teaching foreign languages at an early age

Tom Givon tgivon at uoregon.edu
Wed Jan 12 01:42:38 UTC 2011

Well, maybe it is also worth mentioning that when you get into 
Catalunia, you get into thick layers of language politics and liberation 
ideology. So sometimes it is not all that easy to tell when the science 
ends and something else begins. Of course, Catalunia is not the only 
place where this can be observed. But once you get into the convoluted 
relations between a dominant/imperial language and an 
indigenous/liberation language, it becomes harder to do simple science. 
People have all kinds of axes to grind. Our earlier discussion last year 
about the Israeli-Arabic situation certainly overlapped with these 
issues. I am not so worried about the oft-subconscious effect of 
socio-linguistic factors on SLA. This should be studied as part of 
science. It is the deliberate ideologs that scare me.  Best,  TG


On 1/11/2011 6:23 PM, anne marie devlin wrote:
> Just to add to the debate on teaching foreign languages at an early age. The Munoz article mentioned earlier is part of a much larger project entitled the Barcelona Age Factor (BAF).  Although Munoz did suggest that early foreign language teaching produced no long term results, she did say that intense exposure to a foreign language at an early age does have a long term impact.  So the question is not necessarily whether to introduce foreign languages at an early stage, but how much exposure is necessary to have a long term impact.  As an interesting aside re: monolinguals and their resistance to their 1st FL, it's worth pointing out that Munoz's informants are bilingual Catalan/Spanish speakers, so the resistance towards a first foreign language may also be common to bilinguals.
> AMD 		 	   		

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