Intergenerational Language Transmission and Social Identity (by Dr Ruth Kircher)

This week’s blog post includes a linked audio file. Just click on the link below if you would like to hear the post read aloud. Scroll down to read the text.

Ruth Kircher is a researcher at the Mercator European Research Centre on Multilingualism and Language Learning, which is part of the Fryske Akademy in Leeuwarden, Netherlands.

When I visited Montreal for a conference fifteen years ago, it was not only love at first sight but also love at first sounds. The remarkable soundscape of the many different languages spoken in the streets of the city is very different from where I grew up: I was raised in a small town in Germany that was, and still is, almost entirely monolingual – including my parents’ household.

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Reflections on Heritage Language teaching and learning (by Emmanouela Tisizi)

For the past three years, I have been working as a Greek heritage language teacher in a Greek secondary school in Montreal. The first two years, I was assigned grade 10 classes, whereas this year, I was assigned a grade 7 class. I consider myself very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with students of different ages. Even though I have taken several courses on children’s developmental psychology, pedagogics, and school psychology, I truly believe that being given the opportunity to work with students of different ages has been by far the most informative experience I have had.

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Are you in or out? Indigenous and minority languages shaping the linguistic landscape (by April Passi)

After the chaos of a summer filled with travelling, working, family visits and July 1stdéménagement”, I was grateful to barbecue with good friends in my new backyard. We
reconnected over food, stories and laughter, updating each other on our summer adventures. The stories were told in a variety of languages too, showing off the multilingual competencies of my friends. English seemed to be the common language, but at a few different moments throughout the evening, some groups formed to share and laugh in Arabic or Spanish, neither of which I speak or understand. I observed these small groups admiringly…but with the distinct feeling that I was an observer, an outsider.

Multilingual BBQ space 🙂

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