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By Silvina Iglesias Spanish Curriculum Coordinator James B. Sanderlin Elementary School.

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Presentation on theme: "By Silvina Iglesias Spanish Curriculum Coordinator James B. Sanderlin Elementary School."— Presentation transcript:

1 By Silvina Iglesias Spanish Curriculum Coordinator James B. Sanderlin Elementary School

2 American Council on The Teaching of Foreign Languages CAL Center for Applied Linguistics FFLA Florida Foreign Language Association

3 National Virtual Translation Center  How many languages are spoken in the world? There are roughly 6,800 languages spoken on this planet. 96% of them are spoken by a mere 4% of the world’s population.

4  Where are these languages spoken? 2,200 in Asia. 2,060 in Africa. 1,300 in the Pacific. 1,000 in the Americas. 230 in Europe. Estimated distribution of world languages

5  Why study Spanish? 1. Chinese (937,132,000) 2. Spanish (332,000,000) 3. English (322,000,000) 4. Bengali (189,000,000) 5.Hindi/Urdu (182,000,000) 6.Arabic* (174,950,000) 7.Portuguese (170,000,000) 8.Russian (170,000,000) 9.Japanese (125,000,000) 10. German (98,000,000) The Summer Institute for Linguistics Survey (1999) lists top languages by population (native speakers):

6  Why study Spanish? 1. Mandarin Chinese (1.2 billion) 2. English (330 million) 3. Spanish (300 million) 4. Hindi/Urdu (250 million) 5. Arabic (200 million) 6. Bengali (185 million) 7. Portuguese (160 million) 8. Russian (160 million) 9. Japanese (125 million) 10. German (100 million) List from George Weber’s article “The Worlds 10 Most Influential Languages” in Language Today (Vol. 2, Dec 1997) (number of native speakers in parentheses)

7  Educational Benefits: Children who learn a 2nd language show improved performance in basic skills such as reading and math. Students of average intelligence seem to make particularly impressive gains in reading skills.

8  Educational Benefits: Children exposed to 2 languages from a very early age “grow as if there were 2 mono-linguals housed in one brain, and there is no contamination of either language by the other. The earlier and more intensively the languages are introduced, the better.”

9  Educational Benefits: Vygotsky (1986) “It has been shown that a child’s understanding of his native language is enhanced by learning a foreign one.” Students in FLES programs have more practice and experience w/ the TL than older students, leading to greater fluency and effectiveness. Scovel (1988) “... children, but not adults, can attain native like pronunciation in the 2nd language.”

10  Cognitive Benefits: Students in FLES programs were reported to have greater skills in divergent thinking/figural creativity than did those who were monolingual.

11  Cognitive Benefits: Students learning another language can show greater creativity in complex problem solving. People who are competent in more than 1 language outscore monolinguals on tests of verbal and nonverbal intelligence,

12 An early introduction to language study fosters respect and appreciation of cultural diversity. The age of 10 is a crucial time in the development of attitudes toward nations and groups perceived as “other.” Children are in the process of moving from egocentricity to reciprocity, and information introduced before age 10 is well received.  Attitudinal Benefits:

13 Children prior to age 11 are naturally more open to linguistic and cultural differences and are therefore inquisitive about the diverse peoples of the world.

14  Socio Cultural Benefits: Proficiency in multiple languages permits individuals to expand their world. Leads to greater intercultural understanding, tolerance, appreciation and respect.

15  Socio Cultural Benefits: Learning to speak another’s language means reaching out to others across cultural and linguistic boundaries. Language is far more than a system to be explained. It is our most important link to the world around us. Language is culture in motion. It is people interacting with people.

16  Economic Benefits: Proficiency in another language will enhance career potential, and will open up job prospects in business, the diplomatic corps, tourism, or communications. In the global marketplace, there are plenty of jobs that call for bilingual proficiency. 4 out of 5 new jobs in the United States are created as a result of foreign trade, and the global market place is an ever-growing reality.

17  Economic Benefits: Business, cultural, political, and social activities around the world call for people with different language and cultural backgrounds.

18 FIN

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