Learning a language in 22 hours -via Guardian

Joshua Foer. Photograph: Christopher Lane for the Guardian

This article is fascinating on so many levels: mnemonics, Congolese hunter-gatherers and their radically different perception of the world, benefits of gaming, etc. And of course, for people like me obsessed with language acquisition, the title says it all!

Have you ever tried using memory techniques for language learning? What are some of the tools or experiences you’ve used or had which worked or didn’t?

In any case, enjoy the article!



New research says “baby signing classes ‘fail to boost toddlers’ language skills”

From an interesting article in the Telegraph. Any thoughts?

Personally, I’d never read that baby signing would boost language skills, just aid in earlier communication since babies’ hand coördination develops earlier than physiology for word-formation.  For me, it was a great bridge as we didn’t know what language our little P or C would start using for their first words.

I’d love to hear about other people’s experience.


Honest Language Lessons: Русский

Honest Language Lessons: Русский.

I’ve never just reposted someone’s post and I’ll admit I was curious to see what the ‘Press This’ button does exactly. (Pretty much what it says on the tin…)

The Greenery is a wonderful blog and I adore this post.  It also fits in to my current thoughts on adult language learning. If I can ever work through this block, more will be posted. In the meantime, enjoy this wonderful post!

Karambolage: Factoids and Language Learning Bliss

Karambolage: Factoids and Language Learning Bliss via Slate.

Forget naff exchanges about the weather and where the bank is located. These dull as dishwater language basics may be tried and tested, but the end result, as far as I can tell, is a big fat FAIL.

Instead, check out this fabulous program Karambolage. It is made up of superb animations and covers fascinating topics like the origins of Cordon Bleue or how bunnies and eggs became associated with easter.

Drawbacks? You need to sit patiently through the annoying 40 seconds of disco beats and a dismembered head floating around a black screen. Seems like a short amount of time but trust me when I tell you it feels like an eternity. (Disclaimer: part of this could be my sucky wi-fi connection). It is also only available in French and German.