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SS6G11a
DIVERSITY OF
EUROPEAN
LANGUAGES
COMPARISON:
GERMAN, ENGLISH, RUSSIAN, FRENCH, ITALIAN
 Larger in landmass than U.S.
 Doubled in population than U.S.
 One dominant language in U.S. (English)
 Europe: home to more than two hundred native
languages
 3 main categories: Germanic, Romance, and Slavic
GERMANIC:
• Has the most native speakers
• Live mostly in northwest and central Europe
• 20 percent of Europeans speak one or two
languages: English and German as their native
language
• Learn English as second language in schools
even if not at home.
ROMANCE
Includes French, Italian, and Spanish
Found in the south and west of Europe
Languages come from Latin, the language of
the ancient Roman Empire
Roman alphabet used to write both Romance
and Germanic languages
SLAVIC
Slavic languages include Russia
Found in central and eastern Europe
Do not always use Roman alphabet
Instead written with Cyrillic alphabet
HAVING MANY LANGUAGES CAN BE
CHALLENGING
Difficult to live, work, and trade
with people who cannot
communicate with each other
Europeans have worked hard to
solve this problem: school
children learn one or two other
languages beside their own
European Union has twenty
three “official” languages
o
o
o
o
THE LITERACY RATE AND STANDARD OF
LIVING
The ability to read and write
Usually found in develop or industrialized
countries
Standard of living is high
Increase wealth of countries allows them to
provide better education, healthcare,
access to technology
SS6G11 Europe’s Languages
1. Are there more or fewer language groups than you
expected? Explain.
2. Within each language group, there are many dialects of each
language. So even within the groups there are differences.
Do you think these divisions within groups are also
important? Why or why not?
3. Why do you think language is important to groups and
regions?
4. Is a common language necessary? Why or why not?
5. What are the pros of increasing language diversity?
6. What are the cons?
7. How does ethnic diversity impact our state and our
community?