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Global languages: English and other future top languages Dr Ursula Lanvers Open University Dr Kristina Hultgren Open University.

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Presentation on theme: "Global languages: English and other future top languages Dr Ursula Lanvers Open University Dr Kristina Hultgren Open University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Global languages: English and other future top languages Dr Ursula Lanvers Open University Dr Kristina Hultgren Open University

2  Think about a time when you’ve met a non- English speaking person in the UK or abroad: what language did you speak?

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4  The number of English speakers in the world is  A: Greater than the number of Chinese speakers  B: Smaller than the number of Chinese speakers

5  How many languages are there in the world? A Nearly 7,000 B About 1,000 C About 900 D Nearly 1 million

6 Speakers of English as a percentage of world population native=first language

7  How many official languages does South Africa have? A 8 B 2 C 11

8  Which country in the world has the most languages? A Switzerland B Papua New Guinea C Luxemburg

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10 LanguageMother tongue speakers Chinese 848 million Hindi/Urdu 500 million Arabic 485 million Spanish 415 million English 335 million

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12  What are the three most widely spoken first languages today?

13  How many languages are spoken in Manchester?

14 speaking_population english-speaking-countries-as-a-comfort-to-non-speakers/ centre/index.php?doc_id=2442&lg=fr ber_of_speakers spoken-languages-in-the-world/

15 1. Answer A There are nearly 7000 languages in the world 2. Answer C South Africa has 11 official languages including English, Afrikaans, Ndebele, Sotho, Northern Sotho, Zulu, Xhosa (a click language)

16 3. Answer B Papua New Guinea is the country with most languages (838) 4. If you mentioned three of these five you were right: Chinese, Hindi, Arabic, Spanish, English 5. There are more than 150 languages in Manchester

17 How being bilingual works What being bilingual does to you Bilingual: fluent (or highly competent) in 2 languages Dr Ursula Lanvers Open University Dr Kristina Hultgren Open University

18 Get into your teams! (Answer sheet? Team name?) listen to experts on bilingualism learn about brain functions and bilingualism Quiz: Results day!

19  Bilinguals store one language in one hemisphere (left /right side) of the brain, the other language in the other hemisphere. TRUE OR FALSE?

20  Prof. Ellen Bialystok  world leader on bilingualism and the brain  scientist at the Rotman Research Institute of the Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care (Canada)  watch her perform a kind of intelligence test & take part!   Minute  Literate=able to read  Executive control=(fast) control over different brain activities  Stimulus= what the test person needs to react to  Congruent=matching

21 Discuss: Were the tasks difficult for you? Why are bilinguals better? Will bilinguals always have this advantage- even when old? Orange Blue Green Pink Purple Pink

22 How many languages can one person learn? A up to 6 if learned in childhood B there is no limit C up to 12 if they are related, like French and Spanish, for example Dup to 18 if learned early in life

23 Prof Bialystok tested for differences in onset (start) of dementia between bilinguals and monolinguals She was so surprised by the results she repeated the tests with lots of different patients Bialystok, E., Craik, F. I., & Freedman, M. (2007). Bilingualism as a protection against the onset of symptoms of dementia. Neuropsychologia, 45 (2), Why these differences? Do they have to do with to the differences in bilingual children? Mean value (and standard deviation) first problem noticed first hospital appointment monolinguals71.4 (9.4)75.4 (9.3) bilinguals75.5 (8.5)78.6 (8.4) Bilingualism and dementia

24  Bilingual children are better than monolinguals at recognizing links between meanings of words, for instance Plane-bus: both are vehicles. TRUE OR FALSE?

25  Bilingual teenagers are better at learning to drive. TRUE OR FALSE?

26  JaY JaY  Are bilingual brains bigger?  Do bilingual brains develop faster?  So bilinguals are better at ‘executive function’ of the brain- any advantages?  Prefrontal cortex: part of brain behind forehead  Neuroplasticity: flexibility of the brain, ability to form new networks  Cognitive function: thinking ability

27  Bilingual babies can separate the languages as early as 7 months  They use qualities like pitch and duration of sounds to keep two languages separate  Pitch: the degree of ‘highness’ or ‘lowness’ of a tone  Duration: the length of time a sound is produced  Hearing two languages from birth gives children advantages that can last a lifetime  Therefore they can differentiate the languages long before they can speak, when they are just babbling  Kovács, Á. M., & Mehler, J. (2009). Cognitive gains in 7-month-old bilingual infants. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106 (16),  Werker, J. F., & Byers-Heinlein, K. (2008). Bilingualism in infancy: First steps in perception and comprehension. Trends in cognitive sciences, 12 (4),

28 Children learning 3 languages from birth  A will become fluent in all 3 if given enough input  B will mix up all languages  C will speak all 3 languages but none of them like monolinguals (speaker of one language only)

29  Bilinguals are better at maths.  TRUE OR FALSE?

30 Q 1 Bilinguals store one language in one hemisphere (left /right side) of the brain, the other language in the other hemisphere. False. Bilinguals store language in the same parts of the brain as monolinguals but  the size of some brain parts (pre-frontal cortex) that process language  the density of neural networks in these parts are greater in bilinguals. =- 1&sk=#view=detail&mid=C174AFC75C58570A3 636C174AFC75C58570A3636

31  Q 2  How many languages can a person learn?  B There is no upper limit.  ….some speak 20 like this 17 year old New Yorker….. ….some speak 20 like this 17 year old New Yorker…..  uages&qs=n&form=QBVR&pq=individual+speaking+30+different+languages&sc =0-0&sp uages&qs=n&form=QBVR&pq=individual+speaking+30+different+languages&sc =0-0&sp

32 Q 3 Bilingual children are better than monolinguals at recognizing links between meanings of words, for instance Plane-bus: both are vehicles. True. Q 4 Bilingual teenagers are better at learning to drive. False. There is no evidence that bilingualism has much impact on the ability to learn to drive BUT they are likely to be better at filtering out irrelevant information and concentrate on the important information.

33 Q 5 C Children learning 3 languages from birth will become fluent in all 3 if given enough input. If the input in the 3 languages is relatively balanced, they will become like 3 monolinguals in 1. Q 6 False. Although bilinguals have some cognitive advantages, there is no evidence (yet) to suggest that bilinguals are better at maths.


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