Tuesday, February 21, 2012
California State University Long Beach (CSULB) language department was awarded a $100,000 grant by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to further an initiative called French and Italian for Spanish Speakers.
"The program is rather fascinating, surrounding the idea of “intercomprehension” or the teaching and learning of more than one language at a time; in this case, creating courses for just Spanish speakers. San Pedro High School, one of the first participants in the initiative, offers French and Italian to its largely Latino student population; instead of treating students like "blank slates," the curriculum enhances what they already know (Spanish and English) with their new language (French or Italian), helping the student learn multiple languages at once. In other words, it uses the known language as a bridge to the other -- and have students come out trilingual following high school."