Multilingual Living’s Week in Review – June 5

by Corey · 0 comments

This is a review of the articles, Tweets, Facebook posts and more which went out this week in and around our Multilingual Living universe. Thank you everyone for sharing your tips, tweets, emails and more with me! Were it not for you, this post wouldn’t even be here!

Supporting Multilingual and Multicultural Families!
If you live in (or near) London, you are lucky indeed! On Friday, June 24th, from 10:00-1:00, there will be a fantastic event taking place. Here is the information:

Bringing up children multilingually can be challenging at times. The event will help the participants to understand the process and benefits of learning and using two or more languages from young age and to share experience and advice on bringing up children multilingually. It will be open to anyone interested in childhood bilingualism and multilingualism.

Event highlights
The event will bring together international experts from bilingualism, bilingual education, sociolinguistics, psycholinguistics as well as parents and grandparents who have had experiences of bringing up children bilingually and multilingually.

Panel speakers include
Professor Jean-Marc Dewaele (Birkbeck College)

Professor Marjorie Lorch  (Birkbeck College)

Professor Helen Grech (University of Malta)

Dr Raymond Sneddon (University of East London / Birkbeck College)

Dr Charmian Kenner (Goldsmith College, University of London)

Richard Howeson (Eurotalk Interactive)

Sarah Cartwright (CILT, the National Centre for Languages)

Head to the Supporting Multilingual and Multicultural Families website for more details. And make sure to let me know all about it after it is over! Wish I could be there!

5 Reasons to Love Dual Language Immersion Programs
I am delighted that so many articles are appearing about dual-language immersion programs! These programs have the potential to bring about so many wonderful changes in our children’s multilingualism if they are done well. Another article came out this week titled 5 Reasons to Love Dual Language Immersion Programs. It is packed with great information and will leave you inspired.

We Won!
This was a great week for Multilingual Living award announcements:

Is Bilingualism Easy for the Brain?
A new study has come out this year from Michael S. Vitevitch, Department of Psychology University, of Kansas, about the degree to which the sounds of words increase or decrease bilingual language processing. has written an overview titled Being bilingual is easy and Bilingualism No Big Deal for Brain is another overview. Or you can read the actual research paper via the site titled What do foreign neighbors say about the mental lexicon?

After we posted the links on the Multilingual Living Facebok page, the following comments were made:

What are your thoughts about this? What have been your personal experiences as a bilingual/multilingual and/or from observing your children’s language patterns?

Drying Clothes around the World
I am really enjoying your answers to our Multicultural Methods series! This week you answered how you dry clothes where you live. I offered 5 options (plus #6 which was none of the above) and you certainly covered the spectrum! You can read the comments to the article Multilingual Methods: Drying Clothes Around the World and below are just a few of the comments that were posted on the Multilingual Living Facebook page:

If you haven’t added your own comment, head to Multilingual Methods: Drying Clothes Around the World and do it! We’d love to have your comment included!

In the Forum
Here are some latest posts in the Multilingual Living Forum that you might want to check out:

News, Stories, and More…
The following are news reports, research, stories and more that came my way via Twitter this week:

  • Web-based advisory service for multilingual families: “The language research team at the Department of Linguistics in the University of Tromsø (UiT) launches a new web-based counseling service which will provide an opportunity for the public to ask questions about bilingualism and children and get a reply from leading researchers in the field.”
  • ‘If you’re Canadian, why aren’t you bilingual?’ new immigrants wonder: “He said immigrants who arrive in Calgary are flummoxed by the lack of French-speaking there (the same Census data found only 0.7% of Albertans speak French fluently). Why, then, does Canada market itself as bilingual? they wonder.”
  • Bring the World to Your Children Without Leaving the Country: “Don’t worry. Even if you’re no polyglot yourself or world geography whiz, you can still make your kid a global citizen. You don’t have to pay for an expensive study abroad program for your child to learn Spanish or other languages, you can find resources close to home. Here are some ways how to bring the world to your child, without leaving your home area.”
  • Refusing to speak a language – The reasons a language may be rejected: “…there are also instances where a decision is made not to use a language any longer. The reasons vary and cover both adults and children. For example, members of stigmatized minorities may opt to no longer use the language of the majority when they are able to do so.”
  • Two languages better than one: “The dual language system has been most successful at Lewis and Clark Elementary in Wenatchee, where there is a waiting list for students wishing to enter the program. It has been less successful elsewhere, but mostly because of the difficulties of demographics and economics. Sometimes there are too few English-speaking students to balance the Spanish-speakers.”
  • Being Bilingual an Edge at any Age: “Not all is lost for those whose parents didn’t teach them a second language in childhood though. A 2004 report  from London’s Wellcome Department of Imaging Neuroscience proved that while younger minds excel at the task of learning a second language, becoming a polyglot at any age provides a boost for the brain.”
  • Understanding Metaphors: “According to The Atlantic, the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity is giving out grants as part of a program to “understand how speakers of Farsi, Russian, English, and Spanish see the world by building software that automatically evaluates their use of metaphors.” The grants could total in the hundreds of millions of dollars. The idea behind the investment is that if you can understand the metaphors people use and how those metaphors affect the way they perceive the world, you can alter the way you present your ideas and proposals so that they are more likely to be accepted.”

How Do You Say It?
To finish things off this week, here are some comments from Multilingual Living Facebook friends who answered the question “What is the name of your native country in your native language?”:

Make sure to click on the LIKE button while on the Multilingual Living Facebook page! You will be able to stay up-to-date on all things multilingual and will show the world that you support us!

Do you have any tips, suggestions or information that you would like to share with us at Multilingual Living? Join me on Twitter, get into the conversation on the Multilingual Living Facebook page, and send me an email whenever you’d like to connect. I always enjoy connecting with other bilingual and multilingual families!

Corey Heller is the founder of Multilingual Living and the Editor-In-Chief/Publisher of Multilingual Living Magazine. Multilingual Living is the place where she shares her knowledge about raising multilingual and multicultural children. Corey, an American, and her German husband live in Seattle where they raise and homeschool their three children, ages 15, 14 and 12, in German and English.

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