Book-based discussions on bilingualism fill the role of a much-needed voice that can promote the inherent value of learning and teaching languages from birth, one that can influence policymakers, academics, and administrators and provide a space to discuss ideas and solutions to the challenges of educating bilingual children. In this follow-up to The Bilingual Revolution: The Future of Education is in Two Languages, Dr. Fabrice Jaumont delves deeper into the topics of bilingualism, bilingual education, and cognitive development through a series of conversations with world-renown experts from the Americas, Europe, and Africa: Ana Ines Ansaldo, Ellen Bialystok, Mbacké Diagne, Ofelia García, François Grosjean, and Christine Hélot.
Conversations on Bilingualism expands on the work of the author to advance multilingualism, empower multilingual families and linguistic communities, and foster cross-cultural understanding. It also advocates for language as a critical life skill through the development and implementation of strong educational programs that promote diversity and equality—as well as those that battle inequality head-on. With this book, the bilingual revolution is far from over; the movement for multilingualism and multiculturalism has just begun to take hold. It is not just about the battle for quality education but is also about self-awareness and the deepening of our understanding of ourselves as human beings—both as bilingual individuals and as members of multilingual communities. In Conversations on Bilingualism, Dr. Jaumont takes an unprecedented look at bilingualism as an essential life skill. Linguistic diversity is an untapped resource that can be harnessed not only to promote global equality, but also to optimize cognitive development, drive cultural understanding, and foster cross-cultural collaboration.
Two important points cut across the key areas discussed in this book: first, bilingualism is beneficial both for schools and society as a whole; second, multilingualism must be understood and taught properly to ensure the balanced cognitive development of children. This book will serve as a valuable resource for helping children and adult bilinguals alike to understand and develop their language skills, combat social inequalities, foster linguistic diversity and cross-cultural awareness, and advance education initiatives in their respective fields.
We need to come together to protect and celebrate linguistic diversity. This is not about making the choice for or against bilingualism or multilingualism, but rather about empowering multilingual families, communities, and institutions so that they can diversify the way they educate their children. Bilingual education has a real impact on the lives of millions of children around the world. We must do much more and much better. It is important to teach our children the most useful thing that languages have taught us for thousands of years - how to listen, think, and articulate – by making bilingualism a priority. A multilingual society is a healthy one.
The bilingual revolution is here to stay for many reasons, the most important being that it works. It works for children, individuals, societies, and the global marketplace. Whether you see it or not, bilingualism is growing and changing, much like the populations it represents. The sooner we understand and embrace this phenomenon, the better everyone will be able to adapt to change. This book aims to shed light on many of the issues surrounding bilingualism and multilingualism as well as provide a path towards a more inclusive future by expanding language resources for all of us.
Whether you are a teacher and want to know more about bilingual techniques or a parent and want to understand why your child is speaking another language than you: this book is for you. It contains public talks by experts combined with the author's personal perspective on bilingualism. This presents readers with both the ideas thrust upon families and the teaching practices discussed in the contemporary educational spheres. If you're interested in this topic, I highly recommend adding Conversations on Bilingualism to your reading list!
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