"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
Bridging Discourses in the ESL Classroom: Students, Teachers, and Researchers. Pauline Gibbons. New York: Continuum, 2006. Pp. 256. $60.00 paper.
In English-speaking countries with large numbers of immigrants, like the United States and Australia, children from non-English-speaking families are very likely to encounter difficulties in learning English and content knowledge simultaneously. In particular, one of the greatest challenges for English as a second language (ESL) children lies in their tendency to use everyday language (i.e., language acquired in informal situations, such as playing) in academic settings. Gibbons' work presents a research project that examines real-life content-based classroom interactions in which ESL children's English and content knowledge learning are facilitated. It makes an invaluable contribution to the effort to help ESL learners make a successful transition from everyday informal language to specialized academic registers.