Here is a recent review of my book, The Bilingual Revolution, The Future of Education is in Two Languages, written by Frederic Colier for The Epoch Times’ Books du Jour column, alongside Tides, by Jonathan White, Say Bonjour to the Lady: Parenting From Paris to New York, by Florence Mars and Pauline Lévêque, and Never Out of Season by Rob Dunn.
Lors de mon séjour en Suisse pour participer au Symposium on Philanthropy in Education (article en anglais), j’ai eu la chance de pouvoir rencontrer Sami Kanaan, Conseiller administratif en charge du Département de la culture et du sport à la ville de Genève et discuter avec lui d’éducation multilingue. J’ai pu ainsi mieux comprendre les enjeux éducatifs d’une ville comme Genève où tous les enfants grandissent en parlant plusieurs langues.
Vivre en Suisse, c’est être exposé quotidiennement au multilinguisme. Un avantage indéniable ! Les quatre langues nationales sont l’allemand, le français, l’italien et le romanche. Toutes ces langues, sauf le romanche, ont un statut identique en tant que langue officielle au niveau national au sein de l’administration fédérale de la Confédération Suisse. Mais il y a également de nombreuses communautés linguistiques dans les centres urbains comme Genève qui ont du mal à maintenir leur héritage linguistique et culturel. J’ai rencontré plusieurs parents libanais, chinois et portugais pour qui être multilingue signifie, à la fois, parler les langues du pays et préserver la leur. C’est là où, à mon sens, mon livre, La Révolution bilingue, a un rôle à jouer à Genève.
Après cette discussion, je suis allé à la légendaire Galerie Papiers-Gras dans la vieille ville de Genève où j’ai pu partager mon livre, La Révolution bilingue, avec de nouveaux ami(e)s, dont Roland Margueron, le propriétaire de la galerie-librairie, Georges Schwizgebel, un réalisateur de films d’animation maintes fois récompensé, et bien d’autres encore ! La galerie accueillait une exposition d’une artiste de Zurich, Anna Sommer, dans le cadre du festival féminin Les Créatives.
I was interviewed earlier this Month by Elizabeth Rose Daly for her blog, Liz daly’s Culture Digest. I spoke about my new book The Bilingual Revolution, the development of dual-language programs in New York City public schools, and the various models applied by the different linguistic communities I worked with (Polish, German, Japanese, etc.). Continue reading
I co-wrote a chapter in the newly issued Routledge Handbook of Heritage Language Education with Jane Ross and Benoît Le Dévédec: Institutionalization of French Heritage language Education in U.S. School Systems, the French Heritage language Program. Continue reading
March 20th marks the official International Francophonie Day, a celebration observed every year within the International Organization of La Francophonie’s 84 member states to celebrate the French language and Francophone cultures. In the United States, the American Community Survey counts a little over 1.3 million Francophones (U.S. Census Bureau, 2013). Speakers of a language other than English undergo constant assimilation pressures, amid an ocean of English and dominant monolingualism. Francophones in this country do not escape this rule and are challenged to maintain the practice of French at home, at school, and in their communities through various modes of transmission and education. Long-established Francophone populations in the United States have shown a strong desire to maintain and even revitalize “their French” after a long decline of language use, often linked to more or less violent forms of discrimination. Continue reading
Here is my latest contribution to Heritage Language Education in the U.S. written with Jane Ross, Joseph Dunn, Lauren Ducrey, and Julia Schulz: “Sustainability of French Heritage Language Education in the United States” published in Handbook of Research and Practice in Heritage Language Education by Springer International Handbooks of Education. Continue reading
I was interviewed by Steve Norman for a Burlington cable TV channel. The City Council of Burlington, VT is promoting French friendliness towards its visitors, and a French dual language program is being considered for one of the local elementary schools. I spoke about my background in bilingual education, presented a few examples of dual language programs in Utah, Massachusetts, and New York, and talked about the Bilingual Revolution -both the movement and the book that I am currently writing. I also discussed various options to consider when implementing a French dual language program. Continue reading
French heritage language speakers in the United States face multiple challenges as they attempt to maintain French as a living language, despite the fact that French is one of the most commonly studied foreign languages in the country (second in the list of most common languages offered in elementary and secondary schools after Spanish, and before Latin, German, and Chinese). The case of French is particularly interesting, because French heritage language speakers represent several distinct geographic populations and different historical circumstances, from recent immigrants to settlements dating back several centuries. Franco-Americans and Acadians in Maine and Cajuns in Louisiana serve as examples of revitalization efforts to protect and encourage the vitality of French as an indigenous language. Continue reading
How do you identify yourself? Are you American? French? Mexican? Latino? African? Haitian? Canadian? Quebecois? As the world becomes increasingly integrated and interconnected, cultural identity has taken on new meaning and importance. The ability to understand our own culture and the cultural heritage of others is essential for our shared humanity. It is also a powerful asset in a world that is increasingly more interconnected and competitive.
On Saturday, April 12, we examined these topics at the Lycée Français de New York with leading educators, policy makers, entrepreneurs and practitioners from around the world. The conference “My Culture, Your Culture: International Education for Success in the 21st Century” explored cultural identity and diversity, and how best to prepare our students for success in the future. You can watch the video of the different panels below. Continue reading
What’s the best age to start and master a new language? Are bilingual students smarter? Does knowing two languages offer advantages in learning how to read, write and do math? Does being bilingual have an impact on our personal and emotional development? These themes, and many more, were addressed during the daylong conference, Living with Two Languages: the Advantages of Being Bilingual, at the Lycée Français de New York on Saturday, April 13. Experts from the United States, France and Canada, including renowned researchers, Ofelia García and Ellen Bialystok, author Karen Le Billon, and chef Eric Ripert, explored bilingualism from the perspectives of education, sociology, psychology and gastronomy. Continue reading