lundi 29 août 2011

Metaphors and Language Learning

A metaphorical work of art, La trahison des images,
René Magritte
As my début post on the Easy Languages blog, I thought I'd kick things off with a theoretical musing that's been bubbling away at the back of my mind for some time. It's not only fascinating but it also sheds some light on the elusive, frustrating, but endlessly beguiling enigma that is our capacity for language - and how we learn it.

vendredi 19 août 2011

Office Update: Welcoming three new interns to the Easy Languages team

It seems like just yesterday we began saying our goodbyes to some interns. Alas as the clock moves forward and the days turn into months, we see fresh faces come and go. This post is on a happier note, fresh faces! We're excited about 3 new interns joining us the month who together represent three separate countries: Italy, England, and the Netherlands!

lundi 15 août 2011

Win 2 Weeks of French Lessons in Brussels!

The gorgeous flower carpet of Grand Place
At Easy Languages, we want to see the world become bilingual. Each person on our team has a passion for learning languages, so we’re putting our money where our mouth is. Starting now, we are announcing giveaway for a French language learning trip for 2 weeks including accommodation in Brussels, Belgium! Language immersion is the best to learn a new language. When you live, breath, and sleep with the language, you can’t help but absorb it. One lucky winner will be treated to this fantastic, immersive experience free of charge.


jeudi 11 août 2011

In the News: Why bringing up your child bilingual is awesome

A bilingual sign in Hong Kong

I recently found an cool article in Newsweek that makes an interesting argument for bringing up children bilingual. While it's still not understood exactly why, children who are immersed in two languages from an early age receive an extra boost in their brain development. Beyond that, these children grow up with a "global consciousness,"  awesome stuff. Looks like the parents responsible for the blog Bringing Up Baby Bilingual have the right idea.

While Easy Languages currently doesn't offer programs to students this young, we do offer some cool language immersion summer camps in France and Spain for kids ages 12 and up. Check 'um out!

Photo: yosoynuts
Source: The Daily Beast

jeudi 4 août 2011

In the News: How language separates us from the chimps

Do you ever wonder how freaking cool it is that you can turn puffs of air into sound waves? Not only that, but you can use those puffs of air to make someone smile or laugh or maybe even love you? Certainly it's not a normal thought that crosses our minds, but Mark Pagel makes a living of it with his study of language evolution. Mr. Pagel believes that one day we will speak a single universal language, but until then, learning new languages will remain pivotal for international cooperation. Click "read more" to check out his Ted talk.

mardi 2 août 2011

A "Dead" Language Lives On: The Significance of Learning Latin

Place St. Michel in the Latin Quarter of Paris
Latin. It is the mother root of almost every European language that exists today and is present in 60% of the English vocabulary. So more than half of our words derive from this long-time considered "dead" language.  But in this study of Latin history and it's relevance to understanding languages, I will argue that this subject is very much still alive. A basic knowledge of Latin can aide anyone trying to learn a foreign language, particularly the romance languages like Spanish and Italian for example. But learning Latin can unexpectedly help even with learning other challenging languages.  For example, Greek and Russian may seem quite different from other European, romantic languages but surprisingly share some similar characteristics with Latin, specifically in relation to the large amount of varying inflections in the language.  So in this article we will be going through the importance of Latin and some of it's history for those of you who are constantly interested in learning new languages or travelling....

lundi 1 août 2011

The Beauty of Learning Abroad: Central and South America

South America in Portuguese

In an effort to show you the beauty that can be found at every one of our destinations around the globe, we will be crawling Flickr for photos that grasp the inherent allure of every city on our map. First up Central and South America countries!