Over two years ago, I wrote about the idea of a language as a homeland as I was starting my journey into the endangered language of Ladino/Judeo-Spanish. The Portuguese writer, Fernando Pessoa, is quoted as having said, “Minha patria é a língua portuguesa” (My homeland is the Portuguese language). The Portuguese language is the homeland… Read more »
Posts Categorized: How to learn languages with songs and the media
Minde, a Portuguese village of 3000 people, has its own language, Minderico.
DSCN1304Minderico developed as a secret language of the textile merchants in the town of Minde. When I heard it, I couldn’t understand anything even though the language has Latin roots.
How do an exercise bike and a Brazilian Portuguese language book go together? Well, one keeps me from falling asleep because of the other. Problem: I like languages but I fall asleep reading grammar books.
January not only brought in a new year, it brought in three new books! First, I updated Language is Music with about 30 new tips on language learning using music, TV, radio, movies and other media and I added information from scientific studies about the relationship of music and language, bilingualism and language learning. Then… Read more »
Fortunately, a scant few of us will ever be in a life or death situation requiring foreign language knowledge. However, Canetti’s example is not the only example of how a multilingual person in the Balkans used a language to save a life.
I’m co-producing the documentary, Saved by Language, with Bryan Kirschen about how Moris Albahari saved his life in the Holocaust by speaking in Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) to an Italian Colonel and a US pilot.
Melody and rhythm are important to learning a tonal language like Mandarin, but learning a tonal language through music is not the same as learning a non-tonal language like French.
While politicians bicker about how to re-organize and finance schools, parents worry about their children’s academic performance and low-performing students struggle to follow lessons, we are forgetting about a free, fun and extremely powerful tool to help us learn and remember: music.
We’ve probably heard of people improving their conversation skills in a language over a meal. I’m reversing the trend. Portuguese vocabulary goes up and the inches melt away. (Let me be ambitious and count in inches which are longer than centimeters!) When I say “reading Brazilian books on a bike to improve my Portuguese”, is… Read more »
Have you ever felt like traveling into your past while being marveled by the present? My trip to Budapest for the Polyglot Conference was both a trip to my past and a wonderful journey to be with others who are passionate about foreign languages. Before my trip to Budapest, I was in Mexico doing presentations… Read more »
An Introduction to Korean Indie Music for Korean Language Learners Guest post by Sam Gendreau It’s been 5 years since I started looking for some of the best possible—preferably noncommercial—Korean bands out there, and today is your lucky day because I’ll share some of my findings with you! It’s not an exhaustive list by any… Read more »