US Department of Education

Proposed cuts in funding for foreign language programs in US

Public foreign language programs may now be cut or eliminated because of education budget cuts to the Foreign Language Assistance Program (FLAP), the only source of federal funding for K-12 foreign language programs. This...

Multilingual California beaten by Rhode Island, offering trilingual school

I live in Silicon Valley where Mandarin Chinese is widely spoken by the large Taiwanese and mainland Chinese community in the area. However, the schools in Cupertino only offer Mandarin immersion programs from Kindergarten...

How to raise a bilingual or multilingual kid

I am typing this just after having a trilingual conversation with my nephew who just came back from Ecuador. When I speak to him in Russian, he responds in Spanish. When I speak to...
People communicate online in different languages communication concept

Why It’s Smart to Be Bilingual: The brain’s real super-food may be learning new...

A recent article in Newsweek, Why it's smart to be bilingual, shows some positive and negative elements of multilingualism. I didn't know that those who know more than one language may have a reduced vocabulary...
Multiple personalities with different languages

Mutlilingual identity: diversity of languages and ways of being

Scientific American magazine published an article about how speaking various languages can alter the personality of the speaker: Polyglots Might Have Multiple Personalities People take on different character traits depending on which language they are using This...
english as a second language

Multilingual identity: I have to speak all my languages to be ME

So far, I've written about language learning and the importance of being multilingual. But I haven't covered a much more personal and psychological element of being a polyglot: my multilingual identity. I joke that...
Men and women, different languages

Why female foreign language students or speakers may not practice or show their languages

Multilingual women, where are you? In late January, I had a Skype call with Benny Lewis for about two hours to discuss our language learning trajectories and I asked him why there were more male...
Crown Princess Masako

Famous Women who speak foreign languages, Do you know of any?

As I am thinking of ways to promote women and girls learning foreign languages and showing their linguistic prowess, I compiled a list of famous and powerful women who are multilingual. Some of them use...
Lemonade pitcher with lemons

Making lemonade from lemons, turning the burden of being a polyglot into a skill...

I wrote a blog post for my Polyglot Project Podcast interview about why I believe it's imperative for people to learn foreign languages. It's based on my family's history leaving the former USSR. Here it...
Student ridiculed

Speaking your native (heritage) language despite ridicule

It’s assumed that just because I grew up speaking Russian that it was always easy for me to speak Russian. No way! My parents’ Soviet immigrant friends liked to talk about how well their children...

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