ETS - Aug 2011

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

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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 | 3 Comments

Learning with Purpose

Kristal Bivona looks at teaching specialized Spanish programs

For years, English language instructors have had access to a wide variety of materials to help teach English for specific purposes; now, Spanish teachers have a burgeoning subfield of teaching Spanish for specific purposes. In the U.S., students can take advantage of courses in Spanish for business, Spanish for academic research, and Spanish for the health care industry. A course in Spanish for specific purposes will address grammar, but it may not be taught in a communicative approach and may not even instruct all four skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

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July 19th, 2016 | 3 Comments

Call of the Wild

It’s not only humans who have language systems built on linguistic rules and patterns. Gelada monkeys from the Ethiopian highlands have exhibited that their calls follow the same linguistic rule that is evident in many languages—Menzerath’s law.

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July 14th, 2016 | 1 Comment

Why French?

Chateau de Versailles, FranceKathy Stein-Smith explains why demand is growing for French the world over.

There is one skill that is being learned around the world, with enrollments growing by 50% in Asia and Africa, while in the U.S. programs are being reduced and even eliminated. This highly sought-after global skill is not social media, data analytics, or coding; it is learning French. French is a language that reflects both the rich cultural and historical heritage of France and also that of the worldwide Francophonie. It is a language of international diplomacy, a global business language, and a top internet language, which points to the growing importance of French.

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July 12th, 2016 | 2 Comments

A Whole Lot of Axolotls

Paula Cuello and Lori Langer de Ramirez explore environmental
studies in the Spanish classroom.

It all started with my sixth-grade son. After returning from summer vacation, he visited our fourth-floor science wing and was thrilled to notice a large fish tank with five new creatures inside. The axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) intrigued him, and it wasn’t long until he convinced me to have a look. At first I was turned off. These small creatures look oddly unfinished. They are somewhat squishy and, as they don’t have eyelids, they never blink, giving them a creepy air. But after seeing them through my son’s eyes, I started appreciating their cuteness. Their mouths are arranged in perma-smiles and their black beady eyes are quite endearing. Over time, the ratio between love and hate moved heavily over into the “love” column, and I was hooked.

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July 12th, 2016 | 2 Comments

How Will ESSA Affect Your Bottom Line?

Paula Love shares her insights on what the new legislation will mean to language and literacy educators in terms of funding, accountability, and professional development.

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July 6th, 2016 | Leave your comments

Digital Natives or Not?

Özge Karaoğlu asks if all the children we teach really are digital natives

The term digital native was coined at the beginning of this century. It reflected the idea that young people today have grown up in a digital, media-saturated world. According to the theory, these young digital prodigies should have a different way of looking at online technology and different expectations and comfort levels when it comes to the role of technology in their learning. They are connected multitaskers who are the native speakers of the new digital world, and their expertise extends to computers, video games, the internet, and all the latest social and mobile technologies.
We assume that they must somehow have a naturally deeper knowledge and understanding of all of these technologies compared to so-called digital immigrants, people like their teachers who weren’t born into this technology and were forced to learn it.

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July 6th, 2016 | 1 Comment

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The World As We Speak

Texas Introduces House Bill to adopt Seal of Bilingualism and Biliteracy
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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."

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Nationalists protest the availability of university entrance exams in the Uzbek language.

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

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At a time when Brazilians have more resources and opportunities to study abroad than ever, lacking language skills a hinderance.

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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
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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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