels. Over 50% of immigrants to the US in 2015 were classified as LEP—and numbers indicate that trend is only increasing. It’s notable that at least 350 different languages besides English are the only languages spoken in homes around the US. Perhaps what’s worse than any of these statistics is that even those who can read are simply not doing so much these days. Reading books for pleasure or reading the newspaper are no longer popular leisure activities in the day of the smartphone, internet, and on-demand TV services.
So where can translators, interpreters, their families, and everyone else, go to visit Planet Word? The museum will be located in the heart of Washington, DC. It will be housed in the Franklin School, one of America’s earliest co-ed high schools. Besides simply being a gorgeous, historic building, the Franklin School is a fitting place for a museum about such an integral building block for learning: language! Don’t forget to mark this museum down when you’re planning your Winter break plans next year, or just a quick trip to DC. It’s bound to fascinate you – whether you’re a nerd for translation services and their unique quandries, or just a lover of words!
About Language Connections:
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