Tag: learning

Learning Languages Modifies Brain Network

According to a Sino-American study published recently in the Journal of Neurolinguistics, learning a new language changes your brain network both structurally and functionally."Learning and practicing something, for instance a second language, strengthens the brain," said Ping Li, professor of psychology, linguistics, and information sciences and technology at Pennsylvania State University. "Like physical exercise, the more you use specific...

When Language and Learning Get Tough

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John Carr offers strategies for identifying and serving the growing population of English learners with learning difficultiesIn the 2012-2013 school year, there were approximately 1,346,000 English learners (ELs) in California’s K–12 public education system (California Department of Education, 2013). It is estimated that, in general, 15% of students should qualify for special education services (Root, 2010), so it is...

Babies Learning Words on the Edge

A new study shows babies memorize first and last syllables.New research from the journal, Child Development, offers insight into how babies acquire language. The article, “Verbal Positioning Memory in 7-Month-Olds,” posits that word “edges” are the most important word parts for language acquisition.More...

MIT Study Reveals Secret to Language Learning – Don’t Try Too Hard

Proof that language learners should let it flowIn a new study, a team of neuroscientists and psychologists led by Amy Finn, a postdoc at MIT’s McGovern Institute for Brain Research, has found evidence for an important factor that contributes to adults’ language difficulties: When learning certain elements of language, adults’ more highly developed cognitive skills actually get in the...

Learning by repetition blurs nuance

A new study by University of California, Irvine neurobiologists Zachariah Reagh and Michael Yassa have found that while repetition enhances the factual content of memories, it can reduce the amount of detail stored with those memories. This means that with repeated recall, nuanced aspects may fade away. The findings could have significant implications for more advanced language learners.Click here...

Let Learning Emerge

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Diane Larsen-Freeman applies lessons from complexity theory to language educationComplexity theory (CT) deals with complex, dynamic, and nonlinear systems. When I first encountered CT some 20 years ago, it was not in the context of language. However, I couldn’t think of many things that were more complex, dynamic, and nonlinear than language (Larsen-Freeman, 1997). And it soon became...

Language Learning Alters Brain

According to a joint study by the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital – The Neuro at McGill University and Oxford University, the age at which children learn a second language can have a significant bearing on the structure of their adult brain. The study concludes that the pattern of brain development is similar if you learn one or two languages...

EMC Languages: New Online Learning Platform

Increasing student fluency in world languages and providing educators with innovative technology are the goals of a new ten-year partnership between EMC Publishing, a division of New Mountain Learning, and the University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development (CEHD). This collaborative partnership will build EMC Languages, a new online environment for teaching and learning world languages in...

Columnist Calls Language Learning Useless

In a recent column for the Washington Post, Why Waste Time on a Foreign Language?, Jay Mathews argues that "based on what actually happens in high schools, learning a foreign language often is a waste of time."Language Magazine staffer Kate Sommers-Dawes has responded in her own letter to the editor. Click here to read her response (registration may be required).