This is a list of articles, Tweets, Facebook posts and links that we think you might enjoy this weekend. 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!
We’re Back in Seattle!
Our weekend reviews have been a little silent lately, haven’t they? It isn’t that there hasn’t been a bunch going on out there in cyberspace. It’s simply that my family and I have been on a Multilingual Road Trip from Seattle to California (and back) and I didn’t have time to do much writing. But we are back now and I am looking forward to getting back into the swing of things!
Sign Up Today!
If you live in the Seattle area, you won’t want to miss the Raising Bilingual Children seminar that I give each year at Bellevue College. I pack it full of research, tips, best practices and a lot of discussion. It would be wonderful to have you there!
To learn more about Raising Bilingual Children, please check out the listing at Bellevue College and sign up today!
Is 12 Months Too Late?
While I was traveling this past month, a new study came out about the way babies’ develop speech perception. The research is fascinating and well worth reading through. However, as with Patricia Kuhl’s Ted Talk, it is important to note that she is talking about speech perception, not language learning in general. Be careful here! Don’t let yourself get caught like so many others! Her work is focused on how we are able to pick up the sounds of a given language. This is helps to explain why most who learn a language in childhood have little or no “foreign accent.”
Unfortunately, this latest research on babies’ speech perception has been reinterpreted by a few journalists and bloggers into anxiety-provoking articles and posts. One writer even went as far as to claim that if we don’t learn languages by the time we are 12 months old, then it is too late. Sigh.
Anyone who is bilingual or multilingual knows that growing up with more than one language is the best but that it is never too late to pick up a language! We know that to pick up a native-accent it is best to start when we are very young. However, many of us also know adults who learned a language later in life and have little or no accent. And we know many, many children who moved to a country in elementary school and now speak the language without any accent.
Research is there to help us understand as much as possible about ourselves and our world. It is there for us to learn from and to continue to improve upon. It is important to remember that it is often focused on one small aspect of a much larger, more complex organism. I hope that reporters and bloggers will be careful in how they interpret research data on bilingualism and multilingualism, especially when used to support an agenda.
Prof. Grosjean Goes Viral!
This past week a fantastic article by Prof. Grosjean appears on his Psychology Today blog titled, Those Incredible Interpreters. It was about the role of interpreters and translators, many of which are children who help their immigrant parents get along in a new country.
I am delighted to report that this post was so well received that it went around cyberspace with lightening speed. I was informed on Saturday that the post was on the verge of going viral – what a fantastic boost for bilingualism and the amazing professor who promotes it with valid and trustworthy sources and knowledge. A big hand of applause for Prof. Grosjean from all of us!
Extreme Schooling? Just Do It!
I came across a fascinating article this weekend titled My Family’s Experiment in Extreme Schooling. The article is especially interesting to me as a multilingual since the experiment included moving to a brand new country where children would attend school, immersion-style, in a completely foreign language (Russian).
While reading this lengthy article, I was both impressed and horrified as I imagined what the author’s children must have experienced. Experiment, indeed! I was also once again impressed with the resilience us human beings have to adapt and maneuver – children in particular. This doesn’t mean that such experiments won’t leave scars or change our outlook on life. Ultimately, it all comes down to whether in we feel that we successfully met a challenge or never found our footing.
Here are some comments about the post from the Multilingual Living Facebook page:
Read all of the comments and add your own at the direct Multilingual Living Facebook link for this entry. While there, click on the LIKE button to keep up on the conversations that take place each day!
Who Attends a Bilingual School?
With the school year in full swing, we wanted to know how many of your children attend a bilingual school. You gave us a wonderful list of answers! See a few of the answers below:
You can read all of the answers to this question and add your own at the direct Multilingual Living Facebook link to this entry. We look forward to hearing what you have to say about this!
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!