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The spectacualr Huntingtower Castle, Perthshire
Photo credit: Blue Noun

Why Scottish Castles Are a Must on an English Language School Activity List

Hello English language learners and friends of Blue Noun English Language School in Scotland.

We are known as an alternative English language school. We do many things a bit differently – so it might surprise you that we have a castle visit on our English language school activity list, but we certainly do! 

Read our blog to find out why you most certainly should visit a castle on your trip to Scotland – and read on to discover one of our favourite castles – the fantastic Huntington Tower Castle Perthshire.

 

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If there’s one thing we love, it’s visiting a castle. 

I’m sure you know that Scotland is littered with the things. Some are private properties owned by international millionaires – but hundreds are owned and managed by Historic Scotland – or in a few cases, the National Trust.

It’s not really true, but a general rule is, if it has curtains, it’s a National Trust property, whereas rugged walls equal Historic Scotland. 

The work of these organisations means that over the last decades, this important part of the culture of our lands has been preserved and made accessible for visitors. 

Scottish castles are one of many types of buildings that attract heritage tourists and support tourism all across Scotland – and for good reason. They are amazing. 

But so are many other things. 

In terms of language learning pedagogy, why put castles on an English language school activity list?

English language school activity list Huntingtower Castle keys
You can ask to see the castle door keys when in the Huntingtower gift shop: Photo credit: Blue Noun
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Reason No. 1 | Immersive English Experiences | A New Built Environment

 

An immersive English experience is essentially any experience where you are dipped into a situation where the language spoken around you is English – and where you yourself have to communicate in English.

Immersive English experiences are not role play. They are real-life contexts you must use your language skills to navigate. 

Our theory is that changing your sensory world enhances the profoundness of this language experience. 

Castles look, sound, smell and feel different to any other architectural experience. This difference sharpens your attention to every detail and makes language learned across your whole time in Scotland very memorable.

 

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Reason No. 2 |  Imagination

 

Learning a language is about taking on a new identity. You are not the same person speaking a new language, you develop a new personality, cultural awareness and identity WITH the new skills you are learning.

That is Freedom!

Freedom to be a new person with new powers – a superhero version of yourself!

Where better to explore this than walking the footsteps of kings, queens, knights and murderers through walls shaped by plots and intrigue.

Open your heart to a Scottish castle and grow a little bit of new you.

 

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Reason No. 3 | Exploration

Whether you are the kind of person to imagine yourself in history – or (like me) you simply enjoy racing around seeing which corridors lead where, castles are liberating.

Our local castle, Huntingtower Castle is particularly good as it’s rarely busy.

Often we get the whole place to ourselves.

I’m not a great fan of trailing around in a group, in an ordered sequence of rooms – and at a set pace.

I like climbing staircases to see where they lead. I like to hang out in a particular room for a while – perhaps race through others ( I do this in art galleries too).

 

I think the metaphor is obvious: explore English with us and follow the language points which interest you. Pick your pace and explore!

Many language schools show you a certain path and certain content. We will support you through the path you chose for yourself. 

 

See where it takes you!

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Huntingtower Castle in Perthshire

Next we’re going to show you our favourite local castle, Huntingtower Castle.

Just outside Perth, Huntingtower Castle is superb and a must-see for Blue Noun English Language learners.

It’s one of several historic buildings, palaces and castles on our English language school activity list – you can see the full list here.


Huntingtower Castle is a medium-sized castle in great condition. It’s a bit off the beaten track, so relatively quiet to visit. 
 

 

English language school activity list Huntingtower Castle perthshire painted ceiling
English language school activity list Huntingtower Castle perthshire painted ceiling
Huntingtower Castle walls: Photo credit: Blue Noun
English language school activity list Huntingtower Castle perthshire painted ceiling
Huntingtower Castle, Painted Ceiling: Photo credit: Blue Noun

For established castle fans, it is noteworthy for its two towers (built in the 15th and 16th centuries and joined by a range in the 17th century), as well as the remarkable painted ceiling in the hall of the eastern tower and remaining mural work of interest.

 

English language school activity list Huntingtower Castle
Huntingtower Castle, Interior: Photo credit: Blue Noun
 
For history fans, it was once owned by the Ruthven Family who held James VI captive here for 10 months.
 
For sensation seekers – Huntingtower Castle is an amazing visit with spooky winding staircases, high, sheer walls and an internal connecting bridge that gave me butterflies to cross.


English language school activity list Huntingtower Castles rooftop
Huntingtower Castle, Rooftop: Photo credit: Blue Noun
 

It has a fabulous medieval wooden door that you can swing shut with a bang. 

 

It has a terrifying roof terrace which you can peer out across fields and grazing deer. 

 

Best of all it is home to hundreds of bats (protected in the UK).
 
It is dramatic, medieval, Scotland at its best and it’s thrilling!
 
Find out more about Huntingtower Castle here.
 

Put a Scottish Castle on your English Language School Activity List!

Thank you for exploring Huntingtower Castle with us. I hope that you agree, it absolutely should be on our English language school activity list.

If you have enjoyed this blog, and love Scottish history, then you might like to read:

 

Live Language Learning!

 

A quick note from the author

We began the Blue Noun blog back in 2019, when we called ourselves a ‘language school’ (we now call ourselves a language hub) and we were building up our business completely from scratch.

Our first few months were spent making friends in the community, researching homestay hosts for our language guests and finding out about all the good local places and activities to take our language learning guests.

In 2021 we moved the Blue Noun website to a different platform. We had the option of deleting these old blogs – they are very different form our current, more pedagogic style of posting, but I think they are quite charming to see how our young business grew, turning from a language school run by an artist – into a language hub which really began to focus on coaching artists in English by immersing them in creative environments.