This is a video timeline depicting speech development milestones in the human and the progressive acquistion of skills from prosody to making a case for yourself!
(based on Sousa, D. A. (2011) How the ELL brain learns.)
||Responds to prosody
||Recognises word boundaries
||Attaches meaning to words
||Recognises noun/verb differences
||Recognises other grammatical functions
||Most language activity moves to the left hemisphere
Here are some interesting excerpts:
Scientists are discovering that the brain wave patterns that an individual emits when at rest can predict how fast that adult can learn a second language.Although the fastest learner was twice as fast as the slowest, in the end, they both attained the same level of proficiency.
“We’ve found that a characteristic of a person’s brain at rest predicts 60 percent of the variability in their ability to learn a second language in adulthood.”
“By studying individual differences in the brain, we’re figuring out constraints on learning and information processing in hopes of developing ways to improve language learning…” (Prof. Chantel Prat)
Are Some Learners Wired to Learn Languages Faster?
I’m bilingual English and Portuguese. I also speak French, Italian and Spanish.
I consider myself bilingual because I can think in both languages…When I’m talking in Portuguese, I don’t translate from English and then deliver it in Portuguese and vice versa.
How he defines bilingualism:
For me, to be truly bilingual, you can’t have studied it…because it means that you’re always in your mother language and then translating based on what you’ve learnt. It’s not ‘organic’…I know that sounds a strange word…
Click this link to view ‘The First Year’ article (Bhattachargee) Which is more important: Nature or Nurture?
Here are just a few interesting excerpts:
“Hallam Hurt and her team found that children who received more attention and nurturing at home tended to have higher IQs. Children who were more cognitively stimulated performed better on language tasks and those nurtured more warmly dd better on memory tasks.”
“The Philadelphia study (…) 2010, was one of the first to demonstrate that childhood experience shapes the structure of the developing brain. (…) despite coming prewired with mind-boggling capacities, the brain depends heavily on environmental input to write itself further (…) by the interplay between nature and nurture.”
Patricia Kuhl shares with us what modern tools of neuroscience are revealing about the ‘critical periods’ for language learning. “No scientist disputes this.” (Kuhl)