Press Release FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE A Second Life for European Day of Languages: Language Treasure Hunt Event

in Virtual World La Paz, Bolivia, September 12, 2007 - - The European Day of Languages will be celebrated in the online world “Second Life” for the first time on September 26, 2007. Visitors will see how Second Life allows for more social and communicative language learning processes through task-based activities, including a virtual language-treasure-hunt. Winners will receive free language lessons with real teachers in the virtual world, Second Life. The European Day of Languages is a project of the Council of Europe and the European Union to encourage language learning, promote the linguistic and cultural diversity of Europe and support lifelong language learning. This day was first celebrated in 2001 – during the European Year of Languages. Its success across over 40 European countries led to an annual day (26 September) being announced. Second Life is rapidly becoming an established online education environment, with a diverse range of educational institutions using the 3D virtual world for distance learning. It has a community of millions of residents around the globe, who visit the parallel world for socializing, doing business and, learning. Second Life is free to access and allows its virtual residents (or avatars) to build homes, gardens and even cities. Some have created imaginative locations, whereas others have recreated virtual replicas of well known places in the real world, such as London , Paris , Barcelona and Berlin . “Second Life has a unique combination of qualities which makes it especially effective for language learning; it is social, immersive and virtual” says Howard Vickers , Director of Avatar Languages, who sees that students can gain language learning experiences that are not easily available in real life. “Language learning undoubtedly requires considerable practice; as Second Life is an environment that is constantly changing, it is able to effectively challenge the language student” says Andrés Guiloff, Rector of UNIACC University in Chile and coauthor of Generation.Net: cultural collision in the classroom, CEU, 2007. Avatar Languages is celebrating European Day of Languages with a language treasure hunt and free lessons with Avatar Languages as prizes: 10 hours for first place, 5 hours for second place and 3 hours for third place. The treasure hunt is open to anyone and will take place the school's tropical island in Second Life throughout September 26. Access to the school's island is available from Avatar Languages has been developing innovative teaching methods using task-based, communicative learning in Second Life. The treasure hunters will carry out social and communicative activities that will take them around European cities within Second Life. To further celebrate the day Avatar Languages is offering a special promotion: 3 lessons for the price of 2. Students who book lessons by September 26, 2007 will receive 50% more lesson time. For further information on this virtual European Day of Languages event and on Second Life language teaching in general, contact Howard Vickers or visit Free trial lessons are also available with Avatar Languages – please contact the school for details. Avatar Languages is an online language school in the 3D virtual world Second Life. The school provides professionally qualified and experienced native speaking teachers who offer individual and customized language classes to students globally. Avatar Languages was established by Howard Vickers, an English teacher with international experience, currently based in Bolivia.

Contact: Howard Vickers, Director of Avatar Languages Avatar Languages +591 765 25279 (Bolivia) howard.avatar.english (Skype) Press: Images: Blog: ###

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