ETS - Aug 2011

Californians, Vote Yes on 58

October 14th, 2016 | Leave your comments

October 2016 Issue Out Now


What’s the Secret? Jennifer Helfand  verses on the ‘musts’ of language learning

Crucial Connections Diane Barone encourages parents and teachers to work together to support English Learners’ literacy acquisition

Honing Heritage Learners Maria M. Carreira describes the challenges of teaching mixed classes

Working for Every Student’s Right to Read Donell Pons, an educator and ‘reluctant expert,’ shares her personal mission to help students with dyslexia and other reading challenges.

Transformational Texts Sally Allen advocates the reading of literature to cultivate empathy and communication

The Value of Test Scores Beth Marshall believes that awareness of global citizenry is the true goal of language education

October 3rd, 2016 | 1 Comment

Study Suggests Universal Sounds

In most languages, the word for “nose” is likely to include the sounds “neh” or the “oo.”

In most languages, the word for “nose” is likely to include the sounds “neh” or the “oo.”

In a study that challenges a fundamental concept in linguistics, an analysis of nearly two-thirds of the world’s languages shows that humans tend to use the same sounds for common objects and ideas, no matter what language they’re speaking.

The independence between sound and meaning is believed to be a crucial property of language: across languages, sequences of different sounds are used to express similar concepts (e.g., Russian “ptitsa,” Swahili “ndege,” and Japanese “tori” all mean “bird”). However, a careful statistical examination of words from nearly two-thirds of the world’s languages has revealed that unrelated languages very often use (or avoid) the same sounds for specific referents. continue reading

September 13th, 2016 | 2 Comments

Land of the Fleeing

thinkstockphotos-519893744On September 20, President Obama will host a Leader’s Summit on Refugees on the margins of the 71st session of the UN General Assembly. With 20 million refugees around the world, a comprehensive, collective international effort to strengthen refugee protection and assistance is more critical than ever. Community leaders, educators, and employers will play a crucial part in any such plan, as they are key to the successful integration of refugees both young and old into their new communities. Without this basic support, these new arrivals will flounder in their new societies, be hard pressed to succeed, and create a backlash. continue reading

September 8th, 2016 | Leave your comments


September 2016

cover-sept-2016-2In Our September Issue: 

Stressing Classy Communication Margo Gottlieb and Gisela Ernst-Slavit know that academic language is important for all students and essential for English language learners

Testing Benefits Mariana Castro shows what language proficiency assessments have to offer educators of English Learners

Helping Students Find their Voices Adrienne Almeida examines the unique challenges that ELL students face and the impact these challenges have on their social-emotional and academic health

Curing Initiative Fatigue Stacy Hurst and Laura Axtell explain how to kick off the new school year with buy-in from everyone

On the Road to Multilingualism Bilingual rapper GüeroLoco takes us on his passionate journey to
promote language learning and allow students to reap the benefits

Citizens of the World Beth Marshall believes that awareness of global citizenry is the true goal of language education




September 7th, 2016 | 1 Comment

Deaf Artist Creates Visual Art about ASL

Artist Christine Sun Kim was born deaf, and throughout her life thought that sound was only for able-hearing people. When she began making art that visually represents ASL through themes of music, everything changed. In some pieces, she visually represents the movements made in sign that mean a certain thing, like the sign for ‘all day’ which looks like  the outline of a hemisphere.

Watch Kim talk about ASL, the power of interpreters, and her interaction with sound and language as a Deaf person below.


August 31st, 2016 | Leave your comments

Ten Spanish Words That Come From Africa

African culture and language has had a massive influence over Latin American, South American, Caribbean, and other Spanish-speaking countries not only culturally (from Samba to carnivals), but also linguistically. Language Magazine rounded up ten Spanish words that come from African roots.

Marimbaa cognate that refers to a beating in the southern cone of South America.

Mucamaused for maid or servant in Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil.

Guineoused in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic for different types of bananas

Congoused in Latin America for a term for a black man/woman, presumably stemming from the country Congo.

Ñamea Spanish word for yam.

cachimbo/aused for pipe in Latin America, a term for a poor man/woman in the Caribbean, and solider in the Andes.

Merengueused to refer to the music and dance, along with meaning mess in the southern cone, and wimp in South America.

Mandingaused for devil, evil spirit, and goblin in Latin America, black in the Caribbean, and effiminate in the south cone of South America.

MondongoSpanish word that means guts, and is often used as a word for tripe.

Chévereused as a term or phrase for fantastic or great in Latin America.

Original reference from “A History of Afro-Hispanic Language” by John M. Lipski of Pennsylvania State University published by Cambridge University.

August 30th, 2016 | Leave your comments

Tools for School

ThinkstockPhotos-488510454 - CopyA bumper crop of resources to help make the new academic year a success

continue reading

August 23rd, 2016 | Leave your comments


Québec and New Brunswick Unite to Promote French

ThinkstockPhotos-588364076 (1)New Brunswick and Québec are celebrating 400 years of Francophone history by signing a joint declaration on the Canadian Francophonie, as a testimony to their deep attachment to the French language and to their desire to continue to advance and promote French in Canada. continue reading

August 22nd, 2016 | 1 Comment

Early Spanish Learning Leads to Better English

Preschool skills are transferred from one language to the other

New research from the University of Missouri shows that Spanish-speaking preschoolers experience significant improvements in their English skills when they have a good grasp of Spanish letters and numbers. In another study, the researcher found that behavior traits play a role in English learning. These findings suggest that early education programs that connect children’s word and math skills in Spanish to those in English can increase school readiness for Spanish-speaking children. continue reading

August 16th, 2016 | 4 Comments

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Quick Links

The World As We Speak

Texas Introduces House Bill to adopt Seal of Bilingualism and Biliteracy
If approved, seal could appear on diplomas as early as the 2013-2014 school year

Brazilian Literature Goes Global
Reading Brazil Digitally and in Translation.

NY Becomes 2nd State to Recognize Biliterate Grads

Feds Face Foreign Language Crisis
Senate hearing discussed how the lack of adequately trained language specialists compromises national security.

State Dept Chooses Kindle for Worldwide English
In an effort to promote English literacy around the world, the U.S. Department of State is planning to purchase up to 35,000 Kindle e-readers as well as selected content. The Kindles would be distributed to U.S.-friendly educational centers around the world so as to be available to those looking to study English and learn about America.

Need for Bilingual Preschools
A new report from the Center for American Progress that urges policymakers to maximize on the investments being made in public preschool programs to serve disadvantaged children. Specifically, the report calls for "more federal, state, and local capacity to meet the increasing demand for culturally and linguistically appropriate services for children who are dual-language learners."

Tensions in Kyrgyzstan over Exams in Uzbek
Nationalists protest the availability of university entrance exams in the Uzbek language.

Linguistic Diversity Linked to Biodiversity
Linguistic and cultural preservation may be the key to protecting biodiversity.

English Proficiency Biggest Hurdle for Brazilian Scholars
At a time when Brazilians have more resources and opportunities to study abroad than ever, lacking language skills a hinderance.

Cajoling All Teachers to Consider ELLs
New report examines how to prepare teachers for the fastest growing student population in the U.S.

Language Education Cuts Compromise National Security
New Council on Foreign Relations report calls education a national security issue

Canada Instates Language Tests for Some Immigrants
Exams on proficiency in either English or French will be stated for certain immigrants in June

San Jose School Hosts Spanish Spelling Bee
First Spanish spelling bee in northern California held at a dual language academy

English is Number One Language Test in Georgia
Students in final year of school aim to take English instead of Russian in foreign language exam

Promotion of French Language is Hot Topic
The separatist opposition party in Quebec rallys for French

U.S. Demand for Portuguese Increasing
Universities scramble to keep up with influx of learners

Urdu Gets Official Status Around India
Urdu to become a language of instruction in Muslim communities

Norwegian Language Camp to be Launched
Camp will focus on Norwegian language and cultural immersion activities

National Center for Family Literacy Ruminates on Education Policy at Conference
Conference of educators, advocates, and policy makers highlights family literacy

New Arabic Center Symbolizes Chinese-Emirati Exchange
Beijing's University of Foreign Studies unveils remodeled center for Arabic language and Islamic studies.

Promoting French in Pakistan
After an exodus of native French teachers, France pushes its language and culture in Pakistan.

Columbia’s Teacher College Addresses International Education with TEDx
Inaugural TEDx conference on international education takes places

Irish Language on the Rise, but not in Ireland
Could heritage learners abroad save Irish?

Santorum: Puerto Ricans Should Learn English
While visiting Puerto Rico, Santorum turns off Boricua voters.

International Summit on Teaching Profession Takes Place in New York
Delegations from 23 countries and regions discuss education issues at the second annual summit

Journey to Find Indigenous Languages in Trip of the Tongue
New book by Elizabeth Little covers indigenous languages throughout the United States

International Portuguese educators come together to teach Timorese teachers

Read Across America Kicks Off March 2
Students all over the U.S. will celebrate literacy on Dr. Seuss's birthday

Equatorial Guinea Strengthens Connection to Portuguese
Portuguese linguists to document archaic dialect from the Annobón province.

To read from The World As We Speak Archive, click here.

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