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Shaw: American foreign language education is ineffective

The Iowa State Daily – Daniel Shaw

“America is facing a serious foreign language education crisis. The reality is that American schools are failing to adequately educate American people in foreign languages. We are falling behind many other countries in terms of foreign language proficiency.” (more)

Why it’s OK for bilingual children to mix languages

Medical X-Press – Chisato Danjo

“Few would consider mastering more than one language a bad idea. In fact, research points to a number of cognitive, economic and academic advantages in being bilingual. Parents who speak different languages understand the family home is an important setting to learn both, and seek various ways to help their children thrive bilingually. One of the best-known approaches is the “one-parent-one-language” strategy (OPOL). Each parent uses one language when communicating with their child, so their offspring learn both languages simultaneously.” (more)

Multilingual Students Succeeding in the U.S.

Language Magazine – Staff Writer

“Students who speak a language other than English at home have improved in reading and math much more substantially since 2003 than previously reported, according to a study published this month in Educational Researcher. Hidden Progress of Multilingual Students on NAEP by Michael J. Kieffer, associate professor of literacy education at New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, debunks a common myth that multilingual students and English Learners have made little progress in academic achievement in recent years, and that U.S. schools continue to fail these students.” (more)

Stephan Behringer – Every new language opens a new door in your life

The Dubrovnik Times – Mark Thomas

“There are polyglots and then there is Stephan Behringer. His badge on his shirt had the flags of twelve countries, and yes he speaks twelve languages, well eleven and a half as he says. He spent time in Dubrovnik learning Croatian and we caught up with him during his time here. Born near Stuttgart, Germany he started expanding his languages skills relatively late in life, but when he started there was no stopping him.” (more)

Early Language Key to School Success

Language Magazine – Kim Echart

“Language, in other words, supports academic and social success, says Amy Pace, an assistant professor in the University of Washington Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, which led the study, published in Early Childhood Research Quarterly. The study was the first to look at a comprehensive set of school readiness skills and to try to determine which, of all of them, is the most solid predictor of a child’s later success. Language—the ability to fluidly learn words and to string them together into sentences—was the hands-down winner, said co-author Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, director of the Infant Language Laboratory at Temple University.” (more)

Bilinguals use inter-language transfer to deal with dyslexia

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Dyslexic children learning both a language that is pronounced as written, like Spanish, and a second language in which the same letter can have several sounds, such as English, are less affected by this alteration when reading or writing in the latter language. The authors a new study say that this is less a cure than a reduction of some of the symptoms.” (more)